Utility Support Structures
We manufacture steel and concrete pole structures for electrical transmission, substation and distribution applications. Our products help move electrical power from where it is produced to where it is used. We produce tapered steel and pre-stressed concrete poles for high-voltage transmission lines, substations (which transfer high-voltage electricity to low-voltage transmission) and electrical distribution (which carry electricity from the substation to the end-user). In addition, we produce hybrid structures, which are structures with a concrete base section and steel upper sections. Utility structures can be very large, so product design engineering is important to the function and safety of the structure. Our engineering process takes into account weather and loading conditions, such as wind speeds, ice loads and the power lines attached to the structure, in order to arrive at the final design.
Our sales in this segment are mainly in North America, where the key drivers in the utility business are significant upgrades in the electrical grid to support enhanced reliability standards, policy changes encouraging more generation from renewable energy sources, interconnection of regional grids to share more efficient generation to the benefit of the consumer and increased electrical consumption which has outpaced the transmission investment in the past decades. According to the Edison Electric Institute, the electrical transmission grid in the U.S. requires significant investment in the coming years to respond to the compelling industry drivers and lack of investment over the past 25 years. The expected increase in electrical consumption around the world should also require substantial investment in new electricity generation capacity which will prompt further international growth in transmission grid development. We expect these factors to result in increased demand for electrical utility structures to transport electricity from source to user.
Our competitive strategy in this segment is to provide high value solutions to the customer at a reasonable price. We compete on the basis of product quality, engineering expertise, high levels of customer service and reliable, timely delivery of the product. There are many competitors. Companies compete on the basis of price, quality and service. Utility sales are often made through a competitive bid process, whereby the lowest bidder is awarded the contract, provided the competitor meets all other qualifying criteria. In weak markets, price is a more important criterion in the bid process.
Products are normally sold through commissioned sales agents or sold directly to electrical utilities.
Learn more about Valmont Utility at valmontutility.com.