EXPOM SA flows out to international seas

Expom SA – the company from Kurzetnik, a village located in north-eastern Poland, boldly enters the international markets of offshore & marine, energy, and big steel construction industries. Currently, more than 90 percent of its production is exported to places like Scandinavia, Dubai and the US. The company’s results prove that geographical conditions do not bar its development. Therefore, it may become a leading player within its field.

The seemingly ordinary plant in Kurzetnik harbours state-of-art machinery as well as a technological and construction office. Although it is located over 150 km from the marine zone it is here, on a surface of 6500 square metres, where innovative projects are being created. The projects include highly processed final offshore and marine products– compact lifeboat davits and heavy cranes for drilling platforms – technologically advanced, as they are equipped with hydraulic and electric outfitting. Expom engineers also build machinery for the gas-oil and energy industry, for example constructions of electrical stators, power generators, and biomass combustion plants. These products are exported from Poland to Singapore, Australia, China, the Netherlands and Scandinavian countries.

How did it happen that the Municipal Machinery Centre established in 1952 is now one of the fastest developing companies of this industry in Poland? The business has adopted an innovative approach towards the market, which is evident in the challenges and ambitious projects it has undertaken. In 1982 the company built a prototype of the WE-8 wind turbine and steel constructions constituting equipment for a nuclear power plant built at that time in Poland.

In 1991 the centre turned into a private company and changed its name to Expom. 2008 indicated the forthcoming changes – the first in the company’s history robotized welding station was put into operation and the first lifeboat davit equipped with hydraulic and electric outfitting project was developed. However, the most important changes in the company took place in 2012 with the changing of the Management Board, which, together with the Supervisory Board, started to watch over the company’s finances. After the change the business started a restructuring process consisting in management changes, organisation of processes, strengthened cooperation, and optimisation of employment.

The most dynamic period of the company’s development is associated with the promotion of Rafał Domżalski, current President of the Management Board, to the position of CEO. It was this young engineer who pushed Expom in new directions. Today, after two years under his management, employees describe him as consequential, ambitious, adamant, and hard-working. He firmly believes in the need to invest in the newest technologies and in employees. That is why since 2012 to the present Expom has been focused on intensive development. Inefficient systems were replaced by state-of-art, more effective and ecological solutions. Machinery includes the most modern equipment for design, production, and testing – for example the Wotan Rapid 5 specialised boring machine and FRORIEP turning lathe. These changes increased the possibilities of the company in the field of CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machining, important in particular in the production process of big steel constructions. Recently, the machinery was supplied by an overhead 20t crane that increases transport capacity in the production hall of large machine tools to the maximum load of 30 tons. The company has also developed a state-of-art technological and construction office offering 3D modelling services that enable execution of assigned projects as well as analysis and structural changes in projects commissioned by customers. Much significance lies with the fact that each product leaves Expom after thorough tests and certification supervised by international units such as DNV and ABS.

In total, the company’s infrastructure investment cost 800,000 EUR in 2013 and 230,000 EUR in the first half of 2014. All that to create a competitive offer for international counterparties, especially those in the energy and offshore industries. While Expom has been recognized as a big welded constructions manufacturing company for many years, development of production for the needs of the marine industry is the company’s plan for the nearest future. President Domżalski approaches the project with great ambition because in 2008 he was the first person in the company to undertake the task of technology implementation and design development of lifeboat davits equipped with hydraulic and electric outfitting. So far, the company has a number of spectacular developments to its name in this area – for example the 50-ton HSC 700 crane developed and exported to Dubai or 42 lifeboat davits exported to Scandinavia, Asia, Cameroon, and other locations. The scale of these productions is spectacular – the largest designs of Polish engineers weighted even 52 tons and were divided due to transport size limits.

Such dynamic development of the company would not be possible without qualified employees. Expom is one of the most significant employers in a small village of Kurzetnik and employs, in the plant, almost 150 people, including 20 top-class engineers. An additional 100 people cooperate closely with the company. The company appreciates employees with the longest period of service because their experience constitutes great potential. In order to make them more comfortable with new market conditions, the company invests in training them. On the initiative of the Management Board, the company established the Expom Academy – unit responsible for training employees of different levels. Due to these trainings, which cost over 160,000 PLN within the last two years, 60 percent of employees improved their qualifications. In order to encourage young people to stay in their hometown, Expom supports local initiatives addressed to young people who might someday join the company’s team.

All these initiatives are reflected in better and promising financial performance for the company. The company’s yearly turnover currently exceeds 10 million EUR. In 2013 the company noted a five times higher profit than in the previous year. With export-oriented production (over 90 percent) and a growing portfolio of customers, the company surely strives for more.

Most important facts:

  • 5 production halls with a total area of 6500 m2,
  • Number of employees: over 250, with 150 working at the company’s premises and 100 in close cooperation,
  • Turnover: 10,000,000 EUR,
  • Infrastructure investments: 800,000 EUR (2013), 230,000 EUR (2014),
  • Investments in employees: over 60% of trained employees,
  • Double sales growth from January 2013 to December 2013,
  • Five times higher profit than in 2012,
  • Export of heavy sea cranes and lifeboat davits to Singapore, Australia, China, Netherlands, Denmark, Norway and Germany,
  • The largest project: 50-ton HSC 700 crane exported to Dubaj.
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