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Norway’s Awilco Set to Launch Offshore Wind Services Business

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Published Mar 2, 2021 5:36 PM by The Maritime Executive

As another demonstration of the perceived emerging opportunities in the offshore wind sector, famed Norwegian shipping company Awilco is reportedly poised for entry into the sector. Reports from Norway say that the division of Awilhelmsen is poised to launch a new company for maintenance and service operations targeted at the offshore wind sector.

Awilco will establish a new company called Integrated Wind Solutions and is reported to be ordering a fleet of new construction and service operation vessels according to analysts at Clarkson Platou Securities. The Norwegian media outlet Finansavisen is confirming the reports saying that the company will build a fleet of ships to transport personnel to the wind farm fields as well as providing maintenance services.

The first of the ships for the new service are reportedly already on order in China due for delivery in 2023. It is also believed that Awilco has options for up to four more ships from the Chinese shipbuilders.

Additional confirmation of Wilhelmsen’s move into the wind sector came on the LinkedIn account of the new CEO of the company. Lars-Henrik Q. Røren, who currently heads the equities operation at Norwegian financial services firm Formuesforvaltning announced the new operation. He writes on his profile, “April 1, I will take up a new position as CEO for an offshore wind service company, 100% AWilhelmsen (Awilco) ownership. A thrilling journey awaits. Stay tuned.”

The Wilhelmsen family has deep roots in the shipping industry dating back to 1939. The company has owned and operated vessels within various shipping and offshore segments including successful investments in the tanker, cruise ship, and oil services sectors. Today, its Awilco division is focused on the shipping sector with investments in containerships, drilling, tankers, LNG, and technical services. The opportunities in offshore wind are believed to be a strong extension of the company’s technical services operations.

Wilhelmsen was one of the two founding investors in the 1960s of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and continued to play a key role in the cruise line’s growth into the second-largest cruise operator. Awilhelmsen which was established to manage and diversify the family’s investments also holds positions in real estate and retail.