Platform supply firm Fletcher Shipping forced into administration

Fletcher Shipping FS Cygnus platform support vesselFletcher Shipping, Portlethen-based platform supply firm, has been forced into administration following a drop of more than 80% in the price of leasing offshore platform supply vessels.

The company owned four vessels that it leased out to oil and gas services companies, and the daily spot price for hiring offshore vessels dropped from £18,000 to only £3,000 – according to PwC. The huge decrease reflects North Sea operators cutting costs and reducing exploration.

Administrators have transferred Fletcher Shipping assets to a new company, FS Shipping, in an £18m deal, financed through Grovepoint Capital. The main assets transferred in the pre-pack deal were the FS Pegasus, FS Aquarius, FS Pisces and FS Taurus.

Keith Fletcher, Founder, Fletcher Shipping, said: “It is testament to the strong reputation of the crews and personnel at Fletcher Shipping that we have secured the confidence of new investors who have helped us recapitalise our business.

“We have worked hard to keep our fleet working throughout the recent downturn in the North Sea – a downturn which has affected the vessel market more harshly than I have witnessed in 30 years of business.

Administrators have said that as the vessels crews were contract staff working for other firms the transaction had no employment impact.

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