For Simon Gorman, Managing Director of CCB Envico, living out of a suitcase and flying to remote areas around the Pacific has become a regular business.
In operation for over 18 years, CCB Envico specialises in the design, construction and commissioning of facilities for Government and private industry within Australia and internationally, with a particular focus on the Asia Pacific Region.
“CCB Envico started off working on water projects in Australia and it was only because of our experience in the sector and our involvement with a sister company Reeves International that we decided about seven years ago to take it offshore and do water projects overseas,” said Simon.
Export contracts now make up about 50% of the business’ revenue.
“It’s probably where my interest has always been, working offshore. We’ve always seen the opportunities, but it does have its challenges. Getting the finance to do offshore work is much harder,” said Simon.
Simon explained that the contracts secured are with overseas Governments and are backed by multilateral banks, like the Asian Development Bank.
“Once a contract is signed it is signed with the backing of multilateral banks so the funding is secured. This means potential political and country risk, like Government change, is somewhat contained.”
Overcoming financial barriers
Where the financial challenge comes in is providing the performance and warranty bonds that are often needed for the projects secured.
“In considering bidding new contracts the level of financing and securities required is a limiting factor, particularly with our focus in the Pacific countries. Australian banks can find it difficult to get comfortable working with multilateral banks and international-based projects. That’s why Export Finance Australia is so important,” explained Simon.
“Export Finance Australia has provided us with support over the last seven years. It provided the finance needed to allow us to really pursue offshore water projects approximately seven years ago. Since then the offshore segment in both our water and construction business has grown to provide us approximately 50% of our revenue from that source equating to approximately $20 – 25 Million in revenue per annum,” said Simon.
Our most recent support was $1,519k for performance bonds for the upgrade of Ebeye Island’s water supply and sanitation infrastructure.