Platinum Sponsor: Trimble
Regional sales manager
Brad Freeman, regional sales manager at Trimble MEP, reveals that the MEP Middle East Awards is a place where the future meets reality. He says: “Now in its twelfth year, this is an opportunity for MEP professionals to meet new people, honour excellence in innovation, and learn from one another. We are definitely looking forward to this year’s event.”
“We’re most looking forward to learning about projects that are changing the industry. We enjoy meeting other companies that are working towards similar goals, and we often seek out opportunities to bounce ideas off of one another. This event is a great opportunity to network and even develop new strategic partnerships.” Trimble is a platinum sponsor at this year’s MEP Middle East Awards.
Freeman says that the MEP sector in the Middle East should focus its efforts on efficiency through VDC (Virtual Design & Construction) services, robotic total stations, and scanning technology. He adds: “These are innovations that are changing the face of the industry, and they can’t be ignored in this region. With the demand for new buildings increasing at an astonishing rate, competition amongst construction firms to build better and faster is getting fierce. Adopting these types of services and technology is one way to position this region far beyond the competition.”
Talking about Trimble’s plans for the region, Freeman says: “BIM is a requirement for a growing number of projects in the Middle East. Contractors are upskilling their workforce and implementing technology that can aid in the BIM process. Trimble sees a major opportunity on the job site. BIM models are being produced with rich information that is transferred to site on paper resulting in the loss of intelligent data.
“Trimble’s Robotic Total Station (RTS) is the connection between office and site, by enabling Contractors to export 2D and 3D models that include wall penetrations or hanger points and cable tray attachment locations to site on a Trimble tablet, the RTS pinpoints the exact locations via a green laser. Over the last 12 months, there has been a significant uptake in the RTS and is being used on many major projects in Dubai.”
Freeman says that 3D Laser Scanning is prominent in the region with contractors purchasing laser scanners to verify existing installations, progress monitoring and creating as-built models. He says that Trimble has received a number of RFP’s for its 3D Laser Scanning solution and services. He says: “We expect to see this rise over the coming years as more buildings mature and owner/operators look at utilising existing building space.
“MEP consultants have been using 3D design solutions for a number of years. They are now reaching out to companies such as ours to understand what solutions we offer that can enhance existing workflows, streamlining business processes. ProDesign is already a tool used by many consultants and contractors for LV Electrical Design and Calculations. We have now taken this one step further with the introduction of ProDesign 3D. No longer are you required to use ProDesign in isolation, now you can leverage existing 3D models to perform electrical calculations integral to the model.
“With the uptake in Revit by MEP Consultants and Contractors, we see a major opportunity with Trimble Sysque software. Contractors can take design-intent models from designers and engineers and efficiently create models that are built from the same, integrated, managed content database, improving collaboration and workflows between design, detailing, and fabrications.”
Khansaheb Industries - Spiralite: Gold Sponsor
business development manager
Khansaheb Industries for Spiralite
Khansaheb Industries will continue to identify and introduce innovation that is sustainable and energy efficient, stated Paul Groves, business development manager, Khansaheb Industries for Spiralite. Groves was speaking to MEP Middle East on the backdrop of MEP Awards which will be held on 7 November. Khansaheb Industries is one of the gold sponsors for MEP Awards.
Talking about the company’s plans for the MEP sector in the region, Groves said: “We will both continue to develop our energy efficient AC ductwork Spiralite and look at other similar products. We find it hard to believe that it is the only AC ductwork that effectively saves energy and reduces the carbon footprint of a building. Given that up to 30% of the lifetime cost of a building is directly related to AC, we have a passion to spread the message to as many people as possible and as quickly as possible, and hence our involvement in such awards.”
Groves considers the MEP Middle East Awards to be the best of its kind in the UAE region as they attract “a diverse and wide range of high quality entrants and represent the best of the MEP industry”. He added: “They also encourage innovation and quality, which are key factors for the future growth of the sector.”
He said that it is important to be exposed to innovations and initiatives that represent the evolution and dynamism of the MEP sector during challenging times. Talking more about the awards, Groves said: “We also benefit from exposure to industry leaders as this helps and guides our own growth and development and allows us to respond better to new challenges. Finally, we believe that our products Spiralite is unique and offers benefits to all parties involved in the construction industry, from developers to MEP contractors, and all in between, so its increased exposure to the sector can be beneficial to all.”
About the MEP sector, Groves said that the sector is going through difficult times with shrinking margins and fewer construction projects. He said that the solution is to become more productive and innovative, with a greater focus on quality. He said: “We have to look outside the box. This is being done but, in my view, to a far too limited extent and by only a few of the players. Times are changing and the sector needs to embrace change and innovation, particularly in the area of sustainability and energy efficiency; that is the future.”
Talking about the challenges, Groves said that the margins are shrinking and that the market is very competitive driven by cost. Moreover, there is limited focus on quality and more reliance on older technologies.
On opportunities, Groves said there is value engineering that is not just a cost driven exercise. There is also a greater focus on sustainability and energy efficiency, with greater concern for quality and long term relationships. “Khansaheb Industries,” Groves said, “through Spiralite and other innovative and sustainable products that we are currently looking at, is proud to be doing all these things.”
Energi People: Silver Sponor
Manager – international, MEP Building Services Recruitment Consultant
James Mowat feels that the MEP Awards is a good opportunity for recognizing individual and collaborative achievements of MEP engineers and companies in the region, for all of their hard work on incredibly challenging projects, in what has been a very tough market. Mowat, who is a manager – international, MEP Building Services Recruitment Consultant at Energi People, says: “Energi People is proud to be the recruitment partner of MEP Middle East and have sponsored the MEP Awards for the fourth year running. The event provides a great platform for networking and strengthening business relationships.”
Mowat looks forward to celebrating the achievements with everyone and seeing the development and recognition of engineers within the region. He adds: “It’s fantastic to see longstanding and new clients doing well and candidates I have helped in their careers over the years flourishing and being in the spotlight!”
Talking a bit about the MEP Conference, Mowat says: “There was a big call at the MEP Conference this year for more collaboration between consultancies and contractors and having the contractor involved with the consultant at the conceptual design stage. It’d be great to see this happening more in the region this year. Having good levels of communication and transparency across all parties involved is essential but has always been a challenge, with each party motivated by their own interests and not necessarily working together as a team to achieve the end result of the project.”
He adds that there are a lot of opportunities in Dubai. He says: “Dubai is where most projects appear to be being awarded, with a lot of work waiting to start associated with Expo 2020 and other large developments. Payment is still a huge challenge for all in the region, which impacts every party involved on a project, highlighting the need for transparency and consistency.
“There is still a huge shortage of talent in the region in the MEP design sector, BIM coordinators/engineers are at an increasing premium as more firms understand the challenges of BIM, Principal Level engineers & engineers who are able to help companies with business development to secure more work are all in high demand.”
According to Mowat, Energi People, as a company, will continue its level of service, support and collaboration with its clients and candidates which has firmly placed itself as the number one MEP recruitment company in the region for over a decade. He adds: “I am very passionate about this industry which I have now worked as a part of in the GCC for over 12 years and personally feel it is essential to add value (outside of recruitment) across the region and I am hoping to work closely with the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) UAE this year, to help raise their profile and also help engineers develop in their careers and gain chartered status.”
One of the main opportunities driving the market is Expo 2020. Freeman says: “Clients are aligning construction timelines to have their projects operational by Expo 2020. This poses many challenges for the ongoing mega-projects with contractors looking at ways to deliver on time and within budget. No longer is it viable to just ‘chuck more people at the job’; MEP contractors see technology as the driving force in increasing efficiency, mitigating risk, and reducing costs.
“Trimble isn’t just a technology provider, we are a ‘partner’ to many of the major MEP contractors in the region. Not only are we providing the technology needed to get the job done, but we are offering our knowledge and expertise in BIM to go along with it.”
The nominations as well as table sales for the MEP Middle East Awards 2018 are open. The deadline for the nominations are 13 September.
Click here for more information.