The counter piracy model used by the majority of private maritime security companies (PMSCs) in the Indian Ocean does not transfer easily to the Gulf of Guinea. As in the Horn of Africa, the private sector is beginning to fill the void in delivering maritime security to the Gulf of Guinea.
Somalian pirates have a very simple business plan: head out to sea and hijack any vessel they come across, then hold the crew to ransom. Oil tankers, small private sailing yachts – all have been targeted and all too often the surprising speed and aggression of the pirates catches people off guard. Not to mention the fact that they carry AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), which slightly tips the balance in their favour.
Gemini Maritime provides professional maritime security solutions to the commercial and private shipping industry. Having seen the way the industry was developing and how legislation was being introduced, Alain Schembri and his co-director Steve Martin established Gemini Maritime.
In the aftermath of pirates attacking the yacht Lynn Rival and the brutal killing of the entire crew sailing aboard the yacht Quest, Frances and Michael Howorth ask
the question: Should British yachts carry armed guards when transiting high risk areas?