US nuclear services group Jacobs announced on 9 March that it had acquired Wood Nuclear, part of Scottish energy services Wood, for an enterprise value of approximately £250 million ($325 million).
"Bringing together Wood Nuclear within Jacobs' Critical Mission Solutions business provides a powerful platform to support clients' complex programmes, respond to unprecedented changes in the many sectors and geographies where we work and help accelerate commitments to a more sustainable future," said Jacobs Chair and CEO Steve Demetriou.
"With our shared values, technical heritage and global reach, we are combining complementary capabilities to deliver high value, differentiated nuclear and defence solutions for our clients and greater opportunities for our people across our diverse portfolio."
Clive White of Wood Nuclear will lead the new combined business as Senior Vice President Critical Mission Solutions – International. Jacobs said a joint Jacobs-Wood Nuclear Integration Management Office (IMO) has been formed and is working to oversee the integration process. Jacobs Senior Vice President Pete Lutwyche is overseeing the implementation of the IMO and supporting initiatives in the broader business.
Jacobs said the acquisition brings more than 2,000 employees into its business, with plans to recruit 300 to 400 additional employees into these highly-skilled roles over the next year. It expands the Jacobs UK employee base to nearly 11,000 “and increases access to specialist talent – particularly in locations across Cheshire and Cumbria, UK, as well as expanded reach into Europe, Japan, the Middle East, South Africa and the US.”
Jacobs plans to invest in the UK's largest independent nuclear research, development and testing facilities at Birchwood Park near Warrington, in the North West of England, to provide capability such as remote handling, cyber, inspection technology and test rig facilities.
Wood said proceeds from the sale of Wood Nuclear would be used to cut debt associated with the 2017 acquisition of Amec Foster Wheeler and a prolonged slump in oil price. Wood will now focus on other growing parts of the business, including petrochemical plants, low-carbon energy and oil and gas exploration and production.
Photo: Jacobs has aquired Wood Nuclear