A consortium of north-east businesses set up to tap into the lucrative multibillion-pound offshore decommissioning industry is close to securing its first contracts.
Peterhead Decommissioning has confirmed that it is now dealing with several inquiries as it battles to become a major player in the emerging industry.
Several established firms in and around the port announced the joint venture last year. They want a piece of the oil and gas decommissioning market, which is expected to be worth between £15billion and £20billion over the next 20 years.
It is unlikely that the fledgling business will be able to compete in dismantling large structures but it will be able to bid for specialist contracts.
The company has now secured the services of a senior industry figure to spearhead its bid to bring new jobs to the Buchan port and boost the local economy.
Grant McGregor has been named general manager and his first task is to deal with inquiries the company has received in recent weeks.
He is originally from Fife but has spent much of his career living in Peterhead, working in the oil and gas industry in the North Sea and the Caspian region.
Company chairman Colin Manderson said: “We held negotiations with a number of highly-qualified and experienced individuals, all of whom had international credibility and terrific reputations.
“Grant brings with him not just substantial business development experience but contracting and engineering expertise as well. His knowledge of quality and safety systems will also be particularly relevant to developing a winning team.”
Mr McGregor said: “I was immediately attracted to the role because of the huge potential this area has to expand its role in the energy industry, and decommissioning in particular.”
Companies that are already part of the group include Asco, Broad Cairn Services, Enviroco, Dales Engineering, GCG Shotblasting, the John Lawrie Group, Stoneyhill, Score (Europe) and the Les Taylor Group.
The consortium gets financial backing from Aberdeenshire Council and Scottish Enterprise Grampian.
It will work in conjunction with Peterhead Port Authority to exploit the port’s deepwater facility, the closest one to most fields in the central and northern North Sea.