Polarcus orders two new high-end 3D seismic vesselsVessel & ROV News // November 19, 2010
Polarcus Limited has signed shipbuilding contracts for two high-end 3D seismic vessels for delivery in the first half of 2012. The company simultaneously launched an equity issue of US$65 million through a private placement to partly finance the new vessels' total estimated project capital expenditure of US$168 million per vessel.
"This new order for two further high-end 3D seismic vessels underscores our commitment to be the new seismic major," said Rolf Ronningen, CEO of Polarcus. "We have been able to take maximum advantage of the current availability of yard slots to execute shipbuilding contracts on highly favourable payment terms and to secure beneficial delivery times of the newbuilds."
"We have furthermore taken the strategic decision to build these vessels in Norway to avail ourselves of significant and advantageous financing from the Norwegian Institution for Export Financing, Eksportfinans".
"Both newbuilds are of the same proven design as Polarcus Asima and Polarcus Alima. They also incorporate some additional advanced capabilities, including the ability to tow up to 14 streamers, which will position these vessels firmly in the most active 12 to 14 streamer market segment, thereby maximizing vessel operating profitability. Their timely delivery in the first half of 2012 will place Polarcus in pole position to ride a sector recovery."
The announcement increases the size of the company's high-end 3D seismic fleet to seven vessels, with a corresponding projected increase in market share to approximately 13 per cent after delivery in 2012.
The shipbuilding contracts were signed with Ulstein Verft AS. The two newbuild vessels will be constructed to the ULSTEIN SX134 design but with a higher ice class (ICE 1A super), increased propulsion and other innovative efficiency enhancing features. The vessels will be capable of towing up to 14 streamers with 100m lateral separation between streamers.