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2022 July August Marina World

The magazine for the marina industry

“Ocean Reef


MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS/SMART TECHNOLOGY Maximising occupancy – the smart way Marinas are gateways for boosting tourism revenue and, by functioning properly and offering a warm welcome, they have direct and positive impact on the local economy. It is, therefore, essential for harbour managers to have streamlined management systems in place that meet the needs of today’s boaters. Created in 2017, Nauticspot is a young French company based in Montpellier and Antibes in the South of France that helps marinas to optimise their management on several levels: berth supervision; safety; and economic and tourism development. Nauticspot founder, Jeremy Ladoux, realised there was a shortfall in marinas due to a lack of technology and he set sail as a pioneer in smart berth management. The company is now working with more than 60 marina partners. From pen and paper... to smart marinas Ladoux first became aware that marinas were in need of a management update when he was sailing around the island of Corsica. He was looking forward to mooring up in marinas when he realised that the managers didn’t have current occupancy information so didn’t know what berths were available. This meant he either received negative replies or had to wait hours for a response to his stopover request. The Nauticspot smart sensor (inset left) detects whether or not a berth is occupied and relays the information to the marina office. He asked himself why the marina managers didn’t have berth occupancy data in real-time and set about to put this right with a system that innovates and Jeremy Ladoux improves the sailing experience for boaters and harbour managers. Here’s the outdated traditional system – often a five-step (minimum) process: 1 Manual inventory A member of staff walks around the docks with pen and paper to note which berths are available or occupied. This is a time consuming task, especially at large marinas. The same process is applied in the swing mooring area, but the staff member goes out in a boat to make the inventory and check on all the buoys. This can involve the use of fuel causing release of hydrocarbons. 2 Updating marina software Once the inventory is finished, another manual update is needed to refresh the marina software. This will be out of date as soon as the first boat leaves the marina. 3 Calling ‘missing’ boaters Marina staff need to contact boaters who didn’t inform them that they were leaving their berths. The management needs this information, along with the return date, so as to be able to reassign the berth when they receive stopover requests. Unfortunately, once at sea, boaters are often tough to reach. 4 More software updating Another update is required when the departure and return dates for the ‘missing’ boaters is ascertained. 5 Check on available berths to answer stopover requests When a berth is requested by a visiting boater, a physical check might be needed to ensure the berth is available as the morning inventory will be out of date. This method is a recommended solution to ensure the visitor will be well-positioned. During high season, this management process is repeated a – July/August 2022 49

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