May 28, 2024
Sumitomo Corporation

Sumitomo Corporation to Take Stake in IWS Fleet, Norwegian Owner and Operator of Offshore Windfarm Support Vessels Second-Largest Global CSOV Fleet Contributing to Renewable Energy Production

On May 27, Sumitomo Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President and Chief Executive Officer: Shingo Ueno) reached an agreement with IWS Fleet AS (IWS Fleet), a Norwegian owner and operator of vessels in the offshore wind industry, to take a stake in IWS Fleet. The deal, scheduled to be closed in June, will see IWS Fleet become an equity method affiliate of Sumitomo Corporation. Together with IWS Fleet, we will contribute to the realization of a carbon neutral society through the expansion of renewable energy production.

As newly installed offshore windfarm continue to increase, demand is also rising for offshore support vessels for use in the construction, operation and maintenance of windfarm facilities. Commissioning Service Operation Vessels (CSOVs) are offshore support vessels that provide accommodation and safe transportation for engineers working on offshore wind turbines during the commissioning and installation phase. Demand for CSOVs is increasing, especially in Europe, which is leading the way in offshore wind power development. It is estimated that around 60 CSOVs will be needed worldwide by 2027, rising to over 100 by 2030.

IWS and IWS Fleet Have a Strong Presence in the European Offshore Wind Industry

IWS Fleet owns and manages a fleet of six CSOVs (two completed, four under construction), the second largest in the world in terms of CSOV fleet size. By aligning the fleet with sister vessels, vessel management can be streamlined and agile services offered to clients. The stability of the “gangway” (access bridge) that carries engineers and materials to offshore wind turbines, the dynamic positioning system which maintains a vessel at fixed-point at sea, and the comfortable, well-equipped living quarters have all been rated favorably by customers.
IWS Fleet's parent company, Integrated Wind Solutions ASA (IWS), is an Oslo Stock Exchange-listed company founded in 2020 that owns offshore wind-related services and support vessels. In addition to IWS Fleet, which owns CSOVs, IWS owns other companies connected to offshore wind, including consulting, engineering, advisory and asset management entities.

Accelerating New Growth in Ship and Offshore Businesses Driven by GX

This is Sumitomo Corporation's second investment in the offshore windfarm support vessel business, following the establishment of a company owning four heavy-lift vessels (two in operation and two under construction) to transport wind turbine components. In our medium-term management plan announced in May 2024, the development of supply chain services for the offshore wind power industry was positioned as a GX (Green Transformation) business that will further enhance our strengths and competitive advantages. Sumitomo Corporation will continue to focus on owning and taking part in offshore windfarm support vessels such as construction support vessels and heavy lifters.

Transferring Global Offshore Wind Supply Chain Business Experience to Domestic Offshore Wind

Sumitomo Corporation will contribute to IWS Fleet business expansion through our network of wind power developers and other global industry players, alongside the business expertise we have gained through our own ship business. Through partnership with IWS, Sumitomo Corporation will also promote the spread of offshore wind power on the supply chain side. As a result, we will also garner expertise in renewable energy businesses in Europe, a region leading the field, and channel it back to the offshore wind power market in Japan.

Corporate Communications Department, Sumitomo Corporation
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