1st Jun 2021

When our marketing team approached me and asked if I could produce a blog around my role as General Manager, my first thought was “what’s a blog”, but I’m delighted to have this chance to introduce both myself, and also Francois Offshore Catering which may be new to many of you reading.

Starting in my role just over a year ago in Jan 2020, I was excited to be leading a company with an established reputation in the offshore catering services sector, but also one making a fresh start from our base in Aberdeen, having previously only been situated in Singapore.

From our new base in Aberdeen, we are in an ideal position to work with companies operating in one of the world’s oil and gas epicentres, but we see ourselves as much more than just a Scottish or even UK company.


As part of the Northern Marine Group, I’m keen to stress to clients how we can provide them with the assurance of working with a sustainable provider with a unique worldwide service solution.

Through our in-house supply company Francois Marine and Offshore, with warehouses in Rotterdam and Singapore, and working in tandem with our Crewing division Northern Marine Manning Services, with offices in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Mumbai and St Petersburg, we are able to support our clients’ operations in South America, North America, Israel, UK, Australia, Antarctica, Asia and Europe.

I’ve worked in the offshore catering services sector for over 30 years, and I mean it when I say that this example of connectivity between divisions in not always a given.

I want to use this experience to break free of the regimented service delivery that many companies have come to expect from traditional suppliers and provide clients with a viable alternative, that matches their requirements.

We can back these promises up with delivery, boasting a 97% customer satisfaction score in our most recent review, and also the enviable fact that we have never experienced Lost Time to Injury (LTI) on any of our contracts, which is a remarkable statistic, and one that is testimony to our relentless focus on adhering to Health and Safety protocols on board.


The best of aspirations can’t be delivered without the right team in place, and at Francois Offshore Catering, I believe we have just that.

Iain Mearns is not only a highly experienced Operations Manager but also boasts a bachelor’s degree in food science, and has worked with major brands such as Unilever, Tesco and Marks & Spencer, in his 25 years within the catering industry.

Fellow Operations Manager, Paul Flannigan, spent 24 years in the Royal Navy before leaving to take up the role of Facilities and Flotel Services Manager for Prosafe, one of the world’s leading operators of Flotel accommodation. What Paul doesn’t know about mobilisation isn’t worth knowing.

And finally, Stewart Farmerey, with over 35 years offshore catering experience, starting as a chef before working his way through the ranks to become an Operations Manager, and gaining international experience through ESS (Compass Group), Trinity and Entier.


2020 was a year like no other, and although we still have some way to go, the vaccine offers hope that it is one that we never need to face the likes of again. I am immensely proud of how we coped during this unprecedented of times, and I look forward to returning again soon to talk about how we coped on-board, and lessons learned for the future.

Thank you for taking the time to read.

If you would like to reach out to me, you can via