Fugro continues its spending spree with its largest acquisition to date. This time the target is offshore survey and geoscience specialists Thales GeoSolutions. The company has a forty year history of marine positioning from the early days of Decca and Racall Survey. Fugro will be paying Thales €147.5 million cash to acquire the debt-free unit.
Fugro anticipates some €30 million savings from synergies and anticipates that full integration will be achieved in six months at a cost of €25 million. This amount includes restructuring charges on a 10% headcount reduction (around 400 will go).
€ 590 million
The acquisition will increase Fugro’s pro-forma turnover for 2003 from € 380 to € 590 million. Fugro anticipates that certain non-core fixed assets may be divested after the deal has been completed.
The rationale behind the deal is that ‘substantial efficiencies and synergies’ are achievable. Thales GeoSolutions will also bring new technology and people into the Fugro organization—accelerating research and development of new technologies. The acquisition will lead to rationalization in marketing and administration activities and improved equipment use. Fugro’s global reach will be extended—particularly in Latin America and China.
Fugro describes its current strategy as seeking a ‘strong worldwide and balanced position in all its activities’. The acquisition is said to reinforce Fugro’s position in the offshore survey, positioning and geotechnical market segments.
In the last couple of years Fugro has spent around €200 to acquire several oil service software houses and consultancies including Geologic BV, Volumetrix, Petcom, Jason-Geosystems, Robertson Research and most recently, SeiScan Geodata.
Included in the deal is new 4D/4C recording technology spun-off from development work originally done for the Australian Navy. This includes a novel ROV-deployed autonomous seabed multi-component recording system. There will be more on Thales/Fugro’s new ARMSS system in our report from the SEG International Exposition and annual meeting in next month’s Oil IT Journal.
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