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September, 2018


The Lighthouse editorial team sat down with Sreenath V. – Vice President Operations & Projects – to know more about his dedication to the field of logistics and freight forwarding, what his motivation is and more.
By: Minaal Pervaiz

If you were to describe yourself in under two minutes, how would you sum it all up?
Team player, flexible and open to constructive ideas.

How did you first get involved in the Shipping, Liner and Logistics industry?
Getting into the logistics industry was purely an accidental occurrence. I started off my career by being part of the customs clearing division and as opportunities presented themselves, I kept learning various aspects of the logistics industry.

Tell us how you got to join the CSS Group. Why did you want this job?
CSS was – by 2002 – a very fast-growing organization. I met Mr. Kala [CEO and Founder, CSS Group] and Mr. Anil Kumar [Finance Director, CSS Group] through a mutual friend. We sat down for a casual cup of coffee and we discussed the role they had in mind. Now, 16 years later, I sit here as the Vice President of Operations & Projects!

What do you think it takes for an employee to get ahead in the CSS Group?
There is no alternative to hard work and when it is combined with honesty and passion, growth is imminent. There are a lot of opportunities still around for youngsters in the CSS Group. If they understand that growing laterally too is an achievement, then for sure they will [get ahead].

Could you tell us about the portfolio you are currently managing?
Presently I work along with the operations team of Consolidated Shipping Services, be it the CFS or the SCM requirements, take care of the Transport department activities, and commercially involved with the projects division under Mr. Raj George.

How would you handle failure?
Failure can only be understood as being a corrective step towards success. Why not embrace it, learn and look forward to new doors?

What do you enjoy most about working here?
Being a part of a big family, where everyone cares for one another, works as a team to find solutions and then enjoy the fruits of their labor – together.

What is your personal philosophy on working with logistics and freight forwarding at this point?
I have moved ahead in my career simply due to the passion I developed for the job I do. I am still learning the nuances of this industry. The logistics industry is an ocean and you never get tired of learning new things on a daily basis.

What do you think the current state of affairs are in the industry and possible (positive/negative) predictions using your knowledge at this point?
The market is on a course of stabilization with various aspects affecting our industry. As CSS, we have always ridden the wave quite fine over the years and are confident that we will ride this one too very smoothly. Of course I am not predicting anything but – as a team and putting in a consolidated effort – we are earmarked to do well.

What motivates you?
It is the team, the people that one works with that motivates one automatically. I appreciate every day that I can walk into my office and interact with such willful and intelligent colleagues. That is my motivation – I keep going because I want to, not need to.

July, 2018


The Lighthouse editorial team sat down with Fida Asghar – Manager, NVOCC – to know more about the impact the current economy has on the maritime industry, his 19 years of experience with the CSS Group, and more.

Can you please summarize yourself in two minutes?
I am jovial, challenging and loyal. My job portfolio at the CSS Group includes handling all LCL cargo [imports and exports] by way of specifically managing the NVOCC division. I also help in product development for the CSS KSA branch offices (in Riyadh, Dammam and Jeddah).

How did you first get involved with the NVOCC industry?
That is really a good question – I was not a shipping guy before! I came to Dubai in 1993 and after a few years I was asked by the Chairman [T.S. Kaladharan] to join CSS. I came from the ground up, learning at every stage. I was in operations initially, then moved to the Customer Services department – in telesales – where my performance spoke for itself. I began heading the call center and it grew to what you now see as the NVOCC division at the CSS Group.

How long has it been since you have been with CSS? What has motivated you to stay?
I am in my 19th year at the company now. I joined CSS because I was looking for a better career – this industry is vast and you learn everyday. What keeps me here this long is the open door policy – you can meet the chairman, you can meet anyone that you want and it is a friendly atmosphere. As long as you perform well, you can go to great heights [with the CSS Group].

How can you keep brushing up, or adding, on your knowledge of the industry?
We meet a lot of people in this industry, including our peers. Through listening, you learn. There will not be any daily trainings but you do end up learning through [observation]. It is fair to say you gain knowledge through networking, your colleagues and your superiors.


In your time with the CSS Group, what have you seen it to become?
It has expanded really fast – when I came in first to the CSS Office in 1995, there were only 3 employees. When I finally joined in 1999, there were 80-90 employees – you can imagine the amount of growth in 3 years. Within 10 years, we were at the top. I will not say we have reached our peak yet – we are still going higher and breaking more barriers!

What is the average day like for an NVOCC operator?
It is mostly a lot of phone calls. This industry is based on creating and sustaining relationships. In my 19 years of experience, I have learnt that you need to have good relationships in order to get yourself that cargo and volume. Just keep working on your people skills!

May, 2018

The Art and Science of Selling

The Lighthouse editorial team sat down with Hinna Hussain – Team Manager, Sales – to know more about the day in the life of a salesperson, how CSS is different than most Multinational corporations and what drives her to succeed.

How would you describe yourself in under two minutes?

Prompt, efficient, bubbly, always on the job, workaholic.

How does a salesperson go about doing things – walk us through it?

You’re open to doing [business development] in any way that you feel; everyone has their own approach. It could be through LinkedIn, you would be searching for another company on social media, you might try finding people you have common connections with. It could just be various ways of trying to secure a client.
Once things come in, you begin to understand more. If a job is overseas, your stress is mainly dealing with the overseas offices to ensure things happen in a certain way, and to keep [customers] updated. If the job is being executed [in the UAE, or elsewhere], export or import, it would need you complying with all their procedures.

How involved would you be?

We are quite invested in the job – we have the freedom to fix the job from point A to point Z. In many other companies, your sales, costing, pricing departments are separate, the guys that quote your job and the ones that do invoicing are separate. You might close the sale but you are not really sure about what is happening in the background now. You might be able to bring in clients every single day but servicing them is not really easy because you are not the one involved in other aspects of the job. Here, you are truly involved in all aspects. You are always ready for a situation where suddenly everything is an urgent situation, an emergency, sudden calls in the middle of the night to make vessels and planes go faster become normal! The CSS structure runs better because you know more, you learn more, you are more invested in your job. At any given time, the client can call you for an update and you are more than aware on how to handle the situation. You are the sole person handling it, along with your support team.

How did you first get involved in the shipping and liner industry?

I think that purely happened quite by accident. I don’t think anyone ever enters logistics with an intention of entering logistics. I started from ground zero and it has been 7 years since [I have been with CSS].

What do you think it takes an employee at the CSS Group to get ahead?

You would really have to think out of the box, walk the extra mile. It is an internal motivation, rather than external. You should want to do it for yourself. Once you imbibe that, people recognize it. We have always had supportive seniors – they are always open to guide you. One cannot be spoon fed when it comes to logistics. If you have that desire to grow and learn, you are bound to be recognized. Everyone sitting here has the potential and an equal ground of opportunity to grow; your drive and the energy you put out there is key.

What do you enjoy most about working here?

The comfort of working with the team and the freedom to make immediate, executable decisions for your customers.

What is your personal philosophy regarding freight forwarding?

Whether you look at cargo, logistics or freight forwarding, people should just break it down. Freight forwarding has never been rocket science – it is so basic and so simple, the layman would have a laugh if they actually understood the concept. I think people just unnecessarily complicate it.

With the current state of affairs in the industry, what do you think are the positive and negative predictions that you could possibly make?

Everything is always evolving and growing. A constantly changing landscape brings with it its own challenges. But as with all challenges – there are opportunities to overcome them. Instead of focusing on areas that do have problems, you should rather work on areas that have more strength.

What would you say your greatest strength is?

My positive outlook

If you were to be faced by failure, how would you handle that?

Failure is something everyone has to go through because it is only then that you learn to be appreciative and thankful for what you have, what you are doing and for more yet to come. If you do not go through that phase, it is a human tendency to take things for granted. Go through it, deal with it, move on from it.

May, 2018

Growing Supply Chain Management

The exponential growth of supply chain management is a promising factor towards the growth of the economy of UAE. Lighthouse spoke with Hareesh Haridas, Manager /Logistics for SCM about the Supply chain activities within the CSS Group, his service and much more.

If you were to describe yourself in under 2 minutes, how would you?

I am a team player and like to be a part of good working environment. I was moulded by my experiences and work with a mentality of sharing and delegating things for a better and positive outcome.

How did you first get involved in this industry, specifically supply chain management? Did you go through a process like working with a shipper, liner or logistics?

My experience with the service industry started much before I joined CSS. I was with another company, five to six years working within the passenger services where you deal with people and their emotions directly. It gave me ample exposure understanding various situations. My experience in the logistics industry began with CSS.

How long have you been working with the CSS Group?

Its been a long journey, close to 14 years now. We even have staff working here ever since the company commenced operations. I had joined as a coordinator when the Supply Chain department. started within the company. In a short span, I climbed up the ladder with more responsibilities.

Tell us exactly what Supply Chain Management entails.

Supply Chain Management is the oversight of materials, information, and finances as they move in a process from supplier to manufacturer to wholesaler to retailer to consumer. Supply chain management involves coordinating and integrating these flows, both within and among, companies. In simple terms, catering the end to end needs of a customer with uncompromised quality.

What is included in your portfolio?

CSS has expanded their facilities with storage spaces across the Emirates. We have warehousing facilities in Sharjah, Al Quoz, Jebel Ali and Abu Dhabi with CSS personnel and equipment. We have more than 20,000 Sq.mt. being managed in Jebel Ali itself. My responsibility is to manage it professionally and constructively, to make these entities run as profit centres and provide exceptional services to our clients.

What is the innovation side of Supply Chain Management?

An efficient supply chain is vital for businesses to deliver their products to consumers who want or need them. with Dubai being a major marketplace in the MENA region, supply chain management must think more innovatively and proactively to balance product flow and costs throughout a product’s life cycle.

How does supply chain management, not only related to the CSS Group, play a role when it comes to oil, energy, projects?

CSS is amongst the top five consolidators in Jebel Ali. SCM is undoubtedly the backbone for A to Z Logistics activities, especially in freight forwarding. The SCM is a assembly of different activities happening in the entire supply chain starting from procurement of goods from suppliers to selling the goods to the end customer. It helps in managing and controlling materials, information and finances as they move from supplier to customer.

What would you want to tell someone to put them at ease if someone is exploring SCM?

You need to have the mindset to work and carry out a variety of tasks. How much time you spend in your job is immaterial, it is the dedication and concentration which really matters. Supply Chain Management is a highly promising area. Work hard and you will be successful.

With the current state of affairs in supply chain management, what are the negative and positive observations you can make?

Current market situations are rather fragile, even though the situations can change any time.

What do the words “local knowledge, global reach” mean to you?

CSS Group is very strong in the GCC and South Asia. We enjoy one of the strongest network of partners and associates across the globe. Over two decades of experience in the Middle East make us equally strong with the local knowledge.

What motivates you?

Every day is different! It becomes more and more demanding, just be ready to take up any challenge.

March, 2018


With the recent promotion of Ajay Krishnan to Chief Operating Officer of Freight Forwarding, CSS Group, Lighthouse editorial team sat down to gain insight into his past, what he is looking forward to pushing with his new responsibilities and more.
By Minaal Pervaiz

If you were to describe yourself in under two minutes, how would you do so?

Logical, tough, but fair. Hospitality background, came into shipping and logistics quite by accident. It has been twenty years since then.

How did you get into it by accident?

[…] A friend of mine gave me an opportunity saying do you want to try this [As a] hospitality major, I think I was a little ahead of my time. When she came up with the opportunity to join APL, shipping was new to me. It was supposed to be a temporary situation but it just [stuck].

Has your background with hospitality helped you?

Absolutely – coming from a hospitality background, it levels the playing field. You’re not in a silo, it opens up horizons and gives you full access into the service industry. Shipping was the first option that appealed to me, excited me. It gave me the opportunity to meet multiple, diverse types of individuals; not one trader is the same as the other.

Tell us how you joined the CSS Group?

I used to handle the CSS Group account while I was in APL. We helped grow the business with a lot of innovative ideas, which actually got me known in the company.

Freight Forwarding was a grey area for me – although we say it’s all shipping and logistics, it is very different. You have to engineer services – you have to find a way. Here, [you deal] with freight, land transport, LCL, warehousing, 3PL, relocation. If you want to continue in the logistics industry, the future is in being a third-party agent. The role of the middle man, as we call it, is increasing a lot.

[I was given] a blank slate – the CSS Group had quality Forwarding but we didn’t really have a Forwarding division, per say, with the focus that we have today. We have our own network now, our own agents. I was welcomed very warmly because I had some good relationships in place already.

What do you think it takes an employee to get ahead in the CSS Group?

Focus, an ability to understand the objectives of the company and keep your own objectives aside for the time being. There will be an opportunity for both of them to merge at some point, as this happened to me.

What is your renewed focus now for your division?

Growth. Nothing else but growth. You have to take the profile of the company to the next level. We do not want to be known as only a consolidator, a key vendor for a customer. We want a [visibly] balanced profile, saying we cover all products effectively.

What is your personal philosophy on working with Freight Forwarding at this point?

I am enjoying it! No two days are the same and that’s the best part about it right. Every day presents a new opportunity. I am a very aggressive individual but balance it off so that I do not come in as overwhelming. So I will continue to try to do that through a balanced approach, excite the sales guys enough to get them to go out and do it. I do not do business because I have to – I do it because I want to. That has been my philosophy throughout. You want to take the best out of the personal objectives, take the company objectives and try to get them to meet.

[…] your aggression and arrogance needs to be measured and in balance. It cannot be too much of one. If people need to understand what you are thinking then you need to talk to them a lot more.

What do you enjoy the most about working here?

The flexibility, the diversity, the energy. It’s all about engineering or re-engineering the process. We do not say no, we find a way. That has been a philosophy of the group for a very long time and that is extremely exciting to be a part of.

With the current state of affairs in the industry, what predictions can you make using your knowledge, thus far?

I think the industry is in a state of flux right now. Things change beyond your control. Right now, 2018 looks good. I am not going to predict anything. We’re going to ride the wave, going to put in control measures so that we do not fall off the edge of the wave. While it seems steady and stable, it is not. It looks more like the calm before the storm. We have some pretty focused plans in place where we are going to grow our business organically.

There are certain ways people handle failure and success – how would you handle failure for certain objectives, or a division?

Failure for me is more internal; it’s not external. Even in success, I beat myself up for failing a lot because you have certain expectations, objectives in anything that you initiate personally, or professionally. I do not have a philosophy or a thought process when it comes to external failures – it is always internal.

How would you motivate yourself?

If you do what I do, if you work with the people I work with, live with the people I live with, and if you are friends with the ones I am friends with, you are motivated all the time. It’s only about the energy, but it is the ability to think forward. One of the reasons I grew in both my jobs is because I do not think about today. I have a habit of thinking a year, two years, three years from now. If I have an environment that is challenging, it is more than enough to motivate myself. I need to go home feeling mentally exhausted. I need to go home and say, you know what, that was a good day.

Other than set targets for the rest of the year, is there anything else you have planned with the particular portfolio you are now in charge of?

Targets are one thing, and how to achieve them is the other. It is not enough having a number, It’s the process and how we want to achieve that output matters more.

March, 2018


With the recent promotion of Chandra Kala to COO of NVOCC, CSS Group the Lighthouse editorial team sat down to gain insight into her past, what she would want the Group’s partner and agent networks to know and more.
By Minaal Pervaiz

How would you sum yourself up in under two minutes?

I’m a workaholic. I like to get involved from the bottom [up]. If I am doing [a task], I would rather do it from A to Z – I don’t like handing it over to anyone which [could be] both a bad and good quality of mine [laughs].

I like things to be perfect. Even for a tiny thing like a report [not being the way I want].

Tell us about your work background – take us through your entire journey.

Once I [graduated] from college with a BBA in Business Administration, I decided I wanted to do an internship abroad so I went to Singapore [and joined] Shipco Singapore for a year. It was an internship where I had to go to each department [like] import/export, agent development – a three month training in each aspect.

I went on to complete my MSc in Logistics after I joined the CSS Group.

What did you end up learning there that you then brought back here?

Basics of logistics – at least I had some knowledge by the time I joined [the CSS Group]! I started with the Key Information Desk – that’s the Customer Service Desk that handles all customer calls. On the side, I would help the Marketing team. Then after a year, I was shifted to the Project, Oil & Energy division where I focused on Yacht & Marine logistics.

Again, a year passed and I was told to overlook Operations as the Assistant Operations Manager – I was completely involved with Operations after that point.

How did you first get involved in the Shipping industry?

Even though some don’t end up joining their family businesses, I think I knew I was already going to join the CSS Group from an early age. It was [no surprise] – it was not a confusing decision for me to make. I was told to work myself up and I appreciate that because I wanted to know more aspects of logistics. You cannot learn it in one year – there is more to it. So I started with handling customers – their doubts and enquiries. You learnt something new every day!

In your opinion – for a CSS employee to get ahead within this company – what do you think it takes?

CSS is one company that has always given opportunities. You will see staff here that have been with us for a very long time. They grew from, say, the warehouse or the Reception. We always give them the opportunity to grow as long as they prove themselves, are hardworking and loyal. We do not let [our employees] stay stagnant for a long time.

How do you encourage loyalty among your employees? What does the company end up aligning itself with to create that environment?

I think the term ‘loyalty’ from an employee’s aspect has changed over the years. I think it is any company’s responsibility to protect their employees, and I think we do that at the CSS Group. Loyalty defers in that way but since we have a lot of employees that stay with us for a long time [10 to 15 years], I am assuming we are doing our job!

With your recent promotion to COO of NVOCC at the CSS Group, what does this mean for the portfolio that you will now be managing?

[Previously], I was more focused on ensuring operations went smoothly. Now, Ajay [COO, Freight Forwarding] and I will directly be responsible for making the CSS Group meet its overall targets and goals.

We have two networks – Freight Forwarding and the NVOCC. I will make the decisions when it comes to NVOCC that includes mostly the LCL consolidation business. Again, I will do what is best for the CSS Group.

How do you plan on getting your agents and customers excited about these new developments?

The type of service provided is essential – I telling my team that without service, customers do not come back to us. Even if you make mistakes, learn from them and do not repeat them.

Is there a certain approach that you have for yourself in order to make sure there is continuous success in this division?

My approach is to always discuss my ideas and/or goals with the team; where I want to go. I can set a goal for myself – that is not a problem – but I will not be able to consider further obstacles that I may have missed without discussing it with my colleagues; senior or junior.

How have you made yourself approachable?

The team I manage goes up to 45 members; I started from their level – they know me for a very long time! We – the CSS Group – have an open door policy. Any staff member is allowed to come to any senior management’s office. I allow them to come any time. There is no point in you sitting in your cabin [office], waiting for them to approach you. Take your laptop, sit on their table. Just sit with them.

With the current state of affairs with regards to NVOCC and the industry at large, are there any positive or negative predictions you could make for the next year?

There are logistics companies that are coming in every day, but disappearing at the same rate too. They do not understand the importance of logistics – the basic concepts.

I would like to see mutual cooperation amongst other companies in the same field.

How you would handle failure?

If you know failure is coming, stay cool. Especially at my level, I cannot freak out or else everyone behind us will fall! We have to be confident even if there is impending failure!

What motivates you?

My team and colleagues.

What would you want your partner and agent networks to know with regards to this new announcement?

I would like to work in a mutual manner where we grow together, rather than it being just a one-sided relationship.

March, 2018


With the recent addition of Faisal R as the Co-Director of CSS Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Lighthouse editorial team sat down to gain insight into his past experience, opinions and more.
By Minaal Pervaiz

How did you first get involved in the Shipping, Liner and Logistics industry?
I have been involved in the field for quite a long time. I grew up in close contact to everything shipping related and became more interested when I began to consider my further studies.

Tell us how you joined the CSS KSA branch. Why did you want this job?
I joined CSS KSA because of my interest and experience with [the CSS Group]. I knew that with the knowledge I acquired whilst pursuing my career, plus the experience I have accumulated throughout the years, it would be my next best step.

With your recent addition as a Co-Director (working alongside Britto Satheesh) of CSS KSA, what does this mean for the portfolio you will be managing?
We will be taking CSS KSA further, representing a big challenge that I am looking forward to.

How would you handle failure?
I can best describe how I see failure through the words from Thomas A Edison: “I have not failed. I have found 10,000 ways it will not work.” These words have followed me since my upbringing and are something that best describe our way of working in the logistics world.

What do you enjoy most about working at CSS KSA?
I am excited – it is a good opportunity to work with people from all over the world and share ideas to constantly bring innovation within the company.

What do you think the current state of affairs are in the industry and possible predictions?
The current state of affairs is positive because of the 2020 and 2030 vision. Also, business will be improving because of all these new projects across Saudi Arabia right now.

What motivates YOU?
An ambition to grow and make an impact in the industry. Legacy and the passing of knowledge are factors of motivation in my everyday life, and are my driving forces to always want to become bigger and better at what I do.

May, 2017

ITP Media Interview

Ajay Krishnan, Vice President, Freight forwarding and Chandrakala (CK) Director, Operations and Ocean freight of CSS Group sat with Shaun Ebelthite of ITP Media Group recently. The interviews of the CSS Management delegates were taken by ITP for their April edition of the Logistics Middle East and the Arabian Supply Chain magazine.

“CSS appreciate ITP Media Group’s initiative in engaging companies like CSS who have more than two decades of operational experience in shipping and logistics. Our discussions covered vital and debatable issues that needs to be addressed by the logistics fraternity today for the benefit of all”, mentioned Chandrakala (CK) after the interview.

Ajay and CK spoke in length with Shaun about the CSS 3PL facilities and the programmes in store for an advanced supply chain management strategy which will soon be implemented in the Middle East. The discussion covered crucial topics such as the volatility of the freight rates, stability recovering and the global operations of CSS.

March, 2016

Maritime and More

Interview with Sohan Roy, Founder Chairman & CEO of Aries Group of Companies

A Ship Designer by profession, Sohan Roy started his career as a Marine Engineer, to become the first Naval Architect in India to join Merchant Navy. Along with a Guinness Book entry, today he has global reputation as the Director of the Oscar selected movie DAM999 and the Creative Head & Project Designer of many award winning films & documentaries. He is also the President of the International Maritime Club (IMC) and founder of the first global maritime TV channel, Marine BizTV.

Sohan Roy speaks about his concepts and vision to, G. Unnikrishnan, Head of Marketing and Corporate communications, CSS Group, in an exclusive interview.

IMC has been working as an umbrella organisation for the maritime world for quite some time. Is there any specific reason behind the Cochin chapter inauguration now?
IMC has been active since 2007 in UAE. One of its objectives is to have Marine Cities across the world in all maritime hubs were Mariners can stay, work and learn together in an exclusive housing colony along with having a branch of IMC in that hub. Since the concept of IMC got evolved from Cochin, we decided to have the first marine city at Cochin. Also to make the process more effective we need to have a branch of IMC there for its smooth execution. Since thousands of mariners are staying in and around  Cochin it has a huge potential to support Maritime Industry through Marine City and IMC. Cochin is just a beginning . We are planning to have 10 branches of IMC to be initiated this year itself.

As a guiding figure for the IMC, could you give us your larger vision on the future of this great union of Maritime associations?
The ten objectives of IMC are the Integration of the Maritime organizations for better interaction, quality based accreditation of Maritime institutes, Knowledge sharing through Events, Identify & honour the achievers and talents, Promote charity activities, Effective Utilization of Govt. funds, Establish Marine Cities, To attract investments to the Maritime industry to create more job opportunities, Amicable settlement of Maritime Dispute and the initiatives for Maritime Sustainability. Even though having the huge potential while controlling two third of the world, Maritime Industry is one of the most disintegrated community without having the vision of “those who rule the sea can conquer the world”. The very dream of IMC is to make it happen through an efficient unified maritime community.

Consolidated Shipping Group is an NVOCC, what advantages do an NVOCC have in associating with IMC?
As long as 90% of trade happens through sea, NVOCC will have its major role in the Maritime Industry. Organizations like IMC can take up initiative to guide and put pressure on developing countries like India to open up more and more ports without any delay to boost the cargo movements. Once a container transport system is in place development of that country is automatic as it boosts both import and export. Ports like Vizhinjam would have realized long back if IMC had taken initiative.

Can you explain more about the Maritime city project
The very need of Marine cities is to create marine communities were mariners can walk to their office from home and can work till their last breathe while moulding the next generation in a better way. Future ship management companies shall be based in these communities so that the same vessel can be looked after by the same team for its better maintenance.  As sailors feel more comfortable to see their families being stayed along with co-sailor’s families they shall extend their sailing life which is what really required for the industry these days not to lose experienced hands. Along with ship management, other areas like design firms, academies, survey firms etc. also can be a part of these marine cities.

According to your perspective, what are the impacts of the current socio political situation around the world on the shipping industry?

Crust and trough are part of shipping however; right now shipping is passing through its worst phase. Oil crisis, piracy, Civil wars, massive production of Chinese shipyards and the drastic reduction in the cargo movements to US & China may make it further worse.  But the expected economic boom in countries like India gives a lot of hope for a recovery.

Marine BizTV is the only channel dedicated to Maritime industry. What inspired you to begin such a venture?? Are you satisfied with the outcome??

I had to do a project as part of my Diploma course from Hollywood Film Institute and the idea of starting an exclusive TV channel for Maritime Industry got evolved from that clubbing with my Maritime experience as a Marine Engineer & Naval Architect.  Accordingly Marine Biz TV was launched in 2007 coinciding with the beginning of current shipping recession. As per our initial plans, it was to be commercialized within 3 years. As the Industry could not get out of the recession, it was not possible to get the right promoters for an infotainment channel like this. Presently it’s a CSR initiative of Aries Group to support IMC and free downloading facility is made available to all even on mobile platforms. More than 7000 hours of technical contents are available in the library. Marine BizTV has become the official media for more than 500 maritime events. Even though Marine BizTV hasn’t reached its real heights as planned, I’m satisfied with what it has gained during the worst phase of the Industry.

Sohan Roy is a versatile personality, but you are more known as a film director to the common man. Do you like that??

My passion was always into Films and destiny made me a Naval Architect. After my Engineering Degree I tried to join Film Industry. Due to the pressure from my parents I had to quit my dreams and join back my real profession. Aries was launched in 1998 and within few years I could make our design division as the best in Middle East. The day when one of my designs got into Guinness Book of World records, I decided to chase my dreams on movies again. Several Programmes & Documentaries were made for Marine BizTV to begin with that journey. Portraying the story of few mariners for the branding of Maritime Industry, DAM 999 was announced in 2008 and the movie got release in 2011 by Warner Bros with 5 Oscar short listing. So far the movie has been got into more than 100 film festivals and won several International Awards. It’s a fact that I’m more known as a Film maker than a Ship Designer due to the glittering glamour of the Film Industry. Being a passion I spend 50% of my time for the movie industry even though Shipping is still my bread and butter.

What were the challenges you faced during the epic movie shoot of DAM999

DAM999 was not just another movie for the Indian Film Industry. It was the first movie ever made from the largest film making country in the real Hollywood Format. It was the first 2D  to 3D converted 4K scanned movie . Also it was the first perfectly designed synch Sound Movie. It was for the first time a Super Tanker was used for a Movie shoot and it became the largest floating object ever shown in any movie. The movie got released in 5 languages at a time even though it faced some bans. Even Indian parliament was stopped for 2 days due to the heavy protest to ban the movie due to its controversial subject. However we could launch the concept of Marine City through it.

Being a follower of your updates in the Social media, personally I felt that you love to travel a lot. What sort of perfection do you achieve during these vast travels??

Even though it requires a lot of travel to meet my official commitments I love to travel a lot. All my creative works are happening in the flight as I’m absolutely free from all disturbances. Also these travels give me a lot of experience to learn about the world and people, which is really required for any film maker. I attend several Film Festival across the world where I use to invite my maritime clients too which gives double satisfaction and better networking.

Your website mentions about the pioneering concepts, which are truly amazing. Have you ever thought about bringing in a governmental, state or central level participation for any of these projects?

Presently I’m working on a US$10billion Project called Indywood to revamp the entire Indian Film Industry within 5 years to make it on top of the world in quality and revenue too. There are 100 specific targets for this Project and more than 80% target sample analysis have been successfully done. The concept was launched in last Nov and the next edition will be at Ramoji Film City from 2016 Sept 24-27. It will be done with the Support of state government and Central Govt. Several policy amendments are needed to full fill the remaining targets of Project Indywood. We expect the Prime Minister and the Chief Minister to grace the occasion along with many IMC members who could be the future investors in Project Indywood as part of their branding. Kindly consider this as the invitation to attend this film carnival.

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