The investment supports growth of UK offshore wind farms through enabling the construction of service operations vessels (SOVs) which are critical in supporting the operation of wind farms as these increase in size and distance from shore.
It will also support the provision of transition finance allowing North Star to transition its business from oil and gas to the renewables supply chain.
The investment helps strengthen Scotland’s position of a UK and global leader in the offshore wind supply chain, increasing the likelihood of further SOV contracts and growth.
About North Star
Aberdeen-based North Star has been operating in the North Sea for 135 years. Its 1,300-strong workforce currently manage and operate 42 offshore support vessels (SOVs) providing critical safety services to over 50 UK Continental Shelf installations.
The firm entered the offshore wind market last year after winning all four long-term charter SOV awards for the highly competitive Dogger Bank wind farm. The vessels provide accommodation for wind technicians and access to equipment while working in field. North Star’s state-of-the-art ships utilise hybrid-power, dynamic positioning, AI and machine learning technologies.
North Star Chief Strategy Officer Fraser Dobbie said:
“We have a 40-year track record of reliable marine operations, 15 years of DP experience operating close to clients’ assets, and proven expertise in overseeing numerous concurrent shipbuilding projects. Raising this level of corporate funding from The Bank and other investors, as well as the ongoing backing of Partners Group, provides us with the means to continue to add to our growing vessel fleet and supports our ambition to be a leading player in the European SOV market.
“The £140million secured today secures the capital required for us to continue our newbuilding programme in the year ahead, whilst providing us with the flexibility to continue to expand these facilities to meet our strategy of 40 new SOVs by 2040.”
Jimmy Williamson, Scottish National Investment Bank Executive Director said:
“The Bank is catalysing support for Scotland’s offshore wind supply chain by enabling companies like North Star to increase focus on providing vital services for offshore wind farms and in supporting their transition to net zero.
“This follows our investment in the Port of Aberdeen, which will continue to act as a hub for North Sea offshore services and, increasingly new offshore wind farms, through its South Harbour expansion.”