Wilhelmsen Ship Management signs up to IMPA ACT

Wilhelmsen Ship Management, one of the world’s largest providers of third-party ship management services, has become the latest company to join the IMPA ACT, IMPA’s responsible supply chain management programme.
Wilhelmsen Ship Management signs up to IMPA ACT
Carl Jansma, Wilhelmsen Ship Management’s Vice President of Procurement

Wilhelmsen Ship Management has joined the likes of Thome, D/S Norden and J. Lauritzen in committing to IMPA’s industry-leading initiative, in what is a clear sign of a shift towards a sustainable future for the marine supply chain.

Marine Trader caught up with Carl Jansma, Wilhelmsen Ship Management’s Vice President of Procurement, to talk about why WSM has committed to the IMPA ACT, how the company will benefit from it and why he thinks this is a sign of the times for the industry.

Why have you chosen to join the IMPA ACT?

Wilhelmsen Ship Management’s (WSM) goal is to become a frontrunner in delivering a sustainable and responsible CSR framework across all of its procurement and supply activities, for and on behalf of our managed ship owners. 

WSM’s Global Procurement Services (GPS) is a significant stakeholder to WSM’s Corporate Strategy and adds value through the continuation and focus of corporate sustainable supply chain management and development.  In terms of procurement: governance, social, ethical, environmental and community CSR impacts reside as much in our vendor relationships (or the supply chain) as within our own activities.  We are motivated to embrace the standards of the IMPA Act to help us manage our vendor relationships.

How will joining the IMPA ACT change the way you work?

Under WSM’s Sustainable & Responsible Procurement (SRP) Policy, Global Procurement Services is striving to increase the proportion of our vessel procurement expenditure on sustainable goods and services. GPS will continue to aim to set, achieve, measure and report on sustainable procurement targets.  The selection of targets aligns with the various strategic and operational procurement objectives for WSM and is coordinated by GPS.

Do you have any existing CSR/RSCM policies? How long have you been working with them and what have you achieved with them so far?

The main purpose of our Sustainable & Responsible Procurement (SRP) Policy is to establish WSM as an environmental frontrunner in the maritime industry. Our SRP policy relates to the areas of sustainability and the long-term effects of our procurement practices, environmental management, equality and diversity, fair trade and ethical procurement. 

As a major purchaser of goods and services globally, the procurement of environmentally preferable products is key to reducing CO2, greenhouse gases, energy, waste and reductions across the supply chain life cycle of the goods or service.  Thus, under this policy every procurement decision must consider the source of capital equipment, consumables, minor equipment spares, inventory, servicing, maintenance, wastage, potential for reuse and recycling operation and ultimate disposal during the total life cycle of the product.

Generally, our Sustainable & Responsible Procurement (SRP) Policy covers:


·      Strategies to reduce consumption and manage demand;

·      Vendors responsible practices and compliance with legislation;

·      Value for money from reduction of whole of life costs – not just initial price;

·      Minimising environmental impacts during whole of life of goods/services;

·      Elements of sustainable procurement include setting, achieving and measuring targets (i.e.: increasing % proportion of spend on environmentally friendly products/services)


How many clients have you engaged with (using IMPA ACT/RSCM policies) so far? What has their reaction been?

GPS is committed to a leadership role internationally by working with strategically aligned vendors to positively influence our collective mutual social, ethical and environmental performance in the industry.  This is evidenced through GPS’s vendor prequalification processes that are designed to identify and manage supply risks and/or improvement areas in all areas of responsible and sustainable CSR.  WSM has had a positive response to date from our key and strategic suppliers regarding their commitment and pursuit of industry CSR related standards.

Long term, what benefit to do you see IMPA ACT having on Wilhelmsen and the wider industry?

We believe all maritime related employees involved in procurement and supply chain activities can make a significant contribution (individually and collectively) towards the goals and targets of sustainable development and efficient resource usage by ensuring suppliers and contractors achieve optimum social, environmental and ethical performance before, during and after each sourcing process. 

Our journey towards Sustainable & Responsible Procurement (SRP) seeks to influence and promote better buying decisions, as well as encouraging our suppliers to be better corporate citizens.

We feel that through IMPA ACT’s Supplier Code of Conduct the wider industry can achieve greater standards and efficient resource usage by ensuring all suppliers to the industry achieve optimum social, environmental and ethical performance.

You're the second major shipping company to sign up in recent months. Is this is a sign of a shifting attitude in the shipping industry?


We hope so…! GPS encourages all its buyers to strive to purchase from suppliers that have a positive impact on the environment and human health, are ethically and socially responsible, and meet value for money considerations.  Sustainable supply strategies are not merely a cost of doing business. On the contrary, they are a new method for lowering costs, securing supply, and contributing to our ship owner customer’s top-line revenues and profits.

We should start challenging all maritime companies to examine their SRP footprints and identify just one area where they could employ a more environmentally or socially responsible supply strategy.  It can be something as simple as retrofitting a ship with more energy efficient lighting. Or something more challenging, like collaborating with engineering, suppliers, logistics, and your after market service organisation to assess ways to reduce waste, reuse and recycle materials and improve transportation efficiency.

Far from incurring additional costs, there is a very strong financial incentive for all companies to embrace greater sustainable and responsible procurement standards (such as with IMPA ACT) that saves money whilst improving efficiency.


by Tom Holmes

Marine Trader Editor

Tom Holmes is the Editor of Marine Trader and readmt.com, the official publications of the International Marine Purchasing Association (IMPA). To discuss news, features or contributing to Marine Trader please get in touch.

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