Drexel Vice President Eng. Ahmed Shalash speaks to Pipeline Magazine about how the company is looking to evolve to meet the challenges of a new energy landscape…
How important is Egypt to your growth strategy?
A growth strategy usually starts by identifying and accessing opportunities within the market. Egypt has become one of the very high potential countries in the Middle East. Our growth strategy is based on how Drexel is going to evolve to meet the challenges of today and in the future, to ensure keeping us working towards goals that go beyond what’s happening in the market today. We keep shareholders leaders and employees focused and aligned, to make decisions not based on today, but for an emerging tomorrow. This growth strategy is being carried out by continuous coordination among a cross-functional group of stakeholders in the Egypt market. Drexel has been building partners with Egyptian customers and delivering a distinctive and integrated customer experience.
What areas are you focusing on in Egypt?
We are focusing on new oil and gas projects and expansions, in addition to petrochemicals and fertilisers. A well-trained workforce, advanced equipment, and state of the art facilities earned Drexel Oilfield our solid reputation delivering client- focused services for multi nationals in the business.
Are you looking to expand your business in Egypt?
Yes… as previously mentioned, Egypt is booming and becoming the oil and gas hub in the region. This encourages us to increase our investment in assets and personnel to serve the local market with the best up to date services and technologies.
How has the business landscape changed in Egypt over the last few years?
The business landscape for Drexel has changed over the last few years from only acting as principals to major reputable companies, to being a very specialised service provider. We have established downstream and upstream business units, in addition to safety and specialised supplies units. In a nutshell, we go where the business is. So we have diverted from only serving production companies, now we cover refineries, petrochemicals, gas, fertilisers and even new industrial construction projects.
What is your outlook for Egypt’s oil and gas industry?
We are serving both organically and inorganic, we are developing the business within each of our companies. We’re growing the upstream and the downstream businesses. Within upstream, we are currently pushing through our safety division within Drexel, which provides safety service to around 30 per cent of the market in Egypt. At the same time we are looking into new accusations. Within downstream, we are also working very hard, not just for oil and gas companies, but also by providing services to petrochemicals and fertilizers companies. We’re aiming to be one of the top safety providers in training, PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), H2S, drilling operations and so on. We’re providing these services across the whole industry, not just for oil and gas.
Do you see an opportunity in Egypt’s downstream sector?
We have invested in our downstream business unit to ensure we are covering the full integrated services. This covers catalyst handling services, PPS services, and specialised mechanical services in addition to specialised safety solutions. Our portfolio covers services required during pre-commissioning of new projects and also specialised services during shutdowns and turnarounds. We have invested in new up to date nitrogen pumping units, vaporizers, tanks, flange management and hot tapping equipment in addition to leak sealing services. We have also invested in our safety related services equipment and gas monitoring tools. Our eyes are focused on working with new refining and petrochemical companies for new upgrading projects; we worked at Zohr Project in the downstream part of the gas plant.
We have just successfully completed works with Methanex Shutdown, completing catalyst change out scope, mechanical works and heat exchangers hydro jetting works. Also, we completed a new catalyst loading for GS/ERC refining and BP West Nile Delta Giza Fayoum and Raven plants including the full safety service for all the activities. This is in addition to nitrogen purging service to GUPCO Shutdowns and Sokhna NCIC Second Ammonia Tank.