Amec Foster Wheeler

  (Redirected from AMEC)

Amec Foster Wheeler plc was a British multinational consultancy, engineering and project management company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. In October 2017, it was acquired by Wood Group.[1][2]

Amec Foster Wheeler plc
IndustryEngineering and project management
Founded2014 by merger of AMEC plc and Foster Wheeler AG
Defunct9 October 2017; 4 years ago (2017-10-09)
FateAcquired by Wood Group
HeadquartersLondon, United Kingdom
Area served
North America
Key people
John Connolly (Chairman)
Jonathan Lewis (CEO)
Revenue£5,440 million (2016)
£300 million (2016)
£-514 million (2016)
Number of employees
36,000 (2017)

It was focused on the Oil, Gas & Chemicals, Mining, Power & Process and Environment & Infrastructure markets, with offices in over 55 countries worldwide. Roughly a third of its turnover came from Europe, half from North America and 12% from the rest of the world.

Amec Foster Wheeler shares were publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange and its American Depositary Shares were traded on the New York Stock Exchange.


Amalgamated Mechanical Engineering and Construction (AMEC) was formed from the 1982 amalgamation of Leonard Fairclough & Son (founded 1883) and the William Press Group (founded 1913). In 1988, AMEC went on to acquire Matthew Hall Group.[3] In 1996, AMEC took a 40% stake in Spie Batignolles from Schneider in association with a management buyout.[4] Amec launched the AMEC SPIE brand for engineering services in Europe,[5] a rail construction business AMEC Spie Rail was created, and the remaining construction business was retained as Spie Batignolles.[6] The company announced that it would seek to sell the construction arm of the business Spie Batignolles, and entered negotiations to secure a management buyout of that division;[6][7] the management buyout of the construction arm of Spie was completed in September 2003 with the aid of Barclays Private Equity Finance[8] and later that year Amec took full control of the remaining parts of Spie.[9]

Acquisitions in the new millennium included Ogden Environmental & Energy Services[10] and AGRA Monenco Inc., a North American engineering and services company, both in 2000[11] as well as the U.S. operations and equipment of Lauren Kamtech in 2003.[12] Then in 2004, AMEC was awarded a contract to assist in the reconstruction effort in Iraq, as part of a joint venture with Fluor Corp.[13]

In 2005, AMEC acquired UK-based NNC, a large nuclear consulting company and its subsidiaries, including Ontario-based Nuclear Safety Solutions ('NSS'), the nuclear safety division of OPG, which was spun off when OPG was privatised.[14] The European engineering business, AMEC SPIE, was sold to PAI Partners for €1,040 million in 2006[15][16][17][18] and the European rail business joint venture Amec Spie Rail systems was sold for an estimated £200million in 2007, to Colas Group.[19][20][21]

In 2007, AMEC purchased UK environmental consultancy Applied Environmental Research Centre (AERC),[22] providers of environmental science, planning engineering and monitoring services, and sold its UK construction arm to Morgan Sindall Group.[23] In 2008, it sold its internal plant hire division to Speedy Hire[24] before buying project services company Rider Hunt International,[25] North American environmental consulting firm Geomatrix Consultants, Inc., and Slovakian nuclear services company AllDeco.[26] In 2009, AMEC acquired Performance Improvement Group, Journeaux, Bedard & Associates and GRD Limited[27] and in 2010, it continued to expand with the £61.2 m purchase of Entec UK, one of the UK's largest Environmental Consultancies.[28] GRD Ltd. was a Perth-based company incorporating three companies Global Renewables, GRD Minproc, and Kirfield.[29] AMEC also acquired Australian-based businesses Currie and Brown (Australia)[30] and BurmanGriffiths and acquired a majority stake in S2V Consulting.[31]

In 2011, the company acquired US-based BCI Engineers & Scientists, Inc.,[32] MACTEC, a US-based engineering consultancy company,[33] and Zektin Group, an Australian-based specialist engineering consultancy for the oil and gas and resources industries.[34]

In January 2014, AMEC provisionally agreed a £1.9bn takeover of Swiss rival Foster Wheeler.[35] AMEC completed its purchase of Foster Wheeler on 13 November 2014 and changed its name to Amec Foster Wheeler plc.[36]

In 2015, the company tried to change its focus to deal with the decline in oil process.[37]

The acquisition of Foster Wheeler coincided with a downturn in revenues from the oil and gas sectors, its primary clients, leading to crippling debt.[38] The resultant financial difficulties led to the company's chief executive Samir Brikho stepping down in January 2016.[39][40]

In March 2017, Wood Group announced it would acquire the company for £2.2 billion.[41] In October 2017, the transaction was completed.[1][42]


Head office of Amec Foster Wheeler in London (on the right)

Amec Foster Wheeler employed over 40,000 people in more than 55 countries, including Afghanistan, Australia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, India, Kuwait, Qatar, Peru, Poland, Turkey and the United States. The company had three geographic business units covering engineering and project delivery operations—Americas; Northern Europe & Commonwealth of Independent States; Asia, Middle East, Africa & Southern Europe—and one power equipment business unit operating worldwide - The Global Power Group.[43]

AMEC's operations were structured until October 2012 into Natural Resources, Power & Process and Environment & Infrastructure.[44]

AMEC's UK construction business was sold in 2007.[45][46] Amongst its notable projects were: the Kielder Dam completed in 1982,[47] the Cumberland Infirmary completed in 2001,[48] the M6 Toll completed in 2003,[49] new offices for HM Revenue and Customs at Longbenton completed in 2005,[50] the Docklands Light Railway City Airport extension completed in 2005,[51] the University College London Hospital completed in 2005[52] and the New York Times Building completed in 2007.[53]


Amec Foster Wheeler supported children's charity SOS Children's Villages from 2007, funding educational projects in Asia. Amec Foster Wheeler also funded a green project in the Children's Village in Gwagwalada, Nigeria, enabling houses to become self-sufficient following the installation of solar power and water infrastructure.[54]


  1. ^ a b "Wood Group completes acquisition of Amec Foster Wheeler" (Press release). PR Newswire. 9 October 2017.
  2. ^ Pulsinelli, Olivia (11 October 2017). "Wood Group completes Amec Foster Wheeler acquisition, launches new brand, plans office closures". American City Business Journals.
  3. ^ Notes on Financial Times Actuaries Index 1988 Archived 27 February 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Michael Harrison (21 December 1996), "Amec firmly in Europe with pounds 40m Spie buy", The Independent, London, archived from the original on 11 November 2012
  5. ^ "AMEC SPIE Brand Launched Across Continental Europe",, AMEC, 1 July 2003
  6. ^ a b Jay P. Pederson, ed. (2004), "International Directory of Company Histories",, St. James Press, vol. 57, pp. 28–31 (Google books)
  7. ^ "Amec in talks over Spie Batignolles sale",, The Scotsman, 20 May 2003
  8. ^ "Spie Batignolles: History". (in French). Archived from the original on 22 February 2009.
  9. ^ "Exercise of Option To Acquire Outstanding Shares in Spie And Trading Update",, AMEC, 5 December 2002
  10. ^ Phoenix Business Journal (30 October 2000). "Amec buys Ogden Corp subsidiary". Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  11. ^ AMEC history – 2000 acquisition of AGRA Archived 3 March 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ "AMEC acquires Lauren Kamtech's U.S. operations to enhance project delivery in North America". 2 October 2003. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  13. ^ Terry Macalister (25 March 2004). "Amec deal saves Government blushes in Iraq". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  14. ^ Amec offers to buy NNC Holdings
  15. ^ "Disposal of AMEC SPIE",, AMEC, 27 July 2006
  16. ^ "AMEC plc ("AMEC") Sale of AMEC SPIE",, AMEC, 22 May 2006
  17. ^ Caroline Muspratt (24 November 2005), "Amec sells off Spie and considers splitting remaining group", The Telegraph, London
  18. ^ "AGM TRADING STATEMENT Proposed sale of AMEC SPIE and overall trading on track",, AMEC, 17 May 2006
  19. ^ Ian Fraser (25 February 2007), "Amec sells half of specialist rail arm to French company",
  20. ^ Steve Hawkes (19 February 2007), "Amec sells out of rail business", The Times, London
  21. ^ "AMEC to sell stake in rail firm",, Reuters, 19 February 2007
  22. ^ Goldie, Anna; Goldie2007-04-04T09:57:00+01:00, Anna Goldie Anna. "Amec buys Applied Environmental Research Centre". Building. Retrieved 19 November 2021.
  23. ^ "Morgan Sindall buys Amec's ailing construction business". Building. 4 June 2007.
  24. ^ Goodman, Eleanor (9 January 2008). "Speedy Hire buys Amec equipment hire arm". Building.
  25. ^ AMEC acquires leading project services company Rider Hunt International Archived 19 February 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  26. ^ "Amec buys nuclear firm for £11.1m". Construction News. 22 July 2008. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
  27. ^ Amec buys GRD Builder & Engineer
  28. ^ Amec moves to buy Entec Planning Resource, 2 April 2010
  29. ^ GRD website Archived 14 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  30. ^ Harris, James. "AMEC buys Currie & Brown". Archived from the original on 5 October 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  31. ^ "AMEC Purchases Majority Shareholding in S2V Consulting". Archived from the original on 15 July 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  32. ^ "BCI Engineers and Scientists acquired by AMEC". American City Business Journals. 2 February 2011.
  33. ^ "AMEC Closes MACTEC Acquisition - Quick Facts". RTTNews. 6 June 2011.
  34. ^ "AMEC Buys Australian Engineering Firm Zektin Group For US$48.4MM". Hart Energy. 4 March 2011.
  35. ^ "Amec offers £1.9bn to buy Swiss rival Foster Wheeler". BBC News. 13 January 2014.
  36. ^ Pulsinelli, Olivia (13 November 2014). "Energy engineering giants merge, will base Americas unit in Houston". American City Business Journals.
  37. ^ Edwards, Suzanne (24 June 2015). "Houston energy engineering firm changes focus to cope with oil slump". American City Business Journals.
  38. ^ Thomas, Nathalie; Ward, Andrew; Massoudi, Arash (13 March 2017). "Wood Group offer comes just in time for Amec Foster Wheeler". Financial Times.
  39. ^ Bow, Michael (19 January 2016). "Amec Foster Wheeler chief Samir Brikho exits as board loses faith". The Independent. Archived from the original on 22 January 2016.
  40. ^ Lea, Robert (13 March 2017). "Chief who shot himself in the foot". The Times.
  41. ^ "Wood Group agrees takeover of rival Amec Foster Wheeler". BBC News. 13 March 2017.
  42. ^ Pulsinelli, Olivia (11 October 2017). "Wood Group completes Amec Foster Wheeler acquisition, launches new brand, plans office closures". American City Business Journals.
  43. ^ "Amec Foster Wheeler". Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  44. ^ Amec Preliminary Results 2007 Archived 11 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  45. ^ Seawright, Stephen (13 December 2006). "Amec quits construction". The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group Limited. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
  46. ^ King, Ian (13 March 2017). "Amec bought by firm 'it once looked at buying'". Sky News. Sky UK. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
  47. ^ "Structure information". 26 March 2004. Archived from the original on 13 June 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  48. ^ "Visit Cumbria". Visit Cumbria. Archived from the original on 21 May 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  49. ^ "Motorway Archive". Archived from the original on 23 June 2009. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  50. ^ Amec: Public & Private buildings Archived 16 October 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  51. ^ "Docklands Light Railway – London City Airport extension now open". 6 December 2005. Archived from the original on 18 October 2006. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  52. ^ University College London Hospital wins award Archived 24 January 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  53. ^ "New York Times Project added to National OSHA Partnership with AMEC Americas". 9 November 2005. Archived from the original on 18 October 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  54. ^ "Amec Foster Wheeler Partnership with SOS Children". Archived from the original on 11 July 2015. Retrieved 10 July 2015.

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