Norwegian Offshore Firms Diverge With Contracts and Cutbacks

Atlantic's MRV Ocean West (image courtesy Atlantic Offshore)

By MarEx 2015-12-28 18:57:21

Atlantic Offshore has announced a new nine month firm / two year option charter contract for its response vessel Ocean West. Talisman Sinopec Energy UK Limited, a joint venture between Repsol-owned Talisman and Chinese state-owned firm Sinopec, has hired the vessel for response coverage on its North Sea platforms.

Atlantic also announced December 2 that Norway's Statoil had exercised a six month contract option for the Ocean King, expiring in July 2016. There is an additional one year option remaining.

Earlier in the year, Atlantic negotiated the sale of its 1972-built Ocean Sun to a buyer out of the North Sea region, for a price the company described as above book and above broker valuation, and took delivery of newbuild MRV Ocean Falcon in her place.

Atlantic's home office is outside of Bergen, Norway. The firm operates over 20 ships in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, and its portfolio is diversified with the inclusion of both platform supply vessels (PSVs) and multirole response vessels (MRVs).

Separately, Ulsteinvik-based Norwegian firm Island Offshore has reached an agreement for staff pay cuts with its 1200 employees as it works to stave off layoffs.

The news follows on the company’s earlier efforts to reduce payroll overhead in a weak offshore market. On August 1, the firm reduced working hours for all of its onshore employees by 10 percent.

“It is important to us to stand together in this. This way we also retain the significant competence we have built up over time. We know that we are asking for a lot of our employees, hence it is very nice to see that everyone supports this solution,” said Håvard Ulstein, the firm's managing director.

As at other firms, Island has also cold-stacked vessels and delayed newbuild deliveries due to low demand. With the December 2 layup of the Island Commander, Island Offshore has seven vessels tied up at dock, including three off market for the winter season.