Weir sells liquid gas division for £23m

Engineering firm Weir Group has sold its liquid gas division, LGE Process, to Babcock International for £23 million.

Engineering firm Weir Group has sold its liquid gas division, LGE Process, to Babcock International for £23 million.

LGE is based at the Heriot-Watt University Research Park in Edinburgh. It designs and builds plants for the processing, storage and handling of liquid gases for the marine and offshore sectors.

Babcock chief executive Peter Rogers said LGE will become part of the firm’s design services unit, creating a specialist energy and marine technology business focused on mechanical, electrical and chemical process equipment for ships, oil and gas platforms and onshore support facilities.

He added: “The acquisition of LGE and its combination with our existing expertise in design services will create a strong business, well positioned to build on its current positions and develop into new commercial marine markets, particularly within the oil and gas market.”

Advertisement

Hide Ad

Babcock is better known for its defence work. It owns the Rosyth dockyard and manages the Clyde naval base.

LGE, which has designed and supplied more than 150 gas plants for a range of cargo ships along with facilities for onshore liquefied gas terminals, made an operating profit of £3m on revenues of £26.3m in 2011.

Glasgow-based Weir Group said the sale was completed on 28 December. It also used its update to the Stock Exchange yesterday to confirm that its $385m (£236m) acquisition of US shale drilling specialist Mathena had been completed.

Weir agreed to buy the

Advertisement

Hide Ad

Oklahoma-based Mathena, which manufactures a range of pressure control products to meet the increasing environmental and safety requirements of shale drilling, in December.

Although the commercial viability of shale gas in the UK is still unclear, it has been a boom industry in North America in recent years and Weir said it was keen to increase its exposure to a market with “attractive long-term structural growth prospects”.

Mathena was founded in 1990 by Harold Mathena and was sold to Weir by the original family owners. It made $46m in 2011. Its products help to control and vent pressures that build up during the shale drilling process.