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BusinessSubsea Expo a shore-fire success as underwater industry returns to face to...

Subsea Expo a shore-fire success as underwater industry returns to face to face events

SUBSEA Expo 2022 has been hailed a major success as the underwater industry returns to face to face events.

More than 4,000 visitors attended the Subsea Expo, and exhibitors reported doing “real” business with strong interest in their products and services.

The three-day conference and exhibition, organised by the Global Underwater Hub, is the first major industry event to take place since the restrictions on large indoor events were lifted.  

The event, which took place in Aberdeen from February 22nd-24th, featured more than 100 exhibitors, showcasing the innovation and expertise that exists across the underwater industry. 

Crowds on the exhibition floor of Subsea Expo 2022.
Subsea Expo 2022 attracted over 4,000 visitors. Picture by Abermedia/Michal Wachucik.

The conference, which focused on the theme Oceans of Opportunity, featured speakers from a wide variety of sectors.

These speakers discussed the challenges facing the underwater industry and how it can capitalise on the underwater segment of the global blue economy, which is set to grow from £50bn to £140bn by 2035. 

One of the highlights of the event was a gala dinner attended by nearly 400 people, which marked the return of the Subsea Expo Awards, a celebration of the achievements of companies and individuals in the UK underwater industry.  

Richard Knox, managing director at Verlume, an exhibitor and also sponsor of the event, said: “It was a busy show and we’ve been pleasantly surprised by how much it felt like a pre-pandemic event; with the exception of masks, obviously.

“We had a lot of conversations and leads coming out of the two days and look forward to making these count. 

“We’ve recently rebranded and the increased focus, at the event, on diversification ties well with where we are planning to go as a business.

“Traditionally, our client base was very oil and gas focused and we are excited to both help the sector decarbonise and branch out into defence and offshore wind.” 

Brian Storie, managing director of Spectis Robotics said: “We’ve been coming to Subsea Expo since 2010, and I have to admit that we were concerned about the attendance for this year, but we’ve been pleasantly surprised.  

 “We’ve been busy with enquiries, some from international companies, and have had some useful leads across a range of sectors including defence, oil and gas and renewables.

“I think there’s been a real need for the event this year and it’s been great to be a part of it.” 

Neil Gordon, chief executive of the GUH, added: “The timing of this event could not have been more pertinent, coming as it did at a pivotal time for the industry as we prepare for what we hope will be a post-pandemic future.

“We are on the cusp of a prolonged period of exponential growth and opportunity and for the first time in more than two years, industry professionals were able to get together, meeting in person to discuss the challenges which lie ahead and their solutions.

“To say that Subsea Expo 2022 had been eagerly anticipated would be an understatement.

“None of us could have predicted when we wrapped up Subsea Expo in 2020, the most successful in its 12-year history, that it would be almost two years before we would meet again.

“But, we’re back and that alone created a vibrancy, and an enthusiasm and optimism for the future, generating meaningful industry discussion and creating a real appetite for the cross-sector collaboration that will open the doors to these new opportunities.”

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