Vard Marine and ILS Announce a Collaborative Teaming Agreement
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Canada’s Vard Marine and Finland’s ILS Ship Design & Engineering Announce Collaborative Teaming Agreement

Vard Marine Inc and ILS Oy are delighted to announce an agreement to work together to develop design solutions for the global icebreaker market and to address the challenges of ice-capable shipping worldwide. The two companies are world leaders in this highly specialised field, with an extensive combined design portfolio and an impressive client base. Together, we are uniquely positioned to help shipbuilders, ship owners and operators in developing fit-for-purpose and sustainable vessel designs for both public and private sectors projects.

One area of cooperation will be the further development and implementation of ILS’ patented Detachable IceBreaking Bow (DIBB) in new markets. The ILS DIBB, with its independent power plant, allows icebreaking to become a modular capability that can be added to new and existing ships as and when required, rather than being built into the vessel with all the size, weight, cost and efficiency impacts that this implies. While detachable bows are not a new concept, the DIBB’s unique capabilities overcome many of the drawbacks of earlier approaches.

While the agreement is new, both companies have long respected each other’s corporate cultures and achievements. Most recently, Vard Marine has developed the conversion designs for the Canadian Coast Guard’s Medium Icebreakers (MIBs) from an original ILS hull design. These ships are now some of the Coast Guard’s most powerful and effective assets.

Vard Marine’s CEO Wade Carson notes: “Our agreement with ILS Oy will assist both companies in helping current and new clients in identifying their needs and in providing the designs that address these. The two companies’ shared values include putting our clients first and providing objective and unbiased advice.”

ILS’ CEO Kristian Lehtonen says: “During the last five years, we have done design and consulting work for paying customers in 14 different countries. Cooperation with the highly skilled professionals of Vard Marine will further expand our horizons. We are pleased and honoured to work with Vard Marine, as we share with them the same belief in hard work and commitment.”

About Vard Marine Inc: Established in 1983, Vard Marine is an independent naval architecture and marine engineering consultancy headquartered in Canada and is today a wholly-owned subsidiary of Norway’s Vard Group AS and in turn owned by global shipbuilding giant Fincantieri SpA.  Since the company’s inception, Vard Marine has become one of North America’s leading designers of specialised ships, including ice-capable vessels and icebreakers for the Canadian and US Coast Guards, The South African, Chilean and New Zealand Navies, as well as commercial clients worldwide. The Canadian Government has just announced that two polar icebreakers will be built in Canada to VARD’s 9 206 design.

About ILS Oy: ILS Ship Design & Engineering was established in 1988. Its track record in icebreaker designs includes well-known vessels such as the Fennica, Nordica, Botnica, the Tor Viking class, Finnish Navy’s OSRV Louhi and the new LNG-fuelled icebreaker Polaris operated by Arctia. ILS has also designed several icebreaking harbour and oil export terminal tugs. ILS-designed prototype DIBB recently completed ice trials in Finland, after a development programme including extensive model tank testing. The DIBB operated its first winter 2020-21 in East Finland’s lake district. Its icebreaking capability and manoeuvrability were proven excellent and its abilities have received praise from the masters of the merchant ships being assisted and from pilots.

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