Verbrec is setting its sights firmly on the future as it races towards finalising that last of its legacy projects.

Engineering, infrastructure and training service provider Verbrec is on the final leg of hurdling three legacy projects, with two now behind the company and the third on track for completion this year.

Verbrec (ASX:VBC) can now focus on executing its record work in hand, which has been bid at historically strong margins, and home in on securing more new, higher-margin contracts in 22/23.

The leading mid-tier firm has already made a name for itself in the digital industry (DI) and clean energy transition. This means it’s well poised for future growth given its markets are driven by significant investment in decarbonisation plus the upgrading of control systems and digital transformation.

Verbrec’s Chairman Phillip Campbell was very happy to announce the legacy projects’ progress.

“The dedication of Managing Director, Linton Burns, and the entire Verbrec team to see through these legacy projects in what has been a very challenging macro environment – particularly with the added uncertainties brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and the South-East Queensland flood event, is a real testament to the drive and determination inherent now in the company.

“The engineering team has had to overcome a raft of challenges with these legacy projects which were not of their making, and often in an isolated environment not conducive to problem solving.

“On behalf of the Board, and me personally, I would like to thank everyone involved for their efforts,” Burns added, “which now has the Company in a much stronger position moving forward.

“We’re now closing out the financial year in a great position and with new higher margin projects generating record work in hand we’re looking forward to a strong rebound in 22/23.”

Stacks of work

That work includes a multi-year licence agreement for Verbrec’s stockpile monitoring software StacksOn™ with mining giant BHP.

Under that agreement BHP is using Verbrec’s proprietary internally developed software at its supersized Western Australian iron ore mines to boost their efficiencies.

This technology is just one example of how Verbrec is assisting clients optimise their operations. The SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) upgrade projects referred to below are other examples of Verbrec’s significant capability in designing and implementing leading edge technology.

Verbrec is at the forefront of the clean energy sector through its involvement in, for example, the world’s first shipment of hydrogen from Victoria, a waste-to-energy project, also in Victoria, and a hydrogen refuelling station trial in New South Wales.

Turnaround continues

One of the legacy projects, a water SCADA upgrade, is now complete. The other legacy SCADA upgrade project is on track to be completed later this year after Verbrec agreed to speed up delivery following a commitment from the client to fund acceleration resources.

With more than 1200 sites and seven different SCADA control systems, this is one of the largest water upgrade projects undertaken in Australia.

In response to the client’s commitment Verbrec increased its team from 22 to 57 control system engineers within six weeks.

This was a tremendous response given the acute shortage of control system engineers available in the current market.

Acceleration resources were drawn from around Australia and included international resources engaged from Canada, Oman, the United Kingdom and India.

The new SCADA system was designed and implemented by a team of specialist professional engineers in Verbrec’s Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane offices.

With this highly capable team Verbrec recently achieved a technical milestone on time, triggering a $0.7M payment.

The third and final legacy project is the design of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal. A binding settlement agreement has now been signed and the company will be paid in several tranches up until 30 June 2022 to close out the project.

With its work-in-hand the strongest it has been for Verbrec, now has ~700 staff working in Australia, New Zealand, PNG and the Pacific Islands.



This article was developed in collaboration with Verbrec, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.