Apex Tubulars Opens New Machine Shop, Expands Services

Apex Tubulars Inspection Services, the leading UK independent provider of casing and drillpipe inspection and repair services to the oil and gas industry, has defied market conditions and responded to client demand by investing £1 million in a new machine shop, creating 12 jobs and potential for global expansion.

Since opening in mid-February, Apex has secured contracts in excess of £1 million and in its first year of operation the new facility is expected to add around £3 million of turnover to the company. Already employing 65 staff in the North Sea region, the new start positions include quality management, skilled machine operators, laborers, welders and turners. Now that the facility is fully operational and given forecast growth the company expects to double and possibly treble its shop workforce by the end of the year.

The bespoke machine shop was constructed following significant client demand to provide a full range of inspection, repair and manufacturing services under one roof. Those now working in the new facility played an important role in the design process alongside in-house expertise. Housing a comprehensive suite of machines including CNC and manual lathes and vertical and horizontal borers, Apex has extended its range of services to include the repair and manufacturing of valves, pipes, connectors wireline and wellhead equipment.

The new facility has enhanced the company's global reach with North and West Africa cited as major growth areas. To meet the expected demand from home and aboard, plans are in place for additional expansion at the Aberdeen, Scotland site.

Jim Geddie, Apex managing director, said, "I am very pleased with the initial success of the machine shop and it is hard to believe it was only an idea a year ago. Although it was built in response to client demand, investing in a downturn is always a risk. However, this was one we felt compelled to take given our strategic vision for the development of the company. The initial contracts secured signal a very bright future and we are very keen to get the facility working to full capacity.

"Being an independent company allows us to be flexible and meet the needs of the industry. The machine shop enhanced by the range of repair and manufacturing services which we cater for will help us expand our business in the northeast and provide development opportunities for existing staff and create a need for recruitment of additional employees. We have a program of continued regional investment and expansion which will ensure we remain at the forefront of the industry."