Swire takes control of HSE

UK INVESTMENT giant John Swire and Sons has acquired 80% of Australian mining contractor HSE Group.
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The acquisition by Swire subsidiary Swire Mining Services extends the company's Australian resources interests.

Swire already has a strong oil and gas presence through Swire Pacific Offshore and Swire Oilfield Services, as well as mining via bulk logistics provider Kalari.

The company also has building, industrial and agriculture interests.

HSE was formed in 1991 in Darwin as a small-scale earthmoving contracting business and has since grown to become a mining services and equipment rental company, servicing mine operations around Australia.

The company is based in Perth and has 700 staff across offices and workshops in Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland, supplying equipment and services to those states as well as New South Wales.

"The HSE Group sees the investment by Swire as a very positive step for the long-term development of the company," HSE founder Colin Ross said.

"It will enable HSE to further enhance its capabilities and opportunities for growth, thanks to the backing and involvement of Swire and its track record as a global owner-operator of specialised industrial services businesses."

Swire Australia chairman Bill Rothery said the acquisition would provide a platform for Swire to grow in the Australian resources sector.

"Swire intends to invest in the growth and development of HSE's people and operating capabilities in a manner that will bring value to HSE's key stakeholders - its employees, customers, communities and shareholders," he said.

Ross will remain a director of HSE while Swire has appointed former Kalari managing director Greg Holt as MD of HSE.

Globally, Swire employs more than 127,000 people and holds controlling interests in Cathay Pacific Airways and Australia-listed Steamships Trading Company.

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