Big possibilities

A part of Midroc Europe, Rodoverken is a successful service and contracting company specialising in the design, construction and erection of customised industrial plants.

Its operations consist of tank erection, pipe spool fabrication and pipe erection, primarily for clients in the Nordic region.

For storage tank construction, Rodoverken uses a special expertise well renowned in the industry – the unique spiral technique whereby tanks are raised as fabrication proceeds. The company works primarily with carbon steel materials. Rodoverken has a special group, SIM that is specialised in stainless steel. It has over 30 years of experience and a specialised variant of the spiral method adjusted just for stainless tanks makes Rodoverken a complete supplier of tanks and pressure vessels, independent of material.

Fredrik Nilsson, marketing director at the company, explains that the piping and mechanical side of the business primarilyfocuses on the energy sector: “We have a lot ofexpertise in steel and piping and are working on new facilities and projects for sectors such as nuclear plants and refineries. We also do a lot of maintenance work on existing sites,” he says.

“The other side of our business is the construction of tanks and pressure vessels, which are used for the storage of water, gasoline and other kinds of products. In addition, we also build accumulators for central heating power plants. Special vessels are used store centrally heated water, which is then used to feed industry and houses without water for central heating.”

Rodoverken mainly focuses its efforts in Sweden, but as Fredrik points out, the company has been working beyond its borders: “At the moment we are working with some tank projects in the north of Europe, so we are expanding and hopefully we will see more business in this area. We have also established some co-operations with other companies, and now we are putting some more effort to this and really trying to grow our presence in Europe.

“On the pipe and mechanical side we are expanding in Norway, which is our main focus point except for what already exists in Sweden. We have been building in Norway for 30 years but right now we are trying to get a more stable presence in that market. We have already made very good progress and we are well on the way to succeeding with that plan.”

It is clear that Rodoverken is always looking to the future and formulating a strategy for growth, and to this end, it is looking at the LNG market, where Fredrik confirms there is already good growth potential: “We know that in southern Europe there has already been development of LNG infrastructure, but in the north of Europe there is more or less nothing, and that is a market that is growing quite heavily right now.

“This is not a temporary development but rather something that we can rely on for many years, especially when you also take the environmental issues into account – there are some big green benefits that come from using LNG.”

Indeed, one of the major projects currently underway at Rodoverken is on an LNG plant, as Fredrik highlights: “The customer is Skangass and it is building the largest LNG receiving terminal in Scandinavia next to Preem’s refinery in Lysekil. Natural gas will replace butane and naphtha as feedstocks in the refinery’s steam reformer. This will reduce the CO2 emissions by up to 130,000 tonnes per year. We are very involved in this project, and we are using our unique method to make the tank for the LNG as well.”

This method is one of Rodoverken’s unique selling points. “We have a horizontal means of erecting the tanks from the ground, and that is why we are quite strong on the market, especially in Sweden,” says Fredrik.

Rodoverken’s spiral method is used to install tanks without using scaffolding. The procedure involves gradually rotating the tank upwards, which means that the work can be carried out in a small area from one and the same place. “Sometimes a customer needs a big tank on a small site, which means it can’t be pre-built and transported, but has to be constructed in-site,” says Fredrik. “With the spiral method the sheetmetal plates are welded in place from the same position at ground level, which requires only a small work area, and weather protection can be provided together with an optimum work environment. We’ve put a lot of effort into developing this method and it is something we are really trying to make the market aware of.”

The method also offers a lot of safety benefits, and this area is another thing that is high on the agenda for Rodoverken at present: “We are looking at the right secure ID and health and protection for our workers,” confirms Fredrik. “We see this as a must for customers, as they have started asking about our accident statistics and our health and safety record. So we are working really hard on this, and as a result we have to put a lot of demands on suppliers to ensure they too are working to make sure we can offer a safe working place for the team on-site.”

Another of Rodoverken’s competitive advantages is the support of a strong parent company like the International Midroc Group. Midroc Europe brings together the European Midroc companies, and offers undertakings and services with financial and technical strength combined with highly competent human resources. Fredrik notes that having access to this expertise ‘in-house’ opens up many opportunities for the company.

It has been a challenging economic environment for the past few years, and although overall the market is looking quite tough, Rodoverken can see a lot of opportunities in the future: “We now see that on the piping and mechanical side there is an increasing focus on advanced maintenance, and we’ve earned some good references in that area. Our years of experience in this market are telling us there are quite good opportunities in Norway, so we are confident that we can continue to grow our business.

“On the tank side, we are developing storage tanks for central heating and we see that there is a market for this in mainland Europe as well as Sweden. And of course we see a new upcoming market for the LNG sector. So although the overall market is looking challenging, we see big possibilities for us over the next three years, and we believe that 2013 is looking pretty good,” Fredrik concludes.

Services: Design, prefabrication and installation of industrial plants