Starting out on a new venture is always exciting.  But blogging for me is not really new, as I have posted comments online regularly before.  However, this was back in 2001 when I was leading an overland expedition from Scotland to Western Australia: “Perth2Perth”.  In those days, our only feedback was via the number of visitors to the website, which jumped to over 700 when we entered Iran a week after 9/11.

Our expedition aim was “4 Better Understanding”.  Despite the fact that today I am unlikely to be typing my thoughts from the front seat of my (now very rusty) classic Range Rover and uploading them via GSM on my Nokia, my vision is still to promote global understanding. Thus last month saw the launch of HPR International, a new PR & communications consultancy and website, aiming to do just that. 

Last week I flew into Southampton to give the key note presentation to Southampton Solent’s 5th Annual Maritime Conference on behalf of NYK.  My presentation was entitled The Maritime Industry Today – Challenges and Opportunities.

In addressing a packed conference centre of around 200 students, I chose to focus on Technology, Environment and Laws/ Legislations, these being, in my opinion, the most important strategic issues facing the maritime industry today.  I hoped they would also find it easy to remember what I had come the TELL them.  Ironically, one of the technology slides featured a picture of a 3D printer, and yesterday I discovered that pwc have recently published a study (here) into the effects of 3D printing on the transport sector, backing up my comments.

I always enjoy the buzz of presenting, however I find the questions afterwards even more enjoyable.  Since I was answering queries from an intelligent young audience from across the globe, about to embark on their maritime career journeys, I found myself experiencing pre-exam adrenalin as I prepared for the unexpected.  The questions ranged from discussing company core competencies and how long it will be until we see fuel cell marine engines, to how big an effect piracy is having on shipping companies today.

So after a break of fourteen years, I am back typing my thoughts online, but with the benefit of now having the technology for them to be commented upon...

Yours seeing this challenge as a huge opportunity,