Nafsgreen team had the opportunity to participate to a celebration reception at Yacht Club of Greece after a kind invitation of Ecochlor and its exclusive agents in Greece, Euploia Drydocks and Services. We had the chance to have an interview with Mr. Tom Perlich, President of Ecochlor. The interview has as follows:
NAFS: Recently Ecochlor was recognised by Inc. 500|5000 as one of the fastest-growing manufacturing companies in the United States. What really lies behind this success?
TOM PERLICH: The exceptional growth was due to forward thinking / early adoptor ship owners. These ship owners understood the benefits of installing ballast water treatment systems before the big rush – which is expected to begin in 2018. These ship owners now have the experience in Class approval, installation, commissioning and system operation. Our sales growth is continuing this year and we expect even greater growth in 2018 and beyond.
NAFS: As a global leader in manufacturing ballast water treatment systems (BWTS), are you planing to continue building to your commitment to growth and excellence within the maritime industry, and in what ways?
TOM PERLICH: With the regulatory compliance quesitons both USCG and IMO now satisfied, we have been focused on stream-lining our manufacturing processes, building up our Technical Service network and expanding our chemical re-supply facilities around the world. We expect our already proven quality technology to be supported by exceptional service to our customers, which will in turn fuel further growth.
NAFS: Few days ago you said that “Ecochlor strives to identify new ways to enhance the experience of its clients”. Could you please explain what are these new ways?
TOM PERLICH: We believe crew training is the key to satisfying the regulatory requirements relating to Ballast Water Treatment. Our system is proven, the technology is superior and we feel the methodology is easy to learn and understand. Although we feel training on our system is easier than other methodologies – we are still committed to having comprehensive training programs for vessel-based crew and shore based support. We will soon be beta-testing our computer based awareness and operational training designed for on board use. We will also be providing a desk top simulation package for shore based training and familiarization to prepare crew and train support personnel at customer based training centers. Having an approved ballast water treatment system on board is only part of the answer to the regulations. The system must be fully approved, fully operational and fully understood by the crew.
NAFS: What are the means you are going to use to assist shipowners meet BWTS regulatory requirements in the most effective and efficient way?
TOM PERLICH: In order to “assist” we must first listen to the ship owners concerns and questions and then work together with the ship owners to satisfy the regulatory requirements. This support might be sharing our working knowledge of the regulations, explaining the compliance process that has been developed with other ship owners or modifying our training to suit the special needs of their crew and support personnel. It is clearly more than simply providing them with an approved piece of equipment for their vessels. Although we cannot accept responsibility for compliance, we consider ourselves to be partners in the goal of satisfying the many ballast water regulations around the world. This overall service and support is our primary goal and we want to be seen as an extension of the owners / managers technical support team.
NAFS: In early August Ecochlor’ BWTS received USCG Type Approval and it was the first chemical injection treatment system. As one of only five USCG Type Approved BWTS in the world, could you please tell us what this approval adds to Ecochlor?
TOM PERLICH: We believe our approval adds significantly to the options ship owners have to satisfy these regulatory requirements. Many vessels, especially large vessels see the operational limitations associated with the other treatment methodologies. We are free of those limitations such as treatment or neutralization on discharge and these unique features have driven the huge increase in demand from owners to learn more about the system and how to integrate the system on their fleet.
NAFS: Euploia Drydocks and Services Ltd is the Exclusive Agent for Ecochlor in Greece. Could you please highlight some parameters of this very good cooperation with Mr. Valentakis and his team?
TOM PERLICH: Euploia is the exclusive agent for the Ecochlor BWTS in Greece; it is a well-established company with very qualified managers. With more than 35 years of experience, Charis Valentakis, Managing Director of Euploia, is highly regarded with shipowners and fleet managers. His personnel integrity and credibility within the Greek market is appreciated and cherished by ship owners / managers and of course Ecochlor.
*President of Ecochlor