Wärtsilä has acquired the global ship design group Vik-Sandvik, an independent group providing design and engineering services to ship owners and the ship building industry worldwide. The value of the acquisition is $169.9m, with an additional maximum sum of $48.9m to be paid based on the performance of the business over the next three years. In 2007, Vik-Sandvik’s turnover was $70.8 millions and the profitability is on a very good level. The number of employees is 410.
The role of ship design is becoming more and more important due to higher performance requirements, more sophisticated systems, and increased integration onboard most vessels. Also, the environmental and emission regulations regarding NOx and CO2 are becoming increasingly stringent.
“From a strategic point of view, the acquisition of Vik-Sandvik is a very important step for Wärtsilä as it brings us closer to our customers, both ship owners and ship yards. We can now enter into dialogue with them at an earlier stage, when the key specifications of a vessel are decided, and this will result in us being able to offer more competitive solutions,” says Mr Jaakko Eskola, Group Vice President, Wärtsilä Ship Power.
Vik-Sandvik will be integrated into Wärtsilä Ship Design within Ship Power. All personnel - including the management - will continue as Wärtsilä employees. The acquisition is subject to relevant regulatory approvals, which are expected during the third quarter of 2008.
Vik-Sandvik specializes in the design of high-end offshore vessels, as well as product and chemical tankers and more specialized vessels. The company has its headquarters in Fitjar, in Western Norway, and it has operations in Norway, Poland, India, Brazil, Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Russia and China. Vik-Sandvik has up to now been wholly owned by the Sandvik family.
Currently, Wärtsilä’s ship design operations are carried out at its German company, Wärtsilä Ship Design Germany, and future ship design services will be combined within Wärtsilä Ship Design.
Mr Arne Birkeland, 42, will be the head of the Ship Design unit. Mr Birkeland joined Wärtsilä in 2006, and currently holds several other positions within the company. Mr Birkeland is the President of Wärtsilä Norway AS, a Vice President of Wärtsilä Ship Power Technology, and a member of the Ship Power Management team.