Water Online Radio: Pipe Repair Without Shutdown
Brett Haines of TEAM Industrial Services talks about the value of pipe and valve repair sans shutdown, as well as the meaning of “asset-centric.”
Todd Schnick: We're coming to you live from Dallas, Texas. This is day three of AWWA ACE and Water Online Radio. I'm your host, Todd Schnick, joined by my colleague, Todd Youngblood. Todd?
Todd Youngblood: I'm just having a great time.
Todd Schnick: I'm going to come back Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, just because.
Todd Youngblood: We'll just sit here and broadcast.
Todd Schnick: I don't care if the place is empty. We're just having a good time and we're going to have more fun with our next guest. I want to welcome Brett Haines, Business Development Manager of Water Works and Municipality with TEAM Industrial Services. Welcome to the show, Brett.
Brett Haines: Thank you. It's great to be here.
Todd Schnick: Well, it's our pleasure to have you. Before we get into anything, why don't take a second and tell us a little about you and your background.
Brett Haines: I've been in the industry for 30 years doing water taps and line stops and pipe and valve repair, and had my own business and now working for TEAM Industrial Services.
Todd Youngblood: Well, I want to hear more about TEAM Industrial Services. Tell us what you're doing to help and serve your marketplace.
Brett Haines: TEAM Industrial Services is a global company that does online link repair, inspection, and they do a lot of different things to make sure the utilities and plants don't have to shut down in order to do pipe inspection and repair.
Todd Youngblood: Tell us how TEAM is positioned to help serve that market.
Brett Haines: We're global, so we have offices throughout the world. Also, we're well-positioned because we have great products and we have what we call asset-centric products in order to help the utilities.
Todd Youngblood: Alright, Brett, so the clean water industry – what do you say are the most pressing issues in that industry?
Todd Schnick: One of the issues that we're facing is providing clean water at a good cost. As we see more and more contaminants and regulations, water is getting to be more pricey, so we can't operate the systems like we used to and we can't maintain them like we used to, so that's one. The second one is the aging infrastructure is deteriorating to the point where we don't have the money to repair all the pipes.
Todd Schnick: How is TEAM poised to help the trends and issues in the clean water industry?
Brett Haines: By providing an alternative to shut down. Many utilities, if they have a section of pipe that they have to replace, what they'll do is that they'll shut a great area of the system down in order to do the capital improvements.
What TEAM has recently done is developed a product and built a product where you can install a valve of live online so that you don't waste that precious water and also where you can gain control right where you need it, right where you want it, and be able to have a connection to run your new pipe from.
Todd Schnick: Brett, I want to make sure I understand exactly what you mean by the phrase “asset-centric” products. Talk a little bit more of what you mean by that.
Brett Haines: Well, I see that buzzword in a lot of the trade journals right now – asset-centric – and what that is, is having a valuable asset right now that gives you today, but also can give you value in the future. Our insert valve allows you to have that.
Todd Youngblood: I suspect you have competition. How are you guys unique and why should people consider your product over competitors?
Brett Haines: Well, the number one competition that we have is utilities just shutting down and just draining the system. If we could just spend 20 minutes with the utilities to show them that it costs them money in order to do a shutdown.
Number two, we do have competitors that have a similar product, but it seats on the pipe, it doesn't seat on itself, and we have a unique system where the valve actually seats on itself. The other thing about our product, it has an internal mechanical joint connection.
If you have an 80-year-old pipe and you put a new valve on it, you don't want an 80-year-old seat. But also, you'll at one point, either today or tomorrow, want to take that 80-year-old pipe out of my valve and put new pipe in it, and my valve is the only one that allows them that capability.
Todd Youngblood: Get a little more specific on that financial impact. You said it costs money to shut down and of course it does. What's the magnitude of the money we're talking about – not spending and also saving with your products and services.
Brett Haines: Whenever you shut down, obviously you have to notify clients, there's regulations of sampling and flushing, purging, maybe high-lining water to utilities or to customers in that utility.
There's a variety of things that need to be done – probably 40 or 50 different things that a utility goes through in order to shut down. So if you dollarize all those things that they do – put a cost to all that – generally we'll come in less expensive.
Todd Schnick: Utilities are notorious for not being quick to adopt new technology and new innovation. What can we do to address that problem and how is TEAM poised to help utilities address that issue?
Brett Haines: We would like to be able to visit with them face to face. We do a lot of “lunch and learns”. If the utility could just have us come in, buy them lunch, and show them the product, maybe show us what their next capital improvements are. Just give them an alternative bid, and then they can just see for themselves where we stack up.
Todd Schnick: Brett, innovation is so critical given the complexity of this industry and how rapidly it's changing. And you also have to have a long-term perspective – I've got to have a 15-, 20-, 25-year kind of perspective. How do you work with your customers to let them know that you're going to be there, not only now, but next year, 5 years, 10 years, 20 years out?
Brett Haines: Great. We're a publicly-traded company. That's one thing that gives stability to us. Also, another thing is a legacy service of TEAM, started in 1973, was the tapping and line stopping business, and this is really just a variation of that.
This is what we do and that adds stability. Also the product itself, there's no reason why the product won't outlast me. You put it in the ground today and it's going to be longer than I'm around. This valve also can be repaired under pressure, which gives the longevity that no one else can provide them.
Todd Youngblood: Brett, you guys are exhibiting here at ACE12, how's the show going and what's your goals and strategy here?
Brett Haines: The show's really pretty good. It's been… the quality of the people coming up has been fantastic. We haven't been overwhelmed constantly with traffic, but it's been a good show.
Todd Youngblood: A minute ago you talked about repairing a valve under pressure, and I'm back to the financial impact thing again. That's a little scary.
Brett Haines: Yes, so not only does this valve insert under pressure, so that you can get valve control when you need it, where you need it. But in the event that the valve would break because someone over-tightened it or something, it can be repaired under pressure, and that is a unique feature.
Every utility would love to have every one of their valves currently in their system repair under pressure; well, they can start with this one.
Todd Schnick: That's got to save a lot of repair time and therefore cost.
Brett Haines: And they never shut down when they do the repairs.
Todd Schnick: Outstanding. Brett, I hate to say we're out of time. Before we let you go, how can people get in touch with you and, more importantly, where can learn about the goods works at TEAM Industrial Services?
Brett Haines: Our website is www.teamindustrialservices.com, and our phone number is 800-662-8326.
Todd Schnick: Outstanding. Brett Haines, Business Development Manager of Water Works and Municipality with TEAM Industrial Services, it was great to have you. Thanks so much for joining us.
Brett Haines: Thank you.
Todd Schnick: Alright, well that wraps this segment. On behalf of our guest, Brett Haines, my co-host, Todd Youngblood, and all of us at Water Online, I'm Todd Schnick, and we’ll be back with our next guest.