Oddstøl Elektronikk AS was formed in 1929 and has a long and proud history. Operating in the electronics business, the company has over 80 years of experience in maritime electronics.
This long history has proven that it has both good adaptability and an innovative approach to the development of new products. The business predominantly works in telecommunications, with regards to project management, installation and service for shipping, offshore and land-based solutions.
Having delivered the first echo sounder in a Norwegian fishing boat in 1934, Oddstøl has been at the cutting edge of marine technologies ever since. Vidar Fagerheim, who is the company’s sales and marketing director, describes the main factors that set Oddstøl apart: “We have a specialised expertise, and we’re particularly strong in areas involving smaller components such as controls. In addition to this we are also one of the few companies that can provide the necessary experience and competence, in terms of skills and qualifications in all that we offer. Our people are unique in that respect and I would say that’s the main success factor for us.”
In 2009 Oddstøl delivered Norway’s first real-time maritime route information service for passenger speedboats in Møre og Romsdal County. This system is a part of the unique and groundbreaking AIS system, Shiplog, which Oddstøl designed together with Molde University College. Shiplog is a flexible AIS system that Oddstøl has developed and customised over several years in conjunction with Kristiansund Port and Vestbase, which is middle Norway’s leading supply base for logistics for the oil and gas industry. Vidar describes the product’s progress since its release: “Testing was completed showing good results just before Christmas of 2009, and the system has now been presented to potential users, with Norwegian ports and supply bases as our main target customers. Many ports are already using the system, and so we are very excited to see how successful the system will be.”
Shiplog allows users to define their own separate zones for registration and alarm functions. So for example, the dock area can be divided into different regions for these functions. The system also provides statistics, diagrams and other data, all based on each of the zones (quay areas) from the number of ports of call. Information such as IMO, vessel name, vessel call sign, vessel type, duration, arrival and departure are all systematically organised with a user-friendly search engine.
With its main applications in automatic statistics and alarm functions for different port operations, Shiplog offers real-time fleet management both for ship owners and as a route traffic service. Vidar elaborates on its potential: “The sky’s the limit when it comes to Shiplog, as it can easily adjust to meet our users wishes and needs. Platforms and big oil companies have shown a lot of interest in the system, and so far we have a contract with Shell for the delivery of raw data material. This is a market we will look specifically into growing.”
A particular benefit of using the system is that it can deliver a considerable saving through increased earnings, simplified and reliable quality assurance, increased efficiency and improved customer service. As a unique and modern AIS system, which has been developed together with users, Shiplog incorporates a customised interface that is the easiest and best way to get real-time overview of movements and live AIS information of all vessels. Shiplog users can have as many active maps in different presets as they want on one or several monitors. Besides the customised view and many automatic features, Shiplog offers professional sea charts and because it is an internet based, platform independent software, all the user requires is internet access, meaning that they can use hand-held terminals such as laptops, PDA or 3G mobile phones to operate the system. It can also integrate with accounting and logistics systems, as it is designed to work either as an independent system, or as the preferred AIS solution in a totality system.
In autumn 2009, Oddstøl became the first company in Norway to develop a real-time experience-based route traffic service at sea. It was delivered to Møre og Romsdal Fylke in November 2009. The system, called InfoSys, is based on Shiplog, and contains an advanced special algorithm. InfoSys has two main goals: firstly it will provide passengers with the very latest and most accurate information about the boats’ expected arrivals, through both monitors in terminals and a web solution, and secondly, it will generate statistics for delays towards the licensing donor, acting as a crucial tool for the route information service call centre.
Following recent success with its expanding service offering, Oddstøl is looking to develop the business in the coming years. As Vidar explains, an expanding workforce is also one of the main drivers for the company’s growth despite some uncertainty in the industry: “I am one of six new people to join the business, and as I mentioned earlier, we are currently hiring. As a company, we now have the economic muscle to expand and our new owners are aiming high. There is an element of the unknown in the shipbuilding business at the moment, but we are optimistic about the future. The challenge will be to get an analogous growth in the market for maritime service towards the sailing fleet. With our new products, such as Shiplog, we have a variety in our offering. In terms of services in general we are moving on from building to concentrate more on management services – that will be the main focus for us in the future and also the most challenging. However, as we relish a challenge we see this as a positive development, and thanks to our expanding product and service portfolio, and our workforce, we are very optimistic about the future.”
Services: Marine technologies