Global Energy Group Announces Success in Its Bid for Nigg Yard
The purchase, completed in recent days, marks a major step forward for the group’s ambitious plans to develop the 238-acre site, on the Cromarty Firth in the Scottish Highlands, as a modern, multi-user facility serving a range of energy sectors, including oil and gas and renewables.
Global, which has head offices in Inverness and Aberdeen, was named preferred bidder for the famous North Sea fabrication yard in January. Since then the company has been involved in a detailed due diligence process with the facility’s owners, US company KBR, and the Wakelyn Trust, which also owns part of the site. Following the successful completion of that process, delighted Global chairman Roy MacGregor described the purchase as a “hugely exciting development for the company, the Highlands and Scotland.”
Mr MacGregor, whose career in the energy industry began at Nigg during the heydays of North Sea oil platform fabrication in the 1970s, said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be able to announce the conclusion of our purchase of Nigg yard today. It has been a long and complicated due diligence process and I would like to thank KBR, the Wakelyn Trust, their respective agents being Bidwells and DTZ, the legal teams, consultants and our own people for all their work in bringing this fantastic facility into Highland ownership.
We have also been extremely busy exploring commercial opportunities for Nigg. The levels of interest expressed to us about the yard, its strategic location and its potential for further development have absolutely underlined our own firm conviction that this facility is really special.
From the outset our vision has always been to develop the site as a multiple-user, multi-sector facility serving the needs of the energy industry. Having completed this vital first stage of purchasing the site, we are confident we will soon be in a position to make further announcements both on our detailed strategy for Nigg and on significant commercial opportunities there.”
During the 1970s, Nigg yard, which boasts one of the largest dry docks in Europe, had a workforce of around 5,000, building huge structures for the emerging oil and gas industry. The natural protection from the elements provided by the headland Sutors at the entrance to the Cromarty Firth allows the facility and its deep-water anchorage 365-days-a-year access.
Global’s immediate priority is to secure their main fabrication business, Isleburn, onto a long term lease at the yard, that will provide them with further opportunities within their varied energy sector marketplace. Isleburn has been a tenant at Nigg for the past 9 years.
Mr MacGregor continued: “This is a hugely exciting time for Global, but also for the Highlands and Scotland. We are confident that, in time, new job opportunities and work for the local supply chain in and around the Cromarty Firth and beyond will follow on from this historic day.
We are aware of the opportunities opening up to us within various sectors of the energy industry through the purchase of this wonderful facility and we appreciate the importance ensuring we maximise them fully for the common good.
We do see opportunities in the short term in oil and gas, but will also look to the emerging offshore wind and wave and tidal markets, given our advantageous geographical position and our expertise in supporting clients in those sectors. We all recognise the importance of renewable energy and reducing the carbon footprint, but must never lose sight of the growing opportunities within the massive oil and gas marketplace.”
Funding support has been provided by Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets in Aberdeen and Relationship Director, Andrew Robertson, commented:
“We are delighted to be supporting Roy MacGregor and his team in this purchase. It is great to see this world class facility come back into greater use and allow the Global Energy Group to compete for opportunities within the international oil and gas and emerging renewables marketplace. There is no doubt the local economy will benefit greatly from this development today and provide new employment opportunities for years to come.”
Source: gegroup , October, 20. 2011