Dredging giant Van Oord launches latest rock-laying vessel

The Bravenes at sea. Photo: Van Oord
The Bravenes at sea. Photo: Van Oord

Van Oord, the Dutch family-owned dredging and offshore contracting group, has launched its latest specialty ship, the SRI (subsea rock installation) vessel Bravenes.

Although Van Oord did not provide financial details of Bravenes, the vessel is believed to have cost between  €100m and €200m. The Rotterdam company invests an average of €200m a year.

Van Oord is one of a handful of Dutch and Belgian companies which have developed specialised offshore sea bottom skills using RSI ships.

RSI vessels provide rock cover to stabilise and protect subsea pipelines, cables and other structures at depths down to 1,500 metres. Van Oord has three of the eight RSI vessels operated by Dutch and Belgian firms.  Others are owned by Boskalis, Jan de Nul and Deme.

The ship begins work on several Norwegian North Sea projects this week. In mid-July, the Bravenes will be carrying out stabilisation operations for Nord Stream 2, the gas pipeline that will stretch from Russia to Germany.

Now  celebrating 150 years of operations, Van Oord booked 2017 turnover of more than €1.5bn. The company has a fleet of more than 100 ships and has a payroll of 3,500 who were engaged on 180 projects in 42 countries last year.

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