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Helix Lands Petrobras Deal

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Offshore energy services provider Helix Energy Solutions Group Inc. (HLX - Free Report) announced the receipt of a contract from Brazil's state-run energy giant Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. or Petrobras (PBR - Free Report) to supply well intervention solutions by using two newbuild vessels.

The vessels will be constructed at the Flensburger shipyard in Germany for Norway’s Siem Offshore, on the basis of a model developed by Salt Ship Design and will cost around $260 million.

Initially, Helix will charter the vessels from Siem Offshore for a 7-year period, with options that can extend the duration to 22 years. The vessels – to be built in accordance with the MODU-class (Marine Offshore Drilling Units) – are slated to be 158 meters long and 31 meters wide.

Helix will be responsible for providing topsides, while looking after the integration of the well intervention gear for vessels. On the other hand, Siem – the owner – will build the monohull, supervise the construction at the shipyard and charter the marine crew.

Though the preliminary agreement between Helix and Petrobras is for 4 years, it can be extended. Helix expects the first vessel delivery sometime in mid-2016, with the second one to follow later during that year. The order is part of Helix’s strong, longstanding relationship with Petrobras and further strengthens its already solid footing in Brazil.

Houston, TX-based Helix Energy offers marine contracting services, apart from operating offshore oil/gas properties and production units. The company looks to add value to the clients’ energy assets by deploying vessels from its diverse portfolio of contracting fleet.

Helix currently holds a Rank #3 (Hold), implying that it is expected to perform in line with the broader U.S. equity market over the next one to three months.

Some better-ranked stocks in the oilfield services sector include Exterran Partners L.P. and Emerge Energy Services L.P. (EMES - Free Report) . Both of them carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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