UK trade: Buy Fisher James & Sons

The company is run by a very sensible management team and has a broad range of capabilities: including providing specialist offshore equipment and personnel, operating a tanker fleet and providing safety and control systems.

Many of its services are highly specialist: including submarine rescue. When a Russian submarine became entangled in fishing nets in 2005, James Fisher’s Scorpio underwater rescue vehicle and personnel were flown to the Kamchatka Peninsula, off Russia’s eastern coast. Scorpio successfully cut away the fishing nets, which led to the safe return of the seven-man crew of the submarine, the AS-28 Priz.

The company also has a business providing specialist engineering and technical services to the nuclear industry.

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In recent times James Fisher’s approach has been to expand the core marine services side of the business into the fast-growing markets of Asia and the developing world. This strategy appears to have paid off, with the company reporting overall revenues up by 15 per cent.

This is a growing company providing niche services and run by an experienced management team with a good track record.

Giles Hargreave is manager of the Marlborough Special Situations fund