October 14 - Fairstar Heavy Transport has reported a rebound in EBITDA as well as net profits in the third quarter of 2010.

The company's two ships, FJORD and FJELL contributed to the bottom line by being involved in high-value energy and construction infrastructure projects.

Fairstar says that open stern semi-submersible vessels like FJORD and FJELL have significant performance advantages over some of the other types of vessels introduced in recent years to the marine heavy transport industry which allow them to maintain their pricing power in a market that continues to be characterised by excess capacity and significant discounting by the owners of converted oil tankers.

Fairstar achieved a significant rebound in EBITDA and net profitability for the third quarter. Time charter revenue for the quarter was USD 9.4 million which realised EBITDA of USD 6 million and net profit of USD 6.3 million. Net profit was inflated by the strengthening of the Norwegian Krona versus the US Dollar. Fairstar intends to close out this position as the NOK continues to strengthen.

In its Q3 2010 report Fairstar notes that, "the spot market continues to show weakness in terms of both available cargoes as well as pricing. Longer term, there has been a clear increase in tender activity for multiple voyage, high-value projects in 2012 onwards. Fairstar is actively engaged in these tender competitions. The energy infrastructure projects being considered in Australia alone have a need for true open stern semi-submersible vessels that are not available in the current global fleet.

"Fairstar is convinced our strategy to invest in an existing design, to be constructed by an experienced shipyard, is the most prudent way to build the modern vessels required by our clients in the next five years. The Gorgon tender demonstrated that modern vessels combined with an experienced team of marine heavy transport professionals intensely focussed on client needs is a formula for future success."