Eneti Acquires Seajacks Completing Transition from Dry Bulk to WTIV

wind instalaltion Eneti acquires Seajacks
Seajacks operates five wind turbine installation vessels (Seajacks)

Published Aug 5, 2021 4:48 PM by The Maritime Executive

A year after beginning efforts to remake a traditional bulker company to serve the emerging offshore wind sector, Eneti (formerly known as Scorpio Bulkers) is acquiring UK-based Seajacks, the largest owner of purpose-built self-propelled wind turbine installation vessels. The transaction valued at more than $500 million makes Eneti the only New York Stock Exchange-listed operator of wind turbine installation vessels, and comes as the company delivered the last of its bulker fleet to new owners.

“This transaction reflects the biggest step yet in our transformation into a world-class contractor for offshore wind,” said Emanuele Lauro, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Eneti. “Seajacks has successfully installed 2.2GW of offshore wind capacity since its inception. Their organization has delivered on complex projects for demanding customers in the most difficult operating environments. With the well-evidenced demand growth for offshore wind well beyond this decade, we are ideally placed to provide the right assets and the right services for the coming years.”

Eneti entered into an agreement to acquire Seajacks from Marubeni Corporation, INCJ, Ltd. and Mitsui O.S.K., Lines Ltd. in a transaction consisting of stock, assumption and issuance of new debt, and $12 million of cash. Upon closing, existing Eneti shareholders will own 58 percent of the combined companies, while the three owners of Seajacks will own 42 percent and gain two seats on Eneti’s board of directors.

Seajacks, founded in 2006 and is based in Great Yarmouth, UK, is the largest owner of purpose-built self-propelled WTIVs in the world. The company has been installing wind turbines and foundations since 2009. Seajacks’ flagship, the Seajacks Scylla, was delivered from Samsung Heavy Industries in 2015 and is currently employed in Asia. Seajacks also owns and operates the Seajacks Zaratan, which is currently operating in the Japanese market, as well as three other WTIVs, which are employed in the North Sea market. 

In May, Eneti completed the construction order for its first WTIV to be built by South Korea's Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering. The new vessel will be fitted with a 2,600-ton leg encircling crane (built around one of the vessel's jack-up legs) making it possible for the vessel to install turbines of up to 20 megawatts in size - far larger than any turbine in existence today - in water depths of up to 210 feet. It will be possible to retrofit the WTIV at a later date to operate on LNG or ammonia. Eneti has also said that it is in talks with American shipbuilders for the construction of a Jones Act-compliant WTIV.

The former Scorpio Bulkers began selling its fleet of 49 traditional bulk carriers late in 2020 with a goal of completing the exit for the business line by mid-2021. Eneti announced today that it recently signed binding agreements to transfer the existing lease finance arrangements related to its bulkers. The company said it delivered its final vessel in July 2021, concluding the exit from the dry bulk sector.