Norwegian ship management company OSM Maritime Group has secured a contract from Hunter Group to provide technical management services for a fleet of eco-design SMART very large crude carriers (VLCC).

Under the contract, OSM will manage Hunter’s eight identical 336m vessels at its base in Arendal, Norway. The base provides an established strength in specialist tanker services.

The VLCCs are currently under construction at DSME in South Korea and are scheduled to be delivered towards the end of 2019 and in 2020.

Hunter Group CEO Erik Frydendal said: “This is the beginning of a strong strategic alliance between two Norwegian headquartered companies with clear global ambitions.

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“We have our sights set on making a real impact within the segment when the new vessels arrive, and we need a partner with the technical management expertise to really fulfil the potential we see ahead of us.

“We aim to provide our customers with truly world-class vessels and service, and our stakeholders with optimal returns. To do that we need the best management resource. With OSM on board, we have that. I’m looking forward to working together in the coming years.”

With 340,000m³ cargo tank capacity, Hunter Group’s tankers can sail at a speed of 14.8k per hour.

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The vessels are fitted with open loop scrubber systems provided by Finnish marine technology firm Wärtsila to ensure full compliance with IMO 2020 regulations. A crew of 30 seafarers will be responsible for managing each vessel.

OSM CCO Tommy Olofsen said: “Hunter Group is a bold new player within the VLCC segment and we’re delighted they have entrusted OSM to handle full fleet technical management.

“We have a long heritage of successful tanker operations and will be combining that seasoned expertise with innovative technical and data-driven solutions to deliver the best value services for Hunter.”

OSM Maritime provides services to more than 500 vessels across the globe with the help of more than 11,000 expert crewmembers. The company operates full ship management out of offices in Norway, Singapore, Cyprus and Helsinki.