Sparrows Offshore Services Ltd of the UK has acquired Martec Crane Company Inc of Houston, Texas, USA.

The new US company trades as Sparrows Martec.

Sparrows provides crane operation and maintenance services to clients that include global operating and production companies, and drilling and marine contractors.

Since the management-led institutional buyout two years ago, supported by venture capitalist 3i, Sparrows’ annual overseas sales have grown from £2m to £11m ($2.9m to $16m), principally through organic growth in Australia, West Africa, the Middle East and the Caspian Sea region. In the same period, overall sales have grown from £29m to a projected £49m ($71m) for this year.

Ken Scott, managing director of Sparrows Offshore, said: ‘Martec is a strategic acquisition. We bought the business to effect an entry into the US Gulf of Mexico market through a local presence in Houston, a world energy capital where global purchasing decisions are concentrated. We will invest in people and equipment at Sparrows Martec, with the objective of establishing the business as a key player in the Gulf of Mexico offshore crane support service sector.’

Pat Drake, founder of Martec, is president of Sparrows Martec. ‘With 25 years experience in the Gulf market, Pat Drake is ideally placed to spearhead our US growth strategy,’ said Scott.