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Håkan Enlund © Shippax

Håkan Enlund © Shippax

Quick Q&As – Håkan Enlund

InterviewThis interview with Håkan Enlund, EVP Sales and Marketing at Rauma Marine Constructions Oy (RMC), was first published in the March 2021 issue of our monthly magazine Shippax Info.


Name: Håkan Enlund

Position: EVP Sales and Marketing

Age: turned 65 on 21 February

Civil status and family: Married to Lisen, two adult daughters

Place of birth: Jakobstad, Finland

Please tell us about your career path in Finnish shipbuilding.

I hold a Master of Science degree in Applied Mechanics from the University of Oulu, Finland. My career started 1981 with the super yacht builder Baltic Yachts. Within the Hollming Group I was the key person in establishing the new Materials Technology Division, where I took on the management responsibility for the fairing hulls of the MIR I and II deep-sea submersible research vessels project.

During my 40-year carrier in the shipbuilding industry I had management responsibilities for car and passenger ferries as well as for special vessels, front-end technology development and sales. I have dedicated a great deal of my professional life to link academia with shipbuilding and the ferry industry in particular. Today, I am one of the key executives in Rauma Marine Constructions Oy (RMC) and have worked for it since its establishment in 2014. I hold several senior positions in the shipping industry, having served for 12 years on the Interferry Board of Directors, as well as having been the chairman of DNV GL’s Ferry Committee since 2003 and also member of the Advisory Board of Aalto University, Research Centre of Excellence for Arctic Shipping and Operations.

On a special note, I can tell you that during the polar supply and research vessel SA AGULHAS II’s 2012-2013 delivery and scientific voyage to Antarctica, I participated as the Chief Scientist on board for the full-scale ice trial programme.

Shipbuilding is a cyclical industry, but the Rauma shipyard has survived whilst many of your competitors haven’t. How come?

The yard in Rauma has held and still holds a high naval architecture and technology knowledge profile. Focusing on a special vessels portfolio, especially large ro-pax ferries, and having a flexibility to diversify within the portfolio to icebreakers, research vessels, offshore patrol vessels and naval craft for the Finnish Navy, has been a good platform to build on during different times. We have created and developed skills to be a good prototype builder. Capability to tailor a ferry concept solution for the operator’s needs and then to execute the project is another significant strength.

RMC has a healthy order book. Besides AURORA BOTNIA and MYSTAR, what other ships are there on order? What does the future hold – will we see more ro-pax ferries built by RMC?

In addition to these ferries, we have four corvettes to the Finnish Defence Logistics Command in our order book. For the future, we are working on a number of both ro-pax ferries and other special vessel projects. The active development and environmental focus create demanding and awarding opportunities.

In the past you built Stena’s large HSSs and ro-ros. Is a re-entry in the ro-ro market likely, a niche carved by Flensburger Shipyard?

Re-entering the ro-ro market is not likely as we assess the segment.

How many FTEs are there on the yard’s payroll and how many indirect jobs does the yard offer?

RMC’s own personnel is approximately 200 persons and at the yard through our network partners roughly 1,000 persons are working daily.

Due to the fairly limited workforce compared to bigger yards, do you have any limitations when it comes to ship size?

The yard area and facilities here in Rauma limit us in ferry size to about 65,000 gross tons.

RMC has become the most prolific builder of ro-pax tonnage in Europe – a position it also held as Finnyards, Aker Yards and STX Finland, stretching back almost thirty years. Rather than European yards, competition primarily comes from Chinese and South Korean yards. How to remain competitive in this market niche?

I think it comes from the platform we stand upon, the same root as how we survived, perhaps with the addition that there is a local strong and knowledgeable maritime network of companies here in the Rauma region and along the west coast of Finland.

You are chairing the DNG GL Ferry Committee – some readers might never have heard of this Ferry Committee. Who’s participating; what’s its purpose and what have been its achievements in recent years?

It is a position of trust. Members of the Committee are invited by the host DNV GL. Guest speakers and expertise can be invited on a case-by-case principle depending on the subject matter. Members represent the world-wide ferry industry. The Committee comprises operators, builders, designers and suppliers in a truly international mix. Many big thanks are due to DNV GL for hosting and facilitating this creative forum for advice and the exchange of information in regulatory matters.

What is your favourite ship built in Rauma?

PSRV SA AGULHAS II, the only ice-breaking polar research vessel with a passenger ship certificate, built for the Department of Environmental Affairs in South Africa. My favourite ferry to date is AURORA BOTNIA. She represents a major leap in the development of ferry technology.

What are your favourite pastime activities?

Music and skiing in various forms, downhill and cross-country, when there is an opportunity.   

Big yacht sailing.

What was your childhood dream job?

Technical leader of a helicopter factory.

What music do you like?

Scandinavian songs and ballads with a jazzy twist for entertainment.

What is your favourite dinner and drink combination?

South African game with a good Stellenbosch red.

Mar 01 2021

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