Technological differentiation as SENER’s strategic advantage - June 2014 - Number 47 /Up-to-Date

SENER grows in China, Japan and Korea with its marine projects

SENER offices in Busan (South Korea).

SENER offices in Busan (South Korea).

China, Japan and South Korea are currently the worldwide leaders in shipbuilding; combined, the three countries produce 90% of the world’s ships. Therefore, SENER’s Marine Unit is strengthening its presence in Asia, where shipyards and technical offices have implemented its FORAN shipbuilding CAD/CAM system, and where the company has also been awarded engineering contracts. In fact, SENER estimates that, in 2016, 40% of the Marine revenue will come from this region, which gives an idea of its strategic importance.

In 2011, SENER launched a specific plan for this geographic area, which included opening offices in China (Shanghai), Japan (Okayama) and South Korea (Busan), since it is important in all three countries that the firm be recognized as both a local company and a large firm that is financially and technically solvent. SENER faces the challenge of adapting its products and services to the needs of Asia’s “prolific, ultra-competitive and demanding” construction companies, as described by Alfonso Cebollero, the Regional Country Manager for China, Japan and Korea since 2013.

In any case, SENER’s presence in the region dates back to the 1970s when Japan and South Korea surpassed Europe as the worldwide shipbuilding leaders. China arrived on the scene later (in the 1990s), at the same time as the Asian giant broke into the sector. Yet Alfonso Cebollero points to 2004 as the turning point. That year the world’s largest shipyard, HHI in South Korea, completed its CAD system selection process.

Since then, SENER has been awarded several world class contracts. Most of these contracts are licensing and service agreements for FORAN with shipyards, classification companies and engineering centers such as WSDDI (China), Sanoyas, Tsuneishi and Class NK (Japan), and Posco Plantec in Korea. It also performs engineering contracts, such as the contract for a fishing stern trawler (China), a 1,200 passenger ferry and a maintenance vessel for off shore wind turbines (both in Korea). Moreover, SENER has also established contacts with universities and technological centers such as the University of Hiroshima and the Nagasaki Institute of Applied Science (NiAS) in Japan, the Korea Maritime and Ocean University (KMOU), and the Wuhan University of Technology (WHUT) in China, in order to provide training courses in FORAN and develop research projects.

One of the keys of SENER’s success in the region is the FORAN System. Its broad scope of application (covering everything from ship concept design to production) is greatly valued by clients, in addition to the company’s ability to offer engineering services. With these assets in hand, SENER believes it will soon be one of the primary players in the Asian marine market.

Shanghai Jiao Tong University receives FORAN license

SENER has signed an academic license agreement with Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU), the leading one in the field of ship and ocean engineering in China.

Signing ceremony between SENER and SJTU at SENER’s stand in Marintec 2013.

By virtue of the agreement, SJTU is granted the license to use the FORAN System for educational purposes in the design and construction of vessels and marine and oceanic artefacts.

For its part, SENER is commissioned to provide training and technical assistance services to the students. Besides, new ways of collaboration in research, development and innovation are opened. The signing ceremony took place in the frame of Marintec 2013 international exhibition held at the Shanghai New International Exhibition Center.


FORAN design of the China National Fisheries Corp stern trawler.  Scheme of the FORAN System’s 3D model. 

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