Dufour, Laskay & Strouse, Inc.

Worldwide Marine Appraisers,
Surveyors, & Consultants


DLS Introduces Marine Business Valuation Services

We are proud to announce a new strategic relationship with The McLean Group (TMG), one of the top middle market business valuation firms in the nation.  Business owners in the marine industry can confidently rely on our decades of marine asset appraisal at DLS, now combined with decades of advanced business valuation experience at TMG.  Our offering includes a wide range of applications:

  • Pre-transaction Value Assessment
  • Tax Compliance
  • Equity Incentive Plans
  • Litigation Support
  • Transaction Opinions and Advisory

At DLS, we understand the nuances of the marine industry and can ensure that all values are fairly considered in this asset-heavy business segment.  Call me directly with questions about this comprehensive service and we will provide an overview of the process and costs involved.  To learn more about TMG’s business valuation services, visit McLeanLLC.com

Harry Ward, President

Direct: 757-938-7109

NAMSGlobal Appoints Ave Boudreaux, Marine Surveyor for DLS Marine, as Treasurer for 2020-2022 Term

DLS Marine is pleased to announce that An International Association of Marine Surveyors (NAMSGlobal) has appointed Ave Boudreaux, Marine Surveyor for DLS Marine based out of Houston, as Treasurer for the 2020-2022 term.

“At DLS, we were very proud to hear about Ave’s appointment as NAMSGlobal treasurer. The NAMS team couldn’t have chosen a more trustworthy, hard-working professional and we’re sure he will serve with the utmost integrity,” said Harry Ward, President, DLS Marine.

Ave P. Boudreaux, NAMS-CMS 118-969 joined DLS Marine in 2009. Since that time, he has conducted numerous types of surveys in the inland and offshore marine industry both local and worldwide. Prior to joining DLS Marine, Boudreaux spent over 15 years supporting the maritime industry. He trained under a NAMS-CMS certified marine surveyor, completing approximately 350 surveys including damage, condition/valuation and appraisals, machinery failures, on/off charters and new construction progress completions. He also supported the U.S. Coast Guard certificated and ABS classed offshore supply vessels, fast supply crewboats, tractor tugs and anchor handling tugs and/or vessels.

“It’s an honor to be elected on the Executive Board as Treasurer. I look forward to working with the board as we continue to build on the Ethical Conduct Policies and Professional Marine Surveying Practices that are so integral to the foundation of NAMSGlobal,” said Boudreaux. “This work will positively impact our ability to support our clients at DLS Marine.”

The NAMS Board of Directors is the governing body of the oldest professional marine surveyor’s association in the United States and is charged with the operation, growth, and standards of NAMS. Their mission is to uphold and maintain the ethics and credibility of its marine surveyors. DLS Marine currently has 10 NAMS certified surveyors, and Ave Boudreaux is now the second DLS member to join the Board.


It’s the economy, stupid.” James Carville coined this very famous and often quoted remark in 1992 when he pointed out during an election year that it was the economy that was most important to voters. Here again we find ourselves in an election year and here again – it is the economy. More specifically in our industry, the current marine economy for operators and lenders.

I have built a fascination about future technology in the marine industry and its acceleration where technical and economic obsolescence will be replacing physical depreciation as a major factor in the valuation of marine assets.

As of now I tend to agree with the “experts” that say the greater marine industry may happily be part of a V recession. That is, the recovery can be as swift as the fall. In appraisal lingo this opinion is called an extraordinary assumption.

There will be exceptions. I have no idea where the offshore service industry is going to go with oil at a near give away price. Some of it will have to move to renewables such as wind farm or tidal power use. Oil was easing out and with the actions of the Saudis and the blast of COVID-19, oil’s demise is nearer.

Some corporate budgets and investor’s monies are already moving into renewables including the cleaner fuels of hydrogen, LNG, ammonia and battery electrical power. Ergo, technical and economic obsolescence.

Under the present conditions only the oil majors have the deep pockets to survive and many have already opened subsidiaries in the renewables. With low oil prices only the easy pickin’s will come out of the ground and the Saudis have most of that.

Another maritime section left behind with tough future prospects, at least in the shorter 6-12 month view, will be the passenger vessel operators. Disposable income may be short for many families on top of the fear headlines have created on cruise ship sickness and death. Some smaller areas like whale watch, harbor tours and charter fishing may have a spark of life from families ready to spend a bit of money as a “reward” for weeks or months of confinement – if they can get past the fear of being around people.

Of course all of this is dependent on the mysterious actions of the virus. If it acts as past viruses have acted, a preventative serum dose will be discovered and approved. If it continues to spread through a longer than expected life cycle or the resumption of a swiftly growing infection rate, there is no telling what a future world’s economy will look like and not just for certain sectors of the industry.

The crash of the oil industry is going to impact a number of countries whose budget is based on oil revenues. This is a troublesome time for lenders, putting out the fires that today’s economy has caused and trying to guess which way the wind will blow so that they can try to plan for where the fire might flare up next.

DLS Marine has always worked hard to make sure we are up with the technological and regulatory changes in the marine industry in order to better serve our customers.  As for today’s economic situation, we are being re-educated day by day like everyone else.

Future writings will try to keep abreast of significant moves in vessel fuel research and design as regulations and economics are forcing these changes. I am in the process of updating a presentation I gave at the 2019 International Conference for the Valuation of Plant, Machinery and Equipment in Auckland New Zealand.  Its title was Thoughts on How Technology and Regulations May Affect Future Vessel Values. Changes in just the past year call for an update and the revised version will be printed in the American Society of Appraisers Machinery & Technical Specialties Journal and will be available through a DLS Marine website link.

Norman Laskay

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