Norway's Statoil announced Monday that it has awarded three new helicopter contracts to CHC Helikopter Service.
The contract award is one of the largest civil sector helicopter awards ever made, anywhere in the world.
The contracts include offshore flights from Kristiansund and Brønnøysund, as well as a search-and-rescue helicopter stationed on the Heidrun platform
Statoil said in a press statement that it needs to have four transport service helicopters in Kristiansund, two in Brønnøysund, one search and rescue helicopter on Heidrun, as well as a replacement helicopter for the rescue helicopter, also initially stationed in Brønnøysund.
The Kristiansund contract will have a duration of five years and seven months, and will begin in July 2014. The duration of the contracts for Brønnøysund and Heidrun are five years, starting in February 2015. All three contracts have extension options for up to three years.
"Our activity level in the Norwegian Sea is high. These contracts will help make us more robust in meeting the needs for helicopter services in the area in the years to come," said Jannicke Hilland, head of Joint operations at Statoil, in a statement.
"Statoil opted to split the helicopter activity in the Norwegian Sea among three contracts to ensure full competition. This was a success. The current supplier, CHC Helikopter Service, won the competitions for all three contracts. This allows us to achieve economies of scale in the form of reduced costs and future flexibility," added Jon Arnt Jacobsen, head of procurement at Statoil.
Statoil has reserved the right to adjust the number of helicopters during the contract period. Statoil and CHC Helikopter Service have also agreed that Statoil will have the flexibility to move helicopters between the bases, both in the region and in the rest of the country as well as, possibly, internationally.
The estimated total value of the contracts is approximately $822 million (NOK 5 billion), including options for extensions and contract expansions. The expansion option ensures helicopter resources for potential new platforms in the region.
Four of the helicopters are type Sikorsky S92, three are Eurocopter EC225 and one is a Eurocopter L1. The latter is a search and rescue helicopter, and is the same type as the one currently used on Heidrun. All of the helicopters will be upgraded to comply with the latest standards before the contracts commence.
Statoil has helicopter flights from six bases in Norway: Sola, Bergen, Florø, Kristiansund, Brønnøysund and Hammerfest. There are search and rescue helicopters stationed offshore at Oseberg, Statfjord B and Heidrun.
The flights from Kristiansund will run to facilities including Heidrun, Åsgard A, B and C, Kristin and Njord. Flights from Brønnøysund will include destinations such as Norne. Flights to the drilling rigs in the area at any given time will come in addition to this.
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