Jack Quann
Jack Quann

09.46 1 Oct 2019


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The famous Belfast shipyard Harland and Wolff has been sold for €6.7m.

It has been bought by British infrastructure firm InfraStrata plc.

The company has signed heads of terms to purchase the principal assets of Harland and Wolff from its administrator, accountancy firm BDO NI.

The sale will include a multi-purpose facility, quaysides and docking facilities.

InfraStrata has said this is "ideally suited for the energy infrastructure industry and the company's projects."

While 79 employees who did not opt for voluntary redundancy earlier this year will be kept on.

InfraStrata also said it plans to "significantly increase the size" of the workforce by several hundred over the next five years.

A new management team will also be in place at Harland and Wolff by the end of the year.

It will be run independently to InfraStrata's other projects. The company said it intends to start work at the shipyard from November.

Harland and Wolff A pedestrian walks along a road past Samson and Goliath, the twin shipbuilding gantry cranes situated in Harland & Wolff shipyard in Belfast, Northern Ireland | Image: Liam McBurney/PA Wire/PA Images

Harland and Wolff went into administration back in August with the loss of 123 jobs.

The site ceased trading after its Norwegian parent company failed to find a buyer.

The most famous vessel to come out of the shipyard was the Titanic.

At its pre-World War II peak in 1935, the company employed about 35,000 people.

Titanic A photograph circa 1912 of the "unsinkable" four-funnelled ship the RMS Titanic | Image: PA/PA Archive/PA Images

John Wood, CEO of InfraStrata, said: "Harland and Wolff is a landmark asset and its reputation as one of the finest multi-purpose fabrication facilities in Europe is testament to its highly skilled team in Belfast.

"This acquisition is a function of deep operational synergies between the various business segments of the company with Harland and Wolff underpinning the construction economics of the Islandmagee Gas Storage Project and other future projects.

"We are delighted to be able to retain 100% of personnel who did not opt to take voluntary redundancy earlier this year."

The UK Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Julian Smith, added: "I am delighted by the news that InfraStrata have purchased the Harland and Wolff shipyard and retained the skills and experience of the existing workforce.

"I firmly believe that the shipyard has a promising future and that InfraStrata's plans present an exciting opportunity for both Belfast and Northern Ireland's manufacturing and energy sectors."


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