Japanese shipping giant NYK Line selects Marlink to equip its owned fleet with smart hybrid network


Smart network and digital solutions company Marlink has secured a contract to extend its innovative smart hybrid network solutions with Starlink LEO internet service to the owned fleet of leading Japanese shipowner Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK Line).

Tokyo-based NYK Line has been a Marlink customer since 2013 with Marlink providing hybrid network services for NYK’s huge fleet of containerships, bulk carriers and tankers, car carriers, LNG/LPG carriers and other specialised cargoships.

Following the successful assessment of Starlink on two vessels in 2022, NYK Line contracted Marlink to integrate and manage the LEO services as part of its smart hybrid network and to roll out the solution across the fleet.

NYK Line will utilise the Starlink service alongside the existing high capacity VSAT provided by Marlink on its fleet of owned vessels, focusing the additional bandwidth on crew communications and welfare services. Marlink VSAT will continue to provide the primary business communications channel with L-band back-up.

Network management onboard includes Marlink’s XChange platform ensuring guaranteed connectivity levels to run business and crew applications with as high Quality of Service as possible. XChange enables the seamless blending of networks in all orbits and frequencies – to leverage the benefits of a single secure hybrid network solution with the highest uptime available and guaranteed global coverage.

“NYK recognises the importance of enhancing communications and welfare services for both our existing crew and in attracting and retaining the next generation of seafarers to our fleet,” said Capt. Hisaya Higuchi, Managing Executive Officer, Nippon Yusen Kaisha. “Drawing upon Marlink’s industry-leading experience in managing the integration of Starlink services into an existing network, we will be able to enhance the quality of life at sea for our seafarers while continuing to enjoy seamless VSAT services for business needs.”

“Our partnership with NYK has allowed us to support their initial assessment of Starlink and now to act as integrator for a solution that will deliver dramatic improvements to crew welfare services,” said Tore Morten Olsen, President, Maritime, Marlink. “This agreement builds upon our existing relationship and once again demonstrates Marlink’s track record with helping vessel operators adopt this innovative solution and make it a reality for seafarers.”