Dockwise Ltd. announces that its Board of Directors has approved the commissioning of a newbuild vessel to serve the emerging demand for ocean transports of up to and above 100,000 metric tons. The decision is subject to approval by a Special General Meeting of shareholders to authorize the proposed USD 100 million rights issue to part-finance the investment.
As announced in relation to the Q2 results in August 2010, Dockwise has been studying the feasibility of investing in a new semi-submersible monohull vessel, bigger than its current largest vessel, the Blue Marlin. This so-called “Type 0” vessel, with capacity of more than 100,000 metric tons, and decksize of 275 x 70 meters will be a first for the maritime transport industry and is expected to require a total investment of approximately USD 200 million. Dockwise has applied for a patent on the design of the vessel.
Business Rationale for the New Build Vessel
The majority of Dockwise’s revenues originate from the Oil & Gas industry. Current trends for projects and equipment in this industry are distinctly towards greater scale and size for premier projects:
* Exploration and production is shifting from shallow water in traditional areas to deep water and remote areas.
* Industry demand is for larger, heavier equipment, in single transportable modules.
* Plant and equipment is increasingly constructed in dedicated, low cost environments ahead of transportation.
Dockwise’s close liaison with customers commissioning production platforms, sparbuoys and FPSOs, to be deployed in offshore projects in the coming decade, has given Dockwise a view of the scale and complexity of the transportation demands, it will be required to meet as the industry leader. The new vessel, which has already passed its tank tests, will exhibit a revolutionary bowless design for key operational advantage.
With Dockwise’s existing backlog in combination with projects on the horizon it is expected that the vessel will be occupied when it will come out of the shipyard in the latter part of 2012. Dockwise is currently in the process of negotiating with selected first rate shipyards for construction of the new vessel.
Financing of the Investment
The investment in the new Type 0 vessel is expected to require approximately USD 200 million.
In order to cater for a prudent financing of the vessel, Dockwise intends to raise approximately USD 100 million through a fully committed rights issue (the “Rights Issue”). The proceeds of the Rights Issue will be used to pay down or otherwise reduce the senior credit facilities, thereby facilitating the financing of the acquisition of the Type 0 vessel. Dockwise intends to reduce the total amount outstanding under the senior credit facilities with approximately USD 110 million from the net proceeds of the Rights Issue and available cash on the balance sheet. The relevant waivers in respect of the existing debt syndicate, including covenant adjustments for 2011, 2012 and 2013, have been obtained. Furthermore, Dockwise intends to increase its current revolving facility by USD 110 million. For this, four banks (ABN AMRO Bank, Deutsche Bank, Rabobank, The Royal Bank of Scotland) have committed funds at an identical margin and also otherwise in line with the terms and conditions of Dockwise’s existing revolving facilities.
André Goedée, Dockwise Chief Executive Officer, said:
“The decision to invest in this unique new vessel once again underlines our view towards the future and the position of Dockwise at the premium end of the marine heavy transport industry. We have determined that there is a growing desire to develop larger structures for the deepwater development of hydrocarbons and we have determined this investment to be key to support our clients, oil companies, engineers and the yards, in this trend in the next decades.”
About Dockwise Ltd / Dockwise Group
Dockwise Ltd., a Bermuda incorporated company, has a workforce of more than 1200 people both offshore and onshore. The company is the leading marine contractor providing total transport services to the offshore, onshore and yachting industries as well as installation services of extremely heavy offshore platforms. The Group is headquartered in Breda, The Netherlands. The Group’s main commercial offices are located in The Netherlands, the United States and China with sales offices in Korea, Australia, Brazil, Russia, Singapore, Malaysia, Mexico and Nigeria. The Dockwise Yacht Transport business unit is headquartered in Fort Lauderdale and has an office in Italy. The Dockwise Shipping network is supported by agents in Japan, Norway, Argentina and Italy.
To support all of its services to customers, the group also has three additional engineering centers in Houston, Breda and Shanghai, manufactures specific motion reduction equipment such as LMU (Leg Mating Units) and DMU (Deck Mating Units) and owns a fleet of 19 purpose built semi-submersible vessels.
Source: Dockwise, November 8, 2010;