Subsea robotics and engineering company Soil Machine Dynamics (SMD) has revealed its plans to exceed £100 million turnover within five years, which includes the electrification of its vehicles and two new facilities.
To reach the turnover goal, SMD said it has ambitious recruitment targets and plans to expand its innovation and services arms with two new facilities that will be based in the North East of England, in addition to focusing on the electrification of its vehicles.
The plans include opening a dedicated customer service center and an R&D facility, for which engineers and software developers will be needed.
The company’s turnover last year was £58 million, inclusive of its Shanghai operation, and SMD believes it can double that by 2025.
“We have been around for over 50 years now and have weathered many storms including the dot com crash and more recently, the pandemic,” said Mike Jones, Chairman at SMD. “What has helped our continued growth has been our focus on innovation and that has undoubtedly been because of our talented people.”
Branching into a more service-led model is said to be key for SMD and the company had recently announced a new framework agreement with Van Oord, whereby it supplied equipment for an offshore wind project in Taiwan and was on hand 24/7 to repair and maintain the vehicles.
“We have listened to our clients and it’s very clear that they value the assurance working with the OEM can offer. They increasingly want our help to repair, modify and maintain their equipment,” said Liam Forbes, General Manager of services at SMD.
“The three-year arrangement we have with Van Oord means the team benefits from our OEM expertise, a set price list of all parts and services and 24/7 worldwide technical support. This will vastly reduce the cost and the time it takes to purchase, modify or repair parts.”
SMD further notes that its first electric remotely operated vehicle (ROV) will be in the market this year and that concepts for more electric vehicles and applications are in the pipeline.
“Artemis will also be a massive commercial product launch for us in 2023, it’s been over three years in the making and we are finally at the point where it can be hired for use on commercial projects. Its patented technology gives accurate, real-time measurement of where cables have been placed deep below the seabed to protect them, which has not been possible with existing technology,” Jones concluded.