UAE-based rig builder Laprell has set up a joint venture in Saudi Arabia to increase its business in the kingdom after a Saudi company acquired a 10% stake in the company, Pipeline Oil and Gas Magazine reported.

Under the name Lamprell Saudi Arabia, the joint venture is a partnership with local investment company Asyad Holding, allowing Lamprell to qualify for Saudi Aramco contracts.

Aramco, in accordance with the government’s In-Kingdom Total Value Add Program, requires companies and suppliers to contribute to the development of local Saudi capabilities.

Blofeld Investment Management – a private family fund based in Saudi Arabia, owned by the same investor who owns Asyad Holdings – increased its ownership share in Lamprell by 10.08%.

“We are uniquely positioned to build our business in Saudi Arabia with the complementary opportunities of investment in the International Maritime Industries yard and our long-term agreement bid to Saudi Aramco,” said Christopher McDonald, Lamprell chief executive.

“We are committed to developing our local capabilities and we are looking to realize these opportunities by aligning with strong partners In-Kingdom,” McDonald continued, “Much of Lamprell’s effort over the past two years focused on building a presence in the region and we are pleased to see our strategy supported by local partner.”

In 2017, Lamprell invested in a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, Bahri, and Hyundai Heavy Industries known as International Maritime Industries to develop a maritime yard in the Arabian Gulf.