We speak to Abrar Khan, Executive General Manager of Power and Industrial Projects – Gulf, a Business division of Kanoo Industrial & Energy, to find out more about the company, including its strengths, sustainability agenda and future initiatives.
A division of YBA Kanoo, which can trace its roots back over 130 years, Kanoo Industrial&Energy provides leading solutions and supply of equipment and materials to major projects, utility companies, refineries, petrochemical companies and general industries right across the GCC region, serving blue-chip organisations such as Saudi Aramco, SEC, SABIC, Ma’aden, ADNOC, BAPCO and PDO Oman.
SPM: How would you describe the core business philosophy of the Kanoo Group?
Abrar Khan: YBA Kanoo pursues growth and expansion through the consistent delivery of sustainable excellence. Solid, long-term joint-venture partnerships have been established with many of the world’s leading companies. Over the years, YBA Kanoo has also become the partner of choice for regional businesses.
YBA Kanoo’s framework for commercial success is governed by a strong commitment to ethics, social responsibility and economic progress. We strive to continuously raise our standards and achieve greater success each step of the way. Our dedicated workforce continues to accumulate industry awards in recognition of their achievements across the sectors and geographies in which we operate.
SPM: What do you offer to clients, and what do you feel is the biggest strength of the Power and Industrial Projects division right now?
AK: Kanoo Power & Industrial Projects (P&IP) has offered engineered products and services for over four decades. It provides sustainable solutions to utility companies and the GCC industrial sector as a whole.
Through its strategic partnerships and alliances with leading companies around the world, Kanoo P&IP supplies and services products such as gas turbine parts, spares and consumables; turbo-machinery controls; electrical equipment; diagnostic equipment and services for predictive maintenance, life assessment and motion control products.
The division is a pioneer, and one of the leaders throughout the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in power rental solutions and the operation and maintenance of diesel-based power plants. It also supplies fuel treatment systems; speciality lubricants; MRO products; corrosion inhibitors; machine tools; hand tools; personal protection equipment and height safety gear. In addition, the division offers an extensive range of consultancy, commissioning and installation services. An independent project team handles repair, refurbishment, installation and commissioning. Security products and services provided by P&IP include physical and electronic safety to international standards. As part of its Marine unit, qualified engineers undertake the repair of marine navigation equipment and sales.
Our biggest strength is our human resources and their ability to design and execute tailored solutions to suit every client.
SPM: How does the division differ from its biggest competitors?
AK: Kanoo P&IP offers competitive non-OEM solutions that provide customers with a trusted viable alternative. That, and the fact that the company that has been present in this region for 130 years, is one of the biggest distinguishing factors from most other players.
SPM: Which territories do you operate in, and where do you see growth coming from over the next five years?
AK: The division primarily operates in Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain. Saudi Arabia and UAE are expected to be the growth markets going forward. The areas where we can expect the maximum growth are MRO, Safety and Renewables.
SPM: How has the Covid-19 crisis impacted your business, and how will you recover from its aftermath?
AK: Even though Covid-19 has dampened sentiments worldwide, our division weathered the storm and came out relatively unscathed. This is primarily due to the fact that we operate in critical sectors that need to function regardless of the state of the current economic environment. The fact that a majority of our services are MRO related has also added to this relative stability.
SPM: How has technology played its part in the company’s evolution?
AK: In today’s scenario, where travel has been impeded, and most service companies are limited with the availability of a skilled workforce in the diagnostic area, P&IP has brought in cutting-edge technology, dictating that machines can be accurately monitored remotely. This is in line with the Industrial Revolution IOT.
SPM: How does the company ensure sustainability and high environmental standards? Please tell us about its involvement in renewable energy?
AK: The company’s top management is committed to renewable energy and the need to move toward increased sustainability. We have set up a Renewable Energy department to design and execute solar projects within the company and also for other discerning customers to help reduce dependence on fossil fuel.
As part of our commitment to the environment, we have established, implemented and maintain an effective OHS and Environment management system based on ISO 45001 and ISO 14001 standard requirements.
SPM: How do you maximise the potential of your workforce?
AK: Our workforce has been our biggest strength, and this has been further strengthened by systems that encourage initiative and innovation. Department managers have the independence to work freely, in the areas of their choice, and this has fostered a sense of belonging furthering ownership in all that they do.
SPM: What upcoming initiatives do you find particularly exciting?
AK: Our foray into renewables seems promising and is looked upon with a lot of excitement in the company. Renewable energy and the reduced dependence on fossil fuel is the need of the hour and has a bright future in the middle term. We believe our active involvement in the sector would play a small but significant part of the vision shown by the kingdom’s leadership.
The kingdom today offers multiple opportunities to various companies to localise and start manufacturing in the kingdom, a segment that Kanoo will also be actively involved in.