In technology

With technology continuing to become ever more important to almost all aspects of modern life, Imtech Industry International’s multidisciplinary approach embraces this demand by providing integrated technology solutions to a number of markets.

Uniquely combining electrical and mechanical engineering with ICT (information and communication technology) Imtech offers whole chain services from consultancy and design to implementation, maintenance and management. Employing 25,000 people Imtech expects to achieve a total turnover of five billion euros for 2010.

Making up part of the overall Imtech group is Imtech Netherlands, which is divided into four main business units – Imtech Building Services, Imtech Industrial Service, Imtech Special Market Solutions and Imtech Contracting. Working within the Imtech Contracting division is Imtech Vonk, an engineering and contracting company focused on electrical, control and automation, and power electronics.

Jan Slettenhaar, managing director of Imtech, describes the company’s main areas of operation: “We are active within three main markets – oil and gas, power electronics and energy. The oil and gas market in particular is an area that we specialise in as well as other high grade industries, and one that we have worked in for the last 15 years. Originally we sold prefabricated housing for use as an equipment or control building, complete with elevated floors, lighting and air conditioning. These units could be placed in all kinds of locations, in deserts or swamps for example, and some were even blast resistant. Over the last ten years we also expanded our services into mechanical works as an EPC contractor, due to increasing demand within the industry for an EPC multidisciplinary approach. Within the power electronics side of the business we are producing power sources and convertors that are tailored more to the scientific institutes, which have specific energy requirements. Our third market is the energy sector where we convert gas power for example, and connect this to the grid. A rapidly growing part of the energy side of the business is bio-power using wood chippings or steam, which has required us to expand our workforce substantially.”

Imtech works with a number of major oil and gas companies such as Shell, Chevnon and Total, on a local basis as well as internationally, and EPC contractors such as Daewoo and Fluor. Such an established client base is testament to the strengths of Imtech Vonk as Jan elaborates: “I think our close relationships with clients is a key contributing factor to the success of the business. We are able to talk to clients on a professional expert level and challenge them with the best possible solution even if this is different to their initial vision. We also strive to offer a broad range of services within the markets that we work in and to supply customers with complete integrated solutions. Within the oil and gas market one of our specialities is the interchanging of control systems at various levels. I think that this is due to our broad knowledge of different equipment and suppliers, rather than being tied to one particular type.”

Alongside its clients, Imtech works very closely with its suppliers to ensure a successfully operation: “Having a good relationship with suppliers is very important,” says Jan. “It is important to give and take and to work closely together to ensure that we all achieve the best results.” Being a major player in the market Imtech works with a range of local and international suppliers, including such names as global technology group and solutions and software supplier, Invensys.

The rapid growth of the energy market has meant that despite the recession, Imtech had to employ 16 new personnel in 2009 to keep up with demand. Jan expands on the reasons behind this growth: “The one downside of the energy market is that it is a very decentralised market, smaller units in particular are dependent on financing from various sources and we have seen that global location has a major effect on the availability of this financing. In one country there may be a lot of opportunities and banks ready to invest, where as in another it may be much more difficult to obtain money. However as a whole the global demand for green energy and sustainable solutions is continuing to grow and we are developing as part of that. Currently we are building a new bio-mass plant in Holland, which is due to open in April 2011.” The facility will provide green energy and heating for nearly 1600 homes and 20,000 square metres of public facilities such as schools and shops.

Looking at the current conditions of the market Jan concludes with the Imtech future vision: “We see a number of opportunities in the future for the company to develop and increasingly clients are asking for solutions which are focused on their needs. By working very closely with clients we are able to develop the best solution for their requirements With many markets growing stronger, increasingly we are looking at using solutions from the local markets, rather than always supplying them from our base in the Netherlands. Moving ahead, I’d like to see the Imtech group as whole combining its efforts to better serve clients with an integrated expert knowledge from all areas of operations such as electrical, chemical and ICT.

Services: Engineering and contracting