Annual Report 2015

Annual Report 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Download the PDF version.

 

"Our ambition is still to be the very best at what we do and we are proud that numerous loyal customers turned to us once again in 2015.

Read the joint statement from the board

Environment

The all-encompassing environment is a complex phenomenon. Thoroughly interdependent ecosystems and natural resources - air, water, soil, climate - merge to create the world we live in. We appreciate this interconnectedness and the broad range of stakeholders driving environmental action. By leveraging our expertise and resources, we provide solutions that manage environmental impact and restore natural conditions.

“Antea Group in Colombia works on environmental projects for oil and gas, industry and electric power clients. In the Orinoco region, for example, these projects include environmental studies, licensing for the exploration of unconventional hydrocarbons, social and environmental studies for the generation and transmission of wind and solar energy, and sustainability studies and water.”

Juan Manuel Martínez, Managing Director Colombia

“Taking new approaches is important to new clients, but also to clients we already do business with. Over the years we have been delving deeper into the area of environment, always focusing on adding value.”

Menno Smits, Managing Director The Netherlands

“A key differentiator for us continues to be our ability to provide trusted insight, EHS regulatory knowledge and local boots on the ground support to multi-national companies as they expand into global operations.” 

Bob Karls, International Director of Environment

Care for the environment is embedded in Antea Group’s DNA, and we pride ourselves on pioneering and implementing the latest circular economy insights. Along with ecology and sustainability, circular economy is becoming increasingly an important consideration all over the world. Antea Group’s customers turn to us for support in these areas; we have always offered extensive expertise on a wide range of environmental issues, in particular soil and groundwater remediation. Antea Group doesn’t stop at reusing raw materials and treating soil and water: we explicitly focus on new types of ownership and asset management, carefully utilizing what our planet has to offer. 

Support in the area of circular procurement and permit applications can be provided, as well as advice on new environmental techniques and stricter environmental legislation. Besides advising on the use and reuse of raw materials and remediation of contaminated environments, Antea Group also works with companies on promoting employees’ wellbeing. In 2015, our US office launched RiskRight ESH, a tool that can provide companies with personalized advice on their working conditions, including aspects such as safety, ergonomics, odors and noise pollution. We set a good example in this field as demonstrated by our ranking among the healthiest 100 workplaces in America, compiled by Healthiest Employers, LCC.

Infrastructure

Roads, bridges, water supply, railways and underground tunnels - they are the arteries of society, essential for livability, accessibility and economic growth. However, infrastructure is more than just connecting two points. We understand that the focus is much broader, a com-prehensive undertaking involving legislation, regulation and communication. We develop infrastructure solutions that strengthen our built environment without detracting from our natural environment.

“Our engineers’ knowledge can offer answers to today’s major social issues. For example, we were able to contribute to the construction of the first earthquake-proof dike in the north of the Netherlands.”

Rob van Dongen, Managing Director The Netherlands

“In spite of France’s low level of public investments in infrastructure projects and the resulting strong competition on tenders, 2015 was a relatively satisfying year for Infrastructure. Highlights included strong growth in deconstruction and asbestos removal, resulting from reinforcement of our teams, and increased geotechnical engineering work for the Grand Paris Express (200km of new metro lines around Paris).”

Jean-Philippe Loiseau, Managing Director France

To achieve growth on a difficult market, Antea Group is focusing on diversifying both our expertise and our customer base. In Europe, we are explicitly targeting innovation in the infrastructure sector. Instead of exclusively delivering engineering services, we are expanding our activities to include tenders and supporting customers in the execution of large-scale, complex projects, taking care of tasks such as contract management.

In this sector, as in the rest of our work, growth is founded on expertise and quality. Rather than simply aiming to increase our volumes, we are primarily focusing on improving the quality of our services in close collaboration with other sectors. In the Netherlands, we are building earthquake-proof dikes, requiring us to bundle expertise from our various offices in fields such as water management, geo IT and construction of complex infrastructure.

2015 saw us further expand our activities in this field in North and South America. Following a joint tender, we landed a major contract to put together a master plan for development of the Panama Canal area. In 2015, we were also involved in the design of the biggest oil and gas pipe system in South America, which is planned to traverse the highlands of Peru.

Water

Water, an essential part of everyday life, can be viewed from many perspectives - scarcity, flooding, drinking, transportation and transformation into energy. Water management is multi-faceted and requires a delicate balance between social and economic needs. We understand current water concerns and translate our hydrology, ecology and environmental knowledge into solutions that support efficient use of this natural resource, protecting the livelihoods of future generations.

“Our know-how has become an export product, especially our expertise in early warning systems and in port/harbor management. We work across borders close to home, in Europe, and further away, for example on projects in Cochin (India) and Papua New Guinea.”

Jan Parys, Managing Director Belgium

“At the end of 2015, Antea Group acquired French company Groupe IRH Environnement, mutually benefiting both parties. A wider geographical reach and broader expertise offers clients more services and enhanced availability. This association serves as a basis for creating value, in particular in wastewater treatment expertise, which will be developed at an international level.”

Jean-Philippe Loiseau, Managing Director France

“Water is a dynamic resource and therefore our approach to water stewardship is robust. Our solutions span from the strategic to the operational, from identifying water risks and opportunities to optimizing facility water usage.”

Gary Wisniewski, Managing Director USA

Quality and availability of water are two of our focal points. Acquisition of the French company Groupe IRH Environnement and a stake in the Brazilian Angelbrasil Geologia e Meio Ambiente have allowed us to strengthen our position in this sector.

Antea Group is focusing on two different aspects: water quality, which includes measuring and monitoring the quality of water (potable and non-potable) and providing water treatment services; and water management (”Room for the River” and port layout), in which we have extensive experience. 

2015 saw the Group make major progress in drumming up joint business in this sector, resulting in international projects in Africa and Asia. We are also performing a status assessment of early flood detection systems and emergency communications networks in Papua New Guinea.

Urban Planing

As the global population grows, urbanization increases and, as a result, the design and use of land is becoming more and more complex. We understand both the technical and political aspects of urban planning. Through research, analysis and sound engineering principles, our solutions ensure spatial plans are fully incorporated into the fabric of our communities and market value is maximized.

“Improving the quality of life in our major cities demands a creative and innovative way of thinking about topics such as mobility, smart grids and water management. Antea Belgium has built up considerable expertise in Smart Cities projects. This local knowledge can be effectively applied to projects all over the world.”

Jan Parys, Managing Director Belgium

“Our knowledge in the field of urban planning is increasingly proving to be one of the unique selling points, allowing us to achieve our international ambitions. Recently Antea Group completed the master plan for the development of the west bank at the Pacific Ocean end of the Panama Canal.” 

Rob van Dongen, Managing Director The Netherlands

In 2015, Antea Group started an upward trend in urban planning. We frequently work with other parties and are asked to provide services in this field because of our extensive expertise.

Intensive collaboration between the various Group countries helped us land several high profile urban development contracts, such as the master plan for development of the Panama Canal region and a tourism master plan for the city of Nice. As the market picks up, the fact that we have this creative knowledge in-house is opening new doors to us.

An example that clearly illustrates our strength is a contract for an exploratory study and construction coordination for a bicycle boulevard in the Belgian town of Peer. This project allows us to combine our knowledge, experience and thought leadership, addressing the question of how to create a new infrastructure that is good for both people and the environment, while, at the same time, ensuring that this will blend in with the urban surroundings.

DEVELOPMENTS

DEVELOPING TALENT AND EXPERTISE

At Antea Group, we continue to invest in employee development to provide customers with the latest technology at all times. We are also increasingly making use of the Group’s strength in this field.

A sample of the initiatives that have been launched;

  • The Antea Group Academy. Young people about to embark on their careers work on a business case for two days; around half of the participants are offered a contract following completion.
  • The Young Heroes program. This is aimed at staff who have been with us for about one year. Annually, we select fifteen ”stars” to run projects directly for the executive board and in doing so gain additional management skills.
  • Courses in various topics. We provide management development programs and competency courses on specific themes, such as asset management. In addition, Antea Group sets aside considerable budgets for personalized training.
  • Knowledge-sharing between different countries, in three international, internal work groups. These deal with water, infrastructure and the environment. Antea GROUP also operates an exchange program in which employees from the various countries exchange places to share specific expertise. 

INNOVATION

“In the spirit of open innovation, we are working with end users and academics, such as the university of Orléans. We aim to build new products and services based on new sensors, new experimentation processes, new methodologies and new technologies such as augmented reality and high-performance computing. We are ready to take on the challenge of environmental big data.”

Jean-Philippe Loiseau, Managing Director France 

“Today, innovation is not something you do alone: the interplay between governmental, educational and business organizations is essential. For example, by combining and enriching data of several sources and stakeholders, we are able to provide customers with new innovative services.”

Menno Smits, Managing Director the Netherlands

“As engineers and scientists, our discipline is built upon trailblazing innovations. At Antea group, we understand this need to innovate, the need for new ways of thinking and doing. Our clients expect it and our world depends on it.” 

Gary Wisniewski, Managing Director USA

In an ever-changing world, innovation is the key to success. Therefore, we at Antea Group are continuing to make major investments in new technology, new applications and new expertise. The aim of these activities is to provide our customers with the best service possible.

Innovation is a process that requires a certain amount of guidance, even if that is simply learning from innovative projects: ideas that have not been fully brought to fruition can still be successful if learnings are reused in subsequent solutions. Antea Group distinguishes two types of innovation: improvements and breakthroughs. In their daily operations, our staff spend a considerable amount of time conceiving and implementing better ways of doing what they do. The added value of our activities should be immediately clear to the client. It is no longer possible to stretch a unique concept out over a long period: we have to work more efficiently, smarter and faster – all the time. Innovation is, therefore, a vital part of our operations. In order to conceive and implement innovations, creative individuals must be given space, separate from daily routine, to make their journey of discovery. After all, you never know what the results of an innovative project will be when you start out.

We have launched several initiatives to reinforce the Group’s power of innovation. For instance, we present an Innovation Award to the most innovative idea from our own ranks. Our Innovation Centre in Orléans has a dedicated team in place that focuses on accelerating innovation resulting from our projects. This includes the founding of start-ups. What’s more, we are putting a lot of effort into IT innovation, together with our subsidiaries Centric and Strukton Rail.

Geographic Information Systems and data management are the main common theme running through our technological innovation activities. By enriching and combining data, we are able to provide customers with new information. Developed in-house, our OWMonit© tool enables us to perform measurements online and in real time while also providing access to and visualizing the resulting data. When building a quay wall, for instance, we can measure the impact of construction on the environment in terms of noise and vibration.

We look at which systems can be linked in a smart manner that allows them to create added value for our customers. A combination of air quality measurements and shipping movements, for example, can highlight relevant causal links between a passing ship and a temporary change in air quality.