Newbuild contract is worth $93 million to Ulstein

August 2, 2004

Ulstein to build major offshore construction vessel

Norway's Ulstein Verft AS is to build a construction vessel for Solstad/SBM, a joint-venture company owned by Solstad and the Monaco based Single Buoy Moorings (SBM) group.

The project is one of the largest single projects the shipyard has gained so far and is worth around NOK 650 million (US$93 million). The vessel will be delivered in January 2006.

"All 400 employees in the Ulstein group will be involved in the building project," says Tore Ulstein, President of Ulstein Verft, "and the contract will have vast spin-off effects in the region. The contract was won against strong competition from Norwegian, other European and Asian shipyards. Together with its other build projects, Ulstein Verft now has orders on hand worth more than NOK 1 billion, plus we have an option for one ULSTEIN P105."

The construction vessel will be one of the largest build projects at Ulstein Verft in terms of both weight and size.

"The vessel will be 123.8 m long, have a width of 28 m and involve 6,000 tons of steel. Vik-Sandvik is responsible for the design. It is a major project that will demand a lot from us," says Ulstein Verft's Sales & Marketing Manager, Harald Moller.

"The construction vessel is equipped with a moonpool, anchor handling winches, an 'A' frame and a heave-compensated 250 ton offshore crane," says Moller. "The vessel will be fitted out for 100 people and everything onboard will be big. In total the vessel will produce almost 24,000 kW. It will be a challenging project. Not just because of the size of the vessel, but also because of the short delivery-time. We have developed a good partnership with Solstad and it will be exciting to work with SBM again, who we built vessels for in the 1980s."

DELIVERY IN JANUARY 2006

The purchasing and planning phases of the project have started, but the actual steel cutting phase is scheduled to start in the middle of November 2004. Ulstein Verft's Vanylven division is going to build the superstructure, with a start up date in December. It will deliver sections until April 2005.

The forepart and aft ship of the vessel will be built at Ulstein's partner shipyard in Poland, Maritim Ltd. The forepart will arrive at Ulstein Verft in Ulsteinvik in May, while the stern will arrive in July. The delivery date has been set for 20th January 2006.

SBM is the world's largest owner/operator of Floating Production, Storage and Offshore Loading (FPSO) vessels. SBM is a group of subsidiaries owned by the Dutch group, IHC Caland N.V.

Solstad Offshore ASA, whose head office is in Skudeneshavn, Norway, currently has a fleet of 27 modern vessels at its disposal and has in the last few years heavily targeted the construction and subsea market. Geographically, the primary market for this vessel will be West Africa, while the U.S. Gulf and Brazil will also be interesting areas.

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