Infrastrata buys BiFab’s Methil and Arnish sites in £850,000 deal

Infrastrata has acquired the Methil and Arnish yards from the collapsed Scottish manufacturer Burntisland Fabrication (BiFab) for £850,000.

The deal will be split across two tranches: £650,000 upon completion and £200,000 when substantial revenues are generated.

BiFab went into administration in December last year after failing to secure any new contracts. In order to save BiFab from closure in 2017, and to support the delivery of SSE’s Beatrice Offshore Wind project, the Scottish Government invested £37.4 million through a combination of equity and loan facilities and converted this to a 32.4% equity stake in BiFab.

These facilities will trade under the Harland & Wolff brand and represent the final fabrication piece of its UK footprint, positioning the company to fully deliver on its existing strategy quicker than it would have done with only its two existing sites: Harland & Wolff (Belfast) and Harland & Wolff (Appledore).

A total of 29 employees are being transferred under TUPE regulations, with those on furlough brought being back to re-establish operations at the sites.

John Wood, CEO of InfraStrata, said the firm was “very pleased” to have completed the acquisition of the assets of Bifab.

He said: “Whilst the total consideration is not material, relative to our balance sheet size and market cap, it nevertheless is a very important and highly strategic acquisition for InfraStrata.

“With this acquisition, we now have a footprint in Scotland, which is the hotbed for major wind farm projects as well as for shipbuilding programmes.

“This acquisition gives us the flexibility to optimise our operations across the Group and offer our clients the ability to fabricate faster and de-risk their exposure by offering multiple sites. As we move into larger contracts, it is crucial that we demonstrate the capacity to bid for and deliver on these projects.”

He added: “The acquisition of Bifab’s assets delivers that capability to us and will open up a larger demographic of tender opportunities. Most importantly, it is expected to substantially boost our existing sales pipeline success rate given that the fabrication risk carried by the project developers will drop significantly since we will now be more favourably located geographically than others.”

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