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Aberdeen shipping : North Star oil services group wins £100m-plus of contracts

ABERDEEN-based North Star, which describes itself as the largest offshore emergency support vessel operator in the North Sea, has been awarded a raft of new contracts totalling more than £100 million.

The 135-year-old company says it will through the new contracts support new and existing clients in the UK Continental Shelf with its “fast-response emergency fleet, purpose-built to protect personnel working on offshore oil and gas platforms”.

The firm, which employs around 1,400 people across the UK including 140 deck and engineering cadets enrolled in its three-year training programme, said that “with additional year charter options, this marks North Star’s most sizeable emergency response rescue vessel order book in recent years”.

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North Star, which noted its training programme is in its 26th year, added: “These significant new wins are a combination of new clients and new asset locations, as well as continuations secured with operators the…company has worked with since the 1980s.

Highlighting its position as the “North Sea’s largest emergency response vessel operator”, North Star noted it had 41 ERRVs (emergency response and rescue vessels) in its fleet currently assigned to support 50 offshore oil and gas installations in the region, “delivering reliable, uninterrupted, around-the-clock assistance, 365 days a year”.

North Star is now owned by private equity firm Partners Group.

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Matthew Gordon, chief executive North Star CEO said: “Winning these significant ERRV contracts worth £100 million demonstrates the industry’s ongoing confidence in our highly effective and reliable fleet which continues to provide a safe place in case of an incident for the thousands of people working out at sea on oil and gas assets every hour of every day, solidly across the year.

“North Star has supported the offshore energy sector for the past 40 years and we have an unrivalled expertise and high quality ERRV fleet. I’m proud to say that we have never left any client’s offshore workforce unsupported, ensuring there is always a vessel on standby to enable any crew changes, help to replenish stores on the installation, or support regular maintenance.”

He added: “The North Sea is still a very competitive landscape, and we recognise the need for continual investment in our fleet and services to ensure we deliver value and efficiencies to remain market leading. As part of this, we have looked to optimise our operations with a new maritime fleet management system and begun the process of decarbonising our entire fleet.”

North Star noted it had, last year, entered the UK’s offshore wind market, providing service operation vessels which are used to transport technicians to offshore windfarms and accommodate them for extended periods of time.

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