Offshore helicopter flights to Statoil-operated platforms in the Norwegian Sea are to be provided by CHC Helikopter Service under a newly-awarded deal.

Flights from Kristiansund, and Brønnøysund, and search and rescue flights from the Heidrun platform are to be provided by CHC in three newly-awarded deals, which involves the provision of eight new aircraft.

Four American-made Sikorsky S92s, three Eurocopter EC225s and a Eurocopter L1 aircraft are to be provided by CHC under the deals, worth a total of NOK 5 billion.

The Kristiansund contract is for five years and seven months, starting in July 2014, while the Brønnøysund and Heidrun deals are for five years, starting in February 2015. All three carry optional extensions for up to three years.  CHC previously held all three contracts and retained them in a competitive tender run by Statoil.

“This allows us to achieve economies of scale in the form of reduced costs and future flexibility," said Statoil head of procurement Jon Arnt Jacobsen.

Four helicopters are to operate from Kristiansund, serving installations at Heidrun, Åsgard A, B and C, Kristin and Njord. Two helicopters will operate from Brønnøysund will serve Norne. Helicopters from both bases will also serve drilling rigs in those areas. A Eurocopter L1 will be the SAR helicopter based on Heidrun, and another helicopter will provide replacement for the SAR helicopter, which will initially be stationed in Brønnøysund.