2014 Group News
20 / 10 / 2014

RoSPA Gold Award for Occupational Health and Safety

RoSPA Gold Award

Left: Karen McDonnell, head of RoSPA Scotland, presenting the gold award to Steven Morton HCS Quality Engineer.

The RoSPA Occupational Health and Safety Awards are internationally recognised and have fast become the most sought after accolade by organisations from every sector.

This key fixture in the health and safety calendar 2014 offers organisations a prime opportunity to prove their ongoing commitment to raising health and safety standards and to be a part of the longest running and most highly respected occupational safety awards programme.

More than 14,000 people die as a result of accidents across the UK each year. There are millions of other injuries. Accidents cause loss and suffering to the victims and their loved ones, employers and UK society as a whole.

We promote safety and the prevention of accidents at work, at leisure, on the road, in the home and through safety education.

Join us as we look at some of the very latest thinking, initiatives, and emerging best practice, whilst considering - what makes Scotland such a health and safety leader within the UK?

RoSPA Gold Award 2014

Now in its 58th year the RoSPA Safety Awards recognise health and safety success and offer organisations a prime opportunity to prove their ongoing commitment to raising health and safety standards.

In recent years the economic outlook has looked bleak. Yet the health and safety community in Scotland has developed somewhat of a reputation for innovative thinking and strong partnership working – enabling the pioneering of many bold new management ideas.

Left: Steven Morton HCS Quality Engineer and Jim Gilmour HCS Quality Manager.



15 / 08 / 2014

RBS deal helps fuel HCS global growth ambitions

RBS deal helps fuel HCS global growth ambitions

HCS Control Systems, a Fife-based oil and gas sector company is targeting further growth from international clients after securing a £4.5m financing package from RBS.

Headquartered in Glenrothes, HCS is a specialist manufacturer of engineered mechanical, hydraulic and electrical systems for the subsea oil and gas sector. The company’s integrated service offering includes design, engineering, specialist welding and fabrication processes. Established in 1997, HCS has earned a reputation for delivering fast track design, manufacture and testing of topside and subsea control systems to a global blue chip customer base. The company is supported by private equity firms Maven Capital Partners and Simmons Parallel Energy who, together with Front Row Energy Partners, led a Buy-in Management Buy-out transaction (BIMBO) in 2013.

HCS CEO Brett Lestrange said: “This re-financing package will play an important part in driving forward our growth ambitions. The oil and natural gas market is at its strongest level for more than three decades with a substantial rise in global consumption. As one of a small number of companies in the global subsea sector with the required knowledge and engineering skills to meet these increasing levels of customer demands, we are ideally placed to further develop our business and delighted to be working with RBS to help make this happen.”

RBS’s support of HCS marks the 10th deal completion in 10 months for its Aberdeen based Structured Finance team. Lee Donaldson, Director of Structured Finance at RBS, said: "We have a long and successful track record of supporting private equity-backed oil and gas service companies. This deal with HCS is a further example of our strong commitment to growth businesses operating within this sector”.

15 / 08 / 2014

HCS Grows from Strength-to-Strength

HCS Grows from Strength to Strength

Having undergone a £9 million equity funding deal during June 2013, HCS Control Systems Ltd has grown from strength-to-strength and continues to aggressively push its ambitious goal of reaching the “next level” within the subsea market.

Since the business was last featured in European Oil and Gas Magazine during November 2013, HCS Control Systems has reached a number of important milestones and taken significant strides in developing the company. These included the strengthening of the company’s team with new key personnel, such as newly appointed sales director Colin Milne who comments: “There have certainly been some milestones that HCS has reached in a relatively short time; for example the company has been accredited as compliant with the ISO18001 safety standard and has also recently exceeded its financial goals for the period since November 2013. Hopefully that will continue to be the case in moving forward.”

Further expanding on his experience in joining HCS at such a transitional period, Colin elaborates: “It is a very exciting time to have joined HCS at present, especially as it is a leading designer and manufacturer in subsea equipment, which is certainly the case from my perspective coming in. We have a team of highly experienced personnel and it has been an easy transition from a company where I had previously worked for 14 years to HCS, which is moving in the right direction with the company growing steadily.”

In addition to Colin’s appointment as sales director, HCS has amplified its competence through increasing its workforce in its sales, engineering, purchasing and workshop teams in order to develop its sales strategy for ambitious growth. This has been done in tandem with the opening of a new office in Aberdeen specialising in sales and service support that rounds out its main 60,000 sq.ft. engineering and manufacturing facility in Glenrothes, North-East Scotland. This combined approach is driven by the management team’s invigorated approach to growing the business, and in support of innovative new technologies developed by HCS in response to the problems faced by the subsea industry.

As a result of close engagement with its clients to identify the needs of the subsea sector, HCS has developed a new Zone 1 rated high-capacity electric umbilical reeler. As with all of its products and services, HCS offers a full turnkey package solution with its line of reelers and offers a dedicated spooling service where it will install the umbilical onto the reeler and deliver a complete field-ready system to the client. The Zone 1 high-capacity electric reeler it has developed is a patent-pending system owned by HCS, that features a simple yet extremely reliable design that makes it highly suitable for use in hazardous areas of operation. In addition, the design offers several advantages over conventional pneumatic and hydraulic systems, including reduced maintenance, increased control capabilities and more consistent performance, simplified fault-finding and diagnostics, increased data-logging capabilities, reduced requirement for spares inventory and the ability for integration with umbilical tension sensing.

HCS Control Systems’ umbilical reelers and high capacity reelers are complemented by a host of subsea products encompassing umbilical termination units, production control systems, hydraulic power units and subsea distribution units, as well as orbital welding services and comprehensive after-sales and support services that are available to clients 24/7.

Today HCS is a leading subsea design, manufacture and support company throughout the world with strong relationships with clients operating in Europe, South Africa, Asia, Nigeria and India. Recently, the company was given a massive boost when it was awarded a multi-million pound contract with Aker Solutions to provide instrumentation and subsea welding equipment. The project will see HCS assisting Aker by providing equipment to be used in the BP Quad 204 development off the shore of Shetland, UK. As well as instrumentation and equipment, HCS will manage a project welding team responsible for manufacture at the company’s own facility and for the fabrication of equipment on site. Commenting upon the contract, CEO Brett Lestrange says: “The award from Aker Solutions is a fantastic achievement by the HCS team, and we look forward to providing an outstanding level of safe, high quality services to Aker Solutions. The award also bolsters our confidence to continue our rapid expansion plans, having already increased our headcount by nearly 30 per cent since June 2013.”

While the company’s contract with Aker has indeed proven to be an important catalyst to the growth strategy of the HCS management team, it is but one step for the business as it continues to grow, as Colin concludes: “HCS was recently awarded two framework agreements by two major companies, worth between three to four million pounds per year, which is another major milestone for as a company. In relation to the business over the next three to five years, we anticipate that the market will continue to be very buoyant with a lot of opportunities and we also expect a definite increase in projects with the company’s current clients, so things are looking very positive from an HCS and market perspective over the coming months and years.”

08 / 03 / 2014

Major Contract Award with Aker Soloutions

HCS Control Systems are proud to announce the signing of a major contract with Aker Solutions’ Subsea business in the UK, for specialised instrument tubing welding for the Quad 204 project. The multi-million pound contract will see HCS provide a dedicated instrumentation and welding project team to Aker Solutions, and covers manufacturing activities within our Glenrothes facility and on-site services for the subsea control modules being fabricated at Rosyth.

Commenting upon the contract, CEO Brett Lestrange stated “the award from Aker Solutions is a fantastic achievement by the HCS team, and we look forward to providing an outstanding level of safe, high quality services to Aker Solutions. The award also bolsters our confidence to continue our rapid expansion plans, having already increased our headcount by nearly 30% since last June.”

HCS Control Systems is a privately owned Scottish company, specialising in the design, in-house manufacture and service support to the global subsea industry.

28 / 02 / 2014

HCS Control Systems Strengthens Sales Team with Key Appointment on the Board

HCS Control Systems Strengthens Sales Team with new Key Appointment on the Board

Leading Subsea design, manufacture, and service company HCS Control Systems have appointed Colin Milne as Sales Director.

Mr Milne has 15 years’ experience within the in the Oil & Gas Industry, more recently spent 14 years with Hydrasun where he Progressed through a number of roles & was a senior account manager looking after the sales of some of the major clients.

As Sales Director for HCS Control Systems Mr. Milne explains, my primary role is to develop and manage our sales strategy for ambitious growth, leading the sales team and promoting its portfolio of designed and manufactured equipment for the subsea industry worldwide.

Mr Milne says, "It’s a really exciting time to be joining HCS as the company is constantly developing new products & systems."

I’m looking forward to leading the Sales team to enable HCS Control Systems to provide first class services & equipment to our client base globally.

Having worked within the Industry for a number of years, my transition into this role has been smooth thanks to having worked within the Sales & Key Account Management roles along with the relationships within my client base that has been built up over the years.

Mr Milne’s appointment comes at a time when HCS is looking to expand its client base and grow the business within additional sectors of the Oil & Gas Industry. CEO of HCS Brett Lestrange adds that securing someone of Colin’s calibre is a tremendous boost for HCS, we are an ambitious local company and delivering the sales volumes we need to fill our available capacity is vital to our growth.

HCS Control Systems is a privately owned Scottish Company, backed by Private Equity Investment from the Simmons Parallel Energy Fund and Maven Capital Partners.

26 / 02 / 2014

Extension underway at HCS base in Glenrothes

Base extension underway at HCS

In order to accommodate the growing demand for client SIT and EFAT activities, HCS Control Systems have cut ground on a 6,000ft pad extension at the Glenrothes facility.

This is the first phase of the Base expansion plans, being quickly followed by the addition of a further 1,000 ft2 of office space for the growing engineering and project teams. Both activities will be complete by early April.

26 / 02 / 2014

New Technology Delivered by HCS

New Technology Delivered by HCS

Leading subsea design, manufacture and service company HCS Control Systems has delivered the first two high capacity electric drive umbilical reelers for a West Africa project. The reel designs are an industry first, utilising HCS’ patent-pending hazardous area full electric drive system. The advantages of the full electric drive are enhanced operability and control, reduced environmental and maintenance benefits through elimination of the traditional hydraulic drive system, and an overall greater ability to assure the integrity of the deepwater umbilical.

The units were designed, manufactured and tested at HCS’ Glenrothes facility, along with a range of other equipment for the Angolan field development. HCS’ CEO Brett Lestrange stated these innovate and on-time deliveries were again testament to HCS’ vision to be the recognised leading designer and manufacturer of subsea umbilical deployment and handling systems, topside controls systems, and high-value engineered subsea products. The deliveries also come at a time of strong growth for HCS, with headcount up 40% in the last 6 months, to over 70 today following a management buyout of the business in June 2013.

HCS Control Systems are a privately owned Scottish company, backed by Private Equity Investment from the Simmons Parallel Energy Fund and Maven Capital Partners.