Thales Australia and US Navy Industrial Enterprise partner, ORBIS Sibro Inc (ORBIS Inc), have announced a new partnership aimed at enhancing maritime sustainment operations in support of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) at Fleet Base East in Garden Island, Sydney. The agreement seeks to accelerate and future-proof Australia’s maritime sustainment capability to support the National Naval Shipbuilding and Sustainment Enterprise.
Under the new partnership, Thales Australia and ORBIS Inc will collaborate on a range of initiatives, including technological innovation, shipyard infrastructure optimisation, and further development of the naval sustainment industrial base and workforce. Both companies have recently completed preliminary feasibility studies and extensive reviews of Australia’s existing naval sustainment and support operations, workforce development and optimisation, as well as upskilling and mentoring programs.
Thales Australia brings over 30 years of Naval Ship Sustainment and Support experience in Australia and Canada, while ORBIS Inc has developed extensive knowledge, experience and expertise in establishing sustainment system solutions for major US Navy and partner programs over the past 20 years. Leveraging this expertise, the partnership aims to strengthen the naval support and maintenance ecosystem in the Indo-Pacific region while assuring fleet readiness, availability and interoperability of Australian and allied partner current and future maritime capabilities.
Thales Australia has supported the RAN and Australian commercial fleets with ship support, sustainment and lifecycle management from Fleet Base East, Garden Island Sydney, for over 20 years. Since 2014, the company has executed 350 military and commercial ship dockings, employing over 800 highly skilled people and investing in the development of over 100 apprentices in that time.
ORBIS Inc has played a leading role in collaborating with the US Navy’s Naval Sea Systems Command, Warfare Centres, Program Executive Offices and the National Industrial Base to develop near and long-term solutions to critical infrastructure and industrial base challenges. The company has leveraged and applied the knowledge, experience, and expertise developed through its submarine experience to broader Navy-wide challenges, including global supply chain, shore infrastructure, and other sustainment eco-system challenges.
The new Thales Australia and ORBIS Inc partnership will combine Thales’s expertise in naval ship sustainment and support with ORBIS Inc’s experience and intimate knowledge developing, delivering, and supporting the US Navy’s current and future maritime sustainment solutions – the inspiration for the Royal Australian Navy’s Plan Galileo.
Max Kufner, Vice President, Above Water Systems, Thales Australian & New Zealand said, “This partnership will help deliver greater integration of platform and infrastructure through digitisation and automation of the maritime sustainment environment, which is necessary to increase the readiness, availability and performance of RAN fleets and assets.”
Greg Thomas, Vice President, Submarine Initiatives, Orbis Inc, said, “Partnering with Thales to lead critical elements of the Commonwealth of Australia’s Plan Galileo is as much an obligation as it is an opportunity. The U.S. Navy’s 60/40 split – 60% of forces in the Pacific Theater, and the multiple National level alliances and relationships established to counter the emergent threats, inspire building a partnership with Thales, a company with a shared vision, strong sense of thoughtful urgency, and the ability to apply comprehensive system to assuring Allied Navy success.”
The partnership between Thales Australia and ORBIS Inc is expected to contribute to the advancement of Australia’s maritime sustainment operations and support the Australian Government’s National Naval Shipbuilding and Sustainment Enterprise.