Malaysia – David Aldous, Regional Manager Asia Pacific Measurement Systems & Deric Phoon, District Sales Manager Valves & Measurement
“We are not only providing the best technical solution but we can also follow up with the services that our customers require,” says David Aldous – Regional Manager Asia Pacific Measurement Systems. One of Cameron’s objectives has been to increase its service capability; aiming to grow aftermarket revenues.
What have been the highlights for 2014?
David Aldous (DA): Overall it has been a good year for Cameron in Malaysia. The company’s main growth driver in the country has been the Tapis Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) project. The Tapis EOR project is Malaysia’s first large-scale enhanced oil recovery project and utilizes the immiscible water-alternating-gas process to recover remaining oil reserves from the Tapis field by gradually sweeping remaining oil to the producing wells, increasing the overall recovery of the field. Cameron equipment for this project includes water alternating gas manifolds and differential pressure cone meters. The water-alternating-gas process is an enhanced oil recovery technique where water injection and gas injection are carried out alternately for periods of time to provide better sweeping efficiency of the oil reservoir.
The Tapis EOR project is one of the largest offshore EOR projects in Southeast Asia, representing a RM8 billion investment by ExxonMobil and its joint-venture partner Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd (PCSB) to help ensure reliable and sustainable energy supplies for Malaysia.
Cameron provides flow equipment products, systems and services to worldwide oil, gas and process industries through three business segments, Drilling & Production Systems, Valves & Measurement (V&M) and Process & Compression Systems (PCS). How is Cameron in Malaysia organized?
DA: We have operating units for all our divisions in Malaysia. In 2011 Cameron established a subsea manufacturing facility in Johor, Malaysia, built to expand the company’s ability to provide complete subsea systems solutions to customers worldwide. The Johor facility was created as part of an overall investment to increase capacity to meet the projected growth in the subsea market. The facility is an 16,908-sq-m world-class subsea manufacturing site, designed to supply marine wellheads, gate valves, block valves, subsea connection systems and subsea trees for the Asia Pacific region. The Johor facility complements the Cameron Malaysian facilities in Subang, Labuan, Kemaman, Miri and Kuala Lumpur.
The Company implemented a strategic initiative to rationalize its business portfolio that resulted in the decision to exit Cameron’s compression business. Cameron expects to complete the sale of its Centrifugal Compression business prior to year end.
Specifically for the V&M division for which I am responsible, one of our objectives has been to increase our service capability; aiming to grow aftermarket revenues. We now see the aftermarket facet of the business becoming the predominant element. It is no longer enough to simply build and supply a good product; there must also be a good service and aftermarket division to supplement the product.
There is a lot of ongoing work behind the scenes at Cameron, to convert our functionality and structures from a product-manufacture and delivery company, into one with a good aftermarket package. This is a global initiative by Cameron to become a leader in this field and we have invested a lot of resources in this direction.
Deric Phoon (DP): Cameron has invested significantly in Malaysia. The USD100 million (RM338 million) Subsea plant, located at the Port of Tanjung Pelepas Free Zone in Johor has been one of the company’s largest investments in Asia.
Moreover Cameron’s Project Valve Management (PVM) team is based in Kuala Lumpur but responsible for major projects globally. Cameron is one of the only valve companies in the world with such a program that provides technical, commercial and operational intelligence to large-scale, high-specification oil and gas projects. In partnership with our aftermarket services team, the PVM program provides complete life cycle service and support, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
What is the importance of the Valve & Measurement division in South East Asia for the overall Group?
DA: It’s vital. If you mention the name Cameron within the industry, valves are usually the first thing that comes to mind. Measurement on the other hand is very small but a growing niche area. In fact, measurement has been the most profitable operating unit within the company.
The company is sharpening its focus on the business segments that target the oil and gas equipment markets: markets that will be core to Cameron’s future growth and that will provide synergies, share common processes, customers, technologies, as well as provide aftermarket services and growth opportunities. In line with the company’s recent organizational changes the valve and measurement operating units have merged into one division. Measurement within the V&M division is one of the high focus areas for growth.
The company has incorporated a ‘One Cameron’ approach to its corporate ideology. If you check the “One Cameron” initiative you will find that the company focuses on sharing capacity and taking a more holistic approach to move forward as one united team. We have succeeded because we are increasingly focused on the basics of designing better, manufacturing better and servicing better as One Cameron.
What have been the trends in 2014?
DP: When we set the target for 2014 we were foreseeing growth in the market. We are still hopeful reaching the targets set but we have seen that the market softened. At Cameron we have noticed a “wait and see” attitude in the industry; many projects have shifted. Everybody aims to reengineer the design in order to meet the end-users budget.
DA: Another development has been the drop in oil price. However I have not found disruption in projects. For example in my home country, Canada, oil is very expensive produce. Therefore people always look at the break-even point; we know exactly which oil price is profitable and which is not. In Malaysia however, we are not that far because oil is less expensive to produce.
Could you tell us how this innovation is driving growth?
DP: Cameron stands for quality and durability. We are not the cheapest but we are durable. The interchangeability for spare parts is present and we offer the availability of special expertise for repair work. We are not only providing the best technical solution but we can also follow up with the services that our customers require.
Innovation is part of Cameron’s value system. We maintain an open dialogue with our customers to establish more innovations for the industry. This technology leadership is the reason why we are being chosen.
DA: For the measurement unit, a majority of the products make up the cash register on the pipeline. Our systems and products are used to establish the quantity and quality of the product as part of custody transfer. Technology is therefore critical. Producers want to know how much they are making and also when you have schemes such as Production Sharing Agreements or Royalty’s that have to be paid to government; it all has to be accurate and measured. It is actually a positive development for the measurement unit when things get more demanding. We will need to continue develop our technologies. As a matter of fact, next year Cameron will launch a new flow computer called the Scanner 3100, which will stand out in the industry for upstream pipeline measurement.
Additionally we are leaders in terms of sales and technology for products sampling and blending. We build online blenders to blend crude oil to customers’ specification for refinery inlet or export terminal.
In terms of looking at Malaysia as a hub for the region, what has attracted Cameron to Malaysia?
DA: When the choice was made a number of years ago, it would have been Singapore, Kuala Lumpur or Jakarta. In addition Bangkok is becoming increasingly popular for similar reasons as Kuala Lumpur became attractive; because of a large talent base where you can operate on a lower cost compared to Singapore. In addition Kuala Lumpur has a great infrastructure and airport.
DP: Also, what makes Malaysia attractive is the command of English compared to Indonesia and Thailand. In addition Malaysia has more space than Singapore. Singapore has grown almost 23 per cent over the past 50 years but the oil and gas industry requires space, which is becomes scarce in Singapore.
DA: Malaysia has a lot of things going for them but once in a while they should have a look over the border. The Singaporeans are absolutely very good in developing and promoting business. The Singaporean Economic Development Board has made it very attractive for international companies to invest in Singapore. That being said, Malaysia needs to make it worthwhile for international companies to build facilities here and not in Singapore.
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