Driconeq is a leading supplier of drilling pipes and associated accessories to heavy industries including mining, exploration, water wells, construction, geothermal engineering and gas drilling. Though based in Sweden it is one of the few companies in the supply of drill pipes that has a global network and internal reach, working with customers throughout the world to both develop and deliver the items they require.
Founded in 1995 through private investment by former employees from Atlas Copco, Driconeq is today an independent company employing 75 staff with a combined experience of over 100 years in producing drill pipes. The company manufactures its own range of standardised and special drill pipes to the global market, as pipes produced to OEMs i.e by Atlas Copco, Sandvik, Cubex, Hausherr, Nordmeyer and Schramm. It also manufactures a number of specialised units such as reverse circulation (RC), down-the-hole (DTH) and raise bore pipes that are tailored to customer specifications.
Managing director Mats Blacker talks further about the company’s work with its customers: “We produce a lot of tailor-made products for our clients. With this close co-operation, our bespoke solutions are developed with maximum end user productivity in mind. Furthermore, because everything is manufactured in-house, we are able to turn out these products very quickly. Producing and delivering tailored pipes is an important cornerstone for our business.”
Creating high quality pipes, it is important for Driconeq to source the best materials possible and to achieve this it has close partnerships with several major steel suppliers around the world. Mats discusses the supply chain further: “It is essential to us that we work closely with our suppliers. This means a close cooperation in which we invite them to take part in our development process to strengthen our market position. Though we are very knowledgeable as a company, that knowledge is focused on very specific areas, so we really need their knowledge and capability to strengthen our dealings with our customers. Suppliers play a very important role from the beginning of research and development (R&D) on new products so we try and get them involved as early as possible.”
He goes on to talk about the company’s commitment to R&D and the role of the client in the process: “We have a dedicated R&D department that works equally with suppliers and customers to develop new products, as well as to stay one step ahead of what we believe the market will demand of us. Alongside that we also have a close relationship with universities in the region that help us to travel deeper into the research aspect. Ultimately, though, the most important part of R&D is the close co-operation with our customers to help them become more productive and more competitive.”
Driconeq also supplies a number of drilling accessories including fishing and lifting tools, guide sleeves, valves, wrenches, drill bits, adapter boxes and hole openers. Through a system of assigning unique markings to different product series, each individual component has full traceability to ensure efficiency, reliability and security from the cutting of raw material to the delivery of a final product.
By selling its products through a global network of distributers and drilling rig manufacturers, Driconeq’s drill pipes are used by customers across the world. Despite being a relatively small company, it is currently one ofthe few drill pipe suppliers to have a worldwide reach; this is driven by recognition of Driconeq as a high quality manufacturer throughout an otherwise fragmented market.
“We are focused on understanding customers’ needs,” Mats comments, “and have a full-scale regimen to our business. The flexibility and knowledge of Driconeq is really where we lead the market, with our customers appreciating the services we can provide for supporting them in their day-to-day business. When it comes to application we are capable of reacting very quickly to a customer need, and when it comes to troubleshooting we possess the right knowledge to detect what is going wrong or how things can be executed more efficiently.”
The market over the last 18 months for the company has been a variable one, with the financial crisis affecting different in different segments. For example, there has been a significant slow down in business with the construction industry yet at the same time the mining sector has recovered quickly and business with clients in that sector continues to grow. With the development of a special joint tool installed into its own range of pipes, Driconeq has also been successfully moving into the onshore gas industry.
“We are seeing that we can grow throughout all of our markets,” Mats concludes. “In five years time we should have tripled our number of customers. Our number one priority is to work with our current and future clients as closely as possible, supporting them in their growth and helping them to be more competitive.”
Products Drill pipes