Phuel Oil secures investment by the Scottish Loan Fund

Scottish growth and exporting companies access new source of finance

An Aberdeen company operating in Scotland’s world-leading oil & gas industry has become one of the first businesses to access the Scottish Loan Fund (SLF), as announced today by Finance Secretary John Swinney.

Phuel Oil Tools Limited, which specialises in developing and manufacturing wireline pressure control equipment (PCE) for the oil & gas sector, has secured a £1 million loan from the SLF, which is managed by Maven Capital Partners UK LLP (’Maven’).

Improving access to finance in order to support growth and investment is a key part of the Scottish Government’s economic strategy. The SLF has been established by the Scottish Investment Bank, a division of Scottish Enterprise, to address the market demand for small and medium sized enterprise (SME) finance.

Established in 2005, Phuel has developed innovative PCE technology which allows for safe and efficient access to an oil well when wireline intervention is required during production. The technology has already been successfully introduced into the Norwegian market and the business is now actively targeting increased sales in the key US and UK markets. Phuel’s product range and technology brings much needed innovation to this largely under invested niche market and offers operational efficiency through improved safety and unique time saving features.

John Swinney, Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth, said: “The Scottish Loan Fund is offering the financial support that Phuel Oil requires to realise its growth plans, access international markets and expand its operations. Through its expansion plans, Phuel Oil will not only increase its Aberdeen workforce but also its contribution to Scotland’s prosperity and economic success.

“The Scottish Government and our enterprise agencies are working hard to retain Scotland’s position as the most competitive place in the UK to do business.”

Andrew Craig, Partner at Maven, said: “Phuel Oil is an excellent example of how a successful Scottish SME can benefit from the funding provided by the SLF. Having access to finance has put the business in a strong position to use its innovative technology to gain a competitive advantage and increase market share.

We are impressed with the management team led by Colin McCracken and look forward to working with the team to help deliver their ambitious plans for growth. We are pleased by the quality of enquiries we continue to receive and hope that the news of the first investments made by the SLF encourages more eligible Scottish businesses to come forward.”

Colin McCracken, Managing Director of Phuel Oil, said: "We have found the Scottish Loan Fund to be ideal for expanding companies, such as ours, which are finding it difficult to fund growth in the current economic climate.

“We are now able to expand our sales globally whilst maintaining trading headroom, but importantly for Phuel the structure of the loan avoids any dilution of ownership. As a result of this capital injection we fully expect to double our turnover in the next two years and expand our workforce both in Aberdeen and abroad.”

Jim McFarlane, Managing Director of Operations for Scottish Enterprise, said: “This announcement signals the start of a fresh stream of finance which is now reaching Scotland’s small and medium sized enterprises with growth and exporting potential. Lending remains a major issue for firms, it is therefore extremely encouraging that the first deals are now being concluded and a healthy pipeline of applications and offers of funding indicate a steady flow of deals for the coming months.”

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