Two subsea equipment and service businesses said today that they had agreed to join forces as they target market domination.
Westhill-headquartered Ashtead Technology is merging with the subsea rentals business of Forum Energy Technologies (FET).
The link-up will create one of the sector’s biggest providers of subsea survey and remotely-operated vehicle (ROV) equipment rental services.
FET, based in Houston, said it would retain a significant stake in the joint venture.
The deal is expected to go through in the first quarter of 2018.
The venture will trade as Ashtead Technology and will have 120 staff members spread across locations in Aberdeen, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, London and Houston.
It will have a rental fleet comprising 19,000 units worth more than £100million.
The combined business will be led by Allan Pirie, chief executive of Ashtead.
Mr Pirie said the venture would be able to offer clients a better equipment and support package.
He said: “We will help our customers address their challenges head on, taking complex problems and matching them with equipment, technology solutions and industry expertise.
“This is not just about more of the same; it is about doing things differently in response to customer needs.”
Jim Harris, Forum’s chief financial officer, said: “In addition to strengthening our position in the rental marketplace, the joint venture will allow Forum to focus on our subsea franchise’s core ROV related and other fabricated products.
“We are proud of our Subsea team’s resilience through the downturn and expect to outperform our competitors as the global offshore market recovers.”
A majority stake in Ashtead was acquired by Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation and its London-based venture capital partner, Buckthorn, for an undisclosed fee in 2016.