ECO expands its newbuilding plans

Privately held Edison Chouest Offshore (ECO), Galliano, La., today announced plans to design and construct eight new 280 ft deepwater platform supply vessels, increasing its current newbuilding plans to a total of 33 vessels.

“Since 2003, the core of our newbuild program has been a series of 42 new generation 4,750 deadweight ton, 280 ft offshore supply vessels,” says ECO’s Vice President of Operations Dino Chouest.  “Our next generation includes 13 vessels in our 300 ft, 5,150 DWT class.”  The first two of the 300 ft class are undergoing sea trials and being prepared for delivery.

Three in the new class of eight 280 ft Platform Supply Vessels (PSVs) are already in the early stages of construction. “Our design plans also take into account the potential of future modifications for deployment in the Arctic,” notes Chouest.

ECO is constructing the hull and superstructure for a 361 ft Arctic ice class anchor handling tug supply vessel at its North American Shipbuilding (NAS), Larose, La., and LA Ship, Houma, La.  The huge AHTS will be delivered in early 2012 to Shell for operation in Alaska.

With today’s announcement, ECO now plans to build or has under construction 33 vessels at shipyards in the U.S., Brazil and Poland. ECO will build and deliver the new group of vessels at NAS, La Ship, and its other Gulf shipyard, Tampa Ship, Tampa, Fla., over the next 12-36 months.

Last year, ECO added 400 vessel employees, says ECO spokesman Lonnie Thibodeaux and no doubt those numbers will increase as the company adds new vessels to its fleet over the next three years.

ECO repositioned a number of its vessels outside the U.S. Gulf of Mexico in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon incident and the federally imposed moratorium. “Our intention is to continue to replace those assets and address future needs in the U.S. Jones Act market,” notes Chouest.  “Our goal is to maintain our position as the preeminent solutions provider in the market, both domestic and international.”

ECO has long been known for its innovation in the offshore marine transport market, with a leading presence in the deepwater offshore sector.  Additionally, ECO now owns and operates one of the largest deepwater ROV-capable fleets in the world, in conjunction with its subsea affiliate, C-Innovation.

 

May 18, 2011