Al Ajab plans new facility in Jizan

Al Ajab Group’s galvanising business will be expanded with a new facility in Jizan in the southwest of Saudi Arabia following on the heels of successful operations in Dammam and Jubail, Vice Chairman Waleed Khalid Al Ajab says.

The company’s galvanising plants in the two existing locations have a combined capacity of 60,000 tonnes annually. The Jizan project is in the planning stage and will likely be able to handle more work than the Jubail plant whose capacity is 35,000 tonnes.

“Expecting demand for galvanising to go up steeply in the years to come we have planned to expand accordingly. The new Jizan plant is a step in that direction,” Al Ajab said.

“We have already increased capacity in our Dammam plant to a vast extent and have totally reconstructed the unit to accommodate more material and meet customers’ requirements on time.

“Further, if the opportunity arises and project feasibility is good, we don’t see why we should not set up plants outside Saudi Arabia.”

Al Ajab Group started as a general trader in 1968 and was very successful in catering to the industrial, construction, hardware and miscellaneous markets. Subsequently it made a foray into the construction sector, erecting numerous residential complexes and villas, shopping malls, factories and offices.

This diversification proved successful and the company decided to enter into the industrial field by starting a metal plating factory which developed rapidly to become a major player in its field in the Eastern Province. It was just a matter of time that the group would go into galvanising which it did in 2000.

The group portfolio expanded with a steel fabrication plant, which runs busy throughout the year and the launch of an engineering service with a special focus on the oil and gas sector. Its latest endeavour is the opening of a water bottling plant.

Commenting on the galvanising business, Al Ajab said the group decided to fill the gap in galvanising services in the Eastern Province at the beginning of the new millennium.

It would be a win-win enterprise as companies would need to protect steel from the effects of humidity and reduce corrosion.

It was inevitable a facility for galvanising had to be set up, said Al Ajab.

While a galvanising facility was a safe investment, diversifying into the business was “a real challenge and adapting to it was not easy,” says Al Ajab.

A reputation to maintain

“We had to maintain the good reputation gained in previous businesses without compromises, which meant ensuring quality goods and services. We were successful within a short period.”

The group specialised in hot dip galvanising and adopted the high velocity system which maintains a uniform temperature around the bath, resulting in higher quality galvanised steel.

Al Ajab’s production facilities have
served top-drawer Saudi companies

“Al Ajab is the first galvaniser to implement this system in the Eastern Province and both our plants use it. Since we have membership of various relevant associations, we update our system from time to time to ensure better quality,” the Vice Chairman said.

“Quality is a priority and we conform to standards and our customers’ specifications with prompt service and on-time delivery.

“This formula helps us face competition and any uphill task.”

Contracts

The company is now busy implementing contracts for several big-name projects including Maaden DAP Granulation, Pearl GTL, Ras Tanura DHT, Saudi Kayan Olefins, NCP, Manifa, DAP-SMI, Karan Gas plant, Saudi Aramco power plant and the Rabigh cable plant.

The main contractors for those projects are Nesma & Partners, Al Jaber Transport, Samsung Engineering, KBR-Singapore, JGC-Saudi Daelim, GS Construction and Hyundai Engineering.

Last year Al Ajab successfully completed a number of major contracts. These included several Saudi Kayan projects embracing facilities for EO/EG petrochemicals, polycarbonates, phenol and ethylene.
Also that year the company completed an order for the Nuayyim ASL crude increment factory, AAC ethylene amines project and Yanbu refinery.

About the group’s performance overall, Al Ajab commented: “We have surpassed the expectations of the founders.

“The company is driven by hard work and a perfectionist attitude which makes it possible to deliver high-calibre services to the satisfaction of clients.”