Orange Business Services connects cargo ships on Northern Sea Route
Orange Business Services, the enterprise division of French carrier Orange, has won a contract to connect cargo ships along the Arctic shipping route, making them “offices at sea” with virtual networks, electronic mapping, and weather and safety updates.
The Arctic Shipping Company has selected Orange’s ‘maritime connect’ product, which combines multiple networks, including satellite. It means the crew can work in a single virtual corporate network, said Orange.
It also simplifies communication with contractors and port authorities, allocates a local phone number to each ship, and provides unlimited internet and video calls via the Wi-Fi network in the ship.
The Arctic Shipping Company specialises in cargo transportation, including along the Northern Sea Route, which runs from the Barents Sea, near Russia’s border with Norway, to the Bering Strait between Siberia and Alaska.
Network connectivity is important for safety on the Northern Sea Route. The new solutions brings the ship information about ice conditions, and keeps its mapping system up-to-date.
The Arctic Shipping Company paid tribute to the speed of the deployment, to maximise the seasonal shipping window in the Arctic passage.
Mikhail Artyukhov, chief executive at Arctic Shipping Company, said: “For commercial shipping, speed of deployment is very important, in addition to the reliability of the partner and the quality of services provided.
“The seasonal window where we are able to use the Northern Sea Route is very limited, so the installation should be carried out quickly and without hitches. With installation completed in just two days, our partners were able to carry out the work during a short stay in port.”
Richard van Wageningen, senior vice president of Orange Business Services in the Middle East, Africa, and Russia, said: “The Northern Sea Route allows companies to save time and money by providing a shorter connection between Asia and Europe. However, the route is also known as risky and not an easy one.
“Seamless network connectivity is critical to safety and saves not only time and financial resources, but also the crew’s welfare. We are pleased to cooperate with Arctic Shipping Company and are proud that the Orange Maritime VSAT solution is effective in meeting the needs of the maritime industry.”
The deal follows completion of a pilot. The service is now deployed on six vessels. The Arctic Shipping Company is taking the service on a subscription, with fixed monthly payments.