The North American industrial gases industry is in the midst of seismic change, from the transformation in ownership and structure, to supply chain challenges and distributor business disruption. Understanding the rate of change, and more importantly making the right strategic moves to respond, will be key to sustainability and future success.

gasworld’s North American Industrial Gas Conference 2017 will initially provide insight into the changes taking place, but will also then deliver several key topics that will establish key “takeaways” to help attendees and companies support future decision-making around strategies and investment.

With the theme, Tackling the Rate of Change in Our Industry, the event will take place at The Westin Oaks Houston at the Galleria in Houston, TX, Dec. 5–7 (2017). The conference will cover hot topics and offer practical advice from industrial gas professionals that will enable you to head into 2018 with a clear strategy for success. Sessions will include thought-provoking subjects, opportunities to engage in Q&A, and provide you with an educational toolkit to take back to your company.

Between sessions, the event will also provide a booth program over the 2-plus days, where attendees can visit technology providers to discuss solutions that will support your company as it responds to change, and develops the tools for future growth and profitability. Owners, executives, and line of business managers for industrial gas distributors, equipment suppliers, and gas producers, along with their teams, are therefore the prime audience for this flagship event.

Houston, Texas, United States

Session 1 – North American merchant market dynamics

The North American market is facing considerable structural and ownership changes. The conference’s opening session will provide an update on the market, explain the current changes taking place, discuss current M&A activity, and provide insight into what all of these structural changes will mean for you and your company as we approach 2020.

Also covered will be an update on the large merger plans for Praxair-Linde, and the likely divestment fallout of this “merger of equals”.

Session 2 – Specialty gases

The specialty gas sector is a definite growth market in North America, but it also remains a challenge to both producers and distributors. This session will provide practical information on how participants can develop or re-think their strategy, and create consistency, quality, and good customer service around their specialty gas business.

Higher valued products don’t necessarily lead to higher profitability. Companies focused solely on specialty gases have evolved and been acquired. Costs for producing specialty gases have come down, and a growing desire of gas distributors to move more into this ‘gas’ space has led to increased labs and production plants. Topics examined include Make vs. Buy decisions, the dangers of over-supply, capital investment, customer requirements, sales, marketing, and packaging.

Top Five reasons to attend

1. Get practical expert guidance from the world’s foremost industrial gas experts – experienced practitioners, industry visionaries, and subject matter experts.

2. Gain new skills for driving your company’s revenues by learning about best practices around the greatest challenges in the industrial gases industry.

3. Forge new relationships by networking with colleagues who are dealing with the same questions and challenges as you, and build a contact list you can reach out to later for advice and guidance.

4. Hear renowned senior industrial gas industry executives analyze where the business is heading, and how you can prepare your business to remain competitive.

5. Take home materials and handouts prepared exclusively for you, including guidelines, checklists, and charts and graphs you can put into practical use once returning to your office.

Session 3 – The changing packaged gas model

Various gas community events have discussed and debated options for trying to reduce gas distribution costs. Some companies have recognized that, to be sustainable in the future and to become more efficient at gas distribution, they must embrace technology. This session will address some hard, core truths to explain how investing right the first time will be a huge benefit in the future. This session content will include information on the HP cylinder investment strategy, timing, what it will cost to upgrade cylinder filling facilities, and what it takes to move up the supply chain into liquid, microbulk, and bulk supply.

Session 4 (Day Two) – New sources of revenue

Finding new sources of revenue and new customers is imperative for future success and growth. This session will focus on a selection of end-user applications and sectors that are likely to provide growth opportunities for your company. From capitalizing on new demands for carbon dioxide (CO2), and alternative but realistic possibilities in hydrogen, to oil and gas well servicing and beyond.

We’ll examine growth opportunities and offer practical advice for growing in established markets, highlighting new applications outside the traditional gas distribution business and tackling expanding supply models.

Session 5 – Improving your ROI through digitization

Digitization and “going digital” are words that have recently entered everyday discussion. For a traditional industry such as ours, they also present challenges. Most people believe digitization is expensive, and the gains will be either invisible or small for such an investment.

This session will provide practical case studies from companies that are embracing digital technology to improve the bottom line and increase their company’s ROI (return on investment). Session content will include asset tracking and product monitoring presentations.

More information

Please check in regularly with the gasworld team for updates on speakers and specific session information, which will become available soon.

For sponsorship and exhibition information, contact Abbey Stones, Events Commercial Manager: abbey.stones@gasworld.com