The Skien-based engineering company Safelink delivers products, software and solutions for offshore lifting operations. Its primary product category is passive heave compensators for sale and leasing to the offshore and subsea industries. The company’s solutions are designed to reduce both operational risk in offshore lifting operations and dependence on optimal weather and wave conditions.
The purchaser of the heave compensators is the US company Safelink Rentals LLC, in which Safelink is a shareholder. Safelink Rentals LLC has concluded a lease agreement for the equipment with an offshore company that has deployed a deepwater subsea installation vessel under a long-term contract with the state-owned Brazilian oil company Petrobras.
“Petrobras requires passive heave compensators to be used for very heavy lifts, for example in connection with the installation of subsea manifolds in ultra-deep water, i.e. at depths beyond 2,500 metres. Our passive heave compensators come into their own in such situations, both as a tool for better, more secure landing of equipment and as an additional failsafe in case the active heave compensator fails,” says Safelink AS CEO Ole Christiansen. The passive heave compensator incorporates Safelink’s newest technology, and can be upgraded to an active heave compensator.
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Loan and guarantee
This is the third time Safelink has used export financing from Export Credit Norway. On each occasion, the company has used the SME scheme, a simplified solution for contracts valued at less than NOK 100 million. The scheme features a joint application form covering both the loan from Export Credit Norway and the guarantee from GIEK. The exporter subsequently receives a joint offer and enters into a joint loan agreement with the two organisations.
When an export contract is valued at NOK 50 million or less, an exporter can choose to cover residual risk not covered by the guarantee from GIEK, thus eliminating the need for a bank guarantee. Safelink AS has opted to do so, with GIEK guaranteeing the remaining 90 per cent of the loan.
The process has worked very well each time
Ole Christiansen, Safelink
“This is the third time we have used Export Credit Norway’s SME solution, and the process has worked very well each time. We engage extensively in equipment leasing, a capital-intensive business. Export financing is an excellent way to finance units we plan to lease out, and saves us from having to seek market financing. My impression is that end customers are also very happy that we are backed by robust financial institutions,” says Ole Christiansen.