COVID-19: How can engineering firms survive the downturn?

Will my company survive the coronavirus crisis? Will my job? These are the questions that are on every engineer’s mind right now. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world, possibly forever. Social isolation, trade restrictions and work from home has become the new norm.

Australia is facing one of the worst economic fallouts in our history, with the latest ABS data recording a 5.3 per cent plunge in construction jobs over the past six weeks. Nationwide, job losses exceed 800,000. The engineering profession and related industries such as construction have so far avoided the direct impact of the crisis. But as secondary and tertiary effects ripple throughout the world, we know the sector will be squeezed.

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Materials, Construction

Continental Cement Teams Up with CemAI on Digital Solution for Hannibal Cement Plant

PR Newswire | January 04, 2024

CemAI, Inc. has teamed up with Continental Cement Company L.L.C.'s (Continental Cement) Hannibal, MO plant to install CemAI's predictive and prescriptive maintenance solution, combining a unique licensed software with a continuous monitoring and incident resolution service to further enhance its cement manufacturing performance." The CemAI solution uses Continental Cement's existing historical and real-time manufacturing data and applies machine learning, artificial intelligence and remote monitoring by cement experts to complement the expertise of Continental's local plant maintenance and reliability teams. This robust solution brings plant maintenance into the digital age." "We considered a number of approaches to utilizing our data to improve our maintenance efforts, eliminate downtime and increase equipment reliability," says Timothy J. Noud, Vice President of Manufacturing at Continental Cement. "CemAI offers a cement-centric, end-to-end machine learning/artificial intelligence service solution." Continental Cement has built its business on consistent quality, superior service, and delivering a safe working environment since they began producing cement at their Hannibal location in 1903. A leader in innovation and sustainable cement production, Continental Cement provides high quality cement for projects along the Mississippi corridor and is a subsidiary of Summit Materials, Inc. " "CemAI is proud to be collaborating with an industry leader on innovative ways to use data," says Scott Ziegler, Chief Executive Officer for CemAI. "We thank Continental Cement for their confidence in the CemAI solution to provide increased efficiency, improved reliability and optimized operations."

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Engineering Tech, Construction

Comfort Systems USA Announces Acquisition

Business Wire | February 01, 2024

Comfort Systems USA, Inc. today announced that it has closed its previously announced transaction to acquire Summit Industrial Construction, LLC (“Summit”) headquartered in Houston, Texas. As previously disclosed, Summit is a specialty industrial mechanical contractor offering engineering, design-assist and turnkey, direct hire construction services of modular systems serving the advanced technology, power, and industrial sectors. Summit’s capabilities encompass a wide range of modular and site-based construction, including process piping, equipment setting, large pipe rack trestles, and related steel erection and specialty concrete work. Summit is a trusted supplier to some of the world’s largest advanced technology, power and industrial companies and is currently deployed on several major chip fabrication projects. Initially, Summit is expected to contribute annualized revenues of approximately $375 million to $400 million, and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization of $35 million to $40 million. In light of the amortization expense, Summit is expected to make a neutral to slightly accretive contribution to earnings per share in 2024 and 2025. Brian Lane, Comfort Systems USA’s Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are delighted to announce the closing of our agreement to acquire Summit, an extremely capable provider of modular and other complex mechanical services. Summit brings a stellar reputation as a modular technology leader in growing end markets, including multiple ongoing and large semiconductor projects. We are happy to welcome Summit’s wonderful leadership team and excellent production and craft workers across many states, and we are confident Summit will continue to innovate and grow as a part of our network of world-class contracting companies. We are grateful that Summit has chosen to become part of Comfort Systems USA.”

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Market, Engineering Tech, Construction

JRM Construction Completes New Headquarters for Rémy Cointreau at 3 Times Square

PR Newswire | January 30, 2024

<p>JRM Construction Management is proud to announce the completion of a sophisticated project for Rémy Cointreau, a leading international premium spirits distributor. Their new headquarters, spanning 29,850 square feet, is located on the 20th floor of Rudin Management's 3 Times Square tower in New York City.</p><p>Under the guidance of JRM, and in collaboration with TPG Architects, RDA, and Cresa Project Management, the team crafted a full-floor headquarters that embodies Rémy Cointreau's signature luxury brand. The space includes state-of-the-art collaborative work areas, and features high-end bars, perfect for hosting company events and entertaining clients, creating an atmosphere of sophistication and hospitality. Additionally, the new conference rooms are equipped with cutting-edge presentation capabilities, enhancing communication and collaboration among Rémy Cointreau's team members.</p><p>Marc Reissman, Executive VP at JRM, expressed his pride in the project, stating, "Collaborating with Rémy Cointreau to bring their vision to life was a true pleasure. The attention to detail and seamless integration of artistic elements in the design reflects the brand's essence perfectly. This project stands as a testament to our commitment to excellence and our ability to transform visions into inspiring realities."</p>

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