Worthington Industries, North America’s steel processor and leading global supplier of pressure tanks and cylinders, is transforming its operations to ensure consolidation and future growth.

gasworld spoke exclusively to Vice-President and General Manager, Dusty McClintock, about the new product line, the expansion of its distribution into the European market and the merging of its trailer manufacturing operations.

Can you tell gasworld about Worthington’s latest additions to its gas product line?

The company has focused on providing a range of products to global industrial gas markets that support every stage of industrial gas storage and transport. The recent additions of beverage carbonation cylinders, liquid nitrogen (N2) dewars and MicroBulk products are examples of this strategy.

We want to ensure that customers around the world have access to the full range of industrial gas containment technology they need. Liquid technology is a little slower to develop in Europe than in North America because the steel high pressure cylinder technology and filling systems operate at higher pressures, which offer greater efficiencies for compressed gas application. Our steel high pressure cylinder is the lightest cylinder in the market, which provides significant total cost of ownership value to our industrial gas customers; liquid cylinders round out our portfolio to provide the full range of technology they need.

Our customers asked for a reliable supplier to enter the market and we’re seeing positive responses in the US. We’re looking forward to commercializing these in other markets this year once certifications are finalised.

What are Worthington’s recent investments?

Our near-term investments include finalising construction of our new state-of-the-art production facility for cryogenic storage vessels in Bandirma, Turkey, which is set to open in March, 2017.

With the opening of this new cryogenics plant, we’ll be able to provide a competitive, low-risk supply of bulk tanks to European, as well as US markets.

How has the launch of joining technologies in Europe been for Worthington so far?

We’re pleased to offer a premium brand of high-quality propane hand torches, fuel and joining alloys to the European market. Our first container of product shipped last Autumn, is warehoused in Holland and we’re seeing interest from plumbing and refrigeration supply shops across Europe.

Although there are other European and Asian-manufactured products available in this market, we believe there is interest in torches, alloys and fuel manufactured in the US. Reaction from the customers has been positive as they can purchase a high quality, proven line of products from one supplier, and do not need to order full container loads. ­­

Worthington industries has recently completed the move of its trailer manufacturing from Boston, Ma to Theodore. How has this move affected the company?

We’re finalising operations in our Theodore, Alabama facility, after moving our cryogenics trailer production assets from Boston. We’ve invested sizable capital in this business, which will more than double our capacity for cryogenic trailer production and repair.

Consolidating the trailer manufacturing operations to Theodore allows us to have a central manufacturing facility where our cryogenics team can leverage expertise across product lines. This move also allowed us to more than double our trailer production capabilities to serve North American customers.

What’s next for Worthington Industries?

The industrial gas market is an important market for Worthington Industries, even as the company looks at growth opportunities in other markets like alternative fuels and consumer products. We want to continue offering high-quality products, while also looking for opportunities to provide more value to our customers. We expect to grow with containment technology and value-added products that help lower our customer’s total costs of ownership and support their changing needs.