• Saturday, April 13, 2024
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Dorman Long Engineering Limited: Nigeria’s cynosure for socio-economic impact, building infrastructure for generations

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Staying in business for three-quarters of a century and growing into affiliated fields in that time tells its own story about a business, its strength, its resilience, and adaptability, as well as the commitment of those who are at the helm of affairs of that business.

Dorman Long Engineering Limited, established in 1949 as part of British Steel Corporation, is still in business as a Nigerian company having outlived colonialism and military rule. Today, it stands strong as a testament to what vision, quality, and a commitment to excellence can result in for a business.

Dorman Long is Nigeria’s leading steel engineering and fabrication company. Its expertise encompasses the entire EPC value chain. This includes fabrication of pressure vessels & process equipment, structural steel & marine structures, storage tanks and mobile units, asset management including greenfield development and brownfield maintenance, procurement & logistics services (Steel, Valves, and Oil & Gas Equipment), hot dip galvanizing and automation. In addition to its focus on continual growth and profitability, Dorman Long Engineering Limited is committed to making a socio-economic impact in its communities and building infrastructure not only for today, but for future generations of Nigerians and indeed Africans.

Infrastructure is the bedrock on which nations build their economies. Steel in its diverse formations is the ubiquitous component of most infrastructure and no one knows and does steel in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa like Dorman Long.

Every country’s economy needs reliable infrastructure to connect supply chains, linking households to sources of supply for their daily needs, and supporting access to higher-quality opportunities for employment.

When Dorman Long participated in the construction of one of the historic landmark projects in Nigeria — the 1st Niger Bridge — it fulfilled a purpose that remains key to the socio-economic development of the country through transportation.

The bridge which links Delta and Anambra States at the border towns of Asaba and Onitsha, was commissioned in 1964. The sturdy structure which was completed in December 1965 is still functional till date.

Dorman Long has also provided structural steel works for many industrial buildings constructed from the 1950s to the early 1970s in Ikeja – Lagos State and Trans-Amadi Industrial Estate in Rivers State. The company has its name imprinted on many more notable private and public infrastructure projects across the country.

Dorman Long is however not a company to rest on its laurels. As Nigeria’s oil and gas sector developed, Dorman Long rose to the occasion by diversifying from its origins in structural steel into the fabrication of vessels, valves, tanks and other heavy equipment to support the sector. Most recently, Dorman Long built the Madu Conductor Supported Platform (CSP); the first of its kind to be built in Nigeria.

Sustainable infrastructure development which drives economic growth relies on the transfer of knowledge from one generation to the next and continued investment in building and developing relevant technology. Dorman Long is invested in staff training and is constantly exploring new ways of attracting young Nigerian talents to the business. By doing this, it ensures strong local participation and a constant supply of new talent to pass on the skills and culture of excellence which it has built in nearly a century of doing business.

Its adaptability, agility, and commitment to constant growth and innovation to meet the needs of the market are indicative of why Dorman Long continues to play a significant role in quality service delivery to various sectors of Nigeria’s economy including oil and gas, telecommunications, power, and other heavy industries.

Dorman Long supports these sectors by making available a ready local supply of international standard products and services which previously could only be obtained as imports. In all its work, Dorman Long adheres to world–class standards and operates in compliance with industry best practices in Health, Safety and Environment (HSE).

As a testament to its penchant for quality driven by safety in operations, Dorman Long has won several awards, including HSE-related recognition such as the Incentive Prize for Achieving Over 250, 000 Man – Hours Without Lost Time Injury (LTI) on SNEPCO’s Bonga Buoy/Suction Piles Fabrication from Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCO); Incentive Prize for Achieving Over 150, 000 Man Hours Without Lost Time Injury (LTI) on ERHA Piles Fabrication from STOL/ ExxonMobil; HSE Award – Technical Services Division (Construction & Project Department) from Total/Elf Petroleum Nigeria; HSE recognition from Shell Nigeria for over 4 years Zero Lost Time Injury (LTI)-Free Operation in the Bonga Brownfield Engineering and Fabrication Project & Chevron Nigeria Limited – Safety Excellence Award for achieving over 400,000 LTI Free Man – hours in the Okan PRP Project, among others.

Investment in State-of-the-Art Facilities
Dorman Long invests heavily to ensure the company maintains its standards in world–class engineering service delivery. The company has three facilities in Lagos — its historical head office at Idi-Oro, the galvanizing plant at Agege, and the waterfront facility at the Nigerian Naval Dockyard (NND), Victoria Island. All these are fully equipped fabrication yards with the capacity to deliver world-class fabrication service.

The Nigerian Naval Dockyard (NND), Victoria Island facility is especially suited for the assembly of heavy projects that cannot be transported by road but on barges through the jetty. Other projects are executed at its Idi–Oro and Agege sites with galvanizing works solely executed at the Agege Galvanizing Plant.

The Victoria Island site in addition to all normal fabricating facilities also assembles fabrications processed at Idi-Oro and Agege including pressure vessels for transport by sea–going barge. The NND yard comprises a 2,500m2 covered area and a 10,000m2 open area with a deep-sea quay for loading very heavy or large structures onto barges for marine transportation.

The Idi-Oro facility is equipped with all the standard steel fabrication equipment and certain specialist facilities, including 7,500m2 covered and 15,000m2 open work areas. It also comprises major welding facilities including SMAW, SAW, TIG, MIG/FCAW, gouging and full cranage throughout with a maximum of 60mT plus mobile units. The facility is in the process of being upgraded with the addition of pipe profile cutting machines, CNC plate cutter, plate milling machines, and pipe sub-arc welding machines.

Dorman Long’s facility in Agege is the company’s centre for its protective coatings business and is the only large-scale engineering quality hot dip galvanizing facility in Nigeria. It was designed to meet the demands and specifications of the oil and gas industry. With this, Dorman Long has one of the largest state-of-the-art galvanizing plants in the world with an initial capacity of 50,000mt/an. The enlargement of this capacity is in the planning stages.

Improving Local Capacity Through Partnerships
Dorman Long Engineering Limited has successfully executed major EPC works including onshore flow stations, major structural fabrication, and erection. Committed to providing solutions to its clients, DLE is currently in partnership with key international engineering companies to provide Turnkey One – Stop Shop services to its major Nigerian IOC clients.

As the proudly Nigerian company continues its rapid development in an environment of significant opportunities within the sub – Saharan African region, it is increasingly engaging with global EPC companies to further expand its comprehensive range of products and services.

Dorman Long Engineering, along with its partners, will also play host to the 2024 Welding Federation Assembly in Nigeria. This will be the first time the annual event, which has many African member countries participating, will be held in Nigeria. This is made possible by Dorman Long Engineering’s investment in building cross-border synergies to expand local capacity after having attended this year’s edition in Cairo, Egypt along with a few other stakeholders from Nigeria.

In March 2024, Nigeria will welcome TWF member countries such as South Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Morocco, Uganda, Libya, Mozambique, Namibia, Cameroon, Kenya, and others, to deliberate on ways to advance manufacturing technologies in the continent.

Without a doubt, international knowledge exchange through conferences and workshops such as the Pan-African TWF Assembly and Conferences will create more opportunities for the manufacturing industry in Nigeria, thereby stimulating the country’s economy through capacity building and improving the country’s human development index.

Legacy Driven by Quality Human Assets
A business is as strong as the quality of its human assets — the accumulated knowledge and skills that increase employee productivity and become part of the company’s intangible assets. Dorman Long’s seasoned team comprising allied professionals, including 34 engineers, 11 of whom are senior engineers with over 200 combined years of experience continue to move the company closer to its vision.

In furtherance of its vision to offer competitive services to the oil and gas and other industries within Nigeria and Sub–Saharan Africa, Dorman Long is utilizing its wealth of experience and resources to continue to build capacity for more talents in the engineering sector through internship programs.

For decades, Dorman Long has remained a tireless advocate for local content development, putting Nigeria on the map across Africa, and the world. DLE has been doing this for almost a century and is well-positioned to achieve more in the future.