Aker Buys Majority Stake in Norwegian Subsea Duo

Aker Solutions has acquired 70 percent of the Norwegian companies Ing. Harald Benestad AS (Benestad) and Phaze Technologies AS.

Benestad and Phaze Technologies, founded and owned by Harald, Pål and Randi Benestad, are well established globally in the subsea industry and have been among the key suppliers to Aker Solutions as well as other major subsea companies for a number of years. Both companies are located in close proximity to Aker Solutions' subsea technology and manufacturing centre in Lier, Norway, and employ 33 people and with a 2010 operating revenue of NOK 49 million (USD 9 million).

Benestad, a highly specialized materials science company, delivers high technology products for hostile, extreme pressure and high temperature subsea environments. All subsea instruments and power consumers require leak free connections through pressure housings and Benestad's power and signal penetrators are viewed by Aker Solutions as the best quality with the highest functionality in the industry.

Phaze Technologies provides advanced and reliable instruments for hydrocarbon leak detection, water leak detection, pressure and temperature measurements and water cut metering. The market for such products is growing as a consequence of more stringent environmental regulations and optimization of production from subsea fields.

"Benestad and Phaze Technologies have unique competence and experience within their fields and a strong commitment to developing leading edge and extremely reliable products. They have very strong technological expertise which will significantly broaden and deepen Aker Solutions' competence base," said Mads Andersen, executive vice president of Aker Solutions' subsea business area.

Pål Benestad, chairman of Benestad and Phaze, said, "Aker Solutions share our vision to be the preferred partner to our existing and new customers. Innovative solutions based on strong technological know-how will remain our focus area going forward and access to Aker Solutions' customers and regional network will enable further growth for both Benestad and Phaze."

Both companies will continue to operate as independent companies with existing management and brands servicing a broad range of long standing clients.

Completion of the agreement is subject to clearance by Norwegian competition authorities. The transaction value is undisclosed.