Oil and gas veterans' new venture targeting more deals after swooping on energy-focused recruiter

A new Aberdeen-headquartered recruitment company formed by two veterans of the oil and gas industry has snapped up a recruiter focused on the energy sector – and is already mulling more acquisitions.

Recruitment Ventures has been launched by I7V Renewables, the investment company founded by entrepreneurs Doug Duguid and Michael Buchan – and it has swooped on Granite Recruitment, buying it from Clan Partners for an undisclosed sum.

The new business said Granite Recruitment’s background in oil and gas, with divisions in Aberdeen and Norwich, is an ideal springboard to launch the I7V Renewables strategy of supporting businesses in the move to more sustainable forms of energy.

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Granite Recruitment staff, including the management team of Craig and Laura Phillips, will transfer to Recruitment Ventures’ new HQ in Dyce, with the duo positioned at group level as managing director and operations director respectively.

From left: Doug Duguid, Craig and Laura Phillips, and Michael Buchan. Picture: contributed.

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Recruitment Ventures also said it will build on Granite Recruitment’s oil and gas industry focus and know-how in the supply of skilled personnel for the drilling, maintenance, well-services, and pipeline and process sectors.

In tandem with growing the Granite brand, an “ambitious” growth strategy will see I7V Renewables’ portfolio recruitment company Ingenii build out into the specialist renewables sector, working together to service energy transition. Longer-term plans include adding a suite of agencies to the Recruitment Ventures umbrella, each with a specific focus.

Mr Phillips said: “With a resurgence in oil activity, and a recognition that moving to sustainable energy forms will take time, many oil and gas rigs are being reactivated along with contracts awarded – it's a great time to be part of the industry. Granite Recruitment has established a strong reputation… and we look forward to continuing our expansion, both domestically and internationally.

“At the same time, we recognise that many established players are transitioning from hydrocarbons and focusing on green energy projects to meet net-zero carbon and [environmental, social, and governance] targets, and our renewables specialist Ingenii will be in a prime position to service personnel and skills requirements in these sectors.”

Over the last 17 years, Mr Duguid and Mr Buchan have led two international businesses – PSL Energy Services and the EnerMech Group – before the firms were acquired by Halliburton and The Carlyle Group respectively.

Vision

Mr Duguid said: “We are delighted to bring on board Craig Phillips and his highly experienced Granite Recruitment team, which will underpin the growth of Recruitment Ventures into a major brand. Our vision is to continue providing high-quality personnel to the oil and gas sector and to assist our clients transitioning to net zero.

“As part of that approach we will also support the just transition of many talented people into the fast-developing renewables space. In time, we will add to our portfolio with a blend of organic growth and, where appropriate, strategic acquisition, broadening out the Recruitment Ventures brand into niche areas which require highly skilled personnel.”

John MacGregor, director at Clan Partners, said: “We have enjoyed working with the Granite team to grow the business over the past few years and wish them every success going forward. This divestment marks a further stage of repositioning in our recruitment group’s diversification strategy, while helping to accelerate our growth plans during 2022 and beyond.”

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