LR has opened two new state-of-the-art offices in India – the organisation has moved premises in Mumbai and opened a new Digital Survey Centre in Chennai, providing additional technical capability that will enable LR to deliver a high quality, responsive, and globally consistent service to its clients.

The opening of the new Mumbai office was marked with a lamp lighting ceremony, an Indian tradition that is considered auspicious – the bright glow of the lamp is believed to represent enlightenment, prosperity, knowledge and wisdom.

The event was attended by the Director General of Shipping for India, Mr Shyam Jagannathan and Chief Surveyor to the Government of India, Mr Ajithkumar Sukumaran, along with members of the local press and numerous LR colleagues.

Mark Darley, LR’s Chief Operations Officer, said: “It’s been fantastic to celebrate the opening of LR’s two new state-of-the-art office facilities in India. The additional capability provided by these offices will enable LR to deliver a high quality, responsive, and globally consistent service to our clients, enabling us to operate efficiently on a global scale, whilst maintaining a strong local presence in key maritime centres across the world.

“In 2024, we expect to see an accelerated use of technology across all aspects of operational and commercial decision making in the maritime industry. LR’s expansion in India will support this shift as we respond to our clients’ in providing innovative solutions as a trusted adviser.”

Remote surveys are increasingly being requested by LR’s clients as an alternative to in-person surveys, and interest will only increase as technological advances enable further applications. Around a third of all surveys currently undertaken by LR use remote techniques.

The concept is not new – LR first issued guidance notes on requests for surveys without attendance in 2018 – but these surveys really came into their own during the pandemic and continue to gain traction. Both Mumbai and Chennai offices will serve as centres of excellence to support the evolving needs of the market.

Shrikant Aradhey, LR’s Chief Representative for South West Asia, said: “India has a rich heritage in shipping and blooming technological expertise. Its position as a world-leading IT exporter makes it a natural choice in which to expand LR’s technical capabilities, which will provide additional solutions to enhance our service offering and deliver benefits for all our clients worldwide. We will also launch a Ship Emergency Response Centre in Mumbai – the only centre of its kind outside of the UK.

“The new offices and LR’s significant growth in India is a reflection of our continued investment in the region. LR’s history in India dates back more than a century, it’s been 150 years since we began operating in Kolkata. India is home to many leading shipowners and operators, ship building and recycling yards, 12 major ports, and around 8% of shipboard personnel, a number which is projected to increase to 20% in the next 10 years.”