Louisiana-based offshore company Seacor Marine (NYSE:SMHI) has formed a jointly-owned company with China’s COSCO Shipping, one of the world’s largest shipowners, for the construction and ownership of eight platform supply vessels.
The new company, SEACOSCO Offshore LLC, will be based in the Marshall Islands and has already entered into contracts for the purchase of eight Rolls-Royce-designe platform supply vessels from COSCO Shipping Heavy Industry. Six of the PSVs are of UT 771WP design (4,400 dwt) and two are of UT 771CD design (3,800 dwt).
SEACOSCO will take title to seven of the PSVs in 2018 and one in 2019.
As part of the agreement, the shipyard, at their cost, will store the PSVs at their facility for periods ranging from six to 18 months.
Separately, SEACOSCO has also contracted with Rolls-Royce Marine AS to outfit six of the PSVs with a state-of-the-art battery energy storage system designed to reduce fuel consumption and enhance the safety and redundancy of the vessels’ systems. This follows SEACOR Marine’s recent order for battery energy storage systems on four large PSVs in Mexico.
Aggregate total cost for the eight PSVs, including the battery system, is approximately $161.1 million.
John Gellert, SEACOR Marine’s Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We are excited to partner with COSCO SHIPPING GROUP. We are confident that we have structured a transaction that meets the needs of the Shipyard while also managing the cash outlay from the equity owners. The acquired vessels will modernize our operating fleet and expand our offerings to our customers. Combining a proven and advanced design, best in category accommodations, and the innovative Rolls-Royce battery system, these vessels will be highly marketable across all major offshore energy regions worldwide.”
SEACOR Marine will be responsible for full commercial, operational, and technical management of the vessels on a worldwide basis under a separate management agreement with SEACOSCO.