Firms which flew the flag for Scotland at the world’s biggest oil and gas show are already reaping the rewards of taking part in the event.
Early feedback from 12 of the 58 companies supported by Scottish Enterprise (SE) to attend the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston in the US earlier this month shows they expect to increase their international exports by £50million over the next three years as a direct result.
Contracts were signed during the week for projects in the Gulf of Mexico and Brazil, while some of the firms received invitations to tender for other work around the world.
Of the 12 companies which have reported back to SE about their OTC experience and the benefits gained, five are based in Aberdeen. They are Centrifuges Un-Limited, Global Pipe Components, KDM Marine, Online Electronics and Reactive Downhole Tools.
Another of the firms, MSIS Group, operates from bases in Inverurie and Invergordon.
SE chief executive Lena Wilson said: “Whilst it is vital that we focus on supporting Scotland’s oil and gas industry to tackle the immediate challenges, an enhanced and sought-after global supply chain is critical to the long-term future of the industry in Scotland.
“These early indications of £50million in increased exports from this year’s OTC in Houston are extremely encouraging.
“Scotland has a world-renowned reputation in oil and gas and we continue to work closely with our partners to maximise every opportunity to increase the total value the country contributes to the industry globally.”
Energy Minister Fergus Ewing said: “The Offshore Technology Conference acts as a shop window for Scottish companies seeking to promote their products and services.
“It offers the ideal forum for showcasing skills and expertise to a global audience. As these forecasts from Scottish Enterprise suggest, Scottish companies are increasingly successful in securing major opportunities in the offshore supply chain and lucrative contracts.”
SE supported 24 companies to exhibit in the Scotland pavilion at OTC, which was attended by more than 100,000 visitors, and helped a further 34 companies to attend the event.
For engineering firm Ace Winches, based at Towie Barclay Works, near Turriff, it was a third time appearance on the Scottish pavilion.
Graham Thomson, the firm’s chief operations officer, said: “OTC provided the vehicle for Ace to secure several key manufacturing and rental projects during and post exhibition.”
Houston is home to more than 20 of SE’s GlobalScots and during OTC they participated in more than 80 one-to-one meetings with companies, offering them invaluable advice and contacts.
The US is the largest overseas market for Scotland’s oil and gas sector – international sales there reached £3.1billion in 2013, nearly one-third of the international total.