"This move is a long-term investment for us and underlines our commitment to Aberdeen and our customers in the area," said David Currie, Aker Solutions' regional head in the UK. "The new offices will provide high-quality facilities and enable us to bring the majority of our employees in Aberdeen together in one central location."
Aker Solutions explains that the facility is under development and will consist of three interconnected buildings in the Aberdeen International Business Park on Dyce Drive, the main route between Aberdeen's city center and international airport.
The complex will total about 31,100 square meters (334,713 square feet) of office space and related facilities, including a fitness center with squash courts, catering facilities, a nursery, medical facilities and an auditorium. It constitutes the first phase of the park's development and is expected to be ready for occupation in the second quarter of 2015.
Aker Solutions is among the largest employers in Aberdeen with operations spread across six sites in the city. Subsea, the company's largest business area, is already located in Dyce. The new facility will have the capacity to house about 2,400 employees from different business streams in an area that is expected to benefit from development in surrounding infrastructure. This includes the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Road which is set to be completed in 2018.
Aker Solutions will lease the buildings from the property developer Abstract (Cornwall) Ltd. (ACL) for a total annual rent of GBP 7.74 million over 20 years. The rent will be adjusted every five years based on changes in the retail price index. The first 12 months of the lease are rent-free. Aker Solutions also has options to extend the lease for three five-year periods, with the rent subject to open market review. ACL is responsible for all aspects of the development.
ACL is a subsidiary of Aker ASA, which indirectly and directly owns 34.5 percent of Aker Solutions. While the rental agreement does not qualify as a related-party transaction, Aker ASA's ownership interests in both ACL and Aker Solutions prompted Aker Solutions and Aker ASA to handle the transaction according to each company's internal guidelines for related-party transactions.