The John Lawrie Group has been acquired by its management in partnership with Rubicon Partners and Grovepoint as it gears up for an expansion of its business in the UK and USA.
The Group, which was founded in 1930 by metal merchant John Lawrie in Aberdeen, and still has its headquarters in the city, is one of Scotland’s leading privately-owned businesses with bases in Montrose, Evanton near Invergordon, and Houston, USA.
Four members of the Group’s management team, and existing shareholders, – CEO Vic Sinclair, Financial Director Charlie Parker, Operations Director Dave Weston; and Tubulars Director, Iain Laing – have bought out the majority shareholder in partnership with Rubicon Partners, a leading industrial investor, and principal investment firm Grovepoint. Bank of Scotland and Santander have together provided banking facilities to support the acquisition.
John Lawrie has three divisions providing metal recycling and reprocessing, decommissioning, and steel tubular services to the oil and gas, construction and utility sectors in the UK and from its US bases in Houston, New Jersey and Philadelphia.
Opportunities for growth have been identified across the three divisions. With more than two decades of experience in decommissioning projects, a key focus for the Group will continue to be the North Sea decommissioning sector, in which an estimated £17billion will be spent over the next decade.
These growth plans will continue to be supported by Environmental Director Ray Grant who has been a key member of the management team since 2007. Following the acquisition, all existing staff will remain to help grow the business.
Commenting on the transaction, CEO Vic Sinclair said: “The commitment of the senior management team has helped make John Lawrie the industry leader it is today. We enter this exciting new era as a financially strong and ambitious business backed by new investors who will help us drive further organic growth in both the UK and USA across all three of our divisions. We also intend to pursue new markets, including through acquisitions, in this partnership with Rubicon and Grovepoint.”
Charlie Parker, Finance Director, who successfully led the transaction on behalf of the executive team, added: “John Lawrie is a business with a proud past and an exciting future. We are delighted to be partnering with new investors, who have an established pedigree of working with industrial sector enterprises, to drive new opportunities and value creation. We have a clear strategy for growth and that’s good news for all our stakeholders.”
John Lawrie CEO, Vic Sinclair, is a former pupil of Bridge of Don Academy and joined the metals division in 1986. After becoming Managing Director of the group’s global tubular division in 2002, Vic helped turn John Lawrie into one of the leading suppliers of tubulars to the drilling and construction industries in the UK and USA.
Aberdeen University graduate and Chartered Accountant, Charlie Parker, has been Finance Director of John Lawrie Group since 1998.
Dave Weston, Operations Director, joined the company in 1984 and is responsible for all of John Lawrie’s UK operations, focussing on metals and decommissioning.
Tubulars director, Iain Laing, joined John Lawrie in 1995 as a pipe inspector working on projects in the North Sea and Norway. For the past 20 years, he has been based at John Lawrie’s Montrose facility from where he heads up the tubulars division.
John Lawrie’s tubular division was established in both the UK and Houston in the early 1990s and has achieved a global reputation for purchasing and supplying high-quality new, used unused and surplus casing to the UK, USA and European piling and micro-piling markets. As one of the longest serving suppliers to piling projects varying from house foundations to marine developments and other civil engineering projects, the Group supplies almost all the major contractors.
With sustainability always a top priority for John Lawrie, the company has also progressively developed its decommissioning expertise over the past two decades. It has carried out a wide range of projects involving the deconstruction, processing, recycling and disposal of redundant subsea materials, including flexible risers and flowlines, umbilicals, concrete mattresses and other associated items.
As a reflection of John Lawrie’s commitment to reuse and recycling, the Group has this week been announced the winner of Circular Economy title at the 2017 VIBES – Scottish Environment Business Awards. The awards recognise the commitment, actions and achievements of Scottish businesses working hard to reduce their impact on the environment.