Argeo Charters Argeo Searcher Vessel
Argeo, a Norwegian autonomous underwater vehicle provider, has signed a 5-year bareboat contract for the vessel Argeo Searcher (former Ocean Pearl), with an option to purchase the vessel for $2 million after 12 months and $1 million after 27 months.
The vessel is expected to be delivered to the company on December 10, 2022.
"The international expansion of Argeo means contracts are significantly larger, with longer duration, and therefore require predictability in our operational value chain. This agreement will make Argeo a very competitive service provider in all our markets, now offering a complete solution to our customers, says Argeo CEO, Trond F. Crantz.
The contract sizes now accessible for Argeo with this vessel/AUV configuration typically range from NOK 150 million (~14,1 million) to NOK 300 million (~$28 million), which is supported by our current tenders in our pipeline, Argeo said.
"We are pleased to enter into this agreement as it secures Argeo with crucial vessel capacity at a very competitive price in a tightening market, says Crantz.
Argeo said that the Searcher was a perfect DP (Dynamic Positioning) II vessel for Argeo and its customers, with modern diesel electric propulsion means it is a fuel-efficient platform for its operations. The vessel has significant capacities with 200 days endurance, accommodation of 65 persons and a fully certified helicopter deck, ICE 1A1 class means we can qualify most project requirements and be completely independent of partners and infrastructure to do so, Argeo said.
"Having access to a vessel like the Argeo Searcher enables us to meet all customer needs for Argeo’s activities, adds far more flexibility and streamlines our operations in the global offshore energy and marine mineral markets," Crantz continues.
The Argeo Searcher was delivered in 2001 as a cable-laying vessel. Later, in 2006, the vessel was fully converted to an OBN (Ocean Bottom Node) seismic vessel and has been in operations until January 2022.
The vessel has since been docked for inspection and maintenance in early 2022, completing full class renewal (5-year) for the period of the agreement.
Argeo Searcher will operate in North and South America (NSA) and West Africa (WA) energy market and the Pacific Ocean and North Atlantic for marine minerals market.
The vessel can deploy and operate one or several AUV (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle) systems and will be equipped with Argeo’s unique SeaRaptor AUV’s and prepared with available hangar for several work-class ROV (WROV) systems to support IMR operations.
OSM Maritime has been selected for ship and maritime crew management of Argeo Searcher.