Damen Opens First North American Office
Netherlands-based shipbuilding group Damen opened its first North American office on Monday, and it already has its first order: four new twin-screw tugs for Young Brothers of Hawaii, a division of Saltchuk.
The 120-foot ocean-going tugs will be built at Conrad Shipyard in Louisiana under a license agreement, and delivery is scheduled beginning in the first quarter of 2018.
“Opening a permanent Damen presence in North America is a significant milestone for the group,” said Jan van Hogerwou, senior manager for new construction. “With over 200 Damen design vessels built and delivered in the US, this has been an important market for our vessels for many years via our flexible licensing agreements, and we have enjoyed excellent cooperation with shipyards across the country. This latest initiative will enable us to strengthen our relationships further with both builders and operators.”
The office is in Houston, and Damen says that the location was chosen as a signal to the offshore industry – a means of demonstrating commitment to offshore despite the current downturn.
Damen is a diversified shipbuilding and ship design firm, with over 30 shipyard, repair yard and related units around the globe. In years past it has won many orders for offshore vessels, and while the recent downturn has had an effect on ordering activity in that market, the firm's strong presence in design and construction of tugs, wind farm service ships, military and coast guard patrol boats, ferries, and other specialty vessels has helped it stay balanced. As of the end of last year, the firm had a total orderbook value of more than $3 billion, according to Dutch news outlet FD.