Texas Drill Bit Maker Sets up Shop in Russia

Aug. 20, 2012
The Polycrystalline Diamond Drill Bit manufacturing plant will serve both the Russian market as well as other locations.

Varel International, a large independent supplier in the global oil & gas drill bit market, headquartered in Carrollton, Texas, announced earlier this month that it has opened a Polycrystalline Diamond (PDC) Drill Bit manufacturing plant located in Kurgan, Russia.

The plant is a joint venture with NewTech Services. Varel will coordinate the manufacturing efforts and provide ongoing administrative and technology support with NTS championing the sales and services enterprise.

 “In this first phase of the venture, Varel has provided support through the transfer of our technology,"said Bernard Pontneau, Varel International vice president of Eastern Hemisphere Operations. "The plant’s key personnel have been trained at our manufacturing facilities in France. In addition to our commitment to establishing the physical manufacturing equipment and technology, we are providing ongoing administrative and technology support.” 

The facility will service the Russian market as well as the global market.  The new facility, centrally located to facilitate rapid bit delivery across Russia, will  increase global Varel PDC drill bit production by approximately 20%, according to the company.

Varel employs more than 1,000 people and has manufacturing facilities in Carrollton, Texas; Houston, Texas; Matamoros, Mexico and Tarbes, France.

About the Author

Adrienne Selko | Senior Editor

Focus: Workforce, Talent 

Follow Me on Twitter: @ASelkoIW

Bio: Adrienne Selko has written about many topics over the 17 years she has been with the publication and currently focuses on workforce development strategies. Previously Adrienne was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck? which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics and EHS Today

Editorial mission statement: Manufacturing is the enviable position of creating products, processes and policies that solve the world’s problems. When the industry stepped up to manufacture what was necessary to combat the pandemic, it revealed its true nature. My goal is to showcase the sector’s ability to address a broad range of workforce issues including technology, training, diversity & inclusion, with a goal of enticing future generations to join this amazing sector.

Why I find manufacturing interesting: On my first day working for a company that made medical equipment such as MRIs, I toured the plant floor. On every wall was a photo of a person, mostly children. I asked my supervisor why this was the case and he said that the work we do at this company has saved these people’s lives. “We never forget how important our work is and everyone’s contribution to that.” From that moment on I was hooked on manufacturing.

I have talked with many people in this field who have transformed their own career development to assist others. For example, companies are hiring those with disabilities, those previously incarcerated and other talent pools that have been underutilized. I have talked with leaders who have brought out the best in their workforce, as well as employees doing their best work while doing good for the world. 

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