N. Sea contractor to create 20 new jobs in £5m expansion at Peterhead: Hunterston gets new £500,000 decommissioning investment

Glynn Geddie
Glynn Geddie

Independent Oilfield Services – the Peterhead-based storage and inspection firm – is to invest a further £5.5million in the Grampian region by Spring 2018.

 The company has already invested more than £4 million in its state-of-the-art storage and inspection facility at Longside Supply Base near Peterhead. In the first phase of this additional investment, the company has bought its current 32-acre site on the former airfield for £2.5 million.

The deal will be followed by further investment of around £3 million which will create new jobs for the local region with IOS’s plans for major expansion at the Longside facility.

In the past year, privately-owned IOS has taken on an additional 25 employees, doubling the previous workforce. The expansion plans will create an additional 20 jobs within the coming months.

Established in 2014, IOS has seen steady growth in turnover over the past year and, with a number of new contracts wins secured, is forecasting a further 30% turnover increase over the next 12 months.

The company has leased the Longside site since it started up and was three years into a 10-year lease before taking the decision to buy the land outright in order to support its future growth plans. IOS retains a 15-year option to lease additional sites at Longside with potential to extend the facility to 100 acres.

Glynn Geddie, Managing Director at IOS , said: “The decision to buy the site confirms our long-term commitment to the area and our plans for on-going investment in the region.

“We opened the Longside facility in direct response to the shortage of industrial storage space in the North-east and since then we have seen rapid growth in our customer base. Until we opened most equipment and tubulars had to be transported considerable distances by road to reach suitable storage and inspection facilities.

“Our location, just a short distance from Peterhead port, and our range of facilities and services makes us ideally placed to provide a cost-effective alternative.

“The £49 million Peterhead Port development has increased its capability to service oil & gas clients operating in the North Sea and through the investment in our company we are committed to supporting that by providing the facilities that operators and service companies sailing into Peterhead will need.

As part of this we have formed an alliance with NorSea Group (UK), operators of Peterhead’s Smith and Merchant quays.

“The agreement combines their full range of quayside services and logistics expertise with the benefits of conveniently located storage and inspection facilities to provide a full one-stop-shop service for the customer.

“We are absolutely committed to the Peterhead area and the role we can play in the local economy. 

“Since 2014 we will have invested almost £10 million and created 70 new jobs with seventy percent of our employees coming from the Buchan area. We would anticipate that total rising in line with future company growth.”

Meanwhile, Peel Ports, which owns and operates Hunterston port in Ayrshire, has accepted a Scot-Govt grant of £240,000 under the Decommissioning Challenge Fund.

The total investment of nearly half a million pounds will be used to design new gates at Hunterston’s dry dock and to carry out preliminary work on securing the necessary construction approvals.

The gates would improve access for offshore structures, allowing them to be floated in for decommissioning. The project is part of Peel Ports’ ambitious plans to create a new future for the former coal port, following the closure of Longannet power station in Fife.

13 Dec 2017

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