Henry Boot Developments appoints Robertson as contractor to deliver new AECC

Henry Boot Developments – a leading UK property developer and Aberdeen City Council’s joint venture partner for the new multi-million pound Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre – has appointed Robertson Group as its main contractor to deliver the project. The Robertson contract will entail site preparation works, including ground and infrastructure works, as well as building the new arena and conference centre and one of the three on-site hotels.

The new Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre will provide four times the exhibition space available at the current AECC, and increase the maximum capacity to 12,500 in the arena. The new facility is a key element of Aberdeen City Council’s Strategic Infrastructure Plan to grow the city’s economy.

Robertson was appointed further to a competitive tendering process and will work closely with Henry Boot Developments and Aberdeen City Council to create the new world-class facility for Aberdeen and the North East. During the construction period, starting in August 2016 until completion in 2019, 600 new jobs will be created, including a number of new apprenticeships.

Established in Elgin in 1966 by Bill Robertson CBE, who leads the business as executive chairman the Group is now one of the largest independently owned construction, infrastructure and support services companies in the UK. Robertson employs 1900 staff across Scotland and England. They are currently building the new £120m visitor centre and distillery for global luxury brand The Macallan. The Stirling based business was also recently announced as the chosen partner to deliver the new £60m Orkney Hospital.

Nick Harris of Henry Boot Developments said: “Following the sod cutting last month, I am very pleased that we are now in a position to appoint Robertson Group as the contractor to deliver this vital project and I am looking forward to working with them over the next three years. We understand how important the new world-class Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre is to the economy in Aberdeen and the North East and are pleased to be appointing Robertson Group which has close historical and current links to the area.”

Aberdeen City Council Leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: “Following on from the sod-cutting last month, it is great to see the new AECC progressing as it’s a key part of the one of the biggest regenerations in the history of Aberdeen.

“Work on the site should really advance now that a contractor has been appointed and it will be exciting to see the development take shape over the coming months.

“The new AECC is a vital part of ensuring Aberdeen can compete on a global basis with other major cities and also for its future prosperity as it will attract bigger names in entertainment, as well as more international events and conferences.”

Bill Robertson, executive chairman of Robertson Group, said: “Robertson is delighted to have been selected as the main contractor on what will be an iconic venue for millions of visitors from all over the world.

“We have significant experience in delivering complex, high value, innovative, major projects across the country.

“Robertson has had a base in Aberdeen for over 25 years so we understand the local area. We will focus, where possible, on local employment, the local supply chain and working in partnership with the communities in the local area.”

The new AECC is expected to contribute an additional 4.5 million visitors, £113 million of visitor spend and £63m net GVA to the Scottish economy. It will also result in the creation of 352 full-time-equivalent permanent positions by year 10 of operations. The new arena and conference centre has a strong role to play in delivering the Regional Economic Strategy, by anchoring existing international events and competing nationally and internationally for new events, as well as by broadening the appeal of the North East to a global audience.