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Mark Besselink & Kees Cramer about Lubbers Logistics Group’s strategic moves in the Black Sea region

16 Feb 2015

Lubbers Logistics Group provides specialized international transport services for the Oil & Gas industry. With twelve operational bases covering seven countries, Lubbers is available seven days a week and 24 hours a day. In addition to road transport services, the company offers additional value added services including storage & handling, offshore container and basket rentals, manpower and completion of customs formalities. Mr. Mark Besselink, Operations Manager Black Sea Region, and Mr. Kees Cramer, Sales Manager Black Sea Region, told us about the biggest achievements in 2014 and Lubbers’s major goals for the future.

Mark-Besselink- Kees-Cramer-LubbersQ: Which are the key dates and figures of Lubbers (turnover, fleet size, etc.)?

A: Turnover 2014: EUR 62,8 Mil., fleet - 132 trucks, 295 trailers all suitable for the Oil & Gas Transportation. We expect 20% fleet increase and renewal at group level in 2015.

Q: We know that Lubbers provides a wide range of solutions for the industry. What are the most important dedicated logistic services to manage offshore and onshore tailor-made solutions for the oil &gas sector?

A: We offer a wide variety of Value Added services for the Oil & Gas Industry such as offshore container & basket rental, turn-key rig moves, Oil & Gas manpower, storage & handling and specialized Oil & Gas transport solutions within a large pan-European network of bases at all main Oil & Gas locations in Europe. Already since 2008 Lubbers has been partner in the joint-venture KLP Rig moves. Dozens of well-trained employees, special trucks and heavy telescopic cranes are necessary to execute these complex logistic projects. As of the 1st of January 2015 the rig move activities are offered under the name Lubbers Rig Moves, and Mr. Herman Ruinemans who is currently Sales Director Germany, has been appointed as General Manager of Lubbers Rig moves. The combination of profound knowledge and expertise gained by years of experience together with the extensive international network of Lubbers Transport Group will lead to further professionalization, higher flexibility and even better service.

Q: When and why did Lubbers start the activity in Romania?

A: Operations commenced in February 2010. In 2012 Lubbers Romania moved to the new base in Aricestii Rahtivani (Ploiesti West Park).

Q: In August 2014 the company opened a new base in Constanta and announced the base in Ploiesti will double its size in the following three months. What is the current situation with regards to the expansion in Romania and how do you intend to expand your activity in the region?

A: In February 2015 Lubbers Romania will inaugurate the new extended base in Ploiesti West Park and double the surface of the Aricestii Rahtivani base to 11,500 sqm. In August 2014 the new Constanta base has been officially opened where Lubbers Romania operates 1,750 sqm offshore base located next to Constanta Midia Offshore Port. Activities increased at the Constanta offshore base and we expect full occupancy in 2015. We foresee further integration of the Black Sea regional operations, which we strongly believe will be the future for the onshore and especially offshore business development. To strengthen our position in the Black Sea region Lubbers Transport Group will open a new base in Istanbul, Turkey beginning 2015. The Lubbers Turkey base will have a strong foothold in the Diyarbakir Region, the main hotspot for onshore Oil & Gas activities in Turkey. We aim at serving all Top Service Oil & Gas companies with efficient transport solutions from and to the Diyarbakir region.

Q: The hydrocarbon potential of the deepwater Black Sea attracts new players interested in the exploitation of the reservoirs. How do you plan to take part in these upcoming developments?

A: We plan to take part of this development by making our specialist equipment available on Black Sea Oil & Gas hotspots such as Constanta, Ploiesti, Istanbul/Haydarpasar Port. We are intensifying our Groupage lanes between these facilities and make storage space available for short- or long term offshore projects. Furthermore we will increase our stock levels of offshore containers and baskets in these facilities. Since last year we are supplying DNV 2.7-1 units out of stock from Constanta and Ploiesti through our European partnership with OEG Offshore Ltd.

Q: Which are the most reliable partners of Lubbers in Romania and abroad?

A: We serve all main Oil & Gas Top Service companies and many different Oil & Gas Service Companies; Romanian registered companies as well as international companies. We also see an interesting development in smaller local Oil & Gas companies that through their flexibility obtain contracts with large operators for exploration activities in certain regions. Lubbers Transport Group is a quality driven company and has ISO 9001: 2008, OHSAS 18001, ISO 14001 and VCA certifications. Our drivers have full ADR training, which includes IMO classes 1 and 7. This enables Lubbers Transport Group to participate with large international tendering processes and offer efficient tailor-made logistics solutions for all Oil & Gas Service Companies.

Q: The basic steps of your strategy to increase the company’s strength and coverage in the years to come are...?

A: The opening of our Turkey base is an important step to strengthen our transport, storage and logistics services for the Oil & Gas Service Suppliers in the Black Sea region. Turkey is an important East-West Energy Hub. Turkey is located in or adjacent to regions where approximately three-quarters of known deposits of crude oil and natural gas are found. We see Turkey as an investment for future expansion towards other important Oil & Gas regions such as Erbil and Baku. We can now benefit from Turkey’s strategic position with Oil & Gas overseas project shipments to Middle East hubs such as Dubai.

Geographical expansion gives us the opportunity to further roll-out our Value Added services such as offshore container & baskets rental, onshore turn-key rig moves, Oil & Gas manpower and storage & handling. We will be supplying DNV 2.7-1 units out of stock from our Turkey base for Black Sea offshore activities in the Haydarpasar Port area.

In 2014 Lubbers Transport Group invested heavily in new TMS, FMS and IVMS information systems, offering our customers transparent, real-time and seamless integrated supply chain data.

At our base in Romania we implemented a dedicated Driver Safety Training Centre with a full-time Driver Safety Trainer under guidance of our Group Driver Safety Trainer at the Lubbers Headquarters in The Netherlands. Our drivers are trained monthly on safety and prevention of accidents. Offering high quality services by continuous increasing health and safety awareness is our utmost priority.

Lubbers Transport Group has changed its name into Lubbers Logistics Group as of the 1st of January 2015. We have made this change to reflect the shifting focus of our services from mainly road transport to a more complete logistics offering with divisions including rig moves, projects and offshore basket & container rental. More of our customers are looking for a provider who can give them a complete logistics package that goes beyond simply transporting goods.

Q: In your opinion what top essential elements should a successful sales plan include?

A: The top 3 of most important actions in our sales plan are:

  • Being a fully-fledged Oil & Gas logistics provider offering integrated package of value added services at all main Oil & Gas hotspots where we operate bases.
  • Health & Safety first, continuous updating and improving QHSE procedures and strengthening our Training Centres.
  • Being close to Oil & Gas Service Companies with onshore and offshore bases located at the main Oil & Gas hotspots both in Europe and the Black Sea region. We offer immediate availability of specialist Oil & Gas equipment to customer’s onshore and offshore locations.

Q: If oil price will continue to spiral downward what do you consider the first decisions to be taken in order to minimize the impact on business results?

A: First decision is to continue improving logistics efficiency by decreasing for instance the shut down time of the Oil Rig through efficient rig move logistics planning. Another example is increasing the frequency of our trunk routes to and from all European Lubbers bases. Operate efficient Groupage lanes to important Oil & Gas regions like the offshore Black Sea Haydarpasar and Constanta regions and onshore Diyarbakir region; optimal utilization of equipment and lanes.

Q: Compared to recent years, what are the significant achievements in 2014 and Lubbers’s major goals for the future?

A: The opening of the Lubbers Offshore base in Constanta, doubling the surface of our base in Ploiesti, the opening of the new Lubbers Turkey branch, further integration of our Value Added services with as example spectacular growth in the offshore container & basket rental activities and continuous expansion of our rig move division are the main highlights for 2014. Besides this, we renewed 20% of our fleet in Romania and increased our fleet with 10%.

Major goal for the coming years is to create synergies and efficient regional cross-border transport solutions in the whole Black Sea region, benefitting from each other’s strength and local expertise. The Lubbers Turkey organisation will be an integrated part of our Black Sea Team of logistics experts and we consider the Black Sea Lubbers Team in the Black Sea region as one. Our customers benefit from the typical Lubbers market approach, being close to the customer offering regional and local expertise complying with the highest QHSE standards.

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