12/12/2000 - 21:00

Mermaid’s in the swim

12/12/2000 - 21:00

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OIL and gas industry maritime service company Mermaid Marine’s ambitions in construction are set to become a reality with the purchase of two new vessels for offshore work.

Mermaid’s in the swim

OIL and gas industry maritime service company Mermaid Marine’s ambitions in construction are set to become a reality with the purchase of two new vessels for offshore work.

Mermaid is close to finalising a deal to buy a Singaporean boat which can accommodate up to 50 people as well as a barge and crane facility – part of a four-stage plan to quadruple turnover in three to four years to $100 million.

Chief executive officer Mark Bradley said the acquisition would be a significant step in realising plans to add construction to the company’s armoury of services.

“We will have a floating construction base with all the ingredients,” Mr Bradley said.

He said the move would put Mermaid in competition with his former employer Clough which became Mermaid’s third biggest shareholder with 16 per cent when Mr Bradley joined the Fremantle-based company a few months ago.

The initiative, which included Mr Bradley coming on board with an 11 per cent stake, appears to have helped Mermaid’s share price which has almost doubled since the announcement.

Founder Jim Carter and Perth businessman Alan Birchmore are the two biggest stakeholders in Mermaid which floated last year.

Despite the move into Clough’s sphere of operations, he did not see any significant issues arising from the two companies operating in the same general field.

Mr Bradley said Mermaid planned to offer a one-stop shop for small oil field operators offering all the required services in-house and doing away with the complexities of multiple independent contractors.

Mermaid’s manpower division is manning a Norweigan seismic vessel for six months, a job worth $2 million.

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