Ducab has been a major manufacturer of cables in the GCC for many years; how do you remain competitive in the region?
While the GCC is indeed our home market, today Ducab works with customers around the globe. From India to Australia, Africa, the Middle East, and North America, we are setting a new standard in our field. We are the first choice for many prestigious clients and contractors due in large part to our record of quality and customer service. By staying ahead of the curve in these two areas, we have created added value for our customers and expanded our business—whether in the industries we serve or the diversification of our portfolio.
When it comes to the energy sector in particular, we re-invest each year in boosting our innovation and technology capabilities. We combine international best practices while also building up a talented local workforce from our home in the UAE. Ducab is committed to working with its partners to accelerate innovation and create tailored products that make it easier, safer, and more cost effective to deliver energy around the world. Staying close to our vendors and suppliers also provides us an edge.
With a renewed spotlight on quality standards, what manufacturing processes and accreditations have Ducab and AEI Cables implemented to ensure safety?
Ducab commits to ensure the quality of its cables. One way we do this is to ensure our qualified engineers are equipped to use the latest technology and tools to test the entire production process from start to finish. For that, we carry out a full range of routine sample and type tests as per BS, IEC and other national and international standards. Test equipment at Ducab is also verified by BASEC, a UKAS accredited third party certification body.
Our testing facilities include eight test laboratories between three manufacturing sites, an HV test facility up to 600 kV, fully-equipped fire, smoke and halogen emission test facilities, and a wide variety of other instrumentation and pilot cable test systems.
Oil & Gas has been a major market in the Middle East, and with the growth of renewables, what new vertical markets are emerging for Ducab?
We aim to understand the specific needs of the customer and deliver products and services accordingly. We have thus introduced product lines designed specifically for certain sectors, including the renewable energy market. This innovation in product expansion has contributed significantly to increased market penetration.
This includes ranges like Ducab SolarBICC, designed for the solar energy sector and already being supplied to two of the largest solar power-generation projects in the region. Our Ducab NuBICC range is also a unique 60-year certified cable range for nuclear power plants, again being supplied to some of the most cutting-edge nuclear projects in the Middle East and beyond. Oil and gas is of course a staple of the Middle East economy, and that is reflected in our Ducab PetroBICC line which is tailored for the needs of the OGP sector.
Aside from industry-specific product ranges, we are also diversifying into new areas along the supply chain. The launch of Ducab Aluminium Company (DAC) earlier this year is testament to our drive to address market needs while creating smarter ways to deliver value to our customers.
Looking at your aluminium ventures in specific, can you tell our readers more about the new company and how this has strengthened your position?
Initial market research showed gaps that existed within the high-quality aluminium rod and conductor space. Ducab Aluminium Company (DAC) was therefore the result of an AED220 million investment that strengthens the UAE’s industrial supply chain by providing the capacity for 50,000 metric tonnes of aluminium rod and overhead conductor per annum.
Within the Ducab Group, DAC complements our existing portfolio and allows us to offer our existing copper customers an additional breadth of products required for their business. These customers trust the Ducab brand and prefer to consolidate their relationship with Ducab rather than going to an additional partner for their aluminium needs.
Moreover, DAC reduces the UAE’s dependence on imported aluminium products while contributing to a more sustainable ‘Made in UAE’ supply chain that optimises local resources at the same time.
As a UAE-based manufacturer, what is your presence like in other regional markets?
Ducab now has a growing presence in India, Southeast Asia, Iraq, UK, and Australasia, supplying from the six manufacturing facilities we have in the UAE. As I mentioned earlier, Ducab works with a broad set of international customers, expanding from its home market in the Middle East to Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas.
Have there been any industry-wide challenges, both regionally and globally, that have affected Ducab’s market position?
One of the major issues in the industry today is that the market is being flooded with substandard, low-cost cables which often do not meet minimum required safety standards. This often leads to customers looking at prioritising cost over important factors such as efficiency and reliability. It is therefore increasingly important to be innovative and diversify in order to provide for the specific needs of clients at lower costs but without compromising on quality.
Fortunately, markets like the GCC are expected to continue to invest in developing core infrastructure, and we have products that cater to many sectors while upholding international standards. The opportunity we see in providing quality-assured product ranges keeps us relevant to a number of growth sectors.
In 2014, Ducab acquired AEI Cables in the UK. Can you tell our readers more about AEI Cables and its direction?
The AEI Cables acquisition was a result of an extensive evaluation process from many perspectives, and it is having a very positive influence on our global operations. The acquisition has been helpful in broadening our product range and bringing in more expertise from within AEI’s specialist manufacturing facilities and talent pool. It also provides us an effective stepping stone to the European market, with a good existing customer base, and a strong history of innovation and product leadership in the market.
In 2019, we have the upcoming MEE Exhibition. What can our readers expect from Ducab in 2019?
The growing demand for energy over the coming years will be met by the introduction of alternative power sources – such as solar and nuclear energy programs. Delivering this power to the world requires specialised cabling products.
The Middle East Electricity Exhibition and Summit is an unmatched event that brings together visionaries and professionals from the power, electricity, technology, and environment sectors. At Ducab, we value it as a platform to help address the future energy needs of the Middle East, showcasing our investments in new product portfolios relevant to our customers.
Again, I would come back to the point about total quality excellence. High standards in product and service are what allow us to fully meet customers’ expectations. We strive to be the highest quality, greatest value cable manufacturer in the world, and that is what you will see from Ducab whenever you speak with us anywhere around the globe.
For more information on Ducab, please visit www.ducab.com
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