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    Headquartered in Esbjerg, Denmark, ESVAGT is a leading provider of emergency rescue and response vessels (“ERRV”) and related services to the offshore energy industry in and around the North Sea and the Barents Sea. The company is also the market leader in the fast growing segment of service operation vessels (“SOV”) for the offshore wind industry. ESVAGT has been operating since 1981, employs c.900 people and owns a fleet of c.40 vessels. 

    Its ERRV services mainly involve the rescue and recovery of personnel, but also include the dispersion and recovery of oil spills, crew transfers and towing. ESVAGT is the leading provider of ERRV services in Denmark and Norway, with market shares of approximately 100% and 50%, respectively, as well as an established and growing presence in the UK. The majority of ESVAGT’s ERRV revenues are associated with North Sea oil and gas production support, with the remainder generated by supporting exploration activity.

    ESVAGT is also the pioneer and market leader in the provision of SOVs to offshore wind farms, with four bespoke vessels in operation and a further two under construction. SOVs are purpose-built, high performance vessels, providing efficient transport of maintenance technicians to wind turbines and other offshore wind equipment, under long term contracts. The offshore wind market, and hence demand for SOVs, is expected to grow strongly over the coming years, creating significant opportunities for the company.


    Developments in the year

    The market conditions in which ESVAGT operates are gradually improving. Stable oil prices combined with a reduced cost base in oil and gas companies are improving the demand dynamics, which should lead to increasing contract coverage and rates in the emergency rescue and response vessel (‘ERRV’) market for ESVAGT’s tonnage, albeit on shorter contract durations than previously experienced.

    Peter Lytzen became CEO in September 2018 and Sisse Mai was appointed as CFO in December 2018.

    Offshore wind business

    The wind service operation vessels (‘SOVs’) segment has continued to grow ahead of our initial expectations. ESVAGT signed contracts with MHI Vestas for three new SOVs in the year and the pipeline for new opportunities remains healthy in this high growth market.


    In December 2017, ESVAGT completed a €376 million refinancing. As part of the refinancing, the Company invested DKK 175 million further equity (c.£21 million) into ESVAGT.

    This refinancing replaces the debt taken on at acquisition and provides funding for further growth in ESVAGT’s offshore wind service business.

    Investment rationale

    3i Infrastructure acquired ESVAGT from AP Møller-Maersk and other minority shareholders in September 2015, in a consortium with AMP Capital.

    ESVAGT has strong infrastructure characteristics and operates in an attractive market:

    • It is a market leader in Denmark and Norway and has a small but growing presence in the UK offshore oil and gas market and in the expanding North Sea offshore wind sector.
    • It is an asset intensive business, with a modern state-of-the-art fleet of purpose-built vessels.
    • A high proportion of its revenues is contracted over the medium term with a diverse customer base featuring limited customer concentration, underpinning stable and predictable cash flows.
    • It provides an essential service for the offshore energy industry in light of regulatory health and safety requirements, which constitutes a small component of the overall production cost, resulting in lower price sensitivity;
    • It operates in a market with high barriers to entry, as customers require bespoke vessels, manned by experienced crews with a strong safety track record. The harsh weather conditions and language barriers also inhibit new market entrants based outside the region; and
    • With its leading market position, strong safety track record and state-of-the-art fleet, ESVAGT is optimally positioned to exploit growth opportunities in the UK and potentially further afield, as well as in the offshore wind energy market.
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