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Our CEO's new years letter for 2020

Dr. Wim Audenaert featuring a new blog article

Process designprocess operation

2019 has been quite a year for our business. Another 12 months of more than 100% growth. For the third time in a row. But growth as such is not a goal of course. Growth of a service business must be a consequence of a true value you offer to the market. With this new year's letter, I want to express some of my wishes for 2020. Specifically, I relate to:


I wish that:
Technology end users (i.e. the ones using and operating treatment and production technologies):

  • Keep asking the right questions. It is you that use and operate the same technologies for years to decades. So shouldn't these processes be designed properly at the start? Is someone selling you a new technology? Ask: 'how do you know it is designed properly in our specific case?'
  • Keep talking about the value of computational fluid dynamics (CFD). We have many clients like you in our portfolio. And all of you are extremely happy. Why? Because you discovered the certainty CFD can bring. The future problems it can avoid. The future costs it can save. The stress relief it can bring. We will keep disseminating our collaborations with you at top level events in 2020.

Technology designers and vendors:

  • Further embrace the power of CFD. Piloting and experimental testing are extremely important to you. Why? Because you can only sell a technology with confidence if you know it will work. And your client can smell from a distance if you have this confidence. Full scale questions are not easy to answer, and the cash burning rate of experimenting, piloting and testing is high. Many of you have become happy and loyal customers of us in 2019. Because CFD was unknown to you before but now it added value as it helped you improving and deeply understanding your technology. So you strengthened your competitive position.
  • Internally disseminate the success stories. Many of you are rather large organisations. Many of your near colleagues don't realise yet how CFD can help with design and scale-up. For them it's still science fiction. You might talk about your specific case to your colleagues so it can also help them. What I observe is that for you, often the psychological barrier to use it for the first time is rather high. The doubts turn into enthusiasm shortly after that.

Consulting and engineering firms:

  • Start using CFD structurally. Your clients would really benefit from this. And you will win commercially. The fact you don't always use CFD right now is mainly because CFD is often unknown to your clients. You will often not propose it yourself. But they ask for it more and more, as they become smarter every year (see above). Guys, realise that CFD does not slow down the design process. It strengthens your competitive position, provided that you integrate it in your workflow. To be honest, I think it's a matter of time. Do you really have a choice in the longer run?
  • Develop a CFD strategy. You'll need it in the near future. I know that at least some of you are watching us and ask yourselves 'can't we do the same in house?' I recommend you to read this article first. We have proven that nice win-wins can be created that allow you to focus on your core strengths: process design and managing large projects. So we are glad that we started working with some of you in 2019 and will intensify these collaborations in 2020.

My deepest wish

My deep wish is that you start using CFD proactively (to avoid problems) instead of merely reactively (when problems occur). We've seen painful projects in which we solved problems that could have been easily avoided. It's about a lot of money.

I believe the market will let the proactive guys win. And that will probably happen earlier than what many would expect. Just look at how CFD has become a big topic at many major events in the last two years only.

To all of our clients from all categories: a big thank you. You mean a lot to us. And we felt our work also means a lot to you. We look forward to keep working with you in 2020.


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