Poised for the Entry of Foreign CompetitionWed, 01/20/2016 - 16:36
SITec, a Mexican company that develops fluid control solutions for the oil and gas industry enables its clients to stop the flow in a pipeline for maintenance activities. The company intervenes by designing the engineering plans and identifying the ONIS equipment required to complete pipeline maintenance. “Using ONIS line blinds instead of typical industry blinding solutions generates several advantages,” explains Erick Sánchez Salas, SITec’s Country Sales Manager “With the traditional widespread method, and depending on the pipeline diameter, this type of operation would involve 5-12 people, hydraulic machinery, and require 7-36 hours. With ONIS equipment, the flow can be stopped in ten minutes or less, with no need for more than one person, or any type of machinery. This represents several thousands of dollars saved every day.”
The company participates mostly in areas ranging from production, fluids transportation, refining, petrochemicals, and energy generation. “We have 230 different pieces of equipment installed in oil and gas projects in production areas, including both platforms in Gulf of Mexico and land installations,” boasts Sánchez Salas. “We work with clients on several solutions for natural gas, sour gas, oil, condensates, diesel, and fuel transportation for turbo machinery. In addition, SITec cooperates with major companies such as Grupo Dragados to develop infrastructure that enables players in the energy sector to install their own products.” Sánchez believes the company can capitalize on several competitive advantages following the Energy Reform. “We are concentrating our commercial strategies on developing our position with decision makers and stakeholders in the refining industry in Mexico,” he shares. “SITec is the only company with licenses for the maintenance of ONIS equipment, which allows PEMEX to optimize the processes, reducing time and costs, and provide innovative technology, which are priorities for PEMEX operations.”
In the pipeline segment, SITec is creating dialogue with both private companies and public institutions, such as CENAGAS. One of these will be the Mayakan pipline, connecting Macuspana in Tabasco with the Yucatan Peninsula. “We will be able to make a pre-emptive effort since infrastructure is required before operations can begin, and therefore we will be able to capitalize on this project prior to any major operators,” he shares. “This creates an opportunity for joint ventures and associations, and we have a concerted focus on new partnerships.”
For example, SITec is currently working with 3tier, a US company focused on delivering environmental services, and is also working on various projects with companies from Germany and the Netherlands in pipeline maintenance and construction. In an increasingly competitive arena, Sánchez believes that SITec can offer competitive advantages like the company’s ten-year experience in the oil and gas industry and its seasoned knowledge of the market. “The market in Mexico is complex, not only geologically or due to the particular characteristics of the oil and gas industry, but we also have an economic and regulatory environment that can be built upon,” he asserts. “We are experienced in dealing with the economic and social environment of the country, which is an invaluable advantage for foreign companies in an alliance.”
“We know about the significant benefits the oil and gas industry brings to the country, but we are also aware that its operations have an effect on the environment,” Sánchez admits. Taking care of the planet is an intrinsic value at SITEC, which is evidenced by the processes the company implements, such as extracting sulfuric acid from crude oil, optimizing the processes of water treatment plants, and environmental impact reducing fracking practices. Putting values into practice, the company does not use chemicals in activities involving soil, instead using its alliance with 3Tier to offer bacterial bio-friendly cleaning solutions and waste management strategies.
SITec’s expansion plans include establishing a new ONIS manufacturing plant, and Sánchez believes that Mexico is the ideal location for this operation. “Mexico is the second region in terms of ONIS accreditation, only behind the US market,” Sánchez reveals. “Tabasco, as the oil and gas capital of Mexico, and possibly one of the oil and gas capitals of Latin America, could be a strategic location for this plant. Mexico also has several trade agreements with the US, which allows the company to produce in Mexico and then sell across the continent. “For a company like ours, Mexico is one of the most attractive countries in the world due to its myriad of trade agreements,” conveys Sánchez.