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Saipem: Engineering for A Sustainable Future

Through working as a team, Saipem strives to overcome extraordinary challenges and bring the Italian ingenuity of its operations and partners to the energy and infrastructure sector’s engineering, drilling, and construction needs. The company is divided into five business lines: asset-based services, energy carriers, offshore wind, sustainable infrastructure, and robotics and industrialized solutions. These business lines allow Saipem to support its customers by accompanying them on a journey to net zero through its energy transition operations. Consequently, Saipem strives ahead to turn its customers’ strategies and projects into competitive and sustainable infrastructures, plants, and processes – all with the combined aim of a more sustainable future.  


As a global player in the energy industry and infrastructure, Saipem is constantly striving towards technological innovation across its range of services to promote the most efficient and sustainable solutions possible. At present the company has 9 fabrication yards, a fleet of 29 construction vessels for offshore solutions (of which 26 are owned by Saipem and 3 are third-party owned but managed by Saipem), and 15 drilling rigs of which they own 8. The global company provides essential sustainable solutions across a vast array of industries in over 70 different countries. With a workforce totalling over 30,000, Saipem is bringing customers globally towards a path of zero emissions with their increasingly digital means, technologies and processing solutions which are working cohesively to be effective for business whilst environmentally sustainable. Therefore, Saipem supports its customers throughout project cycles to identify needs, decommission facilities, employ staff, and make projects operational even in some of the most challenging contexts.  

We have seen Saipem’s reach across the industry with a range of contracts awarded to the company to help facilitate crucial change and development in the energy and infrastructure sectors. As of January 2023, Saipem was awarded a contract with Anker Solutions and by TotalEnergies to provide a subsea production system, tools and all related EPCI interfaces for the Lapa South West Field Construction in Brazil. The project is developing a deepwater oil field in the Santos Basin, 270 kilometres off the coast of Brazil. Working in partnership with Anker Solutions, the project is set to encompass a range of engineering, procurement, and construction operations, as well as the installation of a production system. This project will include three subsea trees, subsea umbilical, risers, flow lines and tie-in structures. Additionally, the contract is set to upgrade the control system of the existing Lapa South West subsea trees. The Lapa South West Development Project is the first-ever integrated SURF and SPS project awarded by TotalEnergies. The work began early in 2023, with full delivery of the project planned for 2024.  

However, this contract was only the first of two offshore contracts which totalled approximately 900 million USD for Saipem. The second contract was awarded to Saipem by Equinor for the Irpa Pipeline. The project consists of the installation of an 80km long swagged pipe-in-pipe pipeline to connect the subsea production template of the Irpa field to the existing Aasta Hansteen Platform. The work will take place in the deep waters of the Norwegian Sea, with a planned start date of 2025. The project is a pivotal moment for Saipem as they are planning to use their flagship Castorone vessel to complete the work.  

As recently as June 2023, Saipem has been awarded a further two contracts; one to develop EPCI offshore activities in the Middle East and another for the development of underwater drones in Brazil. These two contracts total approximately one billion USD of development. The project in the Middle East is part of a long-term agreement with Saudia Aramco which has selected Saipem for the offshore project. The project involves the engineering, procurement, construction, and installation of 5 platforms and associated subsea pipelines, flowlines, and cables in Saudi Arabia’s offshore Marjan Field. This partnership strengthens the long-standing relationship between Saipem and Saudi Aramco, and its strategic positioning in the Middle East.  

Furthermore, in Brazil, Saipem has been awarded a contract by Petrobras to develop and test a new autonomous subsea inspection system using Saipem’s fleet of underwater drones. The drones will enable the future of inspection and contract options across offshore Brazil. This is a crucial milestone for Saipem, as it represents their innovative underwater robotics programme and the scalable quality it has for global utilisation across offshore projects throughout the entire value chain. The sub-sea technology has vast potential across the offshore industry, with applications in both oil, gas, and renewable segment markets. Therefore, as we see from Saipem, technology and its advancement to push the industry towards more effective technologically savvy solutions is key to Saipem’s, and the industry’s, continued sustainable development.  

Overall, the contracts awarded to Saipem exemplify both the vast range of services they offer and the legacy they have established globally to be given such giant energy and infrastructure projects which are put in place to develop countries around the world towards more accessible energy. However, Saipem is operating and implementing the most up-to-date and efficient technology to cut costs and reduce waste and environmental harm. These technologies allow Saipem to meet its goals and use creative technological innovation to care for people and the planet, whilst establishing the Saipem brand as one that can be trusted to complete all projects they are given efficiently and successfully. Therefore, we can see how the company has gained a reputation as the engineer for a sustainable future, for always promoting innovation, top-quality engineering solutions, technological advancements, problem-solving and project management to build the global energy and infrastructure industry towards a more sustainable future.