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OILMET: “Openness and Integrity are at the Heart of Everything We Do. I’d Like to Think This Ethos Has Underpinned Our Success.”

Founded in 2014, Scottish-based OilMet is a growing presence in the global market of Manufacturing High-Quality Products for the Alternative Energy and Oil and Gas Sector.

Founder and CEO, Kevin Kerr has successfully built a business that has seen its reputation for providing first-class manufacturing and supply chain management services grow year on year whilst also attracting an international client base. Demand for their services in the Alternative Energy sector is particularly thriving.

Such has been their success in the Alternative Energy sector, the company is about to undergo an incredibly exciting rebranding programme, under the name of EnerMet. It will mark the continuing progression of the business under CEO, Kevin Kerr, who is intent on taking the company to the next level, as he explains. “The Oil and Gas sector was our core source of business at inception but we have now diversified and feel that EnerMet (Metal Parts for the Energy Sector) is more relevant for us moving forward.”

It is this ability to diversify and offer a number of different services that has cemented its reputation in the industry. It is a reputation of excellence that has been well-earned and deserved. The team that Kevin has created at OilMet brings with it decades of experience and they have become a trusted name within the sector.

They let their work speak for themselves, and the word of mouth of others does the rest. Demand for their services has grown across the UK, China and North America and we sat down with CEO, Kevin Kerr, to learn more about what OilMet do, what makes them so unique in the industry, what the future holds for the company and what are the core values that define them.

Making a Success in Providing Global Sourcing Support

For Kevin, it has been an incredible journey that has seen him rise throughout the ranks of the industry to become one of the leaders in the sector. But how did his adventure with OilMet begin? “I was already representing a very high-quality Chinese Steel Forging Company and would regularly get asked to support the sourcing of various other parts that fell outside of this company’s capabilities.  Therefore, I decided to set up a spin-off as I felt that I could make a success of providing global sourcing support to some established connections, and hopefully find a few more.”

In what is an incredibly competitive industry, the OilMet team is able to call upon a wealth of expertise in the provision of bespoke manufactured steel component parts and assemblies which are utilised predominantly in the Oil and Gas and alternative energy industries.  So, how do they do this? It is done by using strategic alliances that they have formed with consistently high-performing sub-contract manufacturers in China where they can also lend their expertise to remove the risk of sourcing products such as fabrications, castings, extrusions and general machined parts.  It is all part of a finely tuned process that they have spent years developing and perfecting.

What Sets Us Apart

It’s not just this that sets the business apart from its competitors though, as Kevin explains. “I think the fact that we can offer so many options to our clients makes us unique. We have very good knowledge and experience internally.  We can take any concept or even mature designs and critique them for manufacturability whilst trying to remove unnecessary costs, we may even propose a completely different way to make the part.  Then, if you want it made in China, India, Europe or North America, we’ll take care of that too!”

The depth of services they offer highlights their excellence in the industry. This isn’t a one-size fits all business. They are highly aware that each client is different in their demands, and they’ll go the extra mile to ensure their requirements are met.

They are able to provide direct manufacturing, which allows for access to direct low-cost manufacturing through their partner facility LYGM Subsea Oil Equipment, which is located in Jiangsu Province, China.  They specialise in the manufacturing of Subsea Forgings used in the exploration and production of hydrocarbons in the subsea and surface markets, as well as applying their expertise to indirect manufacturing.

OilMet as a business is also able to provide what many of its competitors can’t and that’s a professional and experienced interface between customers in the West and pre-qualified partners in China.  They ensure the protection of their client’s intellectual property and manage the sourcing cycle from initiation to completion.

“A number of our partners manufacture in China, whilst a significant portion of our customer base is in the US.”

A Trusted Voice

As you can see, this isn’t just a one-stop shop. This is a business which offers a variety of first-class options and exceptional customer service. They take the client with them on a journey from the initial consultation, right through to the sale, providing an open and transparent service, which is communicated throughout the process.

It is also their decades of experience and unparalleled knowledge in what is an often complicated industry, where a need to understand and adapt to diverse market conditions and different regulations is essential. This is part of why OilMet has seen its services so sought after. They are a trusted voice which offers a great deal of reassurance to any client they are working with.

As Kevin explains, “We partner with a select few manufacturing partners and we take their capabilities and offerings on the road.  We analyse sourcing problems that our clients may have and we find solutions for them.  Essentially, we put together a cost-effective package of steel, aluminium and sometimes plastic component parts and assemblies and deliver it to our clients with the quality assured.”

They also provide Supply Chain Management and Inspection Services with an on-the-ground presence and industry expertise, which make them an incredibly useful resource to their clients as a third-party inspection service. They are also able to offer clients their specialist engineers and expeditors at competitive daily or weekly rates to visit any manufacturing facility in China to perform inspection, witness and/or general progress of projects. All of the staff in this department are very competent in English and clients will receive a first-class legible report. No stone is left unturned.

Openness and Integrity

It is also the core values implemented by Kevin at the inception of the business that has helped grow its reputation. “Openness and Integrity are at the heart of everything we do.  I’d like to think that this ethos has been pivotal in underpinning the success that we have enjoyed thus far.  

Our number one source of new custom is not through social media, advertising or attending trade shows, but it is from word of mouth; recommendations from current clients to new which is a great source of pride and something I am very humbled by also.”

It is a sector that isn’t without its challenges, however, and it’s an area that OilMet has expertly navigated to excel in its growth. “The challenges are a mainstay, from day one to the present, only they change as things evolve,” explains, Kevin. Adding that, “A number of our partners manufacture in China, whilst a significant portion of our customer base is in the US.  This posed huge challenges in recent years due to the geopolitical tensions between those two superpowers.  But we always have a plan B and remain optimistic about retaining a strong foothold in the North American market which has been a key region for us in terms of revenue.”

We Have Achieved Alot Together

It’s not just the constant and ever-changing geo-political situation that OilMet has to manage. They also came through the global pandemic, which affected the entire industry and it’s something that Kevin will never forget.  “I would say my most vivid memory throughout our time as a business would be during the pandemic when we were asked to significantly ramp up production which we did successfully at arm’s length and with the odds stacked.  We successfully delivered 4.8 Million Bearing Assemblies to an International client, with zero defects.  It reminds me of how fortunate we are to have a very good team, and we have achieved a lot together so far.”

There is an exciting road ahead for the business. The company is continuing to grow and they are invested in creating jobs in the industry. Kevin’s role is ever-changing and the growth of the team has allowed Kevin to focus more on developing deeper collaborations with manufacturing partners and exploring what more they can be doing with current and potential new clients.

So what does the rest of the year have in store? “The US remains a key market for us, particularly in the renewables sector, specifically solar which we have enjoyed tremendous success in supporting over the last 5-6 years.  This industry will continue to grow significantly year on year for the foreseeable future.  That is why we will look to open an office in the South West region of the US later this year.  At the same time, we are seeing a huge amount of interest within our own shores here in the UK therefore we may need to add to our team in Bathgate to support potential new accounts.” With this and an innovative rebranding project on the horizon, the rest of the year promises to be incredibly exciting for Kevin and the team.

With thanks to Kevin Kerr, CEO of OilMet.

For more information on OilMet, please visit here

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