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Forgemasters clinches Brazil offshore contract

12 December 2007

Forgemasters has clinched its first major offshore contract in Brazil.

The engineering giant won a £1.2m contract to supply a series of insert castings for a semi submersible floating structure that will operate in the Roncador oil field in the Campos Basin.

The deal came on the strength of Forgemasters being named as an approved supplier to Petrobras - Brazil's state-owned oil and gas giant and confirms the historic Sheffield-based company as a world player in the multi-billion pound offshore market.

The steel castings, of which there are 48 in total of weights up to five tonnes each, will be used on Platform P56 in the Roncador field which will be located 125 kilometers off the Rio de Janeiro coast.

Terry Whaley from Sheffield Forgemasters said: "Our steel castings will be used on the highly stressed parts of the semi-submersible where fabrications cannot cope with the high fatigue. Using a casting means the submersible can cope with greater forces through this area.

"Castings like these are now accepted as the only solution for the most vulnerable points of the offshore structures where it is not only necessary to use the best steel quality but also to produce a casting that copes with harsh environmental conditions.

"Petrobras is, and will continue to be, an important operator for us. It is a world leader in both the exploration and production development segments with more than 100 production platforms, 16 refineries, 30,000 kilometers of ducts and more than 6,000 gas stations. Wherever you go in the country you will notice Petrobras' strong presence, contributing to Brazil's development."

The discovery of what could be massive oil reserves off the coast of Brazil, announced last month, has the potential to transform Brazil's oil industry and catapult the country up the league table of oil-producing nations.

Terry added: "This contract opens up a huge new market for us in Brazil and puts our name amongst key people in the industry in South America. The patterns are already in manufacture for this project and we are already moving forward on the next Petrobras project that will be awarded early next year."

Delivery of the castings is expected to start in May next year with completion in December 2008.