Periskal cvba worked closely together with the VUB, Free University of Brussels, department Elec of Prof. Van Biesen. Prof. Van Biesen was that time already involved in digital vector charts for survey work. At the University the first digital charts of the River Scheldt and North See were developed. Soon the need for a navigation program to control this charts came up. The first Tresco Inland ECDIS Viewer program was born at the university and tested with success in the field. We are 1993 when Periskal took part in the first maritime exhibitions like Europort (Amsterdam – the Netherlands) and HISWA (Amsterdam – the Netherlands). The first brochures where spread among interested sailors.
In 1994 it became clear that development towards electronic charting for inland waters was the best opportunity. A second company Tresco Navigation Systems was started and took responsibility for the sales of products in Western – Europe. This activity was taken over again in 2003 by Periskal cvba. In 2004 new companies were founded in Rumania and Ukraine to serv better the local markets. Also the network of distributors was increased towards Switzerland, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia and Bulgaria.
From 1994 on the first Tresco Inland ECDIS Viewer systems for navigation appeared in Inland Shipping. The motorvessel Claudia (inland tanker) on the River Scheldt was the first one. In 1995 and 1996 the first systems on inland rivers like the Rhine appeared. This went together with the increased availability of charts in inland waters. Mid 1999 the 500th ship was equipped with Tresco Inland ECDIS Viewer . This event appeared widely in the national press in Belgium.
In 2001 the 1000th system of Tresco Inland ECDIS Viewer was hand over in the Netherlands to the Unitas of Mr. Speksnijder. In 2002 all software was renewed and the transfer to ECDIS was made. All existing charts were converted from the older Microstation format into Inland ECDIS s-57. In 2007 the latest product Periskal Radar Overlay was certified by the German FVT. This product combines the digital chart with the image of the radar. Nowadays more than 5000 ships in Europe use products from the Periskal group.
In August 2013 Periskal takes a majority interest in the Dutch company Chartworx bv. Chartworx has been involved with the development, production and distribution of electronic chart systems for both the SOLAS market and the fishery and leisure market since 1982. Chartworx products are being marketed under the names TheMAP, TRAX and Quodfish. In 2015 the company Noordersoft with the well known product PC-Navigo was taken over.
Used technology and strategic partnerships
Early 1990’s the charting technology was based upon Microstation DGN format. The software development was done in MDL, Microstation development language. The charting technology has been used till 2002. Then all charting activities switched over towards the ‘Inland ECDIS’ standard S-57. As software an external kernel was used from the middle 1996 till 2002 but the abonded and replaced by the Seven C’s Ecdis kernel. This strategic partnership with Seven C’s has lead to a strong increase of the company and the number of clients.
Distribution for inland shipping
The products of the Periskal group are distributed in Europe by own companies and distributors. A complete list of distributors can be found elsewhere on the site. The biggest distributor in the Benelux is Radio Holland from Rotterdam, in Germany this is Kadlec & Brödlin. Distribution in Rumania is done by Periskal Rumania.
Products of the Periskal Group are available in Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Rumania and Ukraine. Other countries can be handled by the head office.