Cadeler Orders Another Wind Install Vessel as it Books its Largest Contract

wind installation vessel
Cadeler ordered a third A-Class brining its total newbuilds to seven (Cadeler)

Published May 23, 2024 6:39 PM by The Maritime Executive


With demand continuing strong for jack-up offshore vessels for the wind energy industry, Cadeler reported it is moving forward with the construction of a third giant vessel, the seventh it now has on order. The company, which has the largest fleet of jack-up vessels for offshore wind installation, reports it will spend approximately $400 million exercising an option taken in 2022 selecting to build its third A-class vessel.

Cadeler, which completed the merger with Eneti to strengthen its focus on offshore wind, cites global demand for increasingly technologically advanced offshore wind farm installation vessels. They reported the demand is driven by the expansion of the offshore wind industry as well as the growth in the size and capacity of offshore wind turbines. Major developers in the industry have talked openly about the shortage of capable vessels as one of the challenges for the industry.

“The decision to build a third A-class vessel is based on the strong market demand for assets specializing in installing foundations,” said Mikkel Gleerup, CEO of Cadeler. “We have already signed firm contracts and entered a long-term agreement with Ørsted for our first A-Class vessel from 2027 to 2030 and we are in advanced contract negotiations to secure capacity from our second A-Class.”

A day after announcing that it was proceeding with the construction contract, Cadeler also reported it had signed what it termed a “significant installation vessel reservation” with an undisclosed client. They said it is the largest contract in the history of the company and if all the options are exercised, the four-year agreement will be valued in the range of €400 to €700 million. Work is planned to commence in 2027, and it includes a newbuild A-Class among the commitments.

The company already has two A-Class vessels on order and exercised the option for a third with COSCO Heavy Industries in Qidong, China. The vessel to be named Wind Apex is due for delivery in the first half of 2027 and will be built so that it can be registered in Denmark. The company reports it was able to secure a very competitive price for the new order due to its relationship with COSCO, synergies from building several similar vessels, and because it had taken the option in 2022.

The A-Class is a hybrid design that can convert from being a foundation installation vessel to a wind turbine installer within a short period of time. The new vessel will be built with similar specifications to the two previously ordered. They have deck space of 5,600 square meters and a payload of more than 17,000 tons. 

The A-Class vessels will be able to transport and install seven complete 15MW turbine sets per load or six sets of 2XL monopile foundations, cutting down the number of transits needed for each project. They will handle some of the largest dimensions of wind turbine components in the offshore wind industry. The designs are developed in strategic partnership with GustoMSC NOV, Kongsberg, Huismann, and MAN Energy.

In addition to the now three A-Class vessels, Cadeler previously had orders for two P-Class and two M-Class vessels from the combination with Eneti. The latest order will be the eleventh vessel in Cadeler’s fleet.