The new facility for deepwater drilling contractor Seadrill is now open at the Port of Iberia.
Seadrill moved from its 25 acre/14,000 square foot facility in Houma to the new 57 acre/200,000 square foot warehouse at the Port of Iberia. The space also includes 3,000 square foot of climate controlled storage.
The space will allow crews to bring in equipment from ships from foreign locations for repair or maintenance and store the equipment away from outside elements. Lynn Usie, Global Warehouse Manager for Seadrill, said the port's proximity to the coast and waterfront appealed to the company. And the location is already proving to be useful: Usie explained that during the company's first week, it was able to use just one vessel as opposed to several to send off 40 joints of deepwater risers. Using that single vessel saved the company $300,000, Usie said.
Iberia Parish was also able to designate the area as a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ), which allows tax benefits for foreign inventory stored in the yard. Without that, Usie said the move would have never happened.
After the Port of Iberia built the new facility specifically for Seadrill, it is already hearing from suppliers and other companies that want to join the space as well.
"Just us moving here and announcing the move he's received numerous calls of suppliers that want to follow," said Usie. "I'd love to fill the remainder of the port up with all our suppliers, people that can actually help us and anybody around the port."
A second phase is in the works with a test facility that will allow other companies to bring in their own equipment and test it on site.
Seadrill is also looking to begin reaching out into the community and participate in any philanthropic efforts it can, said Usie.
"We're going to do our best to have Seadrill support the local community and all the local events. We want to set the standard in everything, be a company that everybody looks up to and says, 'We're not just worried about drilling oil wells, we're worried about workers and their families."
The company hopes to build up its team of locals as high as possible and begin helping the area as soon as possible, especially after the difficult months of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The future's really good. Coming out of the pandemic, things are different, but we're looking for a really good future," said Usie. "I think you're seeing a really good future for the Port of Iberia."
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