The investment is a vote of confidence in the Oil and Gas market as well as the underlying Norwegian economy. “Norway’s mainland economy regained momentum in Q1 2017, with GDP expanding at the fastest pace in more than three years,” says Certex Norge Managing Director, Harald Hope.
Hope adds that the acquisition strengthens Certex Norge’s product offering within beams and sheaves as well as the service offering within the maritime, offshore, subsea and onshore industries and positions the company well for the recovery:
“The potential for these services is substantial and we see demand for these services growing as the sector rebounds from some challenging years,” he says.
“The agreement adds market specialists with decades of experience to our team and a DNV-certified engineering centre,” he continues. “They also have a strong service offering with their own spooling and rigging capability in their own port, strategically located in Nygårdsviken, Bergen”.
W. Giertsen Services will become part of Certex Norway AS and the current office of Certex in Bergen will be combined in the W.G Services office. This joint facility will create opportunities for existing and potential customers of both companies as well as deliver cost synergies within purchasing, overheads and operations.
“In an industry where consolidation is necessary, we see Certex and Axel Johnson International Group as a perfect new owner to further develop W. Giertsen Services. Our innovative cast iron sheaves will get greater market access through the international network of Certex. At the same time, our lifting business will continue in our base in Nygårdsviken, Bergen with a wider assortment and more extensive customer portfolio” says Frank Mohn, CEO W. Giertsen AS.
The acquisition is in line with Axel Johnson International’s long-term strategy of building strong business groups in fragmented niche markets across Europe.
“The Norwegian market has many small players,” Hope says.
“Business is local and consequently the Norwegian landscape means providers are distributed along the coast from south to north. This acquisition continues to facilitate the need for a local service but supported by the infrastructure of a much larger operation, complementing our current business in Norway, within Erling Haug and Certex Norge, by further extending our customer proposition.
Certex offers comprehensive solutions within lifting, steel wire ropes and related services. Our solutions are found throughout the UK; at construction sites, on cranes, in steel making as well as within the energy- and manufacturing industries.In addition to world class brands of lifting and suspending equipment, we manufacture high specification lifting products at our specialist facilities in Scotland and England. We also offer testing solutions, inspections and certification, technical support, training and maintenance.Founded in 1986, Certex today has annual sales of GBP 14 million and 125 employees at five locations in the UK. Together with our sister companies throughout Europe, we are part of Axel Johnson International Lifting Solutions.