‘Great platform to build on’: Scorpio’s Lauro on Nordic American Offshore takeover

A jubilant Emanuele Lauro yesterday completed the takeover of Nordic American Offshore (NAO) cementing Scorpio Group’s full-on entry into the offshore sector.

Scorpio paid $5m in a private placement yesterday to take over the company with Lauro now installed as chairman and CEO at NAO taking over from veteran Herbjorn Hansson. Hansson will now focus on his larger company, suezmax specialist Nordic American Tankers (NAT).

Founded in 2013 and listed in New York the following year NAO today has a fleet of 10 PSVs, principally engaged in the North Sea.

For Scorpio, the acquisition bolsters its nascent offshore presence. Best known for its dry bulk and tanker divisions, Lauro and his team quietly launched Scorpio Offshore towards the end of 2015 and built up a fleet of eight fast crew boats and a pair of anchor handlers.

On yesterday’s acquisition, Lauro was quick to praise Hansson for the smoothness of the transaction. Lauro told Splash this morning: “They’ve got great people, great ships and it is a great platform on which to build on.”

Lauro said the worst was over for the offshore markets and the sector was now “picking up”.

Latest data from brokers Westshore backs this assumption up with spot rates for large PSVs finally picking up in the last month after a bumpy year.

“I am really excited. We could not have picked a better name to get totally into the offshore sector,” Lauro said.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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