Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Family Powers into the Future

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Family Powers into the Future

Article excerpt

Byline: Alan Plews

Name of company: John Gibson Projects

Turnover: pounds 3.5m

No of employees: 22

Owner: The Gibson family

Start-up date: 1967


IN 1967 John Gibson, a rigging and lifting gear engineer, saw an opportunity to supply mechanical engineering and support equipment to the fledgling Teesside oil industry.

He foresaw the oil boom of the '70s, and was determined to be part of it.

Today John Gibson Projects is a world-renowned business, thanks in part to his son Paul.

Paul is now using his vision to lead Marine Projects International into the wind farming industry after leading the family firm, as managing director for 12 years, into the multi-million pound turnover bracket.

Now a non-executive director, Paul joined his father in the late 1970s after completing his training as an engineer.

He shared his father's belief in the oil industry and was soon helping to develop services for the offshore construction industry.

The company's first venture was into weighing modules, which led to other services being sought by module and jacket (sub-sea) manufacturers on the east coast and in Scotland.

Director David Moreton said: "We developed the ability to load out large modules on to barges to be taken to the production location and then we were able to offer barge ballasting services - some modules weigh 10,000 tonnes."

That work was done primarily in Northern and European waters, but David says: "From the mid '90s it was clear that the North Sea was reaching the end of its development.

"A lot of people we had been dealing with had been working the North Sea fields and when exploration and development moved those people who followed the work to other parts of the world remembered us for our expertise, which is still the case. …

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