SCOTTISH energy giant SSE has said it plans to bid for windfarm acreage off the Netherlands as it aims to become a significant player in renewable energy markets overseas.

The scale of investor interest in the sector was underlined yesterday when Aberdeen-based shipping business North Star said it had been acquired by a private equity heavyweight amid expectations the company will benefit from a surge in offshore windfarm activity.

HeraldScotland: SSE chief executive Alistair Phillips-DaviesSSE chief executive Alistair Phillips-Davies

SSE reckons it can achieve significant success overseas by deploying expertise that it has acquired leading work on the development of big windfarms off the UK, such as Beatrice off north east Scotland.

The company noted it recently entered the Japanese offshore wind market and is actively exploring options in Poland, Portugal, Spain and the United States.

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It said it plans to participate in tenders for a windfarm zone in the Dutch North Sea, which are set to take place in the first half of 2022.

Noting the tenders have a clear focus on innovation, the group said it expects to use its ecological and systems integration expertise to develop innovative solutions to current and future challenges, within the Dutch offshore wind sector and elsewhere.

HeraldScotland: Picture: North StarPicture: North Star

Partners Group bought North Star from the Basalt Infrastructure Partners private equity business for an undisclosed sum.

North Star operates Emergency Response Vessels and specialised Service Operations Vessels that can be used to provide transport and accommodation for people working on offshore assets such as wind turbines.

Partners Group said North Star is well-positioned to capitalize on the transformative trends driving growth in the offshore wind industry.

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North Star has around 1,400 employees. The deal is not expected to result in job losses at the firm.

Basalt acquired North Star from Aberdeen-based Craig Group in 2017.

Partners Group has European headquarters in Switzerland and is listed on the country’s stock exchange.