Resilient Helicopter Services market with $25bn spend forecast to 2019
Despite turmoil this year in the oil & gas industry, Douglas-Westwood (DW) forecasts $25 billion in expenditure on offshore helicopter services between 2015 and 2019 in its new World Offshore Oil & Gas Helicopters Market Forecast 2015-2019. The installed base of manned production infrastructure continues to increase, as does the fleet of offshore rigs and specialist installation and support vessels. This drives the demand for helicopter services, with forecast spend for the next five years increasing more than 25%, compared to the preceding five-year period.
Report author, Andy Jenkins, commented, “However, the significant cuts in capital expenditure that we have seen in 2015 will impact the helicopter business with lower than previously-expected levels of drilling and seismic activity. We also expect to see a delay in the sanctioning of some new offshore production infrastructure.
“Whilst expectations for the coming three years are lower than previously anticipated in our 2014 report (by between -4% and -7% year-on-year) the overall picture remains a long-term growth story with the offshore helicopter industry expected to be relatively resilient as the majority of demand will arise from ongoing production phase support.
“The helicopter market is highly dependent on these production phase operations and they are characterised by long-term contracts. We do note, however, that E&P companies are currently focused on costs through their supply chain and this is expected to impact renewal rates and new contracts over the next two years.”
Report editor, Steve Robertson, concluded, “The coming years will be an important time for the industry as a new generation of medium-class helicopters, such as the H175 and AW189, are introduced. These have been developed to provide higher crew capacity, power and range for a number of industries. These models are highly efficient with new advanced safety systems and are, therefore, expected to perform well in the offshore arena.
“In the longer term there is the exciting prospect of high speed rotorcraft entering the market. These have the potential to be a gamechanger in the offshore sector, revolutionising the speed at which personnel can be transferred and the operating distance of units. AgustaWestland’s AW 609 is expected to be the first commercially available rotorcraft serving the offshore sector with the potential for others to follow, perhaps building on experience with these craft in the military sector (such as Bell and Sikorsky).”