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Cornish exhibitor WorkFloat is celebrating success at Seawork

The company won the overall 'Spirit of Innovation' Award at the European Commercial Marine Awards (ECMAs), sponsored by A-Plan Marine Insurance.

It had entered its self-propelled, floating work platform in the Innovations Showcase, sponsored by National Maritime and HSSMI which gives exhibitors the opportunity to showcase the latest in equipment, services, projects and vessels introduced in the past 12 months.

WorkFloat has been designed to bridge an identified gap in the market between small workboats and larger, more expensive workboats and mulitcats that can only be moved on the road using costly low loaders and that then need a crane or hoist for launching and recovery.

It 'folds' up to tow behind a 4x4 on the road or slide into a standard shipping container. Once afloat the 8m x 5m 'mini multicat' can lift, pull and carry an impressive deadweight and has a wide range of commercial applications.

The vessel is all about versatility, it can be used for commercial diving, civils, bridge repairs, aquaculture, light dredging, oil response, disaster & flood relief, SAR, ferry (cars and passengers), survey work, sampling, drilling, superyacht support, military, and film work.

WorkFloat say “A bit like a worker ant, WorkFloat might be small and light but she's incredibly strong. The Cat 5 MECAL coded workboat can carry more than double her own weight (over 6 tons), lift over a ton with her HAIB and its two steerable propulsion units can push her along at over 8 knots”.

Presenting the Award Peter Green, from sponsor, National Maritime and HSSMI, said,The overall winner of the Spirit of Innovations Award absolutely exemplifies the innovative ethos and practical value which is at the heart of Seawork: it is exactly the kind of forward-thinking product that people who attend shows such as this are interested in, and it ingeniously fills a gap in the market. Despite being a comfortably sizeable work platform, the Spirit of Innovations winner can be towed behind a Land Rover Discovery, and is a deserving winner of the award. Congratulations to everyone who contributed to the design and development of the WorkFloat.”

Toby Budd, founder and Managing Director said ‘’We are beyond delighted. I couldn’t believe it when they called out our name - we only went along for the free beer. I was so happy, I went up and gave Peter Green a big hug. I think you are just supposed to shake hands but I was buzzing, and apparently, the cuddle picture has now gone viral. I was grinning from ear to ear with pride, and so grateful to all the people that had helped us get here. We only formed the company five months ago and are already have our first WorkFloat in build’’

He added ''Seawork has been brilliant for us. We obviously thought it was a good idea but we also know from experience how the market can humble us all. Bringing the concept here and putting it in front of our prime target audience at such an early stage is invaluable. The feedback could not have been better, we've had a strong interest in both our models and have a box full of very high quality leads to follow up on when we get back to Cornwall.

Over half the leads are from contractors, they have been the keenest to get a quote as they already have jobs booked or in the pipeline where they are struggling to get suitable floatation for their kit because of limited access, depth or budget. So yes it could not have been better - great show, no tyre kickers, just serious folk that know what they want. We will be back next year for sure, with both models on the water''

WorkFloat is on stand PG105

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