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Business & Economy

BollardScan drops anchor for longer Wearside stay with office move

An engineer ensuring global port moorings’ upkeep has strengthened its ties to the North East.

BollardScan has switched to Washington Business Centre from Houghton-le-Spring’s Evolve Business Centre.

Bosses say the move will drive growth at the company through a skills hub that is already welcoming transnational learners.

The company – which has also agreed a training partnership with Port of Blyth – uses technology that helps docks monitor and improve the reliability of mooring bollards.

Director Willem van Hoorn, who co-founded the business with Marc Cleophas in 2016, said: “Mooring bollards have been a critical part of the maritime ecosystem for centuries.

“But the way we have assessed their integrity and evaluated the condition of mountings has largely gone unchanged – until now.

“And with a number of new projects in the pipeline, the growing demand for our services gives us high hopes for the years ahead.”

Willem also hailed the potential of the firm’s partnership with Port of Blyth, which will allow students to conduct testing in real-life scenarios.

He added: “One of the key challenges we have is finding people with the skills to conduct and analyse our tests, which is why we decided to try a different approach.

“By launching our own simulation space, we can fly people in from around the world to learn how to conduct tests and use the technology in groups – instead of having our operators fly out to multiple territories.

“We’ve already got people flying in from Brazil, South Africa, Australia and the US.

“Our deal with Port of Blyth will also mean students have real-world experience in using our software.”

Welcoming the company’s renewed commitment to Wearside, Councillor Graeme Miller, leader of Sunderland City Council, added: “BollardScan has revolutionised how one of the world’s most traditional industries operates.

“We’re delighted they are continuing to invest in the city.”