Bristow is preferred bidder for the Irish Coast Guard Aviation Service

Helicopter operator Bristow has been identified as the preferred bidder for the next Irish Coast Guard (IRCG) search & rescue aviation (SAR) contract by the Irish Department of Transport.

The contract covers the provision of services for day and night operation of four helicopter bases in Sligo, Shannon, Waterford and Dublin. For the first time the Irish Coast Guard aviation service will include a fixed wing aircraft element in addition to helicopters.

Alan Corbett, chief operating officer, Government Services, Bristow said the company was honoured to be chosen by the Irish Department of Transport as the preferred bidder for the provision of the Irish Coast Guard Aviation Service.

“We will continue working closely with the Irish Department of Transport to finalise contracts and look forward to integrating our significant global experience and capabilities into this critical public service,” said Corbett.

According to the Irish Department of Transport the new coast guard service will costs about €670m (excluding VAT) ($715.44m). The helicopter service will run for 10 years and for five years in the case of fixed wing element of the service. The contract includes options to extend both services out to 13 years and a provision for the Air Corps to provide the fixed wing element of the service after five years.

The preferred bidder was selected following a full procurement project undertaken by the Department of Transport. The evaluation included an initial market engagement process, a prequalifying process, an initial Request for Tender, a negotiation process, and final evaluation of a Best and Final Offer Tender from the shortlisted bidders. The department said it will work with Bristow over the coming weeks to finalise contracts for the IRCG service.

Meanwhile, last month Chris Bradshaw, president and CEO, Bristow told our Helicopter Investor London 2023 conference that the operator holds SAR contracts with a range of governments. Together, they form a one quarter of total revenues, he said. “It should be understood that, as a percentage of cash flow, this business has a much higher margin relative to offshore energy,” added Bradshaw.


Above: Chris Bradshaw, president and CEO pictured at our Helicopter Investor London 2023 conference.

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