E+I Engineering has developed innovative distribution systems that greatly reduce installation times.
As the world becomes smaller and more interconnected, it also becomes more competitive for business. With customers enjoying a world of options to meet their requirements, finding a competitive advantage in the global landscape can be a challenge.
Irish firm E+I Engineering found their competitive edge by delivering power solutions that greatly reduce installation times, take up less space, and are completely bespoke.
As the world’s biggest companies build larger and more complex headquarters and data centres, the need for tailored power solutions grows. A 2014 estimate calculated data centre power usage alone costs US businesses $13bn annually.
E+I is well placed to meet that need. Founded in 1986 in Derry in Northern Ireland, the company moved across the Irish border to Donegal, a county on the Republic’s north-western coast, where it now employs 750 people in a purpose-built 150,000 square foot facility.
Since then, E+I has thrived by offering customers unique in-house integrated power solutions tailored specifically to their unique requirements.
Helen Canny, the company’s Business Development Manager, explains that E+I’s power distribution systems have been installed in high-profile places.
“We’ve done work on the Aviva Stadium in Dublin and Wembley Stadium in London, as well as hospitals and commercial buildings. More recently, we’ve worked on a number of data centres, which led to opportunities to work with some high-profile clients.
“We try to lower the footprint of electrical systems and the needs of companies. We try to be innovative in how we do that while meeting the client’s needs.”
Innovation tackles engineering’s big challenges
The innovation Canny refers to is, primarily, a response to one of the most intimidating challenges faced by building projects of this nature: the manpower required to install these distribution systems. Canny describes how the company’s focus on research and development has helped them to tackle the challenge.
“Our open channel Busbar system is modular and small, which is a big advantage for our customers. Because of how they are made, the system is both more efficient and safer. It has a better install and requires less maintenance.
“We have a big R&D team, which is something we invested in with help from Enterprise Ireland, the national export agency.”
Strong customer relationships are an Irish Advantage
For a company based in the remote county of Donegal to power venues such as London’s iconic Wembley Stadium is impressive. Canny explains the “secret” is simple: develop a quality product and treat customers well.
“We compete with major European companies. What sets us apart is that our directors and owners are hands-on – our customer service is very strong.
“Customers know that they can pick up the phone and speak to a director or our Managing Director if they have a problem.
“Customer retention is vital to us. Repeat business has been one of the cornerstones of our growth.”
Growth has seen the company take on commercial projects for high profile commercial clients including Allen & Overy, CISCO, Deloitte, Ericsson and Fujitsu and industrial commissions from News International, Rolls Royce and Securitas.
Along with those clients, the company has been able to pursue a large-scale expansion, opening a facility in the UAE in 2009 and one in South Carolina in 2014.
In the US, a recently completed 160,000 square foot extension will allow the company to serve markets in North and South America, Canada and other worldwide locations.
In the international landscape, the company’s Irish origins have given it a distinct advantage in its quest to grow and expand.
“Having no real language barrier anywhere we go is incredibly useful. We’ve been able to sign up American and European countries in the last few months.”
Looking to the future, the company is now in a position to add new jobs in Donegal throughout the year. With a busy 2017 just completed, an even busier 2018 awaits.
“We have a busy order book for the year ahead – we’re working on projects as well as keeping our investment in R&D going with support from Enterprise Ireland.
“We’re extending our factory in Donegal – and wherever in the world we expand to Donegal will always be where it started.”