When beautiful means also professional shipmanagement
Master Crew’s co-owner Elena Kashuba from Ukraine (but based in Greece) has perquisites and shipping expertise one could hardly imagine just at a first glance
She is currently preparing to land Italy for the imminent Genoa Boat Show at the end of September in order to start a deeper penetration of the alluring yachting sector, as a further diversification of her business.
Already at a first look she shows her main features: optimistic, energetic and well determined, until the point to fight to that aim. Although working in a male dominated sector she has the trading spirit in her DNA.
Objectively beautiful with a spontaneous smile, in any case her beauty is not one of the reasons why she stands out in the shipping field, having cut a role in the international shipmanagement. Elena Kashuba, born in Ukraine but professionally based in Greece for quite a few years, as the owner and CO of Master Crewing Company, founded by her father in 2001, sharing the helm with her husband Andrey, is deeply involved in the field of manning aboard any kind of ships.
“I grew up in a traditional Odessa family; my father was a marine master for 20 years. I was strongly influenced by my parents and city, that has a very strong maritime tradition. I actually adore the sea and the port since my childhood. Then I studied Shipmanagement and Marine Law in conjunction with a 10 years working experience in the departments of operations and crewing, from the positions of ship operator to General Manager. In 1993 I graduated from Odessa State University in Russian language and Literature and in 1998 I graduated again as Bachelor in Marine Law”.
Incidentally Odessa’s 200 year maritime tradition has been developed (also) by Greeks involved in trade and transportation of goods in the 18th century. Thanks to them, Ukrainians kept their shipping tradition and now are considered probably the most skilled seafarers in the world.
When Elena decided to set up Master Crewing Ltd. in 2001 to mark her way of thinking on the sector of Greek shipping, her father Capt. Anatoliy D. Lapin, was the mastermind of the newco. She has well clear what are the current challenges of the crew managing business.
“Crewing starts to be more technical; new types of vessels and fuels appear, so technical information is crucial. When you have to work with tankers aframax, LPG, LNG, offshore vessels etc. things get more complicated. The master able for such a complex ship is difficult to be found, it is more like a head hunting operation. We are looking for very demanding seafarers’ specialists”.
As said, the yachting sector is the latest challenge for the Kashubas.
“Our team has a considerable experience in cruise sector providing qualitative services. We also hold expertise for agency representation and technical management in the yachting sector. The remarkable coordination of our services, which are extended to the ports and airports, give the easy and safe selection to our principals for crew changes at any time” they say, detailing their offer more accurately: qualitative selection of yachting staff with all required certificates & licenses, according to STCW-78/95, SOLAS etc. and international professional courses for yachting crew; testing of English knowledge & psychological endurance all our candidates; planning crew changes and organizing flights; visa support & Flag State documents preparation; organizing payments in accordance with the approved budget.
“We carry out directly the selection of seafarers. That is why we are collaborating with Maritime institutions and training centers which are always eager to comply with the latest developing standards. We provide careful selecting, carry out multi-level interviews and training of each crew with special program. Their performance on board is continuously monitored through the Crew Appraisal Program. Our company is placing an emphasis on growing of the young officers, aimed at career development and our Seafarers’ Database includes specialists of all ranks and experience. We can offer Deck & Engineering Officers with boat handling and navigation skills, excellent ISM and ISPS knowledge and practices, excellent knowledge of all systems on board; interior staff with excellent communication skills, knowledge of restaurants and activities in cruising areas, knowledge of flower and table decorations and attention to details; galley sStaff with knowledge of nutrition, diets and allergies, food safety and storage, menu planning, varied repertoire and wine knowledge; experienced butlers, pursers, yoga & pilates instructors, florists and massage therapists. All our candidates have required certificates, according to STCW – 78/95, SOLAS, Professional Courses for Yacht Crew, Marlins Tests etc. We thoroughly check all documents for legitimacy and candidates on required level of experience and proficiency”.
Master Ltd. was licensed by the Ministry of the Social Policy of Ukraine, certified by MLC 2006 and ISO 9001: 2008. “Ukraine and Odessa in particular, has a great tradition and potential for the development and training of seafarers for a wide spectrum of the shipping community; that is why our company is closely cooperating with local institutions such as Odessa National Maritime Academy, Odessa Maritime College, Odessa Maritime Training Center. The availability of easy learning candidates and a good training base allow us to create new HR projects to satisfy our partner’s requirements. As a result we successfully cooperate with Greek, Norwegian, Israeli, Singapore, KSA shipping companies and other” Elena and Andrey conclude.
Three is the perfect number
Maritime agency Master Ltd was founded in 2001 by Anatoliy D. Lapin, Elena Kashuba and Andrey Kashuba as a family business.
Lapin is Deep Sea Captain with 25 years of experience in the position of a Shipmaster on the bulk carrier vessels exceeding 50.000 dwt of the Black Sea Shipping Co. (Odessa) and Swiss Shipping company. Since 1995 he was a director of maritime agency Cosmos, Odessa and during this period he successfully cooperated with Greek shipping companies Meandors Lines, Nicolakis Shipping, Lagoa Shipping, Seatrade Shipping SA, and many others.
From 2006 till 2012 Lapin was the President of Odessa Shipmaster’s association, Nautical Inspector of Liberia and Marshall Islands. As a competent person of IMO representing Ukraine he took part in assessing information communicated from Germany, Kenya, Tanzania, Barbados, Georgia.
His daughter Elena Kashuba graduated at Odessa national University and has Master's degree in law and languages. Since 1996 she was working as a crewing manager.
Her husband Andrey Kashuba is a founder of Maritime Agency Master Ltd, has higher education in jurisdiction as a lawyer (graduated from the Odessa National University) and higher technical education (Odessa Polytechnic Institute). From 2001 till 2006 he has been dealing with shipping company Meandors Lines SA manning its bulk carriers. Later on he did that with Norwegian Ship Management company TFDS, Samicor Group, Buffalo Shipping, Rawabi Swiber Offshore Services, Intertrade Management (Kagiafas Shipping).