Issue Issue 3 2008
Hot prospects for Tranter
Operating on all continents, Tranter International is a truly multi-national company that supplies high specification heat exchangers to some of the world’s most important industries.
Boasting a lineage that dates back over 65 years, it works closely with its many clients affording them a local service through its many subsidiaries, agents and distributors. This close working relationship with its customers has also helped the company to deliver innovative, cost-effective solutions that deliver outstanding performance.
Tranter, serves four main business areas, the first being industrial applications. With companies in the sector using a variety of processes and manufactured products that need heating and cooling, Tranter offers a wide range of heat exchangers that fulfil the demands of plate materials and operating parameters. Thecompany’s products are also found on many yachts, vessels and tankers as the marine industry relies on plate heat exchangers to provide fresh water generation, engine jacket water-cooling and oil lubrication cooling.
Heating, ventilation and air conditioning are also areas of expertise for the organisation as its equipment provides comfortable, pleasant indoor climates. Another area of Tranter’s expertise lies in providing plate heat exchangers for the oil and gas sector, for which the company’s client list includes blue-chip companies such as Shell, British Petroleum and Chevron Texaco. Its products are vital during the processes of crude oil production, gas dehydration, gas sweetening and closed loop cooling.
The business has been further enhanced by an investment programme that began last year. Outlining some of the improvements, Alan Ashton, the company’s UK director of sales, comments: “We are investing heavily in all our factories, with a new press planned in Sweden to help us deal with the recent high demand. The Indian and Chinese side of the company is expanding all the time as well.” Asked whether Tranter has begun to reap the benefits of the substantial cash injection, Alan replies: “Absolutely – in the last year the order intake has increased by 30 per cent while the invoicing has grown by 60 per cent, we are growing quite quickly.”
It is growth that is being experienced throughout all the various sections of the company, particularly the product portfolio. “We are developing new products all the time, especially the amount of heat exchangers we offer. For example, we are adding two larger sizes to the wide gap heat exchangers that handle products with particles, which is particularly usable for renewable fuels. Regarding the welding operations, we have developed a new shell and plate heat exchanger that has previously been produced in India and the USA, parts will now be stocked in Europe so we will be able to offer quicker delivery times,” Alan explains.
Such improvements have seen the company greatly exceed financial expectations in recent times – a feat made all the more impressive in light of the frequent predictions of economic downturn. “Despite some of the doom and gloom, the first three months of this year have been exceptionally good – especially in the UK,” Alan says. “Last year was a record year for us and we seem to be ahead of that at the moment. There is still a great deal of requirement for heat exchangers and with the prices of oil and gas the way they are, there will continue to be a continuing investment into that industry,” he continues.
Looking forward, Alan is confident that Tranter will continue to flourish, although there is clear recognition of the challenges that the expansion of manufacturing in Asia will bring. “The short-term aim is to continue our expansion at the company’s Asian base. The growth in China and India is immense at present so it is a matter of getting our factories up to speed to supply those markets. Then there is the marine market, which we are very prominent in. That is expanding because of the increasing demand for ships, particularly in Asia,” he says. With a wealth of products and a whole host of ongoing developments, it is clear that Tranter is a company in the ascendancy, but what really sets it apart from the competition? “I think it is our flexibility in meeting the demands of our clients with a competitively priced product that they really want,” Alan states. “Another of our key strengths is how closely we work with them in terms of service. We do not just sell new equipment; we build partnerships with our customers,” he concludes.
The partnerships Alan speaks of are built on supplying valuable pieces of equipment at reasonable prices coupled with an after-sales service that incorporates maintenance programmes, reconditioning and client staff training initiatives. It is a business model that has seen Tranter enjoy success the world over and – despite warnings of an economic decline – looks likely to ensure the company enjoys a prosperous future.
Products: Heat exchangers
Employees: Approximately 750