SPARK OF SUCCESS

Nigeria 2019 | TRANSPORT | INTERVIEW

Lambert Electromec aims to provide services to every part of the construction, real estate, and energy sectors in Nigeria

Michael Beylouny
BIOGRAPHY
Michael Beylouny is the Managing Director of Lambert Electromec. He has over 25 years' industry experience both in Africa and the Middle East in engineering, construction, and management. He has been involved in several large and innovative projects, also actively creating new frontiers and markets across West Africa. He is a graduate of St Joseph University – E.S.I.B in electrical engineering and has a diploma in management from Notre Dame University.

What are Lambert Electromec's main operations?

We are an electrical and mechanical engineering contracting company, previously in partnership with a leading Canadian company called Lambert Somec, which started operations in Port Harcourt in 2001. In 2004, operational independence was attained in Nigeria, and by 2007 we became Lambert Electromec Ltd. Our first projects were in Port Harcourt, mainly electro-mechanical works for buildings and infrastructure within the built environment, which remains our core business. Throughout the years, we have developed several in-house divisions, and today we have a power division, a data center division, a maintenance division, and a new division in the oil and gas industry specializing in modular refineries. We have partnered with Houston-based Vfuels Ltd. for the EPC construction of refineries. In 2017, we signed our first contract for a refinery to be built in Imo State for 5,000bpd, which broke ground in 2019. We are currently designing others.

What maintenance services do you provide?

Our maintenance services provide a complete and comprehensive solution to all our clients' facility maintenance requirements. We have the expertise and equipment to handle a wide range of scope for industrial, commercial, and residential sectors. Our approach is to work closely with clients, understand their requirements, and provide cost-effective solutions, thereby minimizing operational costs and optimizing service delivery.

How would you split the operations between your divisions?

Though about 65% of our core operation centers around the building division for the past decade, we are already witnessing significant growth in the power and oil and gas sectors around West African countries.

What power projects do you have in the pipeline?

We are in discussion with various stakeholders in Nigeria for EPC power projects varying between 10MW and 100MW utilizing several sources of energy such as gas, solar, waste-to-energy, and other hydrocarbons.

How challenging is it to obtain funding from the international markets as a Nigerian company?

It is challenging, yet there is significant interest from the international community in developing projects in Africa, mainly for infrastructure and renewable energy.

What does it take to stay ahead of the competition?

Maintaining our standards and quality is how we differentiate ourselves. We do a great deal of training of our personnel to be able to meet these standards. We have a robust and strong engineering team abroad and in Nigeria to provide the quality that our clients seek. While we are mainly local, we have many resources and partners overseas who provide us support.

How is the operating environment today compared to before the recession?

The market has definitely changed; we find it more difficult to convince our clients to maintain certain standards because they are more cost oriented. However, the positive side of this is that we have become more cost effective and have optimized our operations. The construction industry has not significantly improved, as we still face many challenges. There are currently very few construction projects coming up, so we hope the economy will grow again in 2019. Our international clients definitely look forward to making many investments in 2019 and 2020; however, 2018 has been difficult and slow in terms of the construction sector.

What are your expectations for 2019?

We would like to maintain our leadership position and growth in the industry and building sectors; however, we are focusing more on the power, oil and gas, and maintenance divisions. We are also working toward enlarging our clientele and have been operating in several regions where we did not previously have a presence. We operate mainly in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja, and Accra but today we are also in Bayelsa, Delta, Ibadan, Imo, and Ogun, as well as the Ivory Coast, Cameroon, and Togo. Although there are many challenges with expanding our operations, we are eager to widen our reach all the while overcoming the obstacles that this entails.