Scotland's Craig Group orders six newbuilds in Spain

IMT 958SEPTEMBER 10, 2013 — Scotland's family owned Craig Group, today is investing £70 million (about $1,096 million) to build six new vessels at the Balenciaga Shipyard in Northern Spain.

Four D class IMT 950 Emergency Response and Rescue Vessels (ERRVs) and two F class IMT 958 ERRVs will be delivered during 2014 and early 2016, replacing existing tonnage in Craig's North Star Shipping fleet.

"This significant investment is part of our continued drive to operate the largest and most modern wholly British owned fleet engaged in the U.K. offshore industry," says Douglas Craig, Chairman and Managing Director of Craig Group. "A newbuild program of this size and scale underlines our commitment to the marine industry and means that we continue to offer our customers an unrivaled service."

The four D Class vessels will complement four D Class vessels already in service within the fleet which were also built by Balenciaga.

The vessels will be outfitted as a minimum with 1 x daughter craft and 1 x FRC as well as state of the art survival facilities.

Two F Class vessels will also be brought into service. Slightly larger at 58 meters long with diesel electric propulsion via twin Azimuth Stern Drives, they will also be outfitted with Daughter Craft and FRCs as well as being able to transfer and store limited deck cargo and provide offshore locations with fresh water and fuel if required.

North Star managing director, Callum Bruce, said: "We are constantly looking at ways of expanding and modernizing our fleet. The new vessels will feature the most up to date technology and designs, meeting our customers' needs in terms of safety, quality and efficiency."

The newbuild program will secure 160 seafarers' jobs and in addition North Star Shipping continues to support British shipping by training 80 officer cadets on an annual basis. At present the fleet stands at 36 vessels and includes a mix of platform supply, tanker assist, ROV support and emergency response and rescue vessels.

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