When a key part of the business consists of building vessels for - and to service - the offshore sector, challenges naturally arise when the oil price takes a plunge and the demand for new vessels suddenly drops. This development has also impacted Dutch shipbuilder Damen, for which a significant part of the earnings traditionally come from offshore customers, and the company does acknowledge that the business has in recent months been somewhat less lucrative than normally.
"Overall this it not a good year, and next year doesn't look much better. Crisis is a big word, because we're still selling vessels and we're still turning a profit, and other parts of the business are doing well. But due to the challenges in the offshore segment, we're in a less profitable situation than last year. But that's the overall scenario in the shipbuilding sector," Arold de Vries, Head of HR at Damen, tells ShippingWatch.