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GC Rieber settles new deal for troubled Polar Onyx

GC Rieber settles new deal for troubled Polar Onyx
GC Rieber Shipping agreed a charter with Marine Platforms for subsea vessel Polar Onyx, after previous charterer Ceona defaulted in September.

GC Rieber Shipping agreed to take ownership of the Vertical Lay System (VLS) pipelay tower on Polar Onyx, and will be paid $16.3m from the cash deposit established as part of the original charter agreement. The new 60-day charter to Marine Platforms commences on January 2016, with an option to extend for two months.

Ceona went into administration shortly after the default with the loss of 102 jobs.

The development marred an otherwise positive year-to-date for GC Rieber’s subsea sector, with revenue in Q1-Q3 beating the same period in 2014, at NOK431.9m ($49.8m) versus NOK371.2m, respectively. The group reported a fall in Q3 2015 utilisation of its four subsea vessels to 89% from 100% in Q3 2014, “due to lack of employment for the Polar Onyx for parts of the period, as well as yard work.”

Net profit fell to NOK25.3m in the third quarter versus NOK47.0m in 2014, and net income for the first three quarters was NOK92.4m from NOK131.7m in the same period in 2014. Revenues NOK801.3m for Q1-Q3 2015 outpaced NOK623.0m in the same period in the year previous.

“The underlying operations in the company have been positive in the third quarter of 2015, however the current market situation in the subsea and seismic segments is challenging and hampered by uncertainty throughout the whole value chain,” said ceo Irene Waage Basili.