Rickmers chooses Sealink Plus VSAT for entire fleet

Tuesday 2, May 2017

Fleet performance, efficiency and crew welfare are the key focus for Rickmers

They selected multiband VSAT from Marlink based on a two pronged objective of improving operational efficiency by better integration of ship and shore side networks and providing internet connectivity for crew welfare.


The Rickmers Group is a leading international provider in the maritime transport sector and a containership owner with a global blue chip customer base.

Rickmers provides a broad range of shipping and logistics supply chain services, such as owning and chartering vessels, providing in-house as well as third-party commercial and technical ship management services, and transporting breakbulk, heavy lift and project cargoes via their liner service.


Previously equipped with Inmarsat FleetBroadband for business communication, Rickmers’ core focus was to improve the operational efficiency of their fleet through the implementation of new IT solutions and the improved integration of ship and shore side networks.
Rickmers needed a global broadband connection, allowing real time IP applications for video conferencing, remote monitoring, ECDIS and weather reporting.

Furthermore, Rickmers aimed to meet the growing demands from their crew members for high quality internet and email access to enable them to stay in regular touch with family members.


Marlink offered its Sealink Plus VSAT solution to the Rickmers Group to equip its entire fleet of 90 vessels, including all Container Ships, Bulk Carriers and Heavy Lift Vessels.

Sealink Plus comprises VSAT, MSS and XChange, enabling Rickmers to benefit from reliable, global and high-bandwidth connectivity. Also included were two voice lines ideal for business (postpaid) and crew (prepaid) calls at a predictable cost.

As part of the Sealink Plus plan, Rickmers were offered various connectivity options for their vessels. A combination of Marlink’s Sealink Premium VSAT which establishes a minimum bandwidth guarantee through an agreed Committed Information Rate (CIR) and Sealink 10GB VSAT Allowance plans allowed Rickmers’ to fit the right connectivity to each vessel according to their diverse requirements.

Sealink delivers availability guaranteed to 99.5%, but to secure seamless connectivity 24/7 and keep their business running smoothly, Iridium OpenPort was included as their MSS companion service, ensuring business never stops. On Sealink Plus Rickmers will always pay the same monthly fee for their connectivity package, regardless of the bandwidth amount consumed or carrier used (VSAT or Iridium OpenPort).

Marlink’s XChange service delivery platform was fully integrated to support and empower Rickmers to easily manage and control their communications network from onboard and from shore. Universal Remote Access to the XChange enables IT staff to significantly reduce the time needed for network administration since the XChange configuration and onboard settings, like firewall rules and firmware can all be simply managed from shore and access gained remotely to any computer or network device onboard.

Crew welfare communication was addressed thanks to the XChange Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) function, allowing crew members to utilize free apps on their own smart phones and devices to make phone calls and browse the internet under the controlled conditions set by Rickmers.

In parallel, XChange eases Rickmers’ administration related to crew communication, since HR and Fleet Management staff can set access rules and usage limits for different user groups, manage crew access to voice and data services, and monitor and analyse their communication traffic.

The majority of Rickmers vessels will be migrated to the Sealink Plus package via the Ka-compatible Sailor 900 VSAT antenna, making them fully future ready and keeping their options open for meeting their evolving future needs.


  • Stable, predictable VSAT connection with guaranteed availability and the cost of each download included in one fixed monthly fee.
  • Cost predictability eliminating bill shock and easing budget control and accounting.
  • Enhanced fleet operations through real-time data monitoring of on board machinery including main engines and auxiliary equipment.
  • Reduced IT costs since software updates, IT security and network can all be managed remotely and instantly from shore.
  • Happy, performing crew: benefiting from internet and email access via their own devices to stay in touch with friends and family whilst at sea – with Rickmers keeping full control of their communication costs.


“Marlink’s Sealink VSAT service has proven to deliver highly reliable communication for our vessels and has enabled us to leverage additional benefits and improvements to our operations.

With reliable communication on board, we are able to operate smarter and more efficiently, while maintaining a transparent overview of the onboard networks from shore, which we can now access and control remotely. The extra bandwidth is also much appreciated by our crew, who are able to access the internet independently via their own devices, and stay in touch with their families from the comfort of their own cabins and common areas. All this happens while the corporate network remains independent and secured solely for our business needs.”

Capt. Chiratcu C.M.
M/V Rickmers Antwerp