Robertson sold

Fugro has acquired Robertson Research for £ 59 million. The acquisition is part of Fugro’s ongoing expansion into oil and gas ‘niche’ service markets.

Fugro is to acquire Robertson Research International for £59 million. Robertson is currently owned 50.1% by senior management of the company and 49.9% by Simon Group plc. Located in North Wales, with offices in Italy and Australia, Robertson’s activities include geological and geophysical services, reservoir engineering, data management and laboratory services. The company employs around 500 people.


Fugro has proved very acquisitive in recent months with the takeover of Geoteam AS, Seismic Australia Pty, GeoServices, Inc. and Geo-logic Consulting Services B.V., substantially enhancing Fugro’s geoscience offering. Fugro plans to create further growth by integrating Robertson’s products with its growing airborne geophysical activities. Fugro also expects that Robertson will provide the core for future acquisitions.


In a letter to clients, Robertson MD Richard Fowler said “Fugro has fully endorsed Robertson’s present business strategy and has made it clear that it will encourage and support growth by both organic and acquisition means to help Robertson develop an even stronger position in the petroleum service sector.”


Robertson is a debt-free company and will be consolidated into Fugro’s accounts from July 2001. Fugro anticipates a full year turnover from Robertson for 2001 of £ 31.7 million, an EBIT of £ 6.2 million and a net result of £ 5 million.


These figures reflect post acquisition synergies. The purchase consideration of £ 59 million is expected to be settled in cash and loan notes. After selling its interest in the company’s equity, Robertson senior management will continue to work within the company.


Fugro has over 6,000 employees and offices in over fifty countries. Fugro may issue new shares to finance the purchase which should have a positive impact on earnings this year. For more on the deal see our interview with Fugro Survey Chief Operating Officer, Köbi Ruegg and our brief history of Robertson on page 3 of this month’s PDM.

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