Wilson Sons invests in the port support market for the oil and gas industry

  • 02/12/2021
  • 6 minutes

With the largest fleet of tugs in Brazil, the company stands out in towing operations for
the O&G sector

With the recent demand and oil prices recovery in the international market, large
companies are starting to move forward with new projects. A study carried out by
Wilson Sons, the largest integrated operator of port and maritime logistics in Brazil,
shows that 22 FPSOs (Floating Production Storage and Offloading) are expected to start
operating in the country between 2022 and 2026. The investments resuming also
brings optimism to the maritime support market.

With a fleet of 80 tugs, the largest on the Brazilian coast, Wilson Sons participated this
year in more than 20 operations for the oil and gas market, including assistance to
FPSOs, rigs, shipyards and FSRUs (Floating Storage Regasification Unit), consolidating
itself as a reference in the provision of port support services for this sector. “Over the
next four years, we will have a considerable number of platforms starting to operate,
others being decommissioned, new LNG terminals, which brings a series of
opportunities for the supply chain in this industry”, highlights Elísio Dourado,
commercial director of Wilson Sons’ Towage division.

To meet these new projects demands, the Company has been preparing itself. Today, it
has the most powerful fleet on the Brazilian coast – 93% of the tugs have azimuth
propulsion (ASD) and four are escort tugs – a necessary feature for moving large
structures, such as oil platforms. This year, the construction of a series of six other
high-powered tugs has began. The new units are being built at Wilson Sons’ shipyard in
Guarujá (SP) and will hold the IMO TIER III standard, with a reduction of more than
75% in nitrogen oxide emissions, which is considered a greenhouse gas.

People and environmental safety
In recent years, Wilson Sons has been operating in platform support maneuvers,
operations in liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals and ship-to-ship operations. Among
the projects served by the Company are the LNG terminals of Celse (Aracajú – SE), GNA
(Açu Port – RJ) and Petrobras (Pecém – CE), in addition to the ship-to-ship operations at
Açu Port and participation in assistance maneuvers for the FPSOs P-71 at Shipyard
Jurong (ES), BW Cidade de São Vicente (RJ), FPSO Carioca MV30 (RJ), among others.
“We have experienced consistent growth in this market, which we are looking closely
at. These are complex operations that demand great care with safety and intense
training of the crew. And safety is, without a doubt, one of the main pillars of the
Wilson Sons’ Group”, highlights Dourado.

Wilson Sons’ differentials in serving clients in this segment are the expertise of the
Company’s employees and its modern structure. “When there is an O&G (oil and gas)
operation, the operational team participates in meetings with customers from the
beginning to ensure the best planning for the maneuver, as the tugboats are an
essential part of the process. Towing, docking/undocking and operating plans are
usually approved by us and we normally suggest the best arrangements of
connections, cables and materials to be used. This alignment of the Wilson Sons’ team
with the customer is essential for the maneuver to take place safely and efficiently”,
comments the commercial director.

The Towage division has in its structure the Operations Center (COR) and the Maritime
Improvement Center (CAMWS). COR, through its own network of AIS antennas,
monitors in real time the tugboats and vessels involved in the operations and is in
constant contact with all those involved – customers, port and maritime authorities and
pilotage. CAMWS, on the other hand, has as its main equipment its own maneuver
simulator, capable of predicting different operational scenarios. The simulator is
commonly used by customers in the Oil and Gas segment for the preparation and
testing of large projects and operations.

These differentials are crucial in guaranteeing the efficiency of such complex
operations. No wonder Wilson Sons’ Towage division is a reference in the port support
market, in addition to having world-class status in safety, based on standards defined
by Du Pont, a reference consultancy in the sector.

About Wilson Sons
Wilson Sons is the largest integrated port and maritime logistics operator in the
Brazilian market and offers supply chain solutions, with over 180 years of experience.
The Company provides a complete range of services to companies operating in the oil
and gas industry, in international trade and in the domestic economy. With a national
presence, it acts in an innovative way, following market trends.

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