Zerust Oil & Gas
Effectively combating corrosion
Since the late 1970s, Northern Technologies International Corporation (NTIC) has been a market leader in the field of corrosion prevention. Zerust Oil & Gas, a division of NTIC, provides corrosion mitigation solutions and services to clients in the oil and gas, and process chemical industries. Working with the likes of BP, Chevron, Petrobras, Shell and Enbridge, the company leverages NTIC’s global network to deliver products, provide local support, conduct client training, and monitor solution performance. Its dedicated R&D team also works with its clients to develop customized corrosion mitigation solutions and shared IP technologies.
“Here at Zerust Oil & Gas, we were the first company to successfully introduce to market a safe class of vapor corrosion inhibitor (VCI) products, and today we stand here as the largest VCI-focused company in the world,” begins Gautam Ramdas, the company’s Vice President of Global Market Development. “Initially, these VCI products became widely used in the manufacturing space, especially amongst automotive companies, most of whom continue to use them to this day. My role has been to see if it would be possible to introduce the company’s products to other strategic areas such as the marine, defense, aerospace, and oil and gas sectors.”
The latter sector has proven to be a fruitful source of interest, with the level of positive response from those operating within it making it a key area of strategic growth for the company moving forward. “By utilizing our expertise in the VCI space, we have developed a number of unique solutions specifically for the oil and gas industry, which are designed to protect assets and equipment for – among other things – aboveground storage tanks, pipeline preservation, casing protection, equipment preservation, and rig-stacking,” Gautam continues.
Through its association with NTIC, Zerust Oil & Gas can boast of being represented in more than 60 countries – with joint ventures in around 30 of these – meaning that it can offer a high degree of localized support to its customers. As Gautam explains, this isn’t the only strength that the company sees as key to its success. “One of the things that truly differentiates us is the level of service that we provide our customers. We have never been a business that is simply about selling a product, rather what we do is work closely with our customers to engineer solutions that are specific to their individual needs.
“We understand that there can often be several different ways to approach a problem, and we know from first-hand experience that every tank, component or piece of equipment that we are asked to protect has different materials, different designs or is used to store different types of products. That is why we look to our teams’ knowledge, expertise and experience to develop unique, often customized solutions for our clients. After this has been achieved and delivered, we stay in close contact with them to monitor the solution’s performance in the field and ensure that the end result is one that both parties are happy with. This level of attentiveness and commitment to the customer is one of the ways that we have earned regular repeat business, and has helped result in our customers becoming Zerust Oil & Gas’ biggest champions.”
To support the development of its solutions, Zerust Oil & Gas is able to rely upon the efforts of a dedicated R&D center, which is based near Cleveland, Ohio. In due course, the company’s activities in this sphere will be further enhanced with the opening of a second center in Houston, Texas. “As we grow, R&D and back-end technical support functions are areas that we are actively looking to expand upon,” Gautam confirms.
It is a testament to the efforts of Gautam and the rest of the Zerust Oil & Gas and NTIC teams to see the level of success that the company has had in what is traditionally a rather more conservative industry. As many people associated with oil and gas will know, major customers tend to take their time validating newly introduced solutions through pilot programs, or will often await external validation from industry groups such as the American Petroleum Institute (API). By also understanding this, Zerust Oil & Gas and NTIC have been proactive in working with such bodies to highlight the effectiveness of its VCI solutions. Together with the testimonies of those customers that it has served to date, this has helped the company’s portfolio of clients to increase exponentially in a short space of time by industry standards.
As the oil & gas industry enters the second quarter of 2021, there is a higher degree of optimism present than during 2020 – for obvious and well-documented reasons – what with oil prices stabilizing and much-delayed projects being resumed or started up. “I think that the latter two quarters of this year in particular will be strong periods for the company,” Gautam states. “What I would also stress is that, while our own sales and expansion growth has been strong to date, we still have some way to go before we are even close to maximizing the potential that we see for ourselves and our solutions in the oil and gas industry.”
As stated previously, the importance of the oil and gas sector to Zerust Oil & Gas’ future development cannot be underestimated, and in the next three-to-five years, Gautam and the rest of the team believe that the company can comfortably double – if not triple – its sales volumes here. “We have been extremely good at seeding a number of customers in recent years,” Gautam adds. “With each project we undertake, we receive back reports and data from them that supports the excellent performance of our solutions, and with future regulatory rules and guidelines expected to reaffirm the benefits of VCI products, we are very optimistic about what our future holds.”
Zerust Oil & Gas
Services: Corrosion mitigation specialists