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07/09/2022 – Energy / KENT / Gastech / Services / Power / Oil & Gas / Hydrogen / Wind

Tried and Trusted: Integrated energy services specialist KENT at Gastech 2022
Tried and Trusted: Integrated energy services specialist KENT at Gastech 2022

With origins that can be traced back over a century, KENT has built an impressive international reputation as a trusted full-service integrated energy services company. Industry Networker caught up with the COO of this multi-faceted power industry player at Gastech 2022 to learn more about its competencies and current international projects.   

The historical roots of Kent run right back to 1919, when Michael Francis Kent established a small electrical and instrumentation business known as MF Kent, which was involved in the electrification of rural Ireland.

Fast forward 100 years, and the business – by then known as Kentech – had become a trusted electrical and instrumentation specialist in the global energy industry, operating in 17 countries with 4,000 dedicated employees.

In 2021, Kentech completed the acquisition of SNC-Lavalin’s oil & gas business (including the former Atkins low carbon and oil & gas business units) – and Kent was born. “A year on from the launch of Kent, we are a force to be reckoned with, building our reputation as a trusted full-service integrated energy services company,” enthuses Tush Doshi,  the company’s Chief Operating Officer, who notes that Kent is now large enough with its 12,500-strong global team to offer real expertise and scale – yet small enough to be unencumbered by the bureaucracy that holds back some of its larger peers.

Here, Mr Doshi gives Industry Networker the lowdown on Kent’s activities, projects, and future plans.

Could you describe KENT’s current service offering, outlining any recently launched services or innovation? 

Tush Doshi: “We design, build and maintain the assets that power the world of today and make it future-ready for tomorrow, through a diverse portfolio of integrated energy services. We’re taking our 100-years-plus of experience in the market to a new level of capability to drive future energy solutions.

“From consulting to design, build, commissioning, and start-up to maintenance and decommissioning, our collective ingenuity allows us to lead the global energy market with sustainability and innovation in every service we offer.”

What segments of the energy industry do your services cover today?

“At Kent, we believe that having the greatest positive impact today is just as important as creating

a more sustainable future for tomorrow. So, we work across the conventional oil & gas market, whilst working alongside our clients to decarbonise their assets. In the low-carbon and renewables space, we are leading the way in Offshore Wind and Hydrogen, and have some of the best brains in the industry working on low-carbon technologies. We also work in the process and chemicals industry, helping these markets decarbonise while they develop pioneering products to support customer demand for a more sustainable world.”

Have there been any recent investments or improvements made in the business? 

“Since the legal acquisition a year ago, we have been working hard as a business to integrate all our tools and technologies, and ensure we are coming together under the best technological ecosystem available. This has entailed bringing separate business entities together under one united, top-of-the-range technology platform. It has also meant launching a new ERP platform, which will keep our business operations lean and efficient.

“All of this has been taking place whilst continuing to create advanced solutions for our customers through the power of AI, visualisation tech and analytical data. They help us drive value throughout our client’s businesses with improved productivity, increased efficiency and decreased costs. Our advanced solutions and in-house digital tools mean we always keep our clients ahead of the curve.”

Geographically speaking, where are KENT’s current main focal markets?

“The Middle East has always been a core market for Kent, with operations in UAE, KSA, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait and Iraq. However, we are seeing growth and are being awarded exciting new projects in some key regions in the West, including the USA and Canada, Australasia, and the UK and Europe.”

Could you please tell us a little more about some of KENT’s major recent/ongoing contracts?

“We are helping the sector decarbonise through our expertise in low-carbon technologies and carbon capture projects. For example, Kent engineered, designed, delivered and commissioned the world’s first carbon capture project, Boundary Dam in Canada

“Some of our current projects in this space include the V-Net Zero carbon capture project, where we are the lead engineer on the project to reduce emissions from the UK's most energy-intensive industrial area. 

“On the other side of the world, we are engineering Ampol’s Future Fuels Desulphurisation Project, helping to reduce their sulphur emissions.

“In the offshore wind space, Kent has historically been involved in over 70 per cent of the UK’s offshore wind projects. We are currently delivering offshore substation concept designs for the largest offshore wind opportunity in the world, Berwick Bank. Taking our offshore wind knowledge to other parts of the world, we are designing the first full-scale floating offshore wind turbine platform in the US Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf, New England Aqua Ventus

“In hydrogen, we engineered the UK’s first hydrogen project, Hynet, plus we are delivering FEED for the only cryogenic gas and green hydrogen testing facility in the southern hemisphere, Kwinana Energy Transformation Hub. We will be announcing more exciting hydrogen projects imminently.

“In the process and chemicals space, we have recently been awarded an MSA for engineering design services for Avangard’s plastic recycling facilities across the US. 

“We are also currently delivering Canada’s largest ever energy project, continuing to service major clients in the Middle East including ADNOC and Saudi Aramco, and continuing to deliver long-standing engineering services on the US’s two largest refineries, Exxon’s Baytown and TotalEnergies’ Port Arthur.”

What factors have been most important to your company's successful development as an internationally renowned integrated energy services specialist?

“Our great culture has been the secret ingredient to our company's success over the past 100 years. Sticking with Michael Kent's entrepreneurial spirit, we instil deep care for the business's success and every single one of the 12,500 individuals who work for it. We employ and empower the best, and let them make decisions. Out people know their own potential and are not afraid to use it. We know that together, we're far more than the sum of our parts. So, we celebrate people who want to grow and develop as we work together on some of the largest projects on the energy world stage.”

Please could you describe KENT’s workforce, including the skills and expertise within your team?

“We are a global workforce of 12,500 of the industry's most innovative, most dedicated, and wonderfully different people.  

“In our consultancy business, our experts excel in process engineering, structures, safety, environment, electrical and instrumentation, subsea and drilling, naval architecture, software programming, materials, mechanical, fluids and flow assurance, simulation and analysis, expert witness services, sustainability solutions and due diligence.

“Our engineering teams are delivering from the earliest of concept studies, pre-FEED and FEED, detailed engineering design, optimisations and enhancements.

“Our EPC and EPCM experts cover the complete spectrum of energy sector engineering disciplines: subsea, civil, structural, mechanical, pipeline, process, electrical, instrumentation, and automation and control. All are supported by the latest 3D modelling and design tools, as well as sophisticated services, such as laser-scanning and digital twinning.

“We’re also world-renowned for our multi-disciplinary construction and technical field services across the full energy industry spectrum.

“Kent is home to the industry's largest specialist commissioning team. With over 3,500 specialists delivering over six million commissioning work hours per year, we're the best at what we do – delivering predictable, cost-effective outcomes to our client's start-up schedules.

“Finally, our dedicated operations & maintenance teams use leading-edge technologies to optimise operations to maintain production uptime and lengthen asset lifecycle.

“All of our service delivery teams are supported by a dedicated Centre of Excellence team, which acts as a Kent hub of exploration and adoption of new technologies, tools, techniques, and practices.”

What current trends, challenges and opportunities can you identify, and how is KENT responding?

“We live in a rapidly changing world and the global landscape within the energy sector has changed dramatically over the past 12 months due to the events in Russia and Ukraine. However, our strategy remains steadfast: We will become a world-leading integrated energy service provider, committed to bringing the world the energy it needs in the most responsible way. Energy that’s reliable and affordable enough to give everyone a fair and equal run at life’s opportunities, whilst also driving the change needed to reduce carbon emissions and make a renewable energy future a reality sooner.”

What are KENT’s future plans?

“At Kent, our North Star to help drive all our key decisions is our brave new purpose: ‘Courageously tackling the greatest challenge of our time, to bring our world the energy it needs in the most responsible way ever imagined’. Our core strategy to become a world-leading integrated energy services company means we see ourselves as a catalyst to bring all sides of the energy debate onto the same side. We design, build and maintain industrial facilities for three core sectors: conventional energy, low carbon & renewables, and process & chemicals. We will be working to derive our revenues equally from those three core sectors by 2030 or earlier, whilst working with our clients to lower the carbon emissions from all three.”

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