British marine and environmental survey specialist Ocean Ecology taken over

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Norwegian fish health, environmental and technical consultancy group Åkerblå Group invests in Ocean Ecology. Deal is to fast-track build-up of joint service for aquaculture industry in UK and Ireland.

In a press release, Åkerblå Group writes that it has acquired 51 per-cent of the shares in Gloucester-based Ocean Ecology. The founders and current owners of Ocean Ecology will retain the remaining 49 percent and continue to develop the company together.

Joint service
The companies said that they will fast-track the build-up of a joint service offering for the aquaculture industry in the UK and Ireland.

“In recent years, several clients have asked us for support in the UK. Through our investment in Ocean Ecology, we obtain the necessary local competence, equipment and laboratory services that enable us to provide the best and most cost-efficient support to the aquaculture industry in UK and Ireland too,” said Åkerblå Group CEO Roger Sørensen.

The parties have agreed to not disclose the financial details of the transaction.

Entering UK aquaculture sector
“Ocean Ecology and Åkerblå are companies with a history of healthy growth and financial performance. We will together become an even more robust and reliable partner for our aquaculture clients in the UK,” added Roger Sørensen.

Ocean Ecology was established in 2013 and is a company that researches issues relating to impacts of human activities on marine ecological communities. Subjects range from survey design, marine monitoring and habitat mapping.

The company has laboratory facilities and headquarters located on the banks of the Severn Estuary in Gloucestershire and has recently opened a Scottish office in Oban.

“We are delighted to partner with Åkerblå Group which allows us to offer a much broader range of complementary services, expertise and experience to our ever-expanding customer base both in the UK and internationally. Teaming up with Åkerblå Group provides us with access to world-class technical expertise in fish health and environmental services which is a very exciting prospect for the team. Partnering with Åkerblå Group will enable us to fast-track our joint offering to the aquaculture sector whilst broadening our service offering to our key offshore renewable clients,” said Ocean Ecology technical director Ross Griffin.

Setting up in Scotland
Åkerblå Group and Ocean Ecology have already set up a Scottish presence at the European Marine Science Park in Oban for existing and prospective aquaculture clients.

“Establishing a physical presence in Scotland from the onset was seen as a priority to get even closer to our clients based in Scotland, in line with their expectations of having specialist services available at their doorstep,” said Roger Sørensen.

Following completion of the transaction, Åkerblå Group CEO Roger Sørensen and CFO Frode Westbye will join the Ocean Ecology board of directors.