FoundOcean Expands Operations in Scotland

FoundOcean is expanding its operations at Telford Square Industrial Park, in Livingston, West Lothian.

With the addition of a new 500 square meter building, FoundOcean now occupies the majority of the business park. The extra space is needed to build new cementing equipment and to house a new materials testing laboratory, with more space for research and development into new grout formulations. Plant stores will be moved to the new building, releasing space for a new mechanics bay, and it will also house the electronics shop and testing facilities for FoundOcean's Flooded Member Detection and remote grout density monitoring equipment.

Jim Bell, managing director of FoundOcean, said, "A bigger unit in Scotland is essential for us to grow and develop our business. We'll now be able to build on our success with new equipment, more research and an expanded workforce."

In May this year FoundOcean announced it was building three new Flooded Member Detection systems, enabling the company to expand into new territories, including the Far East and the US. These systems enable rapid and cost-effective inspection of offshore platforms to check that members have not become flooded as a result of damage or defective welds.

Engineering specialist L&N (Scotland) are in negotiations to expand operations by opening a base in West Africa.

The valve, subsea assembly and specialist welding company has a long track record of working in Angola and is set to capitalize on expertise built up over the years to tap in to the potentially lucrative African oil and gas sector.

A long established supply chain business in Angola has offered to introduce Aberdeen-based L&N’s services to its portfolio as a way of introducing the company to potential clients. Once established, L&N would open a permanent base with repair, refurbishment and manufacturing capabilities.

In another internationalization initiative, managing director Alastair Chalmers is heading to Malaysia and Australia on a three week fact finding mission after receiving encouraging approaches from Asia-Pacific based companies interested in forming partnerships with L&N.

The international sales push is part of a wider growth strategy which follows on from securing an important UK distributor agreement with global pipe connection and flow control company SMX International.

The agreement represents a £250,000-plus investment by L&N in SMX stock and is part of an ongoing expansion of tools and services.

Originally formed as a supplier of valves and actuators to the oil and gas industry in recent years L&N has added weld cladding, fabrication and subsea control systems to its portfolio.

The SMX deal will include sales, distribution and fitting of the Canadian company's full product range of clamp connectors, seal rings, valves, hubs and clamps which compliment LN's fabrication capability.

L&N operations director, Mike McArtney, said, "The SMX range complement our own products and services and dovetail perfectly with our fabrication, engineering and technical support services.

"It also means we can now offer turnkey spool fabrication and this new partnership will bring very real benefits to the oil and gas industry in the North Sea.

"The significant capital investment we have made underlines our view that SMX's international reputation and product versatility will add value to our business and expand our client base.

"We are not standing still are determined to push out of our traditional markets by exploring new opportunities to grow the business in West Africa, Malaysia and possibly Australia, which will take the company to a new level."