August 21, 2003

Navy consolidates Gulf SUPSHIPS
Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) is consolidating two of its Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion and Repair (SUPSHIP) commands into a single command, in support of the Chief of Naval Operation's Sea Enterprise initiative, and to improve organizational alignment and increase future readiness.

SUPSHIP New Orleans, La., and SUPSHIP Pascagoula, Miss., will be disestablished and replaced by a new command, SUPSHIP Gulf Coast, beginning Oct. 1.

The consolidation follows the acquisition of Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula and Avondale Shipyards in New Orleans by Northrop Grumman Corporation.

Since Northrop Grumman Ship Systems operates both shipyards as a single business unit, the Navy concluded that maintaining two SUPSHIPs was not cost effective. It could achieve significant savings and efficiency by having a single contract administration activity responsible for the entire Gulf Coast area.

"This consolidation is giving us the opportunity to have a common corporate approach to these two entities," said Capt. Ken Roey, NAVSEA's director of the SUPSHIP Management Group. "It provides us the opportunity to gain efficiencies as we combine duplicate functions across the Gulf Coast."

Located near private shipbuilding facilities throughout the United States, SUPSHIPs act as NAVSEA's on-site technical, contractual and business agent. SUPSHIP is responsible for contract administration and project management of shipbuilding, ship repair, maintenance, modernization in the private sector for the fleet, DoD, and other government customers. SUPSHIP personnel work closely with the shipbuilders, and are instrumental in bringing each new ship from the drafting table to the fleet, as well as ensuring the ship's health and technical superiority throughout its service life.

"This is a merger of equals, not a takeover," said Roey. "It will help us identify our best and most efficient practices, identify risk mitigation and Lean Manufacturing opportunities, and streamline our waterfront oversight efforts."

SUPSHIP Gulf Coast headquarters will be in Pascagoula, collocated with the headquarters of Northrop Grumman Ship Systems. The SUPSHIP deputy supervisor will be located in New Orleans.

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