Hollandia Offshore and Croonwolter&dros have formed a strategic partnership under which the two companies will now offer services to offshore wind farms across Europe.

As a collaborative partnership with plenty experience they can provide specialised steelwork and the appropriate installation technology. In so doing, they respond to the market demand for an all-in service. ‘Winner takes all’: the idea that the strongest partnerships get the orders. Thanks to their financial strength, know-how and experience Hollandia Offshore and Croonwolter&dros have forged one of the strongest partnerships in the marketplace.

New off-shore wind farms are springing up wherever you look around the North Sea. The market is booming and developing rapidly; operators are really getting to grips with the transition towards sustainable energy. Rotterdam-based companies in off-shore services and products have a long tradition in gas and oil platforms. ‘A closely-knit ecosystem of suppliers, sub-contractors and service providers has arisen. As all the required specialisations are available close together, this “cluster” can operate very efficiently on the international market,’ explains managing director Nico Noorlander of Hollandia Offshore. ‘As investment in the oil and gas industries has been slashed in the past few years, this sector has focused on foreign off-shore wind farms. It has been successful in that respect. Next is the Dutch market, which is seeing substantial growth in that area at the moment.’

Strong partnership

Division director Aco van de Ven of Croonwolter&dros comments: ‘The off-shore wind market is maturing and consolidating. Operators like to work with companies that can take on projects in their entirety. Then they have a single point of contact for both the steelwork and the technical systems. In terms of turnover the steelwork and technical installations have an approximately equal share of the contract value. The partnerships that put forward the best offer in both specialisations tend to get the projects. Now that Croonwolter&dros are working in collaboration with Hollandia Offshore, as equal partners, we form one of the most experienced partnerships. In addition to specialist knowledge and experience, the financial clout wielded by parent group TBI is a factor that makes the proposition of Hollandia and Croonwolter&dros extra powerful.’

All-in offer

Each party has its own impressive track record in this relatively new branch of industry. Croonwolter&dros, for instance, has been involved since as far back as 2007 in the maintenance of the Prinses Amalia Windpark, in addition to many other wind farms. Noorlander adds: ‘Hollandia was awarded a contract for a substation in Vattenfall’s DanTysk wind farm in 2010. Then it won orders for substations and modules for Riffgat and Kriegersflak. The work on the DanTysk wind farm showed right from the start that it was not efficient to have separate sub-contractors for fire-extinguisher, broadcasting, low voltage, fresh-water, cooling and heating systems. By the time of the work on Kriegersflak, responsibility for those systems had already been given to Croonwolter&dros. Collaboration was noticeably smooth, which made sure that the project ran efficiently with better technical solutions.’

Van de Ven concurs. ‘The current partnership builds on the positive experiences that we have shared. As a partnership we can refer to projects in which we have had fruitful collaboration. Now that we can “officially” put an all-in offer on the table, our joint efforts can only get better.’ Noorlander: ‘For instance, in future we will develop our projects together integrally in the our 3D CAD package. Imagine trying to do that with dozens of different sub-contractors. By working together, we can achieve a better and more efficient finished product for the customer.’