A lot of valuable goods are transported via sea, as it is still the most cost-efficient form of transportation of bulk freight currently available. This valuable cargo is sometimes at risk of being hijacked or stolen, which is why security of the crew and the cargo on the vessel is of utmost importance.
SecuriState Pte Ltd is one such company that provides armed maritime security services, keeping the crew and passengers aboard vessels safe from threats that roam the seas. Mr. Ron Malaravan, the founder and managing director of SecuriState explains that the cargo being transported along certain shipping lanes is always at risk of attack by pirates. The experienced and well-trained staff at SecuriState is tasked to making certain that these threats are nullified, with no casualties and minimal violence.
While SecuriState’s job scope sounds like a plot out of an action movie, it is very real. As such, Mr. Ron only hires personnel who have extensive military or law enforcement experience and training, and then provides them with further training to enhance their teamwork, and operational capabilities.
SecuriState runs complete background checks and psychological profiles on all of their potential security personnel, ensuring that they are a good fit for the team and that they are able to accomplish the task of keeping vessels in transit safe while observing SecuriState’s standard operating procedure and mind-set. Mr. Ron’s own background in the military also allows him to pick men that will fit with the company’s vision, attitude and work environment. As the staff at SecuriState is mostly former military men, the company also has a very military atmosphere to it, a sense of casual discipline infusing the entire office. Mr. Ron also explains that the camaraderie formed during training and during transits has the given the company offices a very family-like atmosphere, without compromising operational discipline.
Additionally, the company sends all of their security personnel to courses to improve upon their operational capabilities, as an add-on to their existing military or law enforcement training. These include an anti-piracy course, the Seafarer’s Training, Competency and Watchman Course (STCW), a Sea Marshal qualification test, followed by two weeks on-the-job training.
SecuriState operates in 3 or 4-man teams (with the 4-man team being highly recommended by SecuriState’s management) and they have worked with clients worldwide, including China, Singapore, India and Norway. They have recently started operations in Nigeria, which is a high-risk area, and have set-up a satellite office there.
SecuriState is relatively new to the industry, and they have to compete with bigger security companies from the United States and the United Kingdom. However, Mr. Ron is confident that SecuriState is up to the task of providing security on par with their more established competition, due to the multi-national nature of SecuriState’s security teams and their desire to adapt and accommodate the culture differences of their international clients. The security personnel within SecuriState include former military personnel from the United Kingdom, Norway, Singapore and Nepal. Mr. Ron explains that this racial and national diversity gives SecuriState an additional edge over the competition, as the different backgrounds and experiences of their security personnel leads to more flexibility, adaptability, professionalism, endurance and cultural sensitivity.
To date, SecuriState has completed over 100 transits with no incident and they have been accredited by the Security Association for the Maritime Industry (SAMI). They are also licensed to own and carry their own weapons by the government of the United Kingdoms and store these weapons in various locations around the world.
Mr. Ron Malaravan was a former military man, having worked in military intelligence for the Singapore Armed Forces for over two decades. He volunteered for early retirement, completed his advanced diploma in counter-terrorism, with the full knowledge that security industry was his future.
He began working for another maritime security firm, learning anti-piracy techniques and completing several transits as an operator. He then started SecuriState in 2010, and completed a few transits personally. By 2011, he had begun recruitment for security personnel, and had several teams operational by the end of 2011.
Since then, the number of personnel and number of clients have grown. Mr. Ron is confident that SecuriState will be able to provide top-flight security to their clients’ vessels in the years to come.
Mr. Ron’s main goal for SecuriState is for the company to become a key security provider in the Asia Pacific region. This will be aided by the new satellite office that will be set-up in Malaysia, expanding their operational reach and recruitment possibilities.
Additionally, Mr. Ron has plans to go into education – providing security and anti-piracy courses for seamen in the form of an anti-piracy school in Malaysia. They are currently working with a company in Malaysia which has the resources and space for Mr. Ron to provide additional training for SecuriState personnel, and to also create Sea Marshals for other interested companies.