Denmark’s Maersk Decom is itself being decommissioned after handing over its last contract.

The oil and gas platform decommissioning operation was formed in 2018 by Maersk Drilling and offshore shipowner Maersk Supply Service.

UK oilfield services company Petrofac is taking over the joint venture’s last well shut-down job off Mauritania.

The work is for Tullow Oil, which said it picked Petrofac to replace Maersk Decom on a contract agreed early in 2020.

Petrofac, which will take on project management, engineering, planning and plugging and abandonment jobs across seven subsea wells, said the deal has a potential value of more than $60m.

A spokesperson for Maersk Decom told Energy Voice that the company has “no further commitments” and will close down: “Maersk Drilling and Maersk Supply Service will continue to pursue decommissioning work scopes within each of the companies’ sphere of operations.”

The impact of the closure will be limited to around 10 jobs in Denmark.

Some of these staff have been able to move to new roles in other AP Moller-Maersk group companies.

Merger not a factor

The Maersk Decom website and social media channels will shut from 1 June, the company said.

“We can confirm that the decisions taken around Maersk Decom in no way are influenced by the proposed merger of Noble and Maersk Drilling,” the spokesperson added.

Maersk Decom aimed to offer a one-stop shop for decommissioning work.

The initial investment was set to be $20m over the first years of operation.

The venture planned to “leverage the companies’ heritage of over 50 years of safe and efficient operations to provide decommissioning services to oil and gas operators”, according to Maersk Supply.

Tough market

But the company found it tough to gain traction in the market.

Another integrated provider, Fairfield Decom, closed down in 2021.

In 2018, Maersk Decom said an increasing number of offshore oil and gas fields were approaching the end of their economic life, with more than 400 in the North Sea alone expected to cease production by 2026 at an estimated cost of $56bn. Globally, this figure was more than 700.

Since 2016, Maersk Supply has been project-managing and executing the full scope of decommissioning services for the Janice, James and Leadon subsea fields in the UK North Sea for the operator (formerly Maersk Oil, now TotalEnergies) after a $5.6bn takeover.

Maersk Drilling carried out plug and abandonment work, while Maersk Supply provided vessels for all three subsea fields.