49 Tor Olav Trøim, Golar and Borr Drilling
Tor Olav Trøim is pressing on concurrently with two of his most ambitious undertakings: owning and operating the world's first converted floating liquefied natural gas vessels and building a fast-expanding offshore drilling business even before the sub-sector embarks on a sustainable comeback
The Norwegian business magnate saw his LNG concern clinch its first-ever FLNG contract with a supermajor, while his offshore business further beefed up its rapidly growing fleet
TOR Olav Trøim has proved yet again this year he is staying the course with his vision for his liquefied natural gas and offshore drilling businesses.
Golar LNG, in which Mr Trøim serves as chairman, announced in June its plan to spin off its shipping assets and focus on expanding its floating liquefaction portfolio.
That came four months after the LNG-focused player unveiled the first-ever contract a supermajor has awarded for a converted floating liquefied natural gas vessel.
BP has signed on the FLNG vessel Gimi for a new gas field development off Africa.
On the back of BP’s contract, Golar LNG stitched up some $700m in financing for Gimi and brought in Keppel Corp as a 30% equity partner for the project.
Gimi is now undergoing conversion at Singapore-based Keppel Offshore & Marine — as was the case for Golar LNG’s delivered FLNG vessel Hilli Episeyo.
Negotiations between Golar LNG and Keppel O&M on the two FLNGs overlapped with those relating to Borr Drilling’s rig purchases from Keppel O&M and its Singapore-based compatriot Sembcorp Marine.
Borr Drilling — a brainchild of Mr Trøim — took the contrarian view during the depths of an offshore downturn.
It bought 20 stranded jack-up rigs in Singapore — 11 from Keppel O&M and nine from SembMarine — even when offshore drilling rates were still hovering not far off multi-year lows.
Borr Drilling has emerged as the fastest-expanding jack-up owner-operator in the past five years, having taken delivery of four of these rigs from Keppel O&M as of late October, in addition to nine others earlier on from SembMarine.
Mr Trøim had Borr Drilling listed on the New York Stock Exchange earlier this year and now serves as deputy chairman.
His ambition to build an offshore drilling business, however, does not seem to stop with Borr Drilling.
Through his investment vehicle, Magni Partners, Mr Trøim has set out to acquire 13 deepwater drilling rigs from Sete Brasil, a distressed rig-owning unit of Petrobras.
The construction of these rigs was also contracted to units of Keppel O&M and SembMarine.