Getting Down to the Nuts & BoltsWed, 01/20/2016 - 11:48
With integrated services becoming so important in today’s hostile oil and gas industry, gasket and bolt manufacturer Lamons wants to supply its customers with a faster turnaround on products, allowing them to service the regional end users, including PEMEX, Ecopetrol, and PDVSA, through its distribution channels. Mauricio Bielaz, Lamons’ Sales Manager Latin America believes that this will allow the company to increase its presence in the Mexican oil and gas industry. “Our main goal was to have a strategically positioned facility to supply the Americas, which would provide us with more opportunities in terms of delivery, quality, and cost-reduction,” he explains. “We can easily travel to Mexico to control the operations and quality, whereas India or China would pose logistic challenges and supply chain delays.”
Lamons' primary business is downstream refining and petrochemicals. Nonetheless, Lamons continues to support the upstream market segment and to develop products and efficiencies to accommodate the industry when the cycle recovers. “Although our main business is in the oil and gas industry, we are trying to enter other markets such as mining, paper and pulp, and pharmaceuticals, where our presence is growing to compensate for the slow-down in the hydrocarbons industry.”
Depending on the application, there are different products the company can supply to fight and prevent corrosion, including bolts with different coatings and other anti-corrosive materials. Moreover, the company has developed a special isolation kit called Isotek Defender Fire Safe, which is primarily used in offshore platforms and has been requested by several major operators and pipeline companies. Lamons is divided into commodity items, such as bolt and gaskets on one side, and engineering products on the other. “We are placing a strong emphasis on the engineering products because we consider this to be quite a specific market, and we have the facility to manufacture and supply such products,” Bielaz reveals. “We plan to expand this area by working with other engineering companies and end users.” Customers look to Lamons to provide bolted joint solutions that reduce downtime and solve leakage issues. The engineering department carries out a variety of activities, including “lunch-and-learns”, teaching end users to implement various gasket types and torque values for the different projects.
The company is working toward increasing its involvement with IMP, which could benefit Lamons’ engineering division. This group works together with IMP to present an overview of the Lamons product portfolio and help it specify new gasket and bolting technologies, allowing the latter to understand how to develop the products. “We are still in the early stages of equipping the new plant, as it has taken longer than expected for the facility in Mexico to reach full capacity, which we are hoping to reach by September 2016,” Bielaz admits.