Important Notice: Upcoming Pricing Adjustment 1st January 2024
As we reach the end of 2023, I am writing to set out some new developments that we will be taking forward with Mecal in 2024.
But before I do, I wanted to share some of our successes and highlights over the last 12 months, which we could not have achieved without you – our loyal customers and trusted partners.
Over the last year we have been able to support a number of innovative future propulsion projects, worked with designers and builders on new build materials and worked closely with the Workboat Association to better support the UK marine sector. This has been crucial to us in thinking about how we ensure that Mecal is geared to best serve its long-standing customer base and the UK’s pre-eminent marine industry.
Over a number of years, we have been able to invest time into really understanding our client needs, learning more about individual certification requirements, how you are managing forthcoming regulatory complexities, and balancing the evolution of new market technologies with ambitions for your vessels.
This has been crucial as we have focussed on looking at how we can best support our customers navigate the evolution of the marine industry – looking ahead to the wider implementation of future fuels and powertrains or examining the detail behind the implementation of Workboat Code 3.
But at the same time, like many of our customers, we have also faced our own challenges, which have forced us to examine in depth as to how Mecal will continue to serve the industry in the future.
Our outlook for 2024
As an experienced marine operator in the UK market, you will of course be aware of the number of challenges our sector has faced in the last two years. Commensurately, the wider macro-economic climate has left us, like many businesses, with a burden of spiralling costs, as inflation has hit our operations.
Equally, marine certification is, as you will appreciate, a specialised business that relies on the skills and attributes of its surveyors, and naturally their diligence and focus. We believe we have the best surveyors in the business for our market segment, and we want to ensure that our surveyors see their long-term future with Mecal by being properly compensated.
At the same time, we recognise that there is more we can do for you as our customers. New technologies are now available that will greatly enhance how we work together, providing you with particular advantages in being able to readily refer to documents, communicate with us more rapidly, and secure certification as your business timelines demand.
Our investment in the business and its people
What this means moving forward is that in order to ensure that we can continue to offer the high-quality service and surveying that we have become known for, we now have to make the difficult decision to increase our pricing.
This is not a choice that we have made without significant consideration, but while Mecal has been able to hold its pricing for the previous 3 years, we can no longer afford to support our surveyors at the current levels, or indeed make further investment that ultimately will benefit our end customers. We have only implemented price increases where deemed absolutely necessary.
The primary reason for this adjustment is to ensure that we can continue to attract and retain top-tier professionals to serve as surveyors for your vessels. To maintain the high standards you expect, it is crucial that we fairly compensate our dedicated team for their expertise and commitment.
I would add, also, that as we recognise the continuing pressures that the marine industry collectively finds itself in, we are still doing our utmost to ensure that these rises are below the most recent levels of inflation.
To that end, from 1st January 2024, the below amended prices will be as follows:
|Complex Vessels £110 p/h
|Compliance/Renewal – <15m – £185
|Simple Vessels £100 p/h
|Compliance/Renewal – >15m – £255
|Travel £70 p/h
|Annual retention <15m – £105
|Consultancy £127 p/h
|Certificate Reissue – £65
|Tonnage Certificate – £175
|MLC Certificate – £110
In adjusting our pricing, we also want to help our clients manage remuneration for certification services. To that end, we are offering an annual credit of two percent (2%) on our survey fee invoices if all settled within 30 days.
Our vision for marine certification
We know that our market will continue to experience a number of challenges and potential obstacles to growth in 2024. There are key pieces of legislation that come close to supporting our industry, but, in reality, need adjustment to really benefit vessel companies – such as financing incentives like the Shipbuilding Credit Guarantee. It is our ultimate objective to lobby Government to push for amendments to improve policies where applicable, but also do drive new initiatives that will ultimately benefit all of us in UK marine.
With the recent and forthcoming updates to a number of regulatory amendments – including Workboat Code 3 and the updated Sport & Pleasure Code – we want to be in the position where our expertise helps support your operations and certification.
In writing to you directly, I hope the above clearly sets out how we intend to invest in the business and ensure that it best serves our customers in future. I recognise that the changes we are making above come when we’re all collectively looking at closely managing our budgets, but we want to assure you that this decision has not been made lightly. We understand that any change in pricing may raise questions, and we are committed to addressing any concerns you may have.
Otherwise, we want to express our deepest appreciation for your ongoing partnership with Mecal and wish you the very best for your business in 2024.
Managing Director & Chief Surveyor