DCD Marine Cape Town has enhanced its in-house engineering capacity through a strategic collaboration with 6Sigma Naval Architects & Offshore Engineering (Pty) Ltd.
Established in 2012, 6Sigma provides specialist engineering services for ship building and repair yards. Its agreement with DCD Marine Cape Town brings mutual benefits to both companies.
6Sigma is enjoying a growing portfolio, while DCD Marine is able to leverage off 6Sigma’s scarce skills set, and have more influence in the design process. This is according to Jako Laubscher, Director at 6Sigma.
“The outcome of the collaboration, while mutually beneficial, is to be able to offer our clients a better service. Being under one roof now enables the client access to one dedicated engineering office, and full 24/7 engineering support from 6Sigma, without being subject to any contractor-sub-contractor limitations,” says Laubscher.
Deon Truter, Business Development Manager from DCD Marine Cape Town agrees: “Ultimately, it is about offering our mutual clients an improved service. Bringing 6Sigma into the DCD Marine fold as in-house engineers has resulted in greatly improved process efficiency. This includes better communications, leading to a reduction in timelines, costs and client risk. We have worked with 6Sigma on a number of projects and we are completely aligned in our commitment to a quality output,” he says.
6Sigma offers a variety of design services for steel and aluminium boats, ships and offshore structures, including FEA (finite element analysis), stability analysis, propulsion estimations, vessel modification; as well all elements of overall design including concept, basic and detail design. The company’s name was adopted from the concept of ‘Six Sigma’, a set of techniques and tools widely used for process improvement in organisations.
“Six Sigma focuses on identifying and eliminating potential engineering errors, being closer to the ‘shop floor’ and therefore being able to offer a better engineering solution and service,” says Laubscher. “Being quality-focused, our two companies share a common vision, mission and direction, and therefore it was a good fit going forward.”
6Sigma has sub-contracted to DCD Marine Cape Town over the past few years on various projects, including FEA analysis, offshore containers, vessel modifications, systems engineering, updating class drawings, design, fabrication, project management, surveying and class approval.
“The key focus is now on further research and development, to enable us to provide up-to-date in-house knowledge in terms of regulatory changes and the most cost-effective engineering solutions,” says Laubscher.
He emphasises the scarcity of naval and offshore engineering skills in South Africa, particularly those with experience relevant to the oil and gas industry. While meeting this gap in the market, 6Sigma also leverages on the knowledge and experience of its software partners to ensure that the company remains competitive internationally.
“6Sigma is focused on ‘breeding’ the best maritime engineers in South Africa. We invest in training and we encourage self-development. We also give back to the country by sharing knowledge and supporting universities in gaining insight where needed,” Laubscher adds.
DCD Marine Cape Town, which specialises in engineering solutions for the upstream oil and gas sector as well as ship repair projects, has a growing number of international oil and gas and maritime clients.
“This industry is one of the most regulated and complex in the world and there are no shortcuts. It requires a high-level skills set and a dedication to the delivery of top quality work. We are happy to share a vision of excellence with 6Sigma, and our collaboration will further strengthen our position as a world-class service provider in the oil and gas and ship repair sector,” Deon Truter concludes.