U.S.-based Crowley and Danish shipping company ESVAGT announced plans today to directly bolster purpose-built, Jones Act vessel availability in support of the emerging offshore wind energy market through a joint venture.
The partnership will bring together two leading maritime solutions providers to serve the emerging industry. Consistent with the requirements of the U.S. Jones Act, Crowley will own and operate the vessels with its highly trained U.S. mariners, while Crowley and ESVAGT will share in the economics of the venture. ESVAGT is the leading Service Operation Vessel (SOV) operator in Europe and will provide technical advice on the design, construction, and operation of these vessels based solidly on their past performance with this specific vessel type.
The venture will work to develop a best-in-class design and deliver its first wind-dedicated, U.S flag SOV. The companies, which share a long history of safe and reliable solutions within their respective markets, are now positioning to advance wind farm development by directly addressing shortages of compliant vessel capacity.
Earlier this year, Crowley formed its New Energy Division strategically focused on diverse services supporting the emerging energy sectors in the U.S. and adjacent regions. Within the offshore wind industry, Crowley’s New Energy expansion, including this latest partnership, advances the company as a total lifecycle service provider. Service offerings include transportation of turbines during construction, industry-specific support vessels, shoreside terminals and supply chain services from farm construction through decommissioning.
“This partnership will marry Crowley’s transferable engineering, vessel operations, project management and logistics experience in the U.S. offshore markets to ESVAGT’s global SOV design and operations capabilities. This will enable the continued growth of sustainable, greener energy solutions by directly addressing the offshore wind service capacity challenge,” Tom Crowley, chairman and CEO, said in a prepared statement. “Our organizations share cultures that are based around the core values of safety, integrity, and high performance. We look forward to a long and successful partnership in support of North America’s new energy solutions.”
ESVAGT pioneered the SOV concept in Europe more than a decade ago and is today the leading provider of SOV services to the European Offshore Wind Operation and Maintenance markets, company officials said. ESVAGT possesses an unparalleled experience in safely transferring people to offshore wind farm installations from a fleet of innovative and specialized vessels operated by highly qualified crew: annually, ESVAGT safely transfers more than 115,000 personnel members from SOV to offshore wind farm installations.
“ESVAGT looks forward to further cementing its position as an offshore wind market leader by entering the U.S. offshore wind market with Crowley, a strong partner with an established track record of delivering solutions to its customers,” said ESVAGT CEO Peter Lytzen. “ESVAGT’s experience in Europe will help deliver a seamless operation in the United States, and we also appreciate the opportunity to invest in the construction of these vessels in compliance with the Jones Act.”