RINA, the Italian inspection, certification and engineering consultancy, has moved strongly into the US market by acquiring Chicago-based Patrick Engineering.
Patrick will be fully integrated into the group’s Rina Consulting subsidiary operating in the engineering sector, according to a statement. No price was disclosed.
The US company is active in infrastructure, transport and renewable energy. It has an annual turnover of $82m and 340 employees in 19 offices mainly located in north-east US.
Rina said the move is in line with its strategy to grow both organically and via acquisitions. Chief executive Ugo Salerno said the acquisition and the combined expertise of the new organisation represented “a unique opportunity for expansion and growth in the thriving North American infrastructure market”.
“It establishes an excellent platform not only in this sector, but also to grow all Rina’s businesses to make the US one of our main hubs. Rina will gain leverage to export its specialised competencies in materials, lab testing, and innovative technology,” he added.
Patrick Engineering founder Daniel Patrick Dietzler said the company would accelerate its growth in new sectors and broaden its expertise.
“We have a strong client portfolio split between the government and the private sector including transit agencies in major cities and investor-owned utilities and heavy industries across North America. Through Rina’s international network we will gain expertise, particularly in offshore wind, high-speed rail and other emerging areas of experience our clients are asking for.”
Mr Salerno said the two companies had worked on infrastructure projects before the acquisition and hoped the incorporation of Patrick expertise would consolidate its work with cruiseship companies Royal Caribbean, Costa and Carnival on terminals in Italy and, perhaps in the US.
Rina is a member of the International Association of Classification Societies and has been showing double-digit revenue growth through diversification while other societies remained more focused on shipping.
“Maritime continues to be the most important sector for us, although it’s now only 30% of our business,” said Mr Salerno. “Rina doesn’t have the largest classed fleet in the world, but even so we are continuing to grow.”
He said the strategy was to gather competence across developing technologies. “In maritime we need a lot of competence from outside the sector.”