Ambitious fleet upgrade plan for Great Offshore

Vol 14, PW 13 (16 Dec 10) Exploration & Production

New Year resolutions are upon us, and Mumbai-based Great Offshore is making some ambitious ones, as it seeks to increase its market share.

Great Offshore executive director PC Kapoor, also managing director of sister concern Bharati Shipyard, tells PETROWATCH he plans to upgrade the company’s fleet of offshore support vessels and drilling rigs. Great Offshore has a fleet of 47 offshore support vessels, making it the largest Indian-owned offshore support vessel provider in the country.

But Kapoor says at least 10 of these vessels need to be urgently replaced as they are old and expensive to maintain. Within the next few months, Great Offshore could place orders for some ‘new-build’ vessels with shipyards in South Korea or Singapore.

It could also buy some readily available one year-old or two year-old vessels. “These replacements will all be ‘higher-end’, very modern, large support vessels that can operate in deep seas, particularly in India’s eastern offshore,” he clarifies.

“We don’t need smaller vessels.” No orders, he adds, will be placed with Chinese shipyards, as “their quality is suspect.

” Great Offshore also plans to send its jack-up Badrinath for a “major refit, upgrade and dry-docking” either to Singapore or to a domestic yard, as soon as she finishes her current ONGC contract in three months. “Great Offshore spent Rs57cr ($12.6m) to renew and refit (its jack-up) Kedarnath in Bahrain,” we hear.

“A lot more will be spent on Badrinath.” Separately, Great Offshore should finally receive delivery of much-delayed new-build jack-up V-351 from Bharati Shipyard in May next year (2011).

“Work is 90% complete,” we hear. And Great Offshore’s jack-up Amarnath, formerly Ensco 50, is offshore Sharjah awaiting her first Indian contract.

According to an industry source, Amarnath has been hired by Adani Welspun at a little over $50,000/day to drill five wells at offshore Mumbai block MB-OSN-2005/2.