A MAJOR shipping giant has announced a multi-million pound acquisition and buoyant end-of-year results.
James Fisher and Sons has acquired fellow marine and subsea service provider, Subtech, and has reported an increase in profits of 11 per cent.
The Barrow-based company bought the entire share capital of South Africa’s Subtech Group Holdings for an initial £3.4m, which could rise to £9.9m if the business meets profit targets in 2015 and 2017.
Subtech is a marine and subsea service provider which employs 200 divers and carries out operations in Mozambique, Namibia, Angola and Tanzania. The company has a strong reputation for delivering marine construction projects, submarine pipeline installation and maintenance, specialised marine engineering projects, diving and salvage. It is also well positioned to take advantage of any future expansion of oil and gas activities in east and west Africa.
Nick Henry, chief executive of James Fisher, said: “The acquisition of Subtech broadens our presence in the growing markets around Africa. Subtech’s marine and subsea services are very complementary to our own. We are looking forward to working together with the Subtech team.”
James Fisher also announced its financial results for the year ended December 31 2014. With underlying profit before tax reaching £51.5m, the company recorded an 11 per cent increase from last year and the company also announced strong profit growth within specialist technical and offshore oil, and an enhanced order book in its specialist technical sector.
The dividend rose for the 20th consecutive year to 22p, up from 20p in 2013.
Mr Henry said: “The group had a further year of consistent growth with underlying operating profit increasing by 11 per cent to £51.5m. The strong result underlines our broad geographic spread and range of specialist services across diverse marine sectors." “James Fisher is well placed to invest organically and to take advantage of further acquisition opportunities. Our dividend has increased for the 20th year in a row. The number of companies who can say that is very small. That shows the strength of Fishers and we hope that that’s set to continue."
“I’m very proud but it doesn’t come off without a lot of hard work. We could not have done that without a lot of fantastic, talented people.”
Image used for illustrative purposes only.
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