Construction work formally commences on HS2 project

PBC Today | September 04, 2020

Construction has formally commenced on the HS2 project, as it looks set to create around 22,000 new jobs. The symbolic announcement signals that the four Main Works Civils Contractors (MWCC) are moving from enabling works, scheme design and preparatory work, to full construction of the HS2 project. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, said: “HS2 is at the heart of our plans to build back better – and with construction now formally underway, it’s set to create around 22,000 new jobs. “As the spine of our country’s transport network, the project will be vital in boosting connectivity between our towns and cities. “But HS2’s transformational potential goes even further. By creating hundreds of apprenticeships and thousands of skilled jobs, HS2 will fire up economic growth and help to rebalance opportunity across this country for years to come.” HS2’s main works contractor for the West Midlands, the Balfour Beatty VINCI Joint Venture (BBV JV), along with its supply chain partners, has said it expects to be one of the biggest recruiters in the West Midlands over the next two years, with up to 7,000 skilled jobs required to complete its section of the HS2 route.

Spotlight

Companies expect a lot of savings when they move their applications to the cloud, but these savings aren’t a slam-dunk. Expected savings from lower up-front capital costs, more predictable operational costs, and economies of scale are driving the inexorable march to cloud adoption by organizations of all types. But these vaunted cost savings aren’t a slam dunk.

Spotlight

Companies expect a lot of savings when they move their applications to the cloud, but these savings aren’t a slam-dunk. Expected savings from lower up-front capital costs, more predictable operational costs, and economies of scale are driving the inexorable march to cloud adoption by organizations of all types. But these vaunted cost savings aren’t a slam dunk.

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ENGINEERING TECH, CONSTRUCTION

Petra Acquires Trenchless Tunneling Company Zilper to Enable Utility Undergrounding Through any Nightmare Geology

Petra | September 16, 2022

Petra, the first company capable of undergrounding critical utility infrastructure from difficult hard rock to soft ground geologies, announced the acquisition of Zilper Trenchless, a pioneer in the trenchless technology space. Zilper Trenchless machines uniquely install critical utility infrastructure through nightmare geologies such as flowing sands, cobbles, and high water table environments. The vast majority of the world’s electric, water, and sewer utilities were not designed to withstand the storms, extreme heat, and drought brought on by climate change and rapid population growth. Above-ground power lines have caused thousands of wildfires in drought prone areas and blackouts during hurricanes. In coastal areas, increased flooding and sea level rise cause sewage to leach into waterways. There is a growing demand by municipalities to expand underground utilities, but in many populated areas with hard and soft ground nightmare geologies, conventional technology has difficulty boring through flowing sand, high water table content, and cobbles. According to the Black & Veatch 2022 Water Report, the United States would need to increase its investment in water infrastructure by $2.2 trillion over the next 20 years, or roughly $109 billion per year to close the water industry’s current investment gap. “Changing ground conditions are the biggest risk in undergrounding,The world needs a more versatile tool that can de-risk undergrounding projects by boring through more geologies, especially nightmare geologies. Zilper has built trenchless products that can uniquely bore through some of the riskiest soft ground conditions on earth like flowing sands, dense clay, cobbles and water logged ground. The Zilper machine is innovative because it dramatically reduces the risk of excavating these nightmare geologies. The proprietary Zilper technology suite has successfully completed numerous trenchless tunnels where competing technologies have failed to deliver. Together, we’re building the future of trenchless tunneling.” -Kim Abrams CEO,Petra. The combined company, in an industry first, will be delivering a solution that de-risks the social, environmental, and economic costs of utility undergrounding in hard and soft soils. Zilper's trenchless technology has been used for sewage, transmission, and water projects. The versatility of the Zilper method enables it to work in extremely complicated conditions. For example, on a recently completed job to clean up waterways, Zilper installed a 16 inch metal casing beneath a river while encountering flowing sands with less than 5ft of cover, a feat unique to Petra capabilities. “The combination of Petra and Zilper brings together complementary teams and technologies, We’ve both been building methods to excavate problematic geologies in the underground industry. Combined, Zilper and Petra provide a complete undergrounding solution to construction and utility companies who need to de-risk undergrounding projects and bore through all geologies.” -Daniel Zillante, former CEO of Zilper and new COO of Petra. Petra will begin manufacturing Zilper’s technologies in the United States in September 2022 for introduction to the US and European Markets in early 2023. Zilper’s co-founders, Daniel Zillante and Robeto Zillante will join Petra’s leadership team as COO and CTO. Roberto will become Petra’s new CTO and brings over a decade of experience in the design, manufacturing, and utilization of trenchless machines. Daniel will join as Petra’s COO, bringing years of operational and strategic experience in the trenchless industry to Petra. Zilper and its founders have won over 15 awards and recognitions for their work, including the Best New Trenchless Equipment at the Latin America Conference of Trenchless Technology in 2019. About Petra: Petra safeguards communities with cutting-edge technology that bores through previously impenetrable geologies. Petra's Zilper platform is the first trenchless tunneling technology that de-risks undergrounding projects. Construction companies, municipalities, and utilities can now bury critical infrastructure at scale. About Zilper: From the halls of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Zilper grew from 2 founders to 31 people in just three years. With more than 3,000 feet of pipeline installed, Zilper’s patented technology reached product-market fit in record-breaking time. More recently, the International Society for Trenchless Technology (ISTT) has included Zilper’s Assisted Dynamic Boring machine in their official guidelines, which has led to impressive traction in international markets.

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ENGINEERING TECH

BMS CAT Acquires Accent Property Restoration

Blackmon Mooring & BMS CAT | October 17, 2022

BMS CAT is proud to announce the acquisition of Accent Property Restoration in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Accent has been in business since 2008, serving the Milwaukee area and surrounding communities, providing restoration, mitigation and reconstruction services for residential and commercial properties. "I am very excited to announce that BMS CAT has acquired Accent Property Restoration. Since 2008, Dean Rossey has built a tremendous organization that is focused on a great work environment and exceptional customer experience. These are two core competencies that match well with BMS CAT. We look forward to working with our new team members from Accent, as we combine forces to create an environment around teamwork and the best customer experience in the industry." -Tom Head, President & CEO of Blackmon Mooring & BMS CAT. I couldn't be prouder of the achievement of being able to sell my company, and for a company like BMS CAT to show interest in our location was an amazing opportunity. After visiting BMS CAT's headquarter office, I knew they were the right fit as my successor, to continue my legacy for generations to come. The best part of this process has been meeting the BMS CAT Team. They are like-minded in the fact that people and culture mean more than the bottom line. I can't wait to see the growth my current team members will experience as part of the BMS CAT Family, said Dean Rossey, former CEO of Accent Property Restoration. Today's announcement is the ninth in a strategic plan of acquisitions to support BMS CAT growth. The company has previously acquired North Carolina-based Diamond Restoration, Arizona-based Stratton Restoration, Michigan-based Jarvis Restoration, Pennsylvania-based FireDEX of Pittsburgh, South Carolina-based CATCON, Pennsylvania-based Mellon Certified Restoration, Florida-based Guardian Restoration, and North Carolina-based Highland Construction. About Blackmon Mooring & BMS CAT: Started in 1948 as a furniture and dye shop, Blackmon Mooring has grown to become a leader in each service area it practices – from fire and water restoration to storm damage recovery. The earliest founders of Blackmon Mooring built their business on reliability, quality and superior customer service. In 1981, the company expanded its reach globally with the addition of the BMS CAT division and since then, it has responded to some of the world's most devastating disasters. Today, the company follows the same principles it was founded upon, and always remembers that the customer is the cornerstone of the business.

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PRODUCTS, CONSTRUCTION

Trimble Acquires B2W Software to Expand its Civil Construction Portfolio

Trimble | September 15, 2022

Trimble (NASDAQ: TRMB) announced today it has acquired privately-held B2W Software, a leading provider of estimating and operations solutions for the heavy civil construction industry. Financial terms were not disclosed. With the passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and other infrastructure legislation across the globe, construction organizations are fast tracking the digitization of their processes and operations. As infrastructure projects become increasingly complex, data-driven insights and analytics will be imperative to improve productivity, increase efficiency and drive sustainability. "Seamlessly connected workflows are key to unlocking the true potential of an organization's data, With the acquisition of B2W, Trimble will be able to provide an unparalleled end-to-end digital experience—connecting the digital to the physical—for heavy civil and infrastructure contractors." -Elwyn McLachlan, vice president of Trimble's Civil Solutions Division. The addition of B2W's comprehensive suite of pre-construction and operations capabilities will expand Trimble's already extensive civil infrastructure portfolio and Trimble Construction One, a purpose-built connected construction management platform. B2W's integrated suite of applications includes estimating, scheduling, field tracking, equipment maintenance, data capture and business intelligence. By combining these capabilities with Trimble's rich field data, project management, finance and human capital management solutions, civil contractors will be able to bridge the gap between office and field in new ways, promoting transparency, efficiency and ultimately profitability. "B2W has helped thousands of heavy civil contractors increase their bid accuracy and operational efficiency, And now with Trimble, we can realize the next chapter of our story. By linking the planned with the executed, we will provide civil contractors with a truly connected construction experience, unlocking valuable new insights for our customers across their entire operation." -Paul McKeon, founder and CEOB2W. B2W will be reported as part of the Buildings and Infrastructure segment. Perkins Coie LLP acted as legal advisor to Trimble. Piper Sandler & Co. acted as a financial advisor and Foley Hoag LLP acted as legal advisor to B2W Software. About B2W: Headquartered in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and founded in 1993, B2W (formerly known as Bid2Win) provides specialized software for heavy civil construction management. Companies throughout North America and several other countries use B2W Software to bid on large-scale infrastructure and commercial projects, plan and manage operations, maintain large fleets of equipment and leverage business intelligence. About Trimble: Trimble is an industrial technology company transforming the way the world works by delivering solutions that enable our customers to thrive. Core technologies in positioning, modeling, connectivity and data analytics connect the digital and physical worlds to improve productivity, quality, safety, transparency and sustainability. From purpose-built products to enterprise lifecycle solutions, Trimble is transforming industries such as agriculture, construction, geospatial and transportation.

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