Keppel O&M was in the black for the first quarter of year with a SGD6m net profit, compared to a SGD23m loss in the same period a year earlier and is starting to see a recovery in its business.
So far this year the shipyard group has secured over SGD1bn in new contracts bringing its net orderbook to SGD4.7bn at the end of March this year, compared to SGD4.3bn at the end of 2018.
Following the sharp drop in the oil price in the second half of 2014, and the subsequent collapse in the offshore marine and rig building markets Keppel O&M laid off thousands of workers globally, including some 10,600 in 2016. However, it is now looking to expand its workforce again as orders improve.
Speaking at its first quarter briefing, Keppel Corp ceo Loh Chin Hua said: “As we prepare for the recovery of the O&M business and to handle the anticipated increase in workload from new projects, we are also increasing our workforce in selected Singapore and overseas yards, with plans to recruit about 1,800 full-time staff over the course of 2019.”