More Cargo. Less Fuel. Full Transparency:How to Build and Manage the Best-Performing Fleet


There are many areas within the shipping business where efficiency can be improved significantly. BestShip focuses on the most promising ones: Riding Gangs, Retrofitting, Cargo Capacity Optimization, and Holistic Performance Management. The goal is to achieve substantial, measurable savings. We are also your partner when it comes to Scrubber Installations or Docking and Repair Services.

Ready for IMO 2020 Sulphur Cap: SOx Emission Reduction with Scrubber Installation

In order to fight air emissions, MARPOL Annex VI establishes a global 0.5 % fuel sulphur cap for vessels as of 1 January 2020, as well as stricter regulations in Emission Control Areas (ECAs). BestShip is your partner when it comes to project management of the necessary vessel modifications, the installation of Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (Scrubbers).

BestShip is currently installing scrubbers on various vessel series and is working with all marketable systems types (closed loop, hybrid and open loop) and various high quality suppliers. Our service scope ranges from 3D laser scanning, basic design concepts, detailed engineering, on-board preparation through Riding Gangs, supervision and the overall project management of the installation. As standard, we combine the fitting of scrubbers with the installation of Ballast Water Treatment Systems considering interdependencies of positioning and layout of both. We always aim at minimum cost and off-hire by installing prefabricated scrubber modules where feasible.

Thiemo Ullrich

Thiemo Ullrich
Technical Director
Phone: +49 40-50098-1560

Riding Gangs: A perfect answer to your demands

With OPEX as one of the central issues, a cost efficient ship management has to cover a vessel's situational, seasonal and individual needs and requirements. As maintenance, service and repairs are naturally fluctuating in their demands a 'standard' crew-setup cannot always and exactly cover the specific working hour needs.
Especially repair works often exceed – in timing and scope – the available time in and between port stays. Their demand for individual qualification is likely to challenge the crews as well. The practical answer are 'Riding Gangs'.
BestShip Riding Gangs are the ideal, cost efficient and high quality answer to repair works and specific maintenance needs worldwide: Experienced as crew and familiar with all relevant tools, systems and processes these colleagues provide a unique qualification and expertise with an owner's view and background. Our highly skilled and additionally trained crew are doing the extra works and only for the time it is necessary. With an ideal line-up, our Riding Gangs are traveling directly from vessel to vessel, saving travel times and expenses. In the long run, they train our colleagues on board and ashore: broad know-how is thus transferred back into the company and will also benefit owners and charterers of our fleet under management.

Bengt Neumann

Bengt Neumann
Head of Operational Services
Phone: +49-40-50098-1561

Dock Broker & Repair Services

We find the right dock for your vessel

You need to find a dock? We do the in-depth research: Based on the return delivery date and port of your vessel, Bestship proves all relevant technical data as docking sizes, water depths, probable draft, pier lengths or crane capacities. We take into account the seasonal conditions and regional characteristics, while we check the availability of the docks. Afterwards, you will receive an overview about your docking options and the respective prices. This enables you to choose the right option quickly.

Repair without loss of time

BestShip benefits from a large global network and cooperates with various highly qualified repair companies around the world. This saves your time, as we have partners nearby wherever you are: in port, but also at anchorage or at sea. We check your vessel data and organize a highly trustworthy repair partner, usually within 24 hours. Thanks to our technical knowledge, we professionally brief the repair companies, so the order is clear. Costs are openly communicated in full transparency.

Bengt Neumann

Bengt Neumann
Head of Operational Services
Phone: +49-40-50098-1561

Retrofitting: A fitness programme for your ship

Amid high fuel prices, overcapacities and stricter environmental regulations, ships must be ready to meet ever more stringent requirements to prevail in competition. Efficiency is the winning formula: It boosts earnings, reduces costs and protects jobs.
BestShip helps shipping companies identify ship-specific retrofitting measures to get their fleets fit for the future. Apart from analytics and development, our range of services includes the design work for the required refits, and comprehensive project management to implement them. From installing new, energy-efficient propellers to retrofitting a bulbous bow with improved hydrodynamics and modifying the main engine, the right combination of innovative technologies will propel your fleet in service ahead with greater efficiency and deliver a rapid return on your investment.

Cargo Boosting: A fully loaded ship runs more profitably

It is a simple formula: More cargo on board means more money earned. But in reality, few shipping companies operate their vessels at optimal capacity. BestShip helps companies maximize the commercial potential of their ships while minimizing modifications of the existing equipment and strictly adhering to the highest safety standards. Increasing the draught, optimizing cargo distribution and lashing, or providing a higher reefer capacity are options to boost revenues and raise charter rates. The result will benefit all parties involved: The owner will have a more commercially attractive ship, the charterer will profit from greater cargo capacity, and the cost per unit of cargo (slot costs) will drop.

Fleet Performance Management: A "safe" for your fuel

Fuel consumption not only represents the lion's share of a ship's operating costs. It also has a direct impact on the vessel's environmental footprint, a factor of ever increasing importance. To thoroughly understand the implications you need solid, reliable, reproducible data. From bunkering and trimming through to route planning and cruising speeds, BestShip's sophisticated monitoring system "FuelSafe" continuously checks vessel operation to reveal the weak spots in the operating profile. The Fleet Performance Centre will then analyse the data to clearly identify all on-board units which consume excessive amounts of energy. Transparent data reports show where you need to intervene to improve energy efficiency. Furthermore, the experts from BestShip will support you in implementing the required steps, from technical retrofits and crew training through to ensuring optimized performance in daily operations.

For further information, please call: +49 40 50098 – 1112


Our expertise for your success: Holistic optimization advice for investors, owners, charterers and ship managers. Bespoke development and implementation of performance-enhancing measures.

With about 150 ships in service, and backed by decades of experience, ZEABORN Ship Management has evolved into a technological leader. As a major player in the market, ZEABORN Ship Management was among the first to develop a comprehensive efficiency optimization strategy. Through its subsidiary BestShip, the ship manager provides its far-ranging expertise to its customers, which are investors, owners, charterers and ship managers.

As a partner to the shipping industry, BestShip offers innovative efficiency-enhancing and optimizing solutions that represent leading-edge technology in this market.

BestShip's consultancy services generate true added value for investors, owners, charterers and ship managers alike, ensuring that their solutions continue to deliver economic benefits every single day of ship operation.


The BestShip leadership team consists of technical experts
with many years of industry experience.

Michael Brandhoff

Managing Director, BestShip GmbH & Cie. KG

Before he began his career, he studied Maritime Engineering at the University of Applied Science Hamburg. He then held positions as Managing Director at Reederei Hamburger Lloyd and Hamburger Lloyd Tanker. Michael Brandhoff joined Rickmers Shipmanagement in Hamburg as Managing Director and Deputy Chief Operating Officer in March 2017. In September 2017 Rickmers Shipmanagement was acquired by Bremen-based Zeaborn Group. Effective 1 January 2018, Zeaborn Group also acquired Hamburg–based ship manager E.R. Schiffahrt. In July 2018 Michael Brandhoff was appointed COO of E.R. Schiffahrt, renamed to Zeaborn Ship Management in August 2018. As COO of Zeaborn Ship Management, Michael Brandhoff is responsible for the technical division, Marine & Quality, procurement and newbuilding as well as the continuous operational performance improvement. In October 2018, he was also appointed Managing Director of BestShip, a subsidiary of Zeaborn Ship Management, which offers services for optimizing performance and efficiency in ship operation.

Being already 25 years in the shipping industry, especially in view of having been a technical director as well as consultant for Hamburg Süd, RHL and others, Michael Brandhoff has gained outstanding experience in this business surrounding.


News updates, new projects: Learn more about BestShip.

Press Contact

Marion von der Dick c/o ZEABORN Ship Management GmbH & Cie. KG
Phone: +49 40 50098-1420 | Email:


BestShip GmbH & Cie. KG
Ludwig-Erhard-Strasse 22
20459 Hamburg