Local shipbuilder finalist for $10.5 billion contract

Published: Thursday, February 13, 2014 at 09:07 AM.

PANAMA CITY — Eastern Shipbuilding Group is one of three finalists vying for a $10.5 billion U.S. Coast Guard contract that could bring thousands of new jobs to Bay County. 

The 20-year contract is for the development of 25 next-generation offshore patrol cutters for the Coast Guard.

 “This is a huge deal, not just for Eastern Shipbuilding, but for Bay County and Northwest Florida,” said company President and CEO Brian D’Isernia. “That’s tremendous for jobs, for long-term jobs, so naturally we’re excited.”

Eastern is one of eight shipyards that submitted proposals for the project and will be competing with finalists in Lockport, La., and Bath, Maine for the contract. 

As a finalist, Eastern was awarded roughly $22 million to design a prototype for the vessel, which must be submitted to the Coast Guard in the next year and a half.

“Each shipyard proposed a different vessel and this award of $22 million will be put toward us completing a detailed design and submitting a final price,” D’Isernia said. “The final award to the ultimate winner will be based on a combination of design of the vessel and cost.”

D’Isernia said the finalists were chosen based on a conceptual design and proposal submitted to the Coast Guard, which represented more than three years of work. 

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