Prosafe profits take a hit

Norwegian flotel contractor Prosafe saw its net profit take a dive last year, despite seeing an improved result on higher utilisation in the fourth quarter.

The Oslo-listed company reported net income last year of $158 million, versus $198.5 million in 2010, as revenue remained virtually flat at $449.6 million.

Prosafe attributed the drop to lower earnings from its Safe Bristolia accommodation platform and the lack of employment for the Safe Astoria unit throughout last year. It was also hit by higher financial expenses of $35.2 million.

However, utilisation of its fleet rebounded to 80% in the fourth quarter, with seven of its units fully employed, to lift net profit for the period by 22% year-on-year to $36.5 million.

The company is set to take delivery of a newbuild flotel, named Safe Boreas, in the second quarter of 2014, backing its expectations of strong demand going forward in its key North Sea market, as well as off Mexico and Brazil where it also has established a firm foothold.

The unit, ordered in December at Singapore’s Jurong Shipyard at a cost of $350 million, is an advanced harsh-environment semi-submersible designed for operations off Norway as the country’s oil activity moves farther north into the rugged Arctic frontier of the Barents Sea.

Prosafe said it has options for two additional units at the yard due to expire in December this year and June 2013.

Meanwhile, the company’s Safe Caledonia unit is set for a $100 million upgrade to extend its working life by 20 years that will result in a seven-month yard stay starting in April.

To read the full earnings report, click here.

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