Left to right: ENL’s Gareth Hodson with Furuno MD Hiroyuki Mori and Muneyuki Koike.

Furuno Electric Co. Ltd takes larger slice in New Zealand’s ENL marine electronics company

Furuno Electric Co. Ltd of Japan — yes, that Furuno marine electronics — has bought a larger slice of New Zealand’s ENL electronics company, confirming a 29.5 per cent share, up from an initial 10 per cent investment.

The move is said to show further evidence of Furuno’s confidence in ENL’s ground-breaking technology, particularly WASSP – the multibeam sonar system that produces 3D topographic imagery of the seafloor and associated fish detection.

The partnership will see ENL Electronics continue to work closely with the Furuno product planning division on specialist projects.

Furuno managing director Muneyuki Koike has high expectations from this investment and collaborative approach. “ENL’s multibeam technology will be an essential element in our product portfolio and we will leverage the technology for all kinds of maritime customers from professional fishermen to recreational boaters,” he said. Since its commercial introduction in 2006, WASSP has established itself as an industry leader with significant numbers of systems sold into commercial fishing, defence, survey and mapping and superyacht applications.

ENL Group managing director Gareth Hodson said the increased investment is a significant step for the Kiwi company.

“Furuno’s financial investment in ENL will strengthen our position in the New Zealand and South Pacific sector with the Furuno brand, together with numerous opportunities to expand our R&D and global export business from New Zealand,” Hodson said.

Both companies will also be looking to expand their presence in the hydrographic survey sector, following the introduction of a cost-effective WASSP model which meets the International Hydrographic Office Standard 1a for Survey and Mapping and Dredging Applications.