SeaEnergy goes into administration, sells subsidiary to James Fisher

  • Business & Finance

James Fisher has purchased Return to Scene (R2S), the Aberdeen-based subsidiary of SeaEnergy which went into administration on June 2, for a price tag of £1.9 million ($2.7 million).

James Fisher said in a press release on Friday that further consideration of £100,000 is payable if R2S wins certain contracts before December 31, 2016.

R2S provides visual asset management photographic capture services, digital media services, and forensic services to the oil & gas and security sectors. According to the company, the unaudited management accounts for the year ended 31 December 2015 reported an operating loss of £0.5 million while 2014 ended with an operating profit of £2.2 million.

R2S was a brand of the SeaEnergy Group which began to experience cash flow challenges in late 2015, due to the ongoing oil price decline adversely impacting R2S activity levels.

In response to these challenges, the SeaEnergy directors secured additional funding in November 2015 via a £1 million working capital loan.

On March 4, SeaEnergy said it was facing significant cash flow difficulties and would need to consider a sale of its main assets or its businesses would be unable to continue trading beyond May 2016.

Further, on April 26, trading in the shares of SeaEnergy was suspended, pending clarification of its financial position.

KPMG, a global network of professional firms providing audit, tax and advisory services, was appointed to run an accelerated sales process on April 28 after which a preferred bidder was selected on May 13. Blair Nimmo, Geoff Jacobs and Tony Friar of KPMG were appointed as Joint Administrators of SeaEnergy on June 2 at the request of the company’s directors.

SeaEnergy said in a separate press release that prior to the appointment of the Joint Administrators, the business, assets and 10 employees of SE Innovation (SEIL), another subsidiary to SeaEnergy, including the Return to Scene forensic, and Max & Co businesses were sold to R2S by the SEIL directors, and seven employees of SeaEnergy were transferred to R2S.

Immediately following the appointment of Joint Administrators, the shares of R2S were acquired by James Fisher and all 33 employees of R2S (including the employees transferred from SEIL and SeaEnergy) were transferred as part of the transaction. With the exception of one individual, all employees are based in Aberdeen.

Blair Nimmo, Joint Administrator and UK Head of Restructuring for KPMG, said: “We are pleased to have concluded the sale of R2S to James Fisher, which will safeguard the majority of jobs within the Group, maintain customer service, and provide the best outcome for SeaEnergy’s creditors.“

Nick Henry, Chief Executive Officer of James Fisher, said: “R2S provides digital services to many of our existing customers and has the potential to work in our wider sector and geographical base.  We look forward to R2S joining the James Fisher Group.”

EC Hambro Rabben & Partners, a company that specializes in mergers and acquisitions for shipping, transport, marine services, oilfield services, and offshore drilling companies, acted as corporate adviser to James Fisher during the transaction.

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