Finnish shipping giant Viking Line transports more than 6 million passengers a year resulting in revenue in excess of $642 million USD.
Viking Line of Finland at the Forefront of Sustainable Sailing Innovation
The Business Initiative Directions (B.I.D.) recognized the company as an outstanding leader in the industry and a prime example of commitment to excellence and technology
Harri Winter (right) and Craig Miller, (left), President of QC100. Harri Winter is Vice President of Viking Line, major Finnish shipping company with cruise liner routes throughout Scandinavia and the Baltic Countries
Viking Line is at the forefront of innovating ways to increase the sustainability of cruising, a sector of the travel industry often in the spotlight due to its environmental impact. Over the course of 2011, the company transported over 6 million passengers between Finland, Sweden, Germany, and Estonia, resulting in sales in excess of $642 million USD. Amidst economic turmoil in all parts of the world, the cruise industry remains strong, valued at $33.5 billion USD with over 20 million people sailing the seas every year.
The Finnish B.I.D. award winning shipping company has started planning its new generation of eco-friendly vessels for service between Finland and Sweden. Future designs may include sails and solar panels in order to supplement more efficient engines that use less harmful fuels. A current example of this cutting edge technology is the German cargo vessel MS Beluga SkySails. It is the world’s first container vessel equipped with a kite that pulls the ship forward. This computer controlled 160 square meter sail results in 15% savings per day in bunker expenses. “With our vision of a new environmentally friendly vessel, we want to encourage all ‘Vikings’ to think in new ways. Using all the brain power that exists in our company, we can do something that is good for all those affected - including customers, employees and the environment. And oil will not become cheap again,” says Tony Öhman, the company’s Technical Director.
Sustainability is not a new concept to Viking, since the early 1980s the company has been working with various solutions to reduce oil consumption and emissions. Twenty years ago they started using low-sulphur fuel and exhaust purification systems. Additionally, they have catalytic cleaning systems on all engines and they pump all waste water ashore rather than purifying and releasing it into the ocean.
B.I.D. recognized Viking’s commitment to innovation, technology, and excellence as a prime example within the industry by awarding it the 2008 International Quality Crown in London. B.I.D. was founded in 1986 by Jose E. Prieto, the creator of the QC100 TQM (Total Quality Management). The QC100 TQM model is the result of many years of dedication of professionals including engineers, physicists, mathematicians, economists, sociologists and journalists , and specialists in business management, who have worked toward defining the philosophy and the modern concept of quality. The proposed award candidates are assessed on the seven criteria that contribute to quality marketing success: Excellence, Innovation, Customer Satisfaction, Technology, Leadership, Strategic Planning, and Business Results. The B.I.D. Award and QC100 TQM enable business people to consolidate and strengthen their position as a global company.