Sietas receivers renew windship order

03 Feb 2012
Berthold Brinkmann, receiver, Peter Bunschoten, staff director technical department Van Oord, Frank Horch, Hamburg‘s Minister of Economy, Transport and Innovation, Rüdiger Fuchs, agent of the receiver with a model of the ordered  offshore wind power transport and installation vessel

Berthold Brinkmann, receiver, Peter Bunschoten, staff director technical department Van Oord, Frank Horch, Hamburg‘s Minister of Economy, Transport and Innovation, Rüdiger Fuchs, agent of the receiver with a model of the ordered offshore wind power transport and installation vessel

An order placed by Van Oord of the Netherlands for a wind power transport and installation vessel with the troubled German JJ Sietas shipyard of Hamburg has been renewed, according to receiver Berthold Brinkmann.

The Sietas shipyard had been unable to continue with the order originally placed in 2010 due to the terms of its insolvency proceedings. Delivery of the complex vessel was planned for early 2013. The parties have agreed to keep the purchase price secret. Van Oord has secured an option on a second ship of the same type.

Brinkmann said: “This order is a bridge into a new future for the Sietas shipyard. I am pleased that we were able to successfully conclude negotiations with our client Van Oord within a short time. The offshore wind power transport and installation vessel is a first in Germany, and points the way forward for Sietas and German shipbuilding.”

The Sietas shipyard and its Neuenfelder Maschinenfabrik (NMF) subsidiary will develop and build the installation vessel and offshore crane from one source as architect and integrator. The ship design was developed for use far from the coast in offshore wind fields. It has a transport capacity of up to 6,500dwt  and can work safely in water depths of up to 45m. It has self-loading capability and a jacking system for stability at sea. The type 187 special ship is 139m long and 38m wide, with a draught of 5.7m and a speed of 12 knots. NMF will provide the offshore crane capable of lifting a 900ton load with a reach of 30m, working at heights of up to 120m above water level. The installation ship can accommodate 74 crew and personnel.

Senator Frank Horch, Hamburg’s Minister of Economy, Transport and Innovation, added: “Today’s order from Van Oord for an offshore wind power transport and installation vessel based on a Sietas design is a huge leap into the future, despite the shipbuilder’s insolvency. The Hamburg Senate remains convinced of the ability of the Sietas shipyard to survive and of this opportunity for Hamburg to benefit from the opening of the market in the offshore wind power sector. The Senate, as well as myself, consider it important to support Sietas in its efforts to retain as many jobs as possible.”

This also settles the order book for the Sietas shipyard in the coming months. Brinkmann said: “The liquidator and management will work at full steam in finding an investor for the entire Sietas group, consisting of the Sietas shipyard, NMF and Norderwerft, and in obtaining more orders for special ships.”

In addition to the Van Oord new construction order for the offshore wind power transport and installation ship, construction of a ro-pax ferry (delivery May 2012) and a dredger (delivery August 2012) will continue at Sietas as part of the debtor-in-possession financing. Thanks to these orders, the Sietas shipyard can utilise the capacity of its workforce longer. The Sietas Group will then have the following estimated workforce in mid-2012: new construction shipyard 375 employees (plus trainees), NMF 127 employees, repair company Norderwerft 90 employees. Future developments depend on the entry of a new investor and the future order book. The receiver says that conceptionally, the reorientation of the shipyard, focused on the design and construction of sophisticated special construction ships, will continue. Specifically this involves dredgers, heavy lifters, “stone-layers” and construction vessels for offshore wind power turbines. According to receiver’s agent Rüdiger Fuchs: “We worked for these products and for market access. The objective is to carry out two new constructions annually. At the same time, our strong engineering division is to realise one new construction annually for the Sietas shipyard and a basic design for the external market.”

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