Friday, July 26, 2013

Groupe Océan - another big move

Groupe Océan has done it again, with another major acquisition* - this time a double play.
With an estimated arrival date of August 8, at Quebec City, Stevns Ocean and Stevns Arctic will join the Océan fleet, giving a major boost to sea-going capability.
Both built in Canada, to a unique Robert Allen design, they are magnificent 5,000 bhp sea-going tugs. Since built in 2003 and 2005, they have worked all over the North Sea from their Danish home base, reaching the Netherlands, the UK, Norway and Germany.

Stevns Ocean was built by Industrie Océan at Ile-aux-Coudres, and completed in 2003, at a reported cost of $13mn.
1. Stevns Ocean alongside at Ile-aux-Coudres in final fit out. She has a massive ship handling winch forward and combination loop and tubular bow fenders.

2. A multi-purpose tug, she also has a towing winch, stern roller and firefighting equipment.

Construction of Stevns Arctic was started by Industrie Océan, but the yard ran into financial problems, and construction was suspended. (The yard was later re-organized under Groupe Océan ownership and is back in business). Arrangements were made with Irving Shipbuilding to complete the tug, and it was launched as an unpainted shell September 16, 2004. It was towed to Halifax by Atlantic Teak, and in a most unusual move, it was hauled up the launch way where the superstructure was removed,. The two components were moved into the building hall where they were fitted out, reassembled and re-launched April 8, 2005. 

3. Stevns Arctic's superstructure is readied for re-installing on the hull, prior to launch.

On July 26, 2005 it was towed to Shelburne by Atlantic Oak where is was drydocked for completion. On September 10, 2005 it returned to Halifax for final trials and handover. It sailed for Denmark September 26.

4. Stevns Arctic on the slip at Shelburne for completion.

5. Stevns Arctic returns to Halifax, under her own power, for completion of trials.

Both tugs were built for subsidiaries of Nordane Shipping, to work on the European charter market. Nordane has now sold off their all-Canadian built fleet, the remainder built by Irving Shipbuilding's East Isle yard in Georgetown, PE. Two had previously returned to Canada and now serve Rio Tinto Alcan on the Saguenay.  The other five were sold to Svitzer. Can we expect more to return? They would be a great fit for someone since they are all 5,000 bhp ice class. 
Meanwhile Groupe Océan will redeploy Océan A. Simard and Océan Serge Genois to Bull Arm, NL**.
Also the recently acquired pusher tug Mega*** appears to have been renamed Orléans, but as yet this has not been made official.
* I understand that the two tugs are on charter with purchase option, but they will be repainted to Groupe Oceéan colours.
** Two more tugs will assigned to Bull Arm in 2014. Groupe Océan has been awarded a major contract there for tug services.
 *** This may be an error-there appears to be a barge in Quebec with that name, but with the same tonnage as the tug - update to follow.


  1. I don't think that the Méga has been renamed Orléans. The Orléans that is currently in Québec Port is a Simec Barge.

  2. One is the barge Motti IMO: 9072434 ;Mega IMO:7377641 is the tug part of this tug-barge assembly .
    This might be quite an interesting equipment to see performing in St-Lawrence ice as it is classed as ice Class 1A.