HB Rentals Invests in New Fleet, Appoints Regional Director to Head Growth

Global offshore accommodation leader HB Rentals has invested £10 million growing its fleet as it expands its operations across Europe, the Middle East and Africa as part of a major international restructuring effort.

The company has more than doubled the size of its office and manufacturing base at Howe Moss Drive at Dyce, Aberdeen which acts as headquarters for its UKCS, Caspian, Africa and Middle East operations.

George Emslie, regional director who heads up HB Rentals' work across those areas, has boosted staff numbers by more than 50% in the last 12 months, to service rising international demand.

HB Rentals has consolidated its market-leading global presence since acquiring the operations and assets of the former Duffy and McGovern Accommodation Services in 2007 for £24million.

Its cabins -- custom-built for use as sleeping quarters, office space, laboratories and even galleys -- meet the highest offshore safety standards including DNV, SOLAS and IMO regulations, which ensure the safety and wellbeing of offshore staff around the world.

Emslie, who joined the firm in 1996, says HB Rentals' Aberdeen base now has a fleet of more than 300 units, with a new-build construction program which has seen 50 new cabins constructed this year alone, currently being completed.

"Since Duffy and McGovern was purchased in 2007, we have been working to ensure we can meet what is an overwhelming industry demand for the highest standards in on and offshore accommodation," Emslie said.

"As part of HB Rentals, we have been able to make significant ongoing investment in building new cabins, making sure that we are able to respond to the market immediately rather than building to order.

"Our fleet has now undergone major international rationalization, creating three distinct regions for our business -- Europe, Middle East and Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Americas."

The fleet at Emslie's disposal in the UKCS, Europe and Africa is now significantly larger than that acquired by HB Rentals in 2007 -- with his regional colleagues around the world also commanding large rental portfolios.

"In Aberdeen we are seeing ever-increasing demand, particularly given the downturn and associated challenging market conditions, which have seen the rental sector become even more buoyant as firms aim to avoid large-scale capital expenditure," added Emslie.

"By adding to our fleet we have been able to move to a position of readiness for any order, ensuring that we have fully-certified units available for fit-out and delivery at much shorter notice than ever before.

"Our new focus in Aberdeen on serving Europe, including the Caspian and UKCS, the growing Middle East sector and Africa, which has always been a busy region for us, allows us to concentrate even greater resource on meeting the industry's needs. We are also continuing to manufacture additional units when required, which are delivered to our wider global network covering the Americas and South East Asia.

"We built our reputation as Duffy and McGovern on quality and standards -- being capable of integrating technology and functionality to our cabins as the energy industry requires them -- and today that remains at the heart of everything HB Rentals does."