C&C Technologies Inc., an ocean-bottom surveyor based in Lafayette, will be acquired by Houston-based Oceaneering International Inc. for about $230 million in cash.

Privately owned C&C specializes in mapping in deep water, using customized, autonomous underwater vehicles. The company also does marine construction surveys for both surface and subsea projects and provides satellite-based positioning services for drilling rigs, seismic vessels and construction vessels.

C&C, founded in 1992, has 550 employees in 10 offices worldwide. The company was the first to offer commercial autonomous underwater vehicle survey services to the oil and gas industry.

C&C will retain its name, and its headquarters will remain in Lafayette.

Oceaneering said it expects to complete the deal in early April. Oceaneering expects C&C to generate $20 million to $30 million of earnings before income tax, depreciation and amortization, an indication of profitability.

Under the agreement, C&C co-founder and CEO Thomas Chance will remain with the company for at least a year to smooth the transition.

Chance, 55, said Monday that he and his brother, C&C co-founder Jimmy Chance, combed through a list of potential investors for 10 months to identify companies they believed provided the best fit.

“From there, we worked our way through the top prospects” before deciding on Oceaneering, Chance said. “In a time of falling oil prices and softening markets, C&C’s work will be increasingly important while allowing Oceaneering to keep those earnings in-house.”

Oceaneering President and Chief Executive Officer M. Kevin McEvoy said the deal strategically expands Oceaneering’s services.

“C&C’s services are used in all of the major phases of an offshore field life cycle, particularly in exploration and development, and are highly complementary with Oceaneering’s,” McEvoy said.

The acquisition is expected to increase the use of the remotely operated vehicles and vessels Oceaneering uses to support survey services; enhance Oceaneering’s ability to secure work surveying subsea pipelines, including X-ray and ultrasonic inspections; and boost demand for the company’s video and data services.

Oceaneering expects to issue 2014 year-end earnings Feb. 11 and will update its overall 2015 outlook at that time.

Thomas and Jimmy Chance, 58, grew up in the oil and gas business. Their father started John E. Chance & Associates in 1957 and grew the company with innovations such as Starfix, a global positioning system that was operational before the U.S. government launched GPS.

John Chance sold his company in 1991 to Netherlands-based Fuegro-McClelland. Shortly after that, his sons started C&C Technologies.

Thomas Chance said Oceaneering has more than 100 offices worldwide, including near Washington D.C. Chance said Oceaneering’s advanced technology division gives C&C more opportunities for government contracts.

Oceaneering’s $230 million purchase also would give it a 20 percent stake in C&C’s autonomous service vehicle business, a C&C sister company that specializes in unmanned boats.

Advocate reporter Billy Gunn contributed to this story.