Jonathan Hamp-Adams, Senior Regional Sales Director, WU - Americas for Grundfos, answered some state of the industry questions for Pumps & Systems.
Pumps & Systems is celebrating our 30th anniversary in 2023. What do you think has made the biggest impact on the industry in the last 30 years? What do you think needs to happen to push the industry forward in the next 30?
There has been a consolidation to some extent of major players in what is a very fragmented market. In recent years all industrial organisation have had a high focus on digital or “Smart Water”. This is likely to continue to be the core focus into the future. The biggest challenge to-date has been the monetarization of the data that is being collected.
What are your thoughts regarding Build America, Buy America? How has that impacted your company?
As one of the pump companies with the biggest production footprint and sq ft in the USA it is topic that is high on our minds. That said there are so many components that today simply cannot be sourced locally due to historical industrial closures. The obvious being foundary capacity for high variability and competitive supply pricing. During 2023 we will be seeking to significantly increase our local input content.
How have any price increases of products or materials impacted you or your company?
Absolutely and this plays as the backdrop to question 2. Material prices increases have in some areas been as high as 17%. As we try to provide pricing stability to our customers we spent a part of 2022 in an under recovery position until we forced to bring some significant increases to the market
What needs to happen in regard to industry improvements in the short term?
Skills at the utilities is a real concern. We as an industry need to figure out how to make waste water operation a much more attractive career option for young engineers. When we look at hi-tech Waster Water in Denmark for instance vs a treatment plant in the USA, there is such a huge gap. The working environment is so different and unappealing
What issues have you seen with any material shortages or supply chain issues?
Electronic components have been a nightmare with many components coming from Asia through OEM suppliers. We have to also remember that we have enjoyed significant organic growth in the last two years which has compounded the issue. The cooling of the economy may help to swing this back in balance, however that will most likely be slowed as the Federal Government looks to power up the economy through infrastructure spend
What industry trends are you seeing as we go into 2023?
It’s all going to be about addressing non-revenue water, connecting assets, making sense of big data and making the life of the operators easier who will face budget constraints.
What’s on your mind/what are you most concerned about?
Can we take the strong momentum we have enjoyed in 2022 into 2023 to ensure that we can resource our future ambitions. A recession will crush confidence and set us back many years
What are you most looking forward to in 2023?
Supply stability and getting amongst our end-user customers to help them solve daily challenges