J&S Subsea in control following management buyout

Source: press release, 7 September 2020

J&S Subsea’s executive chairman Matt Blair, engineering director James Morris, and business development director, Simon Smith
J&S Subsea’s executive chairman Matt Blair, engineering director James Morris, and business development director, Simon Smith (photo: J&S Subsea Limited)

The Aberdeen based subsea controls engineering division of SEA, a subsidiary of the independent technology group Cohort plc, has undergone a management buyout as it looks to grow its core business in the North Sea European energy sector.

Since the divestment completed, the company has reverted to a new version of its original trading name, J&S Subsea Limited. The business is now wholly owned and managed by the senior leadership team, led by Matt Blair. All 17 personnel have been retained and the firm has plans to expand its engineering and production workforce in the coming months.

J&S Subsea is a global subsea energy controls company for new and recertified equipment. The business will continue to focus on refurbishing, designing, manufacturing and engineering controls for the energy sectors and providing operational support where required.

Its Legacy Locker repository subsidiary business is also part of the MBO and will continue to offer its clients options from its range of refurbished capital equipment. The online resource takes existing, unwanted equipment and recycles or re-engineers assets to provide a cost-efficient and optimised solution as well as offering options for sale rather than scrappage.

The company also has plans to move to a new facility in the Aberdeen area that will allow them to support current operational requirements as well as giving options for expansion and new opportunities.

J&S Subsea executive chairman Blair says, “We would like to thank SEA for all their support through the last few years and wish them the best for the future. We are well positioned to build on our reputation and experience in subsea controls and operational engineering support to drive the business forward in the UK Continental Shelf as well as overseas. As businesses engage further in the energy transition, the number of subsea campaigns in the North Sea are on the rise. It’s our strategy to focus on supporting these projects and demonstrate the value we provide with our responsive, safe and high-quality solutions.”

“We are aiming to continue and expand our areas of expertise in the upcoming years and will achieve this by building organically and strategically while continuing to deliver a first-class experience to our clients,” Blair continues.

The transaction was supported by law firm Addleshaw Goddard and corporate finance advice was provided to the management buy-out team by Dow Schofield Watts in Aberdeen.

Dow Schofield Watts partner, Tom Faichnie, says, “The subsea division is a successful and profitable business whose skills in helping clients to extend asset life will be very much in demand in the years ahead. The transaction gives the experienced management team autonomy of the business to take it forward to the next stage of its growth.”