Semco ups wind focus after 'unsatisfactory' 2017

DENMARK: Engineering firm Semco Maritime claimed it is "well-positioned" to progress despite making a DKK 8 million (€1.07 million) loss last year.

Semco Maritime and Bladt Industries loaded out the first of three substations for the Hornsea One project in April

The results compare favourably to a DKK 128 million loss in 2016. Semco attributed this to "a considerable improvement of the group’s project execution".

However, the company still claimed the loss in 2017 was "unsatisfactory" in its annual results. Its revenues decreased 11.9% year-on-year, from DKK 1.59 million to DKK 1.4 million.

Semco, which provides contracting and engineering services for oil and gas projects as well as offshore wind farms, said "intense" competition had increased price pressures during 2017.

It also made a DKK 21.49 million loss after cancelling further development at an unspecified renewables project in central America. The company made this decision due to "delayed financing", it stated in its results.

Semco ended the year with an operating profit (Ebitda) of DKK 100,000 — up from an operating loss of DKK 127.2 million last year.

In 2017, it won a contract to design and build the 1.4GW substation to be used at Ørsted’s Hornsea Two project and travelled to the US to "meet with potential partner companies in the northeast and Gulf Coast".

Semco expects a higher level of activity in 2018. CEO Steen Brødbæk said: "Despite the improvements in 2017 compared to recent years, the result for the year was not satisfactory."

The company stated it aims "to ensure greater independence of the oil and gas business" by strengthening in other areas — "especially within offshore wind".

Brødbæk added: "We are intensifying our focus on offshore wind, and even though German auctions have postponed the installation of a lot of projects, our efforts in this business area are already generating results."

So far this year, it has entered partnerships with compatriots Bladt Industries and Taiwanese ship builders CSBC Corporation to produce substations for some of the country’s offshore wind farms, and with infrastructure advisors Moffatt & Nichol to supply substations in the US.