Shearwater Takes Over CGG Seismic Vessels

January 9, 2020

A CGG seismic vessel / Image source: CGG
A CGG seismic vessel / Image source: CGG

Norwegian seismic vessel giant Shearwater has completed the strategic vessel transaction with the French seismic company CGG following an agreement signed in June 2019. 

The transaction includes the takeover of five high-end seismic vessels, and the five-year capacity agreement for marine seismic acquisition services between Shearwater and CGG became effective. 

The transaction includes the five streamer vessels, and two legacy vessels, previously owned by CGG and Eidesvik, five complete streamer sets previously owned by CGG and a long-term capacity agreement granting Shearwater a guaranteed cash flow and activity level for a period of five years.

Fleet now stands at 23

According to Shearwater, the capacity agreement includes a minimum commitment of two vessel-years annually over the agreed five-year period which yields an attractive cash flow and activity level for Shearwater and ensures CGG access to strategic capacity for its future multiclient projects through Shearwater’s global fleet of high-end 3D vessels. 

Irene Waage Basili, the CEO of Shearwater said: “This transaction signals the start of a strategic partnership with CGG both on acquisition and streamer technologies. For Shearwater, the guaranteed cash flow and activity level from the capacity agreement give vastly improved visibility and debt management capabilities in a market historically known for its spot nature.”

The transaction is a pure asset transfer and Shearwater has at closing assumed the net liabilities associated with the vessels taken over.

Shearwater now has a fleet of 23 vessels, including three OBS MPVs and two dedicated source vessels. 

Streamer pact 

Under the term sheet signed in June last year,  the two companies agreed to create a technology partnership, under the Sercel brand name and CGG’s majority ownership, for the development, manufacturing, commercialization, and support of marine streamer seismic acquisition systems.

"Preparations continue for the creation of the joint technology partnership for the respective marine streamer seismic acquisition systems. The completion of this transaction is subject to approvals by the competent authorities and other customary conditions," Shearwater said Wednesday.

“We see great value for the industry in creating a highly competitive provider of state-of-the-art and competitively priced streamer technology. The purpose of the JV is to develop best of breed technologies under the Sercel brand name, capitalizing on their long history of delivering leading technologies to the entire seismic acquisition market” said Irene Waage Basili.

CGG exits acquisition game

With the completion of the vessel transaction, CGG has now exited the marine data acquisition business.

Sophie Zurquiyah, CEO of CGG said: "In 2019, we executed key milestones of our 2021 strategy: the exit from marine and seabed acquisition businesses and the wind-down of land acquisition operations. We are delighted to enter into this strategic partnership with Shearwater for our multi-client projects and look forward to finalizing the creation of our marine streamer equipment JV under the Sercel brand.“



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