Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding delivers new self-unloading barge to VanEnkevort Tug & Barge Inc.

leader of ship repair and maintenance companies
October 8, 2020

STURGEON BAY, WISCONSIN: Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding and VanEnkevort Tug & Barge, Inc. are pleased to announce the completion and delivery of a new self-unloading barge for operation on the Great Lakes.

The new barge, named Michigan Trader, measures 740-ft. in length, 78-ft. in beam, and 45-ft. in depth. The barge has a 265-ft. unloading boom and capacity for up to 37,000 long tons of cargo.

“This Michigan Trader will be the fourth self-unloading barge in our Great Lakes fleet, and we couldn’t be happier to welcome her into service,” says David Groh, president of VanEnkevort Tug & Barge Fleet.

The Michigan Trader will join as the tenth barge in the VanEnkevort Tug & Barge Fleet, with services on the Great Lakes, Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico.

“Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding has always provided repair services to VTB and built the hull for their first new tug the Joyce VanEnkevort,” said Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding’s Vice President and General Manager Todd Thayse. “The completion and delivery of the Michigan Trader to Dave Groh and his VTB team is another proud event for FBS and our talented shipbuilding team.”

“The repair work that Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding has completed for us over the years has been good,” Groh said. “We are happy to have partnered with them for this new vessel and are thrilled to support the Great Lakes region and its industry. Our growing customer base has supported our vision and we have responded with this new build barge. We are happy to have been able to bring this opportunity to FBS and work with their talented workforces on this project.”

Utilizing top-quality materials and parts from suppliers across the Midwest, the project’s supply chain is a noteworthy part of the vessel’s completion. Substantial local suppliers were Broadwind Heavy Industries of Manitowoc, WI which built the Michigan Trader’s 265-ft. boom, Northern Machine & Repair Inc. provided its hatch covers, and Marine Travel Lift in Sturgeon Bay, WI manufactured the cargo hatch crane along with many more local parts and services.

“We are happy to have supported the Great Lakes economy during the challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic.” Thayse said. “From boom to hatch Crane, and everything in between, this vessel shows the greatness of Wisconsin and Midwest manufacturing and our Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding employees.”

Media Contact:

Melissa Wollering, Fincantieri Marine Group, Senior Manager – Communications at 715.587.2993


About Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding

Located in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding (FBS) is an industry leader in the construction, conversion and repair of large ships – tracing its rich history back more than 100 years. The diversified FBS portfolio includes all types of vessels including articulated tug-barge units, dredges and dredging support equipment, self-unloading carriers, ferries and offshore support vessels. On the repair side, FBS is expert at managing critical deadlines in the repair and sustainment of bulk carriers and other ships of the Great Lakes Winter Fleet.

Shipbuilding facilities at the 63-acre plant include a large graving dock, a U.S. Navy-certified drydock, and lifting capacity to meet the most demanding requirements. Erection buildings are climate-controlled and equipped with sophisticated computer-aided manufacturing equipment. Fincantieri’s skilled workforce has an average of more than 20 years of shipyard construction experience, in-house engineering, and a management team focused on client satisfaction and on-time delivery.

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding is an operating unit of Fincantieri Marine Group (FMG), the United States division of global shipbuilding giant Fincantieri. fincantieribayshipbuilding.com

About Fincantieri

Fincantieri is one of the world’s largest shipbuilding groups and has built more than 7,000 vessels in over 230 years of maritime history. It is a leader in cruise ship design and construction and a reference player in all high-tech shipbuilding industry’s sectors, from naval to offshore vessels, from high-complexity special vessels and ferries to mega-yachts, ship repairs and conversions, systems and components production and after-sales services. Fincantieri operates in the United States through its subsidiary Fincantieri Marine Group (FMG). This company, which serves commercial and government customers in the USA, including the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard, has three shipyards (Fincantieri Marinette Marine, Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding and Fincantieri ACE Marine) located in the Great Lakes.


About VanEnkevort Tug & Barge, Inc. (VTB)

VanEnkevort Tug & Barge, Inc. (VTB) is a privately owned U.S. flag bulk transport company servicing the mining, steel and construction industries on the Great Lakes.

VTB operates the most modern self-discharging bulker barges on the Great Lakes and is a forerunner in converting older ships into viable barges to support these markets. Of the Ten ATBs on the Great Lakes, VTB has been involved in the conversion and/or ownership of Seven of them. Being a nimble and flexible operator, VTB often runs in the extended season offering support to its competitors and the USCG for icebreaking and transiting the frozen waterways.

VTB’s Fleet is in full compliance with EPA air emission control regulations for 2024. Its fleet competes with roughly 50 self-unloading bulk vessels, average age built in 1965. VTB holds several long-term multimillion-ton cargo contracts and offers technical and commercial management services.




Headquarters Washington DC
655 15th St NW, Suite 450
Washington, DC 20005
Fincantieri Marine Group - GBO
2465 Marina Circle
Green Bay, WI 54304
ACE Marine
201 S Pearl Street
Green Bay, WI 54303
Marinette Marine
1600 Ely Street
Marinette, WI 54143
Bay Shipbuilding
605 N 3rd Avenue
Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235