When marine engine maker Me Marine Engineering and its British partners decided to take a step towards making the engines they produce commercially viable, they had little time for the thought of selling the product to a foreign customer.
That’s when they got their first call from a company in Germany who wanted to buy their engines.
It was a huge shock to the British business because it is considered a foreign company.
“We went to the Germans and said: ‘We’re not doing that,'” said Mr Davies.
“But they said: “We’ll buy our engine and sell it back to you”.
“You could see it as a very big risk, because we had to look at the economics.” “
It was a big decision for us,” he said.
“You could see it as a very big risk, because we had to look at the economics.”
Mr Davies, a veteran of the Marine engine industry, was part of a group of six engineers, along with his colleague and fellow British entrepreneur, Tim Breen, who had been working on the design and manufacturing of marine engines since the 1980s.
They decided to go for the big gamble of a German company buying their engines after seeing a documentary about their business, “Ocean Engine” in which Mr Davies was in the documentary.
It also had a big impact on the business.
“The Germans came in and said ‘We’ll help you’, and they did,” Mr Davies said.
They are still selling their engines and are working with the German manufacturer of the marine engines to produce them, as well as other clients.
Mr Davies hopes that the engines will help the UK and other countries become more competitive in the market for marine engines.
“That’s a big reason why we went for it,” he added.
The project is expected to cost about £40 million to produce and is likely to be used for the engines for some time.
“If you’ve got a big-rig diesel engine that is being used by a big oil company, you have to be able to supply the engines to the big oil companies and to the ships,” he explained.
“And the bigger the ship the better the chance you have of having that big- rig engine.”
“That was one of the big challenges that we faced in the design,” he continued.
“One of the biggest challenges is that the world’s biggest oil companies are making engines for big oil ships, so they need to have a big engine to operate the ships and to produce the oil.”
The company hopes the engine will help reduce the need for ships to have to stay in port and that its engines can be used in other areas such as aircraft.
“There is huge potential in that area, but the real issue is that a lot of the time you’re trying to operate big ships in a very small area, you need to get the engines out,” Mr Breen said.