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Saipem: Engineering for the Future

As a global leader in the design, construction and operation of complex infrastructures and plant facilities, Saipem is an engineering company which has taken over the energy sector through both offshore and onshore projects. With a key vision to engineer solutions for a sustainable future, the company has spent the last 65 years at the forefront of a global transition towards net zero. For Saipem engineering is at the heart of its operations and so its business, activities, and industrial solutions are all working to create a clearer vision for tomorrow.  

Saipem’s origins can be traced back to 1957 when it became an independent company and constructed its first offshore platform the Scarabeo. The platform exemplified Saipem’s exemplary construction and engineering skills, which still serve as the foundation of its operations across the globe. Since the completion of its first offshore platform, Saipem has continued to grow its international reputation which saw the company complete a range of key projects across the globe. These projects include 600 wells in the Mesota Espinosa, numerous gas and oil pipelines across Argentina, Italy, and India, and 4 key drilling platforms in the Adriatic Sea by the end of 1969. Today, Saipem is a global leader in engineering with operations in 60 countries, 9 manufacturing sites and a workforce of over 30,00 employees who are passionate about providing the world with innovative solutions to meet its client needs whilst protecting the world for future generations.  

Saipem offers a vast array of services and solutions which it helps design, procure, engineer and construct to meet the needs of its clients’ projects. Saipem works across every stage of development projects taking each one from process and structural engineering, all the way to procurement and construction. Once constructed, Saipem helps with the maintenance, modification, and daily operations of each deep-sea system. The company even works to help decommission plants and platforms when they are no longer in use. By staying so close to every project, Saipem can ensure the maximum economic return of offshore field development whilst maintaining high levels of safety, reliability, and performance.  

Just last year Saipem announced it has been awarded 2 offshore contracts which are roughly 900 million USD in value. The first contract is in partnership with Aker Solutions and was awarded by Total Energies for the LAPA Southwest Development Project. LAPA is a deepwater oil field in the Santo Basin in the South Atlantic 270km off the coast of Brazil. Work on the project includes the engineering, procurement, construction, and installation (EPCI) of subsea umbilical, risers, and flowlines (SURF) as well as a Subsea Production System (SPS). For this Saipem will maximise local content by making use of its yard Guarujá CTCO (Centro de Tecnologia e Construção Offshore) for logistics activities and Quad Joints Fabrication and some other manufacturing activities.  

The second contract was awarded to Saipem by Equinor for the Irpa Pipeline Project. The project covers the installation of 80 kilometres of swagged Pipe-in-Pipe pipeline which will connect the production template of the Irpa Field to the existing Aasta Hansteen platform. The Irpa Pipeline project is expected for operations to begin next year in 2025.  

A fundamental aspect of Saipem’s operations is its offshore drilling services, which date back to the origins of the company where it began drilling off the coasts of Sicily. At present, Saipem has a fleet of drilling vessels that can operate in several harsh environments and at a range of operational depths. In addition to these, Saipem also has a range of drillships, jack-ups and semi-submersibles which are also capable of operating in both shallow and ultra-deepwater depths. Drilling for Saipem has continued to allow the company to establish long-term relationships with exploration and production companies across the world to drill wells in some of the deepest and most technically challenging environments there are.  

In November 2022, Saipem was awarded new offshore drilling contracts covering 3 projects in the Middle East and 2 in Western Africa encompassing approximately 800 million USD in value. In the Middle East, Saipem was contracted to work on two high-specification Jack-Up drilling units (Perro Negro 12 and 13) which are chartered by third parties for drilling and workover activities. The project is expected to take 5 years with completion expected in 2027, with an optional two years for the first unit and another 4 years for the second. In West Africa, Saipem was awarded 2 contracts in the Ultra Deep-Water segment for drilling operations with the sixth-generation Drillship Saipem 1200. The first contract was awarded to Eni Côte d’Ivoire for drilling operations. The second contract was awarded to Azule Energy for drilling. The project included the drilling of 12 firm wells and included the possibility of an extension for an optional term. These contracts in West Africa and the Middle East highlight the areas as key focuses for development over the coming years for Saipem and its operations in the ultra-deepwater market.  

Furthermore, Saipem announced in February 2023 that it was resuming work on the Mozambique LNG project for Total Energies. The project covers the onshore development of the LNG plant and is the first for Saipem in Mozambique, and includes the engineering, procurement, and construction of the onshore plant. Saipem also announced in the same month that the company has renewed its collaboration agreements with Petrojet and ENPPI. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by Saipem with Petrojet to continue the collaborative efforts in the pursuit of potential new initiatives in the oil and gas, infrastructure, and new Energy sectors in North Africa. This continued collaboration highlights the strong relationship Saipem has with companies in North Africa and the Middle East. The cooperating agreement signed with ENPPI continues the execution and co-engineering services for potential new initiatives to be pursued globally. The agreement gives Saipem access to local expertise and engineering in Egypt, especially in areas with high development potential in energy infrastructure.  

Sustainability is key to Saipem’s current plans as it works to constantly update its expertise and renew its design and development assets to solidify its entry into the field of renewable energy. Consequently, Saipem has implemented a range of solar panels, integrated bio-refineries, geothermal energy, and waste-to-energy projects. The goal of these renewable infrastructure projects is to enter the world of existing renewable and continue to develop the sector with new and emerging technologies into wave, tide, thermal ocean energy, floating photovoltaic installations, renewable energy storage, hydrogen, and hybridisation projects which will reduce carbon on a significant scale.  

Additionally, Saipem has recently announced the development of its new Bluenzyme™ modular products which are designed for carbon dioxide capture. The proprietary technology has been developed by CO2 Solutions by Saipem™ which offers efficient and cost-effective solutions for carbon capture. The modular constructions are designed to reduce construction time to save money for its clients. The flexibility of these standardised models allows Saipem to be ahead of the game and meet the specific needs of each client whilst also helping them to continue to meet the needs of the future.  

Overall, Saipem is a vast and ever-expanding company which stretches to every corner of the globe with its engineering services. With vital work both onshore and offshore which aids the infrastructural development of regions across the globe, Saipem continues to lead the way with its reputation for excellence. As the company has moved towards the future, we have seen its vital shift towards renewable and green energy options which has allowed the company to remain ahead of the competition for many years. With vital development carbon reduction and infrastructure across the world, it is not a surprise Saipem continues to be awarded vital contracts for its engineering across the world.