Fire Safety

Moving forward to strengthen MENA's fire fighting capacity

TANKCOHealth, Safety, Security Review Middle East speaks with Sheikh Mishal Yousef Soud Al Sabah, chairman and managing director of Kuwait-based Tank International Petroleum Equipment & Instrumentation Co. (TANKCO), distributor of LUF and IFEX firefighting support machines and services for the MENA region


What are the main features of your firefighting support machines?

LUF 60 and 120 are two wireless remotely-operated firefighting support machines from the LUF family. They can control and extinguish a fire from 300 metres away wirelessly, with a discharging capacity of 3,000 litres per minute for LUF 60, and 12,000 litres per minute for LUF 120 up to a distance of 80-100 metres. All functions are controlled by a remote control unit, making them unique in their category. No other machines match their features and capability, which are offered in such a compact but powerful format. LUF machines’ compactness, tremendous power, flexibility, mobility and safety make them game changers in big fire scenarios.  This avoids risk and safeguards the precious lives of firefighters.  Usually features that are available with LUF 120 exist only on 40 ton trucks with four axles. 

The IFEX® Technologies Impulse firefighting system was developed in 1994 and to this day is still considered to be a pioneer in the market. Through its unique efficiency, lives are saved and protected by the firefighting, and also material damage is reduced many times over. IFEX systems can be used in different configurations from back pack modules to IFEX Helicopter modules to fight fire efficiently and effectively while saving 90 per cent of water resources.

What other services are you looking to promote?

We are looking into providing complete outsourced firefighting services by using LUF and IFEX systems. Due to the peculiar nature of the fire fighting and safety sector, certain types of clients may sometimes prefer to outsource their fire-fighting operations to third party service providers such as TANKCO. Some of these clients may belong to categories such as:

a) Clients that just wish to focus on their core businesses / activities rather than having in-house fire-fighting systems;

b) Clients from certain industries who may need fire fighting services only for short durations at regular intervals etc. such as air and defence shows, fire-cracker displays, large social and cultural events, industrial shows etc; 

c) Governmental clients who usually take much longer to decide on the eventual purchase of firefighting equipment etc.

In all the above scenarios TANKCO is well equipped to offer complete outsourcing firefighting services with both equipment and technical manpower in a highly flexible and agile manner.

The many upcoming high profile international events in the GCC (e.g. Expo 2020, UAE; FIFA World Cup 2022, Qatar; Annual Haj Pilgrimage, Saudi Arabia), mean that growth is the buzz word across firefighting and safety sector. In view of these upcoming events, which will result in an increased demand for innovative and unique products / services,  TANKCO is repositioning its offer to suit local market requirements.


How is your business developing in Kuwait and the region, and are there any successes you would like to highlight?

As a part of our business development programme for the past year we have been actively marketing and promoting our systems and services throughout the MENA region.  Live product demonstrations have been carried out for Kuwait Oil Company, Kuwait National Petroleum Corporation, Kuwait Fire Services Department, EQUATE Petrochemical Company, and detailed sales discussions have taken place with senior officials. We have also participated at different industry specific shows like ADIPEC in Abu Dhabi, SSS in Dammam, Saudi Arabia and OFSEC in Oman to name few. Our product advertisements and top management interviews have been published in various industry specific and premium publications. 

A promotion, marketing and distribution agreement has been signed with a leading Qatari business group and a well as cooperation agreements have been signed with  experienced consultants for Iran, Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia for promoting and marketing the products and services offered by TANKCO.

We expect to close couple of deals in the first half of 2017.

Are there any trends you are seeing which are impacting your business?

Since the launch of our unique range of firefighting machines in early 2016 for the MENA market there have been oversights in fire fighting and safety in critical infrastructure. The new regulations, which are now enforcing stringent guidelines to protect buildings and the people living and working in them, are creating ample opportunities for businesses in the fire safety market in the GCC. This is the right time for companies like TANKCO, with our innovative range of firefighting support machines and services, to strengthen their market presence. 

How are you looking to expand your business in the region, and where do you see the most promising opportunities for you?

TANKCO, as a distributor of LUF & IFEX systems for the MENA region, wishes to expand the business by appointing sales partners in each of its territories. We are looking for interested companies having ample experience in the firefighting and safety domain to promote our systems. Discussions are underway with many companies in this regard.

We advocate "seeing is believing". Arrangements are being made for live demonstrations to showcase the unique capabilities of our systems. A demo tour has been scheduled during the first quarter of 2017 for various clients and end users in the GCC region. This tour will cover all major public institutions and private sector companies in the UAE, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

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