REGENERATION bosses have lured a thriving offshore company to the area.

Riverside Inverclyde welcomed CMI Offshore Group (CMI), owners and global operators of a 25-strong offshore fleet, to a business centre in Port Glasgow.

The company has snapped up a lease for the largest space at Scarlow House, which can accommodate up to 10 people.

It currently has six members of staff working at nearby Ferguson Marine on the development of its air cushioned barge for a project in Kazakhstan.

CMI was established in 2006 and has since been on a steady expansion path.

Based originally in Aberdeen, it was bought in 2013 by a Greek shipping business with interests in Eastern Europe, Africa and South America.

The news comes hot on the heels of another global maritime business, Blu Marine, announcing its arrival in Inverclyde in February.

George MacLeod, construction manager at CMI, said: “We are working hard to bring the air cushioned barge project to a successful conclusion alongside Ferguson Marine and other project partners.

“Having a base here in Inverclyde is therefore essential.

"We are tendering for other work in the UK and are confident that our Inverclyde presence will grow as we win increased business.”

The chief executive of Riverside Inverclyde, Fiona Maguire, says she is delighted to see CMI sign up.

She added: "Inverclyde has a rich shipbuilding history, and the arrival of a further globally-operating marine business is excellent news for the area.

“We believe CMI’s presence will encourage other marine service sector companies to consider Inverclyde as a highly-attractive location with a skilled workforce and extensive opportunities for our growing marine services’ sector.”

The company's tenancy brings Scarlow House back up to full capacity.

Gerry Marshall, chief executive of Ferguson Marine Engineering, said: “The fact that CMI now has a local base is a fantastic boost and we look forward to working alongside George and his team.”