PCM Artificial Lift activities in Oman – Country manager testimonial
Oman is one of the main “heavy oil” countries in the Middle East. Such oil is not easy to lift; it often requires special EOR techniques, such as steam injection, polymer injection etc. and dedicated pump technologies. PCM is the original inventor of the Progressing Cavity Pumps, which is a perfect fit for pumping viscous and multiphase fluids (including solids and/or gas).
PCPs are already widely used in Oman, as a cost-effective solution for lifting heavy oil.
PCM entered Oman in 2010 through the supply of an innovative product called PCM Vulcain™, which is able to pump very hot fluids and as such dedicated to steam injection applications. Thanks to the quality of its services to its customers, PCM gradually managed to diversify its market in Oman to standard elastomer PCPs. Today around 50 per cent or so of the PCPs installed in Oman have been originally manufactured by PCM. In order to better serve our customers in a low oil price context, PCM has developed some advanced requalification workshop services in order to reutilize equipment in good condition and save huge CAPEX for our customers.
Why did you decide to set up a manufacturing facility, and what is its current scope of Artificial Lift activities in Oman?
PCM’s objective is to bring PCP technology closer to our customers. We first built a strong workshop services approach and then we thought: “What can we do next to get closer to our local customers?”
The idea of assembling stators is something which came naturally. Stators are usually nine meters long, thus the supply chain from France is not so easy. As soon as we are able to make pump assembly, we can source three-meter-long elements, which are easier to transport, and enable us to reduce the number of references, as well as reducing stock and lead times. We invested in machines in 2017 in order to be able to assemble, test, paint and pack stators in our Nizwa workshop located on the main road near the oilfields. With this manufacturing facility, we are even able to repair some stators by replacing a damaged element with a new one, which has never been done before in Oman.
Another important benefit is that we are bringing local content to our offer, helping the development of the industrial resources of Oman. We receive trainees throughout the year through a partnership with Nizwa College of Technology, and our employees include a number of former trainees.
How important is R&D to your company?
Innovation has been in the DNA of PCM since its foundation by Mr René Moineau in 1932. PCM today spends a large portion of its turnover in innovation. In parallel with the supply of conventional pumps to the Oman market, we are also developing new ideas in collaboration with our customers in Oman. Operating companies are looking for such partnerships with medium size versatile innovative industrial contractors in order to help them tackle their technical challenges. Our size and focus on PCP technology alone allows us to develop new ideas initiated by our customers from A to Z in record time. Currently we are working on pushing limits on the side of very viscous applications (> 5000cp at pump intake), medium temperature (above 125°C), but also new driveheads and intelligent pumps.
How are you looking to further develop your business in Oman?
The investments achieved by PCM in Oman in the past years have been significant and the company is willing to invest more in the coming years. We are lucky to have loyal Omani customers, who value the quality of services and products that they receive from us, and we continue to see room for further market development in the future.