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    People at EUROGATE

    • Oliver Born

      Large machines are his job

      Oliver Born, vehicle technology planner in Hamburg


      A container terminal is a highly technical operation. It would not work without large machinery such as container gantry cranes, straddle carriers and reach stackers. Oliver Born, planner at EUROGATE Technical Services, looks after the technical side of the more than 160 straddle carriers at the Hamburg container terminal.

    The now 47-year old started his professional career at the traditional Hamburg company Blohm & Voss. “I learned to be a machine fitter and worked in the dockyard for several years”, he reports. He moved to EUROKAI/EUROGATE in 1998 and initially began as a tradesman in the workshop. While also working, Born studied part-time at the Elbcampus in Hamburg to become a master mechanical engineer. “That opened up further opportunities for promotion to me”, he says.


    Even before the training workshop was opened, he along with his colleague Bert Schneider looked after the junior technicians. When the vehicle technology department was looking for a new colleague for planning in 2000, he applied and was accepted. Since then, straddle carriers determine his daily working life. 


    Born is responsible for ensuring that the 162 “Peiners” (as at: May 2016), as the machines in Hamburg are also called, are always functional and ready for use. Among other things, he looks after maintenance, the procurement and stocking of spare parts, and servicing. In addition, he is involved in numerous projects to do with the enormous machines, such as the improvement of data maintenance in the SAP software program, but is also involved in projects concerning the optimisation of processes in workshop operations.


    One important project in this regard is the optimisation of tyre storage and supply. “Straddle-carrier tyres are high-tech products”, says Born. The tyres, which are about the height of a man and weigh half a tonne, are exposed to extreme stresses in daily operations. Changing the tyres isn’t a “straightforward job” due to their sheer size. “We think about how we store the tyres, what change intervals make sense and how all of the processes to do with tyres can be improved”, reports Born. For example, he developed a tyre stacking box jointly with the training workshop and it is to be implemented soon.


    Born, of course, also has a private life outside of his work. The father of two children aged nine and fourteen is a sports fanatic who is an active kick-boxer, runs marathons and cycles a racer. “Unfortunately I'm not so good at swimming, as otherwise I would probably also do triathlons”, he says with a wink.