Spring Conference… and Golf

The 2018 BVAA Spring Conference and Golf days proved a huge hit with members and guests

BVAA Conference in full flow

Desktop Exhibition

Anthony Tutaj, Sercons

Great fun had by all at BVAA dinner

BVAA Cup winners: Golf Sponsor Martin Peat of DMR Seals with (L to R) Matthew Riach, Dean Holroyd, Peter Burnett, BVAA Director Rob Bartlett and Mark Topliss

Peter Burnett, with a nice cover drive… (Photo: Neil Jackson)

The BVAA Team, aka ‘The Wooden Spoon Dodgers,’ comprising honoured guest Fraser Maitland, Martin Greenhalgh, Dave Martin and Rob Bartlett.
With early-bird members and speakers arriving the night before for a relaxed convivial supper together, on 16th May scores more members assembled for the BVAA Spring Conference, this year at the delightful Formby Hall.

The first speaker was Matthew Fancourt of KOIOS on the topic of ‘Accurate master data using ISO 8000 – the International data quality standard.’ A new topic to many, Matt explained the growing importance of the new standard and the expectation of it being mandated by oil and gas customers.

Next was Anthony Tutaj of Sercons, covering ‘Russian Certification, what’s required and how to proceed with approval.’ Anthony gave an overview of the countries for which the CU TR (EAC) Certifications applied and active projects in Russia and Kazakhstan. His particular focus was on the Technical Regulations that applied to valves and actuators.

After the break, Nigel Goodrich, a Fit for Nuclear Industrial Advisor at the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre spoke on ‘Fit for Nuclear, Supplier Development Programme,’ covering an overview of the NAMRC, and the ‘F4N’ programme.

He explained how the Nuclear AMRC helps manufacturers win work in nuclear, and introduced its world-leading capabilities for industry-focused manufacturing innovation. He also gave a view on how the F4N programme can help companies prepare to bid for nuclear work.

Following on was Fraser Maitland of WorleyParsons, who spoke passionately on the subject of ‘Fire Testing in the Oil and Gas Industry - A Pragmatic Approach.’ Fraser quite rightly pointed out that in an industry so focused on the safety of its people and integrity of its assets, the quality of valve testing should be no exception. He pointed out the ambiguities in the various ISO, API, etc. fire-test standards. He observed how a Risk Based Approach could ensure valves were satisfactorily tested to meet client needs without over-engineering and challenged some of the requirements.

His offer to engage personally in a standards revision was warmly welcomed, and an excellent example of suppliers and customers working together to a common benefit.

Kevin Ledwith spoke next on ‘How UK Export Finance can support UK Exporting Companies.’ Kevin - an Export Finance Manager for UK Export Finance (UKEF) in the North-West – explained how he and his colleagues assist companies in understanding export finance requirements and identifying an appropriate solution. He noted how the UK Government, acting through UKEF can assist the UK’s exporting companies to win and fulfil contracts and ensure payment.

The Conference closed out with two market report presentations. The first was by Jeremy Leonard of Oxford Economics (OE), on the ‘Global industry outlook and the implications for valve markets.’

Jeremy reminded members that OE were the providers of the BVAA Global Valve & Actuator Market Outlook. As well as outlining the recently launched latest iteration of the report, with its various improvements, Jeremy reported on the strong momentum of global industrial activity in the second half of last year, persisting into the early months of 2018. He noted the strong positive implications for valve markets. He also described the key economic and sector trends that were driving the outlook for valve demand.

Closing out the day was another regular speaker, Steve Robertson of Westwood Global Energy, on their ‘Global Oil & Gas Market Outlook.’ He noted that the recovery of hydrocarbon prices in 2017 had brought a renewed sense of optimism in the oil & gas industry. There was encouraging news re: some recovery in project sanctioning, albeit operators remain focussed on keeping tight controls on costs. He noted that the industry’s supply chain had seen a period of dramatic consolidation and for many equipment vendors and EPCs, the downturn had resulted in backlogs at their lowest levels for over a decade.

At the invitation of BVAA, Steve also outlined a proposal for a regular market forecast for members, which proved a very well supported idea.*

*BVAA Members-only should be receiving their first bi-annual report in late July.

Desktop Exhibition
Throughout the day, BVAA also hosted a desktop exhibition, comprising eighteen desks, adjacent to the conference area. Mainly for our own members involved in the industry’s supply chain, the event also featured help desks from BVAA’s various speakers, contributors and also our Future Leaders group.

Dinner & Entertainment
A great tradition of the spring gathering is the evening reception and dinner, and this year was no exception.

Great friends and fellowship are an essentially ingredient of course, but the highlights of the evening were undoubtedly the two stellar performances of our guest entertainers...
Fraser Maitland took on additional duties as official piper for the night, while guest comedian Rod Woodward was hilariously funny from start to finish and had members in paroxysms of laughter with his wry observations on life.

Published in Valve User Magazine Issue 46

Winter 2018 // Issue 47
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