Shipowners honoured at Annual Offshore Support Journal Conference AwardsTaken from: Offshore Support Journal news desk, 16 February 2012
More than 400 delegates at this year’s Annual Offshore Support Journal Conference gave Gary Chouest, the chief executive and president of Edison Chouest Offshore, a standing ovation as he accepted a Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contribution to the global oil and gas industry. The presentation was one of the Offshore Support Vessel Journal Awards presented at the conference gala dinner at the end of the first day, on 15 February.
“This is a good conference and an excellent time for networking with our vendors,” Mr Chouest said. The event is now in its sixth year, and the Annual Offshore Support Journal Conference 2012 was held by Riviera Maritime Media Ltd in association with Caterpillar.
Founded as Edison Chouest Boat Rental in Galliano, Louisiana, in 1960, Edison Chouest is one of the world’s largest owners of offshore support vessels. It operates a growing fleet of over 200 vessels, and has a diverse range of technology and shipbuilding companies.
“It is an honour to accept this award for the whole company,” Mr Chouest said. “Building up Edison Chouest has involved thousands and manhours and a lot of risk. We have taken a lot of gambles and had plenty of long nights. It would not be possible without a strong team.”
His group of companies are at the forefront of technologies in the areas of subsea support, integrated bridge systems and maritime communications. Edison Chouest operates a group of shipyards along the US Gulf coast, and one in Brazil to accommodate a wide range of new construction projects, as well as repairs, conversions and refits on its own fleet and others. Chouest's ability to design, build, own and operate mission-specific vessels, then manage them, is unmatched in the industry.
Texas-based vessel operator Hornbeck Offshore won the Shipowner of the Year award for its excellence in ship operations and for expanding its fleet during uncertain times in the US market. Hornbeck has kept its faith in the US Gulf market by recently ordering 16 new vessels from two US shipyards.
The Support Vessel of the Year award went to North Sea Shipping’s high spec construction vessel North Sea Giant. The vessel has extremely high levels of redundancy, and a number of innovative features. The 160m-long ship will be working for Technip Norge in the Barents Sea this year performing subsea construction duties on the Goliat project. Ship designer Sawicon and shipbuilder Metalships & Docks were honoured for supplying the innovative vessel.
The Innovation of the Year award went to Cargotec for its MacGregor chain wheel manipulator, a remotely-controlled system designed to perform continuous successive cycles of chain wheel installation and replacement on an anchor handling winch, while the vessel is on site, even in adverse sea conditions.
Two new awards were introduced this year for the first time in recognition to the rising prominence of the offshore renewable industry and environmental considerations. The inaugural winner of the Offshore Renewables award was MPI Offshore for its new generation of wind turbine installation vessels. Solstad Offshore won the Environmental award for its Green Operations initiative, which has seen the company work with the Rainforest Foundation Norway to reduce emissions and provide funds towards protecting the rainforest.
More information from the awards and conference will be included in the April issue of Offshore Support Journal along with the awards supplement. Further information on the conference programme as well as future events can be found at www.rivieramm.com/events
Riviera Maritime Media thanks the conference sponsors for their support, including: ABB (gala dinner), Damen (drinks reception), DVB Bank (2012 awards).