Ship boat

Americancraft Marine acquires St. Johns Ship Building

US Navymaritime subsidiary of the Libra Groupannounced the acquisition of St. Johns Shipbuildinga full-service marine facility specializing in the construction and repair of Jones Act-compliant vessels, including those used for servicing offshore wind turbines.

Based in Palatka, Florida, near Jacksonville, St. Johns Ship Building builds and repairs a wide variety of steel and aluminum vessels, including ferries, tugs, deck and tank barges, landing craft and general cargo ships. Significantly, it is also one of the few US shipyards to build vessels that support and service offshore wind farms, company officials said.

Americancraft Marine is a subsidiary of the Libra Group, a private international business group whose subsidiaries own and operate assets in more than 50 countries. The announcement comes at a time when the need for Jones Act compliant vessels is great.

Ship production in the United States has declined in recent years, according to a statement announcing the acquisition. In addition, significant shipbuilding capacity will be required over the next 10 to 15 years to meet future demand for ships that build and maintain renewable energy infrastructure.

On June 6, US President Joe Biden invoked the Defense Production Act to address the urgent need for clean energy technologies made in America. This long-pending acquisition builds on St. Johns Ship Building’s proven capabilities in building offshore wind service vessels, as well as Libra Group’s global experience in renewable energy and deep sea heritage.

With facilities including a 100-acre storm-protected indoor campus with an 850-ton floating drydock, St. Johns Ship Building is able to expedite the production of Jones Act-compliant vessels, particularly the construction and maintenance of offshore wind supply and support vessels, the statement said. Americanraft Marine intends to further enhance St. Johns Ship Building’s capability through workforce training, leveraging the shipyard’s proven expertise with the goal of creating a premier shipyard future-oriented order.

“As a group that has over 45 years of maritime heritage through our original subsidiary Lomar Expedition, along with significant experience in renewable energy across four global clean energy subsidiaries, we are proud to invest in the future of America’s energy competitiveness and security,” said the President and Libra Group Chief Executive George M. Logothetis in the prepared statement. “With seasoned leaders who have decades of maritime industry experience and relationships with existing customers, Americacraft Marine and St. Johns Ship Building will build on and strengthen the U.S. fleet, meeting the needs of government and customers while supporting the country’s economic and energy future. ”

The shipbuilding industry is essential to America’s strong industrial economy and provides economic opportunity to coastal communities through long-term employment. It is also vital to U.S. energy independence, which has become more crucial due to lingering trade tensions, the geopolitical landscape and the economic climate, the statement said.

“Americraft Marine is proud to acquire St. Johns Ship Building, which has the right leadership and skilled workforce to accelerate the future of American shipbuilding and advance the urgent need for compliant American ships.” to the Jones Act and looking to the future,” said Omear Khalid, CEO of Americacraft Marine. “Our goal is simple: to build a best-in-class Jones Law-compliant shipyard. Americraft Marine will provide stable industrial jobs, invest in workforce training and leverage the proven expertise of St. Johns as well as the historic maritime heritage of the Libra Group.

The acquisition is the first for Americacraft Marine, which anticipates future organic and acquisition-based growth that addresses the urgent need for modern, state-of-the-art vessels, including those that are environmentally friendly as more and more Jones Act vessels are aging. unemployed. The company expects future expansions to prioritize sustainable investments and position the United States as a leader in the future of clean energy by building and maintaining ships that support energy projects renewable.

The Libra Group is a private international business group whose subsidiaries own and operate assets in more than 50 countries. The group is mainly active in six sectors, several of which are vital to the global economy. Sectors include shipping, aviation, renewable energy, real estate and hospitality, as well as some diversified investments. The group has also created 10 social responsibility programs that have a positive impact on the lives of many people around the world. The Libra Group is committed to supporting a more sustainable and equitable future, including harnessing human ingenuity to help mitigate climate change while promoting diversity and inclusion across Libra’s global footprint. company.

Americacraft Marine was started for the sole purpose of supporting and strengthening the shipbuilding industry and infrastructure in the United States with the goal of establishing St. Johns Ship Building as a center of excellence in shipbuilding Jones Act. This includes leveraging its 15 years of experience to help increase the number of stable, skilled jobs in the shipbuilding industry, while advancing the U.S. economy, competitiveness, and the future of the shipbuilding industry. clean energy, the statement said.