June 29 - Eight months after HLPFI first reported on the filing of an insolvency petition by the Sietas Group (Nov 18, 2011) and five months since HLPFI (May, 2012) reported that five concrete offers have been received for the companies of the Hamburg-bas

The board of creditors has decided on solutions involving industrial partners that may allow a large proportion of jobs to be saved. The individual offers for the three companies of the Sietas Group are higher in total than the overall offer submitted and also offer greater security for the future, since they involve strategic investors, such as companies from the shipbuilding industry..

The board of creditors voted in favour of Norderwerft for the Lürssen Gruppe (Bremen) as it was the highest bidder. For Neuenfelder Maschinenfabrik (NMF) the board has entrusted insolvency lawyer Berthold Brinkmann with the job of holding final negotiations with two bidders in parallel.

Brinkmann says: "In total we are generating a sum in the double-digit millions from the assets of Norderwerft and the sale of the Sietas Werft docks located at Norderwerft. We will also generate a sum in the double-digit millions from the trading portion of NMF. At both companies, all employees will be kept on. Furthermore, the Lürssen Gruppe has already declared that it will take on up to 40 workers from Sietas Werft if there are redundancies there to join the total of 94 at Norderwerft. At NMF all 134 workers will be kept on."

An offer is on the table for Sietas Werft from the VeKa Group (Netherlands).

Brinkmann says: "After thorough consultation, the board of creditors has announced that it will contribute to the costs of maintenance and modernisation at Sietas Werft, since there would otherwise be considerable procedural costs for a necessary transfer company and redundancy notice for employees."

Of the existing 400 jobs at Sietas Werft, three-quarters can be preserved thanks to the current order situation. If further orders come in, this figure could rise. The company employs an additional 30 trainees.

Sietas Werft is currently producing the very first installation vessel for offshore wind farms to be designed and built in Germany, whose dock assembly begins in August 2012 with delivery in 2013. The customer is marine engineering company Van Oord. Sietas Werft has recently been informed that Van Oord is ready to negotiate an order for the construction of a second installation vessel. There is also the possibility of building further specialist ships for the Dutch company at Sietas Werft.