Marine Bulk Carriers (Pty) Ltd (MBC) was established by Robert Knutzen (ex CEO of the Golden Ocean Group), and Jan Rabie (ex Director of Safmarine) to give South Africa entry into the shipping of cargo to and from the country.
Shortly after inception Lester Peteni (Managing Director Sizwe Shipping Investments) joined MBC as Chairman.
The establishment of MBC, and its sister company, Marine Crew Services South Africa (Pty) Ltd, was in order to ensure a greater share for South Africa in the bulk shipping business participation in the Southern African off-shore oil and gas exploration activities, as well as to develop and place South African seafarers with international owners and ship management companies, and, in doing so, to help create job opportunities for South Africans in the maritime world.
Ground breaking agreements:
Towards the end of 2005 Marine Bulk Carriers (MBC) and Sanko Steamship Co., Ltd concluded their first major charter agreements for two Sanko vessels to Kumba Resources and BP Shipping respectively. Kumba Resources, the South African iron ore exporter, chartered the 150 960 dwt Sanko vessel, 'Sanko Spark' and the 298 920 dwt Sanko owned VLCC 'Sanko Unity' went to BP Shipping for 12 months employment.
More recent developments:
At the start of 2008 MBC successfully negotiated its second anchor handling contract with PetroSA when the Norwegian built and Russian owned anchor handling tug, EEMS, and the Norwegian tug, Ocean Supporter, took up contracts with PetroSA in support of the oil rig, Pride of South Seas, in drilling operations in the oil fields along the Southern Cape coast.
During 2009 new vessels where placed under MBC management and in 2010 the AHTS BOURBON THETYS arrived of South Africa's Southern Coast to commence operations in terms of a new platform supply contract with PetroSA.
In 2012 the Bourson Ulysse entered service to support the Rig Ensco 5001 in Project Ikwezi, while in 2013 the Greatship Anjali followed to support general off-shore activities of PetroSA.