Utilising subsea expertise to take technology to the surface
Extensive product development and superior technical expertise has helped propel BEL Valves to become a world leading high integrity valve supplier.Maintaining this position requires a flexible approach, with the ability to respond to both customer and market demands. With this in mind BEL Valves has been working closely with its customers and supply chain to expand its portfolio to provide reliable products across a broader spectrum.
Known globally for their knowledge of oil and gas; BEL Valves began life as a surface gate valve solutions provider. One of the first to enter into the subsea world in the 1980s, then offering subsea ball valves in the early 2000s; BEL Valves has never shied away from exploring new avenues. This has been evident with the delivery of design firsts such as the eccentric ball valve, subsea HIPPS solutions, high pressure and Deepwater critical valve solutions. To complete this high integrity portfolio, they are taking their technology ‘to the surface’, offering a range of surface ball valves to support customers across a wider portfolio of projects.
The timing has coincided with significant change in the market, a great deal of which has been enforced change. But for BEL Valves this move is part of a long term plan to become a central source of supply to satisfy a greater breadth of product to support customer needs. In order to achieve this BEL Valves has developed their relationship with a wider supply chain, with one of their key activities having been to establish a new operation in Milan. “The industry had long witnessed the cost escalation of oil and gas projects, most evident in the North Sea; this shift alone prompted us to think about how we can become more efficient, flexible and offer the most value to customers” said Neil Kirkbride, CEO.
Heavily involved in Oil and Gas UK’s efficiency program, BEL Valves is at the forefront of developing the streamlined solutions that the market demands for the next phase of developments. Continuing on from a successful program of value engineering in BEL Valves, the new Milan operation will support the development and manufacture of the extended portfolio. For the business, this has not only become about advancing technology into more extreme environments but also evaluating current technologies and practices so that they can be applied efficiently to add maximum value for surface applications.
Investment in new capabilities has been paramount for ensuring that BEL Valves remain at the forefront of developments. In recent years this has meant not only investing in efficiency programs, but also into research and development, ultra-Deepwater hyperbaric testing, in country local content provision and now more recently into an Italian operation. It is covering the broad spectrum that means BEL Valves can provide the market with the economical price; but also with the technical and service offering that the market is still demanding and will continue to look to over the next 10 years.
Valve design for oil and gas projects demands efficient practices and procedures to ensure project viability. For BEL Valves this is about being flexible to provide solutions that are both efficient and fit for purpose; creating the most value for their customers.
Tel: +44(0)191 265 9091
Published in Valve User Magazine Issue 38
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