27 June 2012
Corporate team leads the way for FoundOcean
On 15 June, Ambienta SGR, the largest investor focussed on growth environmental investments in Europe, acquired 35% of the equity of FoundOcean Ltd, a leading global provider of foundation grouting services to the offshore global energy construction sector.
David Smellie, partner in the corporate and commercial practice at B P Collins LLP, led the lawyers who acted for Marlow-based FoundOcean Ltd and its management team in connection with the investment.
Jim Bell, Managing Director at FoundOcean, explained, “We are delighted that Ambienta has chosen to invest in FoundOcean as it makes the transition from a 40‐person company to 100 and beyond. The investment will enable FoundOcean to continue with its forecasted growth strategy of expanding its high profile presence in the offshore energy sector.”
The growth in the offshore wind market, combined with geographic expansion in the oil and gas sector, has been reflected in FoundOcean’s revenues, which grew by more than 100% in the last two years, to reach c. £12 million in 2011. Revenues are expected to grow by more than 50% this year, driven by new contracts secured in the offshore wind market.
The corporate team at B P Collins LLP were instructed to ensure that the position of their client and that of its shareholders were protected without creating unnecessary problems or overly complicating the legal process, as David explains, "There were a number of issues to overcome (particularly relating to tax issues) but these were successfully negotiated due to the collaborative approach taken by advisers on all sides to ensure a relatively swift and smooth transaction."
"B P Collins LLP has had a long relationship with both FoundOcean and some of its larger shareholders and directors and this instruction illustrates the success of the approach taken by our practice in becoming trusted advisers to its clients. We are delighted to have assisted FoundOcean in helping it to bring on board an investor focused on growth environmental investments which will allow the company to achieve its expansive growth strategy."
Commenting on the transaction, Ambienta’s CEO, Nino Tronchetti Provera, stated, “FoundOcean presents a compelling opportunity to invest in an attractive company with a robust foundation in the oil and gas sector, combined with access to the rapidly growing offshore wind sector. Drawing on Ambienta’s support and expertise, FoundOcean is well positioned to continue its growth, capturing market share in offshore wind and expanding internationally into key markets, including Germany, thanks to our new base in Munich, and targeted areas in Africa and Asia.”
Ambienta was advised by PricewaterhouseCoopers, McDermott Will & Emery, Studio Grimaldi and Burges Salmon. FoundOcean was advised by B P Collins LLP and David Fawcus.
David Smellie, Partner