Midlands manufacturer increases exports to offshore sector

Published:  13 July, 2016

Following a defiant statement from the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) that the North Sea is ‘Open for Business,' one UK hydraulics manufacturer has completed a deal to manufacture and supply a unit of eight hydraulic safety blocks to be used on oil rigs in the area.

MGR Fluid Power, one of just a handful of UK manufacturing companies still producing hydraulic safety blocks in the UK, will deliver the products from stock in a timescale of just four weeks. The size 20 safety blocks have been painted in a corrosion-resistant Norsok M-50 protective coating, and will be used to provide a vital shut off function for system depressurisation before hydraulic maintenance, as well as a fast acting relief valve that prevents excessive hydraulic pressure. The valve protects both the accumulator and the pipework in the event of over-pressurisation.

The company was drafted in to supply the product after the customer, Aberdeen Hydraulics, experienced difficulties finding such an immediate supply from elsewhere. MGR says it is well positioned to supply modular and off the shelf solutions globally, and recently despatched a unit of 14 safety blocks to Bloomfosse PTE Ltd for use in hydraulic actuators used in the marine and offshore energy sector.

This recent deal comes following a recent two-day conference organised by trade body Oil & Gas UK in Aberdeen, during which 500 delegates heard about the initiatives underway to restore competitiveness to the North Sea, as well as commitments from UK and Scottish Government Ministers to a sustainable future for the UK Continental Shelf. The conference also determined that the size of a business is not the key to its export potential, but instead that any company that provides immediate and innovative solutions to the UK Continental Shelf will be considered a key export partner.

Mike Retford, managing director of MGR Fluid Power commented: "We are starting to attract a lot of attention in overseas markets for our safety blocks and other hydraulic components. We find that overseas businesses still associate UK manufactured products with high quality and because we manufacture to stock, we can beat the lead times offered by other businesses.

"This is a good project for us, and we are continuing to win business from the marine and oil and gas sectors, showing that there is starting to be an upturn in the fortunes of these industries."

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