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Birdon America receives order for 27 vessels from US Coast Guard

Birdon America receives order for 27 vessels from US Coast Guard

Birdon America has confirmed that it has received the contract valued at over US$1 billion from the US Coast Guard.

Birdon America has confirmed that it has received the contract valued at over US$1 billion from the US Coast Guard.

Valued at US$1.187 billion, Birdon America confirmed that it has been contracted to design and build 27 Waterways Commerce Cutters for the USCG, having first responded to the request for proposal in mid-2021.

The construction phase is expected to be completed over 10 years, starting with an 18-month design finalisation phase.


According to the company, the contract includes two designs, including the River Buoys Tender and the Inland Construction Tender, with the vessels designed to enable 11 days of accommodation for up to 19 crew members.

Ninety-eight per cent of Birdon America’s suppliers are from US companies, specifically selected to mitigate supply chain risk and promote economic activity.

Throughout the program, the company will partner with Bollinger Shipyards and Incat Crowther as the leading subcontractors. Over the last 30 years, Bollinger has delivered 174 vessels to the Coast Guard and has been contracted to build bare hulls for the WCC Program.

“We are confident that we represent a low risk, high-performing, and long-term partner for the Coast Guard on the WCC Program. Birdon, and our partners Bollinger and Incat Crowther, look forward to continuing our successful relationship with the Coast Guard for years to come”, said Birdon CEO Jamie Bruce.

Earlier in the month, it was confirmed that Birdon appointed Major General (Ret’d) David Mulhall, DSC, AM, CSC, as an independent advisor on its Australian advisory board.

The retired MAJGEN served 36 years in the Australian Army and worked as a senior advisor to the Minister for Defence.

MAJGEN Mulhall’s military expertise includes a stint as Commander of Joint Logistics, Deputy Chief of Staff – Support HQISAF/HQ RS in Afghanistan, and Commander 17th Combat Service Support Brigade.

The new Birdon advisor was also tapped by the Commonwealth government to support the National COVID Vaccine Task Force.

Birdon’s executive chairman, Dr John White, said MAJGEN Mulhall would help guide the company through its next phase of growth.

“We are very pleased that we can attract people of the calibre of David — his significant experience and insight will prove extremely valuable as Birdon increases its investment in the Australian defence sector,” White said.

MAJGEN Mulhall welcomed the opportunity to support Birdon’s sovereign marine services offering.

“I’m thrilled to be involved with an Australian-owned company that values invention and engineering excellence, a company that creates intellectual property and is singularly focused on delivering world-class products,” he said.

“Birdon just gets on with the job. Its ability to understand demanding capability requirements and then apply Australian design and engineering expertise to deliver solutions well beyond those needs is deeply impressive.”

Meanwhile, Birdon has also announced the establishment of a dedicated defence division, led by Joe Smith, who joined the company earlier this year after a decade at Naval Ship Management (NSM).

Smith, who will now assume the role of general manager of defence, reflected on Birdon’s work supporting defence projects in Australia and the United States.

“It’s an exciting period for Birdon; our current order book and pipeline includes some of the most interesting maritime defence projects in the country,” Smith said.

“I'm looking forward to leading Birdon’s defence division and working with the extremely talented team around me to bring these projects to fruition.”

[Related: Austal to reconfigure decommissioned HMAS Maitland]

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