Hydraulic oils supplier sold to US group

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A NORTH West company specialising in supplying hydraulic and storage fluids for the global oil and gas offshore industry has been snapped up by a US corporation.

Niche Products, based at Walter Leigh Way, Moss Industrial Estate, Leigh, was founded in 2001 to supply water-based subsea fluids.  The company, together with its Pelagic brand, has now been acquired by MacDermid Offshore Solutions, part of Miami-based Platform Speciality Products Corporation, a listed chemicals company.

Niche’s founders, Tom McKechnie and Svein Odland, have retained two businesses, Offshore Environmental Oils and Subsea Fluid Services, from their Subsea Fluid Technologies Group.

They have also retained the production facility and staff relating to the design, manufacture and supply of environmental oils based fluids and are also assisting MacDermid with the integration of the Niche brand until the end of 2014, to ensure a smooth transition of the business.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. In the year to he end of December 2013 Niche Products has net assets of £971,945, down from £1.7m the year before.

The vendors were advised on the sale by a team from Lancashire law firm Napthens led by head of corporate Keith Melling and which also included Laura Crowe, Rob Dobson and Victoria Bromiley, tax specialist Stephen Betts, commercial property specialist Stephen Bell, and employment expert Stacey Carter.

Moore & Smalley Chartered Accountants  supplied tax advice, and MacDermid was advised by a legal team from Eversheds in London and Leeds.

Keith Melling said: “This was a very significant transaction for Tom and Svein  and we’re delighted to have helped them through this process in a relatively short timescale.”

Tom McKechnie said, “We would like to sincerely thank all customers and suppliers for a fantastic 13 years together and we wish them continued success with the Pelagic brand via MacDermid.”