Deep Sea Supply, the Oslo-listed owner of offshore support vessels for the oil and gas industry, is looking to diversify its offering, as it sees no signs of improvement of the fundamentals of the global OSV markets.
Namely, the company, which earlier this week said the offshore vessels market continues to be oversupplied, is now making a shift into fisheries.
Deep Sea Supply will work with Marine Harvest to form a joint venture which will build, own and operate aquaculture vessels.
“The JV represents a unique opportunity for Deep Sea Supply to capitalize on the Company’s experience from the OSV sector to enter into a new and attractive market together with an industry leading partner,” the OSV specialist said on Thursday.
According to Deep Sea Supply, Marine Harvest currently charters 44 vessels with a combined cost of approximately 100 million euros per year, making Marine Harvest the industry’s largest charterer of such vessels.
The joint venture expects to enter into contracts for the construction of aquaculture vessels which will be chartered by Marine Harvest upon delivery.
The two companies say there will be a substantial reduction in newbuilding cost compared to solutions provided by alternative aquaculture providers.
While the joint venture will primarily provide vessels for Marine Harvest, it will also bid for external contracts.
Deep Sea Supply said that apart from potential construction cost cuts, the joint venture is also exploring options of converting surplus offshore vessels into aquaculture vessels if project economics are favorable.
To remind, the concept of converting the offshore support vessels was recently introduced by the Dutch shipyard Damen. The shipbuilder’s design teams have come up with ideas to repurpose the laid up PSVs across several industries. For example, Damen offered to convert a laid up PSV into a profitable container feeder or, for naval operations, a logistic support vessel, or a fish carrier.
That there is a surplus in the OSV market speaks the fact that Deep Sea Supply has, per May 2016, laid up in total 16 vessels, of which 11 are platform supply vessels (PSVs) and 5 anchor handling tug and supply vessels (AHTS).
Deep Sea Supply said in its first quarter 2016 report on Tuesday that, in addition to laying up vessels to reduce cost, the company is working to further reduce operating expenses for the vessels in operation, adding it sees now improvement in the OSV market any time soon.
Deep Sea Supply has 37 vessels in total, 12 AHTS vessels and 25 PSVs. Of these vessels, 16 are 100% owned by the company, and 21 vessels are owned 50% through a joint venture with BTG.
Offshore Energy Today Staff