The delivery of Island Wellserver

Esben Welde

Student thesis: Master thesis


This study deals with Island Offshore Subsea, and the delivery of their new vessel; Island Wellserver. The topic has been examined through two research questions: 1. How have the key requirements for the success of Island Wellserver’s delivery been managed? 2. How has the delivery of Island Wellserver impacted IOSS’ capabilities? Island Offshore Subsea (IOSS), together with their alliance partners, provide various shipborne services within increased oil recovery for companies operating offshore oilfields. The study will specifically deal with the work that went into getting Island Wellserver delivered and operational, and how IOSS managed their own effort and the contributions of their alliance partners, in the face of delays and technical obstacles to fulfilment. The study was carried out through combining assorted scientific papers on relevant topics with empirics collected within and outside the case company. There are primarily two sources of empirics, namely newspaper and magazine articles, and interviews with persons holding key functions in the project. It was found that IOSS initiated the project under challenging circumstances, which in turn influenced the learning and project management negatively. Island Wellserver turned out to be a very complex project, and was evolving throughout the work, being adapted to changing technical specifications. The particular partnership structure, the alliance, is a prerequisite for IOSS to be able to deliver a complete service to their client, but turned out to be a demanding constellation in times of uncertainty. The cooperation with the client, Statoil, has been close and productive, partly because Statoil had concerns about certain technical aspects, and therefore monitored the progress closely. Looking at the impacts of the project, IOSS has certainly been exposed to substantial project experience, which could be helpful in developing their skills for future, comparable efforts. However, the at times stressful and hectic nature of the work may also have limited the value and effectiveness of the learning opportunities. Furthermore, IOSS is seeking similarities in the design and operation of their vessels, which can be a source of competitive advantage if learning economics are achieved, but the specialisation could also cause a lock-in effect with the client.

EducationsMSc in Management of Innovation and Business Development, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2009
Number of pages77