Wood Group buys US construction firm Kelchner

Wood Group has acquired US construction firm Kelchner
Wood Group has acquired US construction firm Kelchner
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Energy services giant Wood Group yesterday made its second swoop for a US company within a month in a move which will boost its presence in the shale gas sector.

The Aberdeen-based group is buying privately owned construction firm Kelchner, which provides services to the oil and gas sector in shale basins in Ohio, for an undisclosed sum.

The deal comes after Wood Group struck a $150 million (£100m) deal at the beginning of this month to buy Infinity Group, a family-owned Texas Gulf Coast industrial construction and maintenance contractor serving the petrochemical, refining and gas processing sectors.

Kelchner, founded in 1948, will operate within the onshore business of Wood Group PSN Americas, providing construction capabilities primarily to the midstream and upstream oil and gas sector in the Marcellus and Utica shale basins. The firm generated sales of about $93m last year.

Wood Group PSN chief executive Dave Stewart said: “The acquisition of Kelchner adds to Wood Group’s geographical footprint in the major US shale regions.

“Kelchner’s construction and energy services strongly complement Wood Group’s engineering capabilities, positioning both companies well for continued success in the region.”

Kelchner chief executive Todd Kelchner will continue to lead the business, which has about 375 staff. He said joining Wood Group “positions us for future success”.

Wood Group also announced yesterday that group financial controller William Setter will become company secretary from 1 January.

The current holder of the post, Robbie Brown, is stepping down from the role at the end of the year.

l Aberdeen-based drilling and engineering contractor KCA Deutag has sold its jack-up drilling unit, the Ben Loyal,

to Advanced Energy Systems of Egypt for an undisclosed sum.

The Ben Loyal has been under contract in the Gulf of Mexico up until last October.

Norrie McKay, KCA Deutag’s chief executive, said the sale was in line with the company’s strategy of focusing on its core businesses including specialist engineering and design.