Color Line has one foot in the maritime industry and one in the travel industry. The company’s activities have considerable knock-on effects for society in general, and especially in the maritime sector, tourism and culture in the communities in which the company operates in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Germany. The company therefore has a responsibility to address national and international issues. Color Line works systematically in areas in which extensive social responsibility is involved.
Being able to reorganise successfully is essential in order to further develop the welfare society. A government productivity commission in Norway has revealed the need for innovation and increased efficiency in all industries and in all parts of society, within the framework of a future low emissions society. Sustainability has been defined by the United Nations in terms of 17 sustainability goals. These also give important guidelines for companies such as Color Line.
Increased productivity - technology and digitalisation
In recent years, Color Line has taken major technological and organisational steps in the introduction of modern, cost-effective IT solutions, in connection with communication and digital booking, for example. These solutions contribute to the automation of tasks and the cost-effective digitalisation of the operation, as well as a better customer experience for guests.
‘Color Line’s SuperSpeed concept is perhaps the best example of industrialisation in the Norwegian travel industry. ’Professor, Torgeir Reve, Handelshøyskolen BI
Innovation and tourism
Tourism is a global growth industry and Norwegian tourism has enormous potential - and has been pointed out by the government and the Storting as a future growth industry. The transport of people, vehicles and goods is dependent on a well functioning logistics system. Color Line has invested over NOK 8 billion in recent years in a modern, cost-effective and environmentally adapted fleet with efficient ports. In 2017 the development of onshore power systems in Color Line’s four Norwegian ports was completed and the company is now one of Europe’s most environmentally efficient shipping lines. This initiative is in line with international and national goals for sustainable transport and tourism.
Value creation and new value creation
Almost 600,000 foreign tourists come to Norway by Color Line every year. These tourists represent about 3.5 million bed nights a year on shore and the company’s international guests represent 8 per cent of the total tourist consumption in Norway. The total effect of tourists’ consumption in Norway is almost NOK 3.6 billion according to estimates made by Horwath Consulting (2016) and the research project REISEPOL. Every kroner that a foreign guest spends on board results in a total spend of eleven kroner in Norway.
Norway as a tourist destination
Color Line is the largest transporter of foreign tourists to Norway by sea and the company is a leading tour operator.
Norwegian tourism shows a positive development and Color Line shares the goal of the authorities and the industry that further growth must occur in the international markets. Color Line is an active participant in the travel community, including through the associations Norsk Reiseliv, NCE Tourism and Visit OSLO, to contribute to the creation of a more cohesive and consistent travel product and better directed joint marketing initiatives internationally. As with other growth industries, the government, the research environments and those in the industry must stand together and work continuously to develop destinations and attractions in parallel with seeking new markets and market segments.
The maritime cluster in Norway is a prerequisite for further development of Norwegian shipping lines and the maritime supplier industry. Color Line is now the only shipping line in international passenger traffic to and from Norway that operates under the Norwegian flag, with mainly Norwegian crews, Norwegian ownership and a Norwegian head office. In summer 2019, Color Line will put the world’s largest plug-in hybrid ship into service between Sandefjord and Strømstad. The ship is being built at Ulstein Shipyard and the sub-contractors are mainly part of the maritime cluster in Norway. Building Colour Hybrid is confirmation of the international competitiveness that the maritime industry in Norway represents when the industry has international competitiveness and predictable framework conditions. A report from Menon shows that the national and local knock-on effects of building Color Hybrid are almost NOK one billion..
Color Line is a major employer with 2,300 employees and is Norway’s largest maritime training company with almost 60 apprentices and cadets on deck and in engine rooms, plus almost 40 apprentices in the hotel operation. Color Line is consciously working to offer an attractive career path at sea and is the largest contributor to the Norwegian Maritime Competence Foundation. In the last ten years the company has contributed almost NOK 250 million to the foundation, which was founded to offer opportunities for apprentices and cadets in the maritime industry. The funding is also used for competence raising and recruitment measures, as well as projects in health and safety and the working environment in the maritime industry.
Onshore power means environmental savings
The introduction of this innovative technology has given measurable results for the harbors where Color Line ships are moored. Onshore power for ships means that the electricity comes from the normal power grid on shore.
The introduction of onshore power in Oslo in 2011 aroused considerable international attention and set a new international standard for the sustainable shipping of the future.
Sea transport is environmentally efficient
The need for transport of goods is increasing rapidly. The EU target is that fifty per cent of goods transport should be moved from the roads to shipping and railways by 2050. The reason is that sea transport is considerably more climate and environment friendly than road transport.
Color Line is an important player in environmentally friendly transport of people and goods. Compared with transport by road, sea transport reduces energy consumption by 82 per cent, CO2 emissions by 94 per cent and NOx emissions by 86 per cent. Moving about 170,000 trailers from the roads to shipping corresponds to an annual environmental saving equal to a queue of trailers some 2,000 kilometres long. That corresponds to the road from Oslo to North Cape (A changing society, Color Line 2015).
‘Color Line has invested over NOK 200 million up to and including 2016 in more sustainable and environmentally friendly operations and our onshore power system is an important environmental contribution and a step closer to the vision of zero emissions from Norwegian shipping,’Trond Kleivdal, Color Line CEO (press release, May 2016).
The safety of employees and customers is something we take very seriously. For these reason we have regular exercises together with the defence forces, the police and the emergency services. The exercises ensure that Color Line maintains high quality in its safety activities and the company has regular training for employees both on board and on shore.
Zero tolerance of corruption
Color Line accepts no form of corruption or delinquency. Guidelines have been prepared to assist the employees in their everyday duties with regard to conduct towards guests, suppliers and colleagues. The company has routines for follow up and notification of unacceptable conditions. All employees take a mandatory e-learning programme and good systems have been established to ensure compliance, with a dedicated whistleblowing channel for employees.
Personal protection and data security
Color Line takes personal protection seriously and we shall ensure that personal data is handled securely and in accordance with legislation. The company has appointed a dedicated personal protection officer to assist in ensuring awareness of and competence in the correct processing of personal data. The personal protection officer works with a dedicated team and the head of IT security and the company’s head of security to ensure that knowledge of how to handle personal data correctly reaches all necessary links in the organisation.
In 2009, Color Line was licensed by the Norwegian authorities for casino operation and gaming on board the ships. The supervisory body is the Gaming and Foundation Authority. Each year the company gives a statutory proportion of the income from gaming to culture, sport and other good causes in Norway. Since the scheme was introduced in 2009, almost NOK 120 million has gone to good causes, including the environmental foundation Bellona, the children's choir at the Norwegian Opera and Ballet and very many sports clubs, which play such an important role in local well-being and community development.
To prevent gaming addiction and undesirable gaming behaviour, Color Line has established effective control systems and training programmes and the company participates in the Gaming and Foundation Authority’s Gaming Responsibility Forum.