Magma Global Limited is a Portsmouth-based designer and manufacturer of unique ranges of high performance carbon fibre pipe for subsea oil and gas applications. As oil and gas production goes into deeper water and harsher environments, existing technologies are reaching the limit of their capability. This has created a need for a highly reliable alternative, which provides significant benefits in reduced weight, increased pressure capacity, ease of installation and resistance to corrosion.
Magma also has a subsidiary which has developed the company’s leading edge composites capability for a very different commercial use. Magma Structures manufactures high performance carbon fibre structures and is currently delivering a contract to design and build the World’s largest unsupported yacht masts.
In December 2012, BGF announced a co-investment of growth capital into Magma alongside existing investors, Kern Energy Partners, a Canadian specialist energy investor; and NES, a Danish venture capital investor which is focused on New Energy Solutions. Magma has used the investment to install a new, high-tech manufacturing facility on a site in Portsmouth. The plant has the capacity to produce up to 250km of pipe, and allows it to manufacture pipes up to 4km long which can be stored on a spool and taken away by installation vessels from the deep water quay. This allows Magma to export pipe to international markets, and provides a platform for further international expansion.
In November 2014, the investor group was joined by Strategic Industrial Capital Partners LLP, providing Magma Global with additional capital to support the growth of the business and significant manufacturing capacity expansion.
The subsea market is one of the fastest growing areas of the oil and gas industry, and it is an area where UK expertise and technology leads the World. Pipelines are estimated to account for more than half of the $139 billion projected spend on subsea hardware over the next five years.
The company was founded in 2009 by Martin Jones (CEO), Damon Roberts (CTO) and Mike Boyd (CFO), who previously developed Insensys, a fibre optic sensing business with divisions in the Oil and Gas industry and Wind Energy backed by 3i and later sold to Schlumberger and Moog in 2007 and 2009 respectively. They were joined by Charles Tavner IP Director, formerly with CCL and IP Group and Commercial Director Steve Hatton, an industry authority on subsea risers and flowlines and a founder of 2H Offshore, a subsidiary of Acteon.
The deal was jointly led by BGF’s Scottish and South West regional teams. The board of Magma includes Non-Executive Directors Jim Buckee and Philippe Hoffman, and Jeff Van Steenbergen from Kern, and Jens Mathiesen from NES. Jim is the former CEO of Canadian oil company Talisman and also is currently on the board of several oil and gas operators, including Enquest and Cairn Energy. Philippe is Technology and IP Director for Subsea7, one of the major subsea construction and installation contractors.