Welsh Global Engineering Company Harris Pye Sold to Joulon Group

The Harris Pye Engineering Group, global specialists in the provision of repairs, upgrades and conversions to the marine, offshore oil and gas, and associated onshore industrial sectors, has been acquired by the Joulon Group.

Joulon was created in partnership with KKR, the global investment firm to acquire well established companies globally. The investment in Joulon comes from multiple funds managed or advised by KKR. Harris Pye has been acquired to primarily add capability in the Project Management Platform for the Joulon Group and will also have an impact in the majority of the Joulon platforms.

“We are really excited to have Harris Pye as part of Joulon Group. Harris Pye’s extensive global presence and expertise in executing large distributed complex projects across any asset class is an invaluable enhancement to our capabilities,” said Abhishek Kumar, Vice Chairman and Group CEO of Joulon

“This is very much a win:win situation,” explained Mark Prendergast, Harris Pye’s Chief Executive. “It is very much ‘business as usual’ for the group with its global team of 1,700 based in 17 facilities and offices around the world. The network stretches from Brazil to Japan, North American and Canada to Australia and includes major workshops in Wales, Brazil, Sharjah and Singapore.

“We remain a proud Welsh company, and the strength of our new owner allows us to compete as a Tier One contractor going forward, and that is good for Wales, and all 16 countries in which we are based, as it cements jobs and brings new opportunities for job creation. Our Welsh base at Llandow in South Wales remains our prime fabrication facility.

“KKR/Joulon’s ambition is to grow the HP Group to many times its current size, through investment, strategic acquisition and increasing market share across the Marine; Offshore Oil & Gas; Industrial and Power Services; and Renewable Energy sectors. This ambitious growth plan is very much in line with the Directors’ desires, and the fact that we are now a part of one of the world’s largest private equity group will strengthen our financial backing and allow us to bid for complete projects as a Tier One EPC contractor, not further down the supply chain as at present.”

Under the new ownership Mark Prendergast remains Chief Executive Officer, Chris David is Chief Operating Officer, and David Walters is Chief Financial Officer. Additional Harris Pye Board Members will be announced shortly.

New UK Managing Director Appointed at Harris Pye


Nigel Hopkins has been appointed Managing Director of Harris Pye UK Ltd based at the company’s headquarters in Llandow in Wales. He joined Harris Pye on 1st May this year working alongside Dave Hayden, the company’s retiring Managing Director at the Harris Pye UK headquarters in Llandow, South Wales before officially taking over from Dave Hayden on 1st October 2017.

Nigel Hopkins started his engineering career in the merchant navy spending 13 years sailing on a variety of vessels including oil tankers, gas tankers and cruise ships working for companies including BP, Mobil, and Cunard Line eventually qualifying and sailing as Chief Engineer, something to which other senior Harris Pye team members can also lay claim.

He then made a career move into the offshore oil and gas industry where he spent the following 20 years and was involved with new builds, conversions and upgrade projects of both floating and fixed platforms for global companies including ConocoPhillips, Bluewater Energy and BW Offshore. He was primarily involved with the commissioning and start-up phases. Based in the Far East for the past 15 years, since 2007 he was Technical Director at offshore oil and gas project management and completions specialised company, Tecnomar & Associates Pte Ltd, the company he founded with his brother Paul Hopkins.

“I am very much enjoying the challenge of joining a rapidly expanding global engineering group, having worked closely with Harris Pye when Tecnomar signed an MOU with them in early 2016,” explains Nigel Hopkins.

“Harris Pye’s diverse range of projects includes marine and offshore engineering, areas I know well; and land based industrial sectors such as the biomass industry, combined heat & power, and nuclear power station projects. I am on a fascinating learning curve and relished working alongside Dave Hayden who has such wealth of engineering experience and knowledge. I look forward to playing an active role in the company’s expansion for many years to come, helping to develop technically innovative and cost effective solutions for clients worldwide.”

“Nigel’s reputation and track record speak for themselves; we are delighted that he has joined us. He worked alongside Dave Hayden for five months and that the handover went extremely smoothly,” says the Harris Pye Group’s Chief Executive, Mark Prendergast.

“Naturally we are sad to have bid Dave Hayden farewell; he has been with us in two stints (1999-2002 and 2004-2017) amounting to 16 years, but as he was part of the 2007 management buyout team, there will still be strong links, as he is a shareholder in the business. We thank him for his commitment to the group and wish him and his wife well in his retirement.”

Harris Pye Engineering Group Opens Office in Oslo


The Harris Pye Engineering Group has opened an office in Oslo to pursue new business opportunities in Norway, and to support existing clients by providing all Harris Pye products and services to the entire Scandinavian region.

Bjarne Eia, former Managing Director of TECO Solutions, has been appointed Technical Sales Manager, and will be the principal contact at Harris Pye Norway. The office is at Holten 45, N-1368 Stabekk, Norway at Lysaker, just 15 minutes from central Oslo. Tel: +47 90051032. Email: harrispye.norway@harrispye.com.

This is Harris Pye’s 17th office, with the network stretching from Brazil to Japan, North American and Canada to Australia and including major workshops in Wales, Brazil, Sharjah and Singapore

“Thanks to his long history in coatings we have also appointed Bjarne Eia as our in-house specialist for protective coatings,” explains Chris David, the Group’s Chief Technical Officer. “We are eager to expand our Protective Coatings Division in the maritime and oil and gas industries.

“We aim to be the preferred provider of high quality voyage repair and of maintenance services onboard ships and rigs while at sea. Working with clients we can streamline their maintenance programme for any ship or rig in operation. We offer three alternatives for owners and managers – coating while at sea; coating at a yard; or a combination of work at yard and at sea.”

“The Division offers all kinds of steel surface refurbishment including blasting and coating of internal and external structures and spaces; scaffolding and covering; special access systems; and passive fire insulation and thermal insulation in the maritime and oil and gas environments,” explains Mr Eia, a former Master Mariner with close to 30 years’ experience in the maritime industry. ”I am greatly looking forward to my new role and to expanding Harris Pye’s protective coating services globally,” he adds.

About Bjarne Eia

Latterly Bjarne Eia (52) was Managing Director of TECO Solutions, a role he held from 1998 until 2007 and then from 2012 until 2017 when he joined the Harris Pye Group.

His seagoing career began in the Royal Norwegian Navy; then joining Wilh.Wilhelmsen on a special apprenticeship programme leading to his Deck Class 4 certificate. He then joined Leif Høegh & Co continuing his maritime career.

In February 1990 he joined Novoklav, a joint venture between the Torvald Klaveness Group in Norway and Novorossiysk Shipping Company as the Ship Operator. He was later promoted to Operations Manager at PetroBulk Carriers in Oslo. PetroBulk was a JV between EXMAR, Mitsui OSK, Safmarine, Erling Dekke Næss and Jørgen Jahre Jr.

Bjarne Eia left PertroBulk in March 1998 having spent his final year setting up the operations in London and Singapore. A short period with R.S. Platou Shipbrokers followed before he accepted a position at TECO Coating Services AS.

Further information at www.harrispye.com

Harris Pye Begins Work on Kishorn Port Dry Dock Gates

Today (9 January) sees Harris Pye, the global engineering group, begin work on refurbishing the historic dock gates at Kishorn Port, last opened nearly 25 years ago. This will be the first step in making them, and the Kishorn dry-dock, operational once more. The contract value is £340,000 and the work will be undertaken in a six week period.

The hollow concrete gates were last opened nearly 25 years ago when the Skye Bridge caissons were constructed there in 1993. The dock was also where the Ninian Central production platform, one of the largest concrete structures ever to have moved across the face of the earth, was constructed in the late 1970s.

“We are delighted to have won this contract, and to be working on these historic gates,” explains Chris David, Harris Pye’s Chief Technical Officer. “We will be floating the gate – no mean feat as it weighs in excess of 13,000 tonnes; replacing all areas of corroded steel, and the rubber seals; and repositioning the gate prior to pumping the dock out to test the integrity of the gates. We will also be strengthening the access road to the dock gate and replacing the flooding covers and fitting new seals on them.”

The owners of Kishorn Port have identified a number of key markets that need access to sheltered deep water, big lay down areas and a large dry dock – Kishorn is one of the largest in Western Europe at 160m in diameter with 13m of draft available. These include the offshore renewables industry which has a requirement for the serial production of large concrete structures (with an on-site quarry and concrete production facilities Kishorn is ideally placed); oil and gas fabricators; and the expanding oil and gas decommissioning sector.

“Refurbishment of the deep draft dry-dock will undoubtedly give Scotland a significant advantage, and be a vital step in improving the local economy,” adds Chris David. “We are proud to be involved in this venture. We will be operating on a turnkey basis our well trained mobile workforce is looking forward to the challenge.”

Further information on Harris Pye is available at www.harrispye.com