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Wood Group Continues U.S. Expansion With Acquisition of Ohio-Based Oil/Gas Construction Firm

Scotland-based John Wood Group plc has acquired privately-owned oil and gas construction firm Kelchner Inc. for an undisclosed sum, expanding its global footprint to the Appalachian Basin.

Kelchner, headquartered in Western Ohio's Warren County, with three other offices throughout the state and in West Virginia and Tennessee, has grown rapidly in recent years through its work in the Marcellus and Utica shales. The company generated $93 million in sales last year and has become a leading excavation company for the industry, providing upstream, midstream and also fabrication services.

The Wood Group, which has energy services operations and three business segments working in engineering, production support and maintenance management services in 50 countries across the world, said it will roll Kelchner into Wood Group PSN Americas division, which said "the acquisition of Kelchner adds to Wood Group's geographical footprint in the major U.S. shale regions, extending our presence to [the] Marcellus and Utica."

The Wood Group's announcement comes less than three weeks after it said it would spend $150 million to buy the Texas-based Infinity Group, which provides industrial construction services in the petrochemical, refining and gas processing sectors along the Gulf Coast. It also recently announced a series of contracts with Statoil ASA, ConocoPhillips and Royal Dutch Shell plc for various projects worldwide.

Kelchner, founded in 1948, also serves the broader industrial sectors and provides turnkey compressor and metering stations, civil work, roustabout, roadway and well pad construction services. The Wood Group said CEO Todd Kelchner will continue to lead Kelchner and its 375 employees.

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