Offshore firm clinches £10m investment deal to continue growth

Graham Hacon from the 3sun group.
Picture: James Bass Graham Hacon from the 3sun group. Picture: James Bass

Tuesday, March 4, 2014
8:09 AM

Great Yarmouth-based offshore firm 3Sun Group has secured £10m of investment to support its continued rapid development.

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The injection of cash from the Business Growth Fund (BGF), a government-backed company established to help Britain’s growing businesses, comes as the energy-focused firm eyes further expansion to create up to 200 jobs over the next three years.

Its success has seen it outgrow its Boundary Road premises less than two years after moving in and the investment will enable it to step up its search for a new flagship headquarters in the borough.

The specialist provider of products and services to the global energy industry secured the funding following six years of consistent growth and is the first business in the East of England to secure backing from BGF.

Starting as a one-man band in Gorleston’s Beacon Innovation Centre in 2007, 3sun founder Graham Hacon now employs 240 people and 31 apprentices.

As well as its headquarters in Boundary Road, Great Yarmouth, 3Sun has offices in Aberdeenshire, Bergen, Norway, Lubeck, Germany and Esbjerg, Denmark, and is currently looking at other UK and overseas locations.

The group is on track to deliver revenue in excess of £25m in the current year.

Mr Hacon said: “Securing this investment is an enormous achievement for us. This significant sum will provide us with the additional capital required to accelerate our capabilities and increase our global presence.

“We expect 50 more employees by March 2015 increasing to an extra 200 by March 2017, so we will be investing in a new site for our group headquarters.”

He said the investment would also allow them to bring a variety of new products and service solutions to the marketplace, along with new overseas locations.

The group’s five divisions include 3sun, which manufactures, installs and maintains topside control equipment for offshore oil and gas platforms, 3sun Inspection Services providing testing and inspection services to the oil and gas and renewables sector, Dawson Energy, supplying skilled technicians for the installation and maintenance of offshore wind turbines, and the recently launched 3sun Academy delivering advanced training courses for skilled offshore technicians.

In line with its drive for expansion and development, 3sun Group acquired RRC Controls Services in 2013, an established manufacturer of subsea control systems for the offshore oil and gas industry.

Chris Hodges, BGF’s investment director, said: “We are delighted to be backing 3sun. It is testament to Graham’s energy and entrepreneurial vision that he has grown 3sun from a small outfit to its current position as one of the UK’s leading energy services and engineering businesses.”

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