The past couple of years have presented challenges for the resilient global superyacht industry, not least for those whose role it is to inspect and report on the complex coatings systems. The pandemic and other factors beyond the Registered Marine Coatings Inspector (RMCI) team’s control brought the successful programme to a temporary halt.
The RMCI standard, introduced in late 2014, was set up in response to pressure from the industry because there was no standard and no specific qualifications for marine coatings inspectors in the superyacht sector. Since launch, nearly 150 industry professionals have achieved the qualification. The RMCI certification of suitably experienced coatings inspectors has been welcomed and supported by many in the superyacht coatings sector, including in newbuild and refit shipyards. The qualification has greatly improved the standardisation of coatings inspections across the sector.
The process of 5-year revalidation was delayed, but three online half-day courses have now been delivered presenting a detailed update and refresher for existing inspectors. Three new courses have been announced in the UK, The Netherlands and Italy for more recent entrants to the industry seeking to gain the qualification. More dates and locations for 2023 will be announced soon.
Applications and expressions of interest from suitable candidates for the new, revised course are welcome and can be made through the website.
After its enforced break, the RMCI programme is being formally relaunched at the Monaco Yacht Show on 27 September. This means a new style of hybrid delivery of updated course material by expert tutors and examination using a state-of-the-art software platform. The brand has a striking new brand identity and logo, plus a redesigned website too. A marketing campaign is being undertaken to re-engage with the shipyards to remind them of the importance and reason for the RMCI standard.
Secretary General of ICOMIA, Udo Kleinitz, said, “The RMCI makes a vital contribution in delivering professional standards in large yacht coatings. It is part of a framework to ensure assessment methods are in place to give certainty to our clients and industry. It is reassuring to see the take-up of the RMCI training and qualification across industry stakeholders. These naturally would be surveyors but also consultancies, shipyards, coatings manufacturers and other parties involved in the process. Moreover, the increasing number of assessments carried out requiring an RMCI qualified professional is an indicator of the momentum this initiative carries. ICOMIA looks forward to co-hosting the RMCI re-launch event in Monaco on 27 September.”
Secretary General of the Superyacht Builders Association (SYBAss), Theo Hooning, said, “SYBAss always supports activities that set benchmarks and create standards at all levels of the superyacht industry. Industry education and industry engagement for these standards are both essential, as the customers of our industry deserve a service delivered to an impeccable level.”
Mike Schwarz, CEO of the International Institute of Marine Surveying, the awarding body for the RMCI qualification, added, “Having seen the RMCI programme develop from humble beginnings, it is pleasing to be able to announce the major rebranding work being undertaken to take the standard on to the next level. The RMCI rebranding signals our commitment and intention to keep the standard relevant and to position it at the heart of the global superyacht coatings sector.”