A technology start-up company based in South Africa with a unique ballast water treatment system, RBT was established almost a decade ago and, in 2006, secured equity finance from the Southern African Intellectual Property Fund ("SAIP Fund"), a venture capital fund that invests in South African high-tech companies with proprietary technologies that have global mass market potential.
"Investment in RBT was premised on the strengths of RBT's ballast water treatment system, especially its innovativeness as well as its simplicity. With space being limited onboard ships, the system has a very low footprint. Other strong advantages include the fact that it is relatively less capital intensive and that it has a low operating cost with low power usage," states Wellington Chadehumbe, the CEO of Triumph Venture Capital, the Fund Manager to the SAIP Fund.
Bernard Jacobs, the CEO of RBT points out that,"RBT's growth strategy focused on advancing its strengths in the technical arena, developing a novel ballast water treatment system that could be fitted onto the ballast discharge pipe and was ideal in the case of retrofitting existing ships."
"Part of the development phase also involved working with the International Marine Organisation's GloBallast initiative, which proved vital in enhancing the company's ballast water treatment system," remarks Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Fred Royan.
As part of its growth implementation strategy, RBT searched for a suitable strategic partner that had the requisite assets, geographic reach and resources in the shipping industry to facilitate the channeling of its technically advanced ballast water treatment system to appropriate customers. After a process of due diligence, the company entered into a strategic partnership with Wilhelmsen Maritime Services (WMS), a leading Norwegian marine repair and maintenance company that is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange.
"Under this beneficial partnership, WMS industrialises the technology and produces the ballast water treatment system at their production facilities while also marketing, selling and providing service and maintenance on the system globally," explains Jacobs. "RBT brings to the table its focus on developing the design and efficiencies of its ballast water treatment as well as exploring the opportunities of utilising the technology for other treatment applications."
RBT is strongly positioned to deliver the best customer value. The signing of the license agreement with Wilhelmsen will ensure that customers benefit from the expertise of Wilhelmsen in the marine industry as well as the high service standards delivered in its worldwide locations.
"The proactive approach of RBT is evident from the setting up of its own testing facility," concludes Royan. "As the certification process of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) for the testing and certifying of ballast water treatment systems is long and rigorous and with there not being such a testing facility in South Africa, RBT responded to the need of hour and built its own full scale test facility in Cape Town harbour."
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About Resource Ballast Technologies
Resource Ballast Technologies ("RBT") is a technology start-up company based in South Africa with a unique ballast water treatment system. RBT has a strategic partnership with Wilhelmsen Maritime Services (WMS), who have industrialized the technology and produce the ballast water treatment system at their production facilities. WMS will market, sell and provide service and maintenance on the system globally. RBT aims to focus on developing the design and efficiencies of its ballast water treatment as well as exploring the opportunities of utilizing the technology for other treatment applications. In 2006, RBT secured equity funding from the Southern African Intellectual Property Fund ("SAIP Fund"). The SAIP Fund is a venture capital fund, which invests in South African companies with world-class technology solutions suitable for global mass markets, and is managed by Triumph Venture Capital, a subsidiary of Quintessential Africa Holdings (see qah.co.za).
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