Six years ago we decided to focus on growing our overseas business, especially for our ultra-high resolution aerial digital surveys of offshore wildlife. These highly specialised surveys are carried out for the offshore wind industry, regulatory bodies and other marine developers.

The results have been dramatic. Turnover from outside the UK rose from only a few thousand pounds in 2012 to over £736,000 in 2016 and is expected to top £1.35 million this year.

Between 2012 and 2016 overseas business increased from less than one per cent of total turnover to over eight per cent.

Last year the company began working off the coast of New York on the world’s largest and most detailed aerial digital surveys of offshore wildlife, on behalf the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.

As well as New York, APEM has also won contracts in Germany, Ireland, France, Florida, New England, Hawaii and the Gulf of Mexico.

Growth in overseas business has led to new jobs and the company now employs 36 ornithologists, image analysts, data processors, pilots and support staff at its offices in Stockport and Hawarden airport, near Chester.

A landmark was reached in 2015 when the company opened its first US office in Gainesville, Florida.

APEM’s managing director, Dr Keith Hendry, said: “We’re delighted to win this award. We have worked hard and with real determination to build our overseas business and this is testament to that effort.

“Most of all, it shows the dedication of the staff who have identified opportunities, built relationships with clients and brought in new work, as well as the quality of the work that our experts have then produced.

“It’s a proud moment to see all of this hard work publically acknowledged through this award.”

Survey aircraft on a bird and marine mammal aerial survey over offshore wind turbines

Our aerial surveys of offshore wildlife are carried out using highly advanced camera systems mounted on twin-engine survey aircraft. Our most recent camera systems, Shearwater II and III, were designed and developed in-house.

Today the company has its own aircraft, camera systems and many expert staff. But the story goes back over a decade to 2006, when APEM purchased its first survey aircraft – a small single-engine aircraft for surveying rivers.

Fast forward to 2009 and the company spotted an opportunity to take its experience in ecological surveys into the emerging offshore wind market. Investing in the required twin-engine aircraft was a risk that quickly paid off, with APEM rapidly becoming a leader in offshore wildlife surveys, first in the UK and then internationally.

Dr Hendry said: “The future looks bright. In fact, we anticipate the announcement of a major new overseas contract win in the next few weeks.”

If you have any queries, please contact Dr Stuart Clough, director.
Alternatively you can email us here. Or call 0161 442 8938.