Dominion Gas, the Aberdeen based supplier of industrial gases to the offshore industry, has announced its first major investment contract since the company's management buyout earlier this year, devoting £2.3m to NORRIS Cylinders.

The deal with one of the world's largest manufacturers of large high pressure and acetylene cylinders comes as part of a £4.5m investment plan in new equipment.

Bought out by the management team, chief executive George Yule and fellow directors Gerry Stephens, Paul McAlister and recently appointed finance director Bryan Park, with backing from private equity firm Graphite Capital, Dominion is the only Scottish-based industrial cylinder gas specialist supplying the full range of diving, welding, industrial, laboratory, test and calibration gases.

Dominion chief executive, George Yule, said, $quot;The whole team at Dominion is very focused and excited about the growth potential and the future of the company. The first step in our growth strategy is to invest in new equipment, which will aid our rapid international expansion plans.$quot;

Although the company's headquarters are in Dyce and its largest market is currently in the North Sea, with production plants in Singapore, Stavanger and another Norwegian plant due to open in Bergen, rapid future growth is on the agenda along with increased employment. This is highlighted as Yule states, $quot;We currently employ 41 staff in Scotland, with plans to increase our UK workforce substantially by the end of 2008, further showing our commitment to this sector and the local economy. Worldwide Dominion employs 50 people, again with expansion plans already underway for our international operations, where we have more scope for developing a greater share of these markets.$quot;