S-Con Inc. (S-Con), based in Bryan, Texas, is a full-service engineering, procurement, fabrication and construction company. Green Smith, having spent almost 20 years prior in the industry, founded S-Con in 1990 to target the natural gas treating and processing industry.
Trey Brown, current vice president of engineering and construction at S-Con, explains the company has evolved over its history to become a one-stop solution for the natural gas industry. When initially founded, S-Con catered to refurbishing and relocating existing natural gas plants. By 2003 shop fabrication services were added to S-Con’s array of services to increase quality control and additional control over skid package fabrication and deliveries.
S-Con – with 100,000 square feet of office, shop and warehouse space, as well as a new state-of-the-art paint facility – is now able to meet many needs. These include the removal of acid gas components in an amine gas treating process or recovery of natural gas liquids (NGL) or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in refrigerated, JT or cryogenic gas processing plants.
“We’ve more than doubled in size over the last three years,” says Brown. “It’s been a little challenging as of late with some of the new government regulations and ongoing uncertainty, but generally S-Con has grown and become much more prominent in the industry.”
S-Con has a team of 165 employees working with a variety of customers. “Green Smith and his team built this company from the ground up,” says Brown. S-Con performs most of its work in Texas, as well as the four surrounding states of Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico. However, jobs have been performed in several other states, as well, including Colorado, Wyoming, Montana and other states along the Gulf Coast.
The company takes pride in delivering innovative design, robust engineering, superior fabrication and quality construction. Brown also claims S-Con lives up to the motto of producing projects as ordered, on time and on budget.
Innovation and Resourcefulness
According to Brown, S-Con continues to evolve by way of adapting to the economic and regulatory climate within the country. In addition to working with a variety of customers, S-Con doesn’t stop looking for ways to provide a better service or product. “We have to adapt to the changing landscape of the industry,” says Brown.
A lot of the facilities S-Con is currently working on are much smaller due to government regulations that prohibit or limit CO2 emissions. Another innovative aspect includes the development of a new technique for liquefaction and fractionation of natural gas into Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and NGL products, allowing the products to be transported to market and eliminating emissions.
“It’s a brand-new technology that we have developed,” says Brown. “It allows people to be green, while also marketing a cleaner alternative fuel [LNG].”
Identifying Stability and Growth
When the economy took a downward turn in 2008, S-Con was able to maintain its staff. “S-Con management used the good times to prepare for the bad times,” says Brown. “Those were tight times, but upper management kept the company in good financial condition.”
S-Con’s ability to survive the tumultuous economy was driven by its innovation. “If you don’t adapt, then you end up going out of business,” says Brown. “We’re always looking for the next opportunity and how to best manage the company.”
Brown admits a lot of business decisions have come based on what S-Con employees have heard directly from clients. The company takes great care to sit down with each customer and have a conversation about his or her needs. Then the team takes the required steps to find a solution for the client and produce it.
Smart scheduling is also a major component to the success of S-Con. Brown explains that without proper scheduling the company can’t deliver a project on time and at the price given. “If we can maintain the schedule and the budget, we feel that we’ve done our job properly,” he says.
Brown doesn’t see the company’s growth slowing down any time soon. “If everything goes according to plan, we’ll be expanding in the next few years,” he says. “We believe the new process we created is going to open up all kinds of opportunities for us.” The company will continue to offer the services and products it has in the past, while innovative efforts will ensure S-Con Inc. thrives through the future.