Oil and gas services company Aubin buoyed by £2.25m investment from BGF

Established in 1986 and based in Ellon, near Aberdeen, Aubin is a specialist supplier of cements and stimulation chemicals used in drilling and preparing wells for production, with the majority of its chemicals sold into growing markets in the Middle East.

Over the last few years, with access to its own lab and team of chemists, the company has developed two new gel based product lines. The first product line, pipeline and pigging gels, are used to treat and clean pipelines where standard products will not work. Many pipelines with changing diameters along their length or sharp bends will not allow standard metal or plastic pigs to pass through them. Aubin’s gel based pigs conform to the shape of the pipe and can therefore clean pipelines which would otherwise be considered “uncleanable”. In addition the company has developed a range of gel-based technologies for buoyancy, pipeline insulation and pipeline sealing. These products are at the point of commercial adoption and are gaining significant traction in the market.

Aubin employs 19 people and in 2012 the company generated revenues in excess of £5m which it hopes to grow significantly as its new subsea technologies are adopted by the industry. January of 2013 saw the company generate more than £800,000 in revenue. Aubin is led by Managing Director Paddy Collins, an industrial chemist with over 30 years’ experience in oilfield chemical technology, having worked at TR Oil, Clariant, BJ Services and Schlumberger.

In February 2013 BGF invested £2.25m in Aubin which was BGF’s fourth investment in Scotland and its third investment in the oil and gas sector. BGF’s investment will be used to commercialise these new products, expand the company’s sales and marketing team, invest in on-going R&D and accelerate the next phase of Aubin’s growth. In addition to BGF’s equity investment, Bank of Scotland has provided Aubin with a £500,000 debt facility through the Government’s Funding for Lending scheme. As with BGF’s first oil and gas sector investment in STATS Group, this is indicative of how BGF can work in partnership with banks to help unlock more credit for SMEs like Aubin. Through BGF’s Talent Network, Aubin has also strengthened its senior management team with the appointment of a new Non-Executive Chairman, Graham Philip, currently Deputy Chairman of Ashtead Technology Ltd, and previously CEO of Vroon (Viking) Offshore Services Ltd. Prior to this, Graham held senior roles within A.P. Moller Group, Wijsmuller Group BV and Ocean Group plc.