Established as a foundry of brass fixtures in 1851, Oventrop has since evolved into a global manufacturer of balancing valves and thermostatic radiator valves for the building industries. The family-owned company is now expanding into the American market, and celebrated its grand opening in East Granby, Connecticut in October. PM Engineer Chief Editor Nicole Krawcke had the chance to chat with Nicola Schannath, CEO of Oventrop-US, about the company’s plans in the United States and current PHCP-PVF market trends.
PM Engineer: Tell me a little about Oventrop, how did the company get its start and what does it do?
NS: We at Oventrop are the partner for efficient heating and cooling. Our modular systems and services offer pioneering solutions for all HVAC experts, easy and flexible — from planning to installation, from industry to trade. We accompany all our partners over many years — competently and personally. As a family business with a history of over 170 years, we are rooted in the Sauerland region in the Northwestern part of Germany, but also have a strong international presence. We employ around 1,000 people at our headquarters in Germany and currently have two production facilities. With eight subsidiaries and numerous agencies, we are present in more than 80 countries worldwide.
PM Engineer: Why has Oventrop decided to push into the North American market?
NS: Oventrop has been extremely successful in the past decades building a strong brand not only in our home market Germany, but also in Europe and many countries in Asia. Our strong commitment to the North American market is part of our internationalization strategy. The North American HVAC market is expected to grow further, driven by increasing energy efficiency standards that will continue to drive the demand for mechanical and electrical upgrades.
Our North American subsidiary Oventrop Corp. is in East Granby, Connecticut, and is the hub for the “Americas” sales region. We also have a warehouse in Guelph, Ontario. Local availability of our products is key to servicing our customers. This decentralization is important to meet the increasing demands on logistics.
PM Engineer: As a valve manufacturer, what are the biggest trends you’re seeing in the valve market? What is driving these trends?
NS: The most prominent trends and challenges facing our industry are certainly digitization and providing solutions that help in the fight against climate change. Digitization changes the whole industry. This development requires new skills from manufacturers and contractors, and we also see an increasing demand in products that are suited for the digitization of homes and buildings. But the ultimate challenge is climate change: Around one-third of our energy consumption is used for heating, cooling and warm water. With rising energy prices and the need to reduce CO2-emissions on a massive scale, topics such as energy efficiency and the use of renewable energies will further rise in importance. We at Oventrop offer a wide range of solutions when it comes to increasing energy efficiency in new and existing homes and buildings.
PM Engineer: Tell me about Oventrop’s pressure independent control valve — how does it work, what types of applications does it best suit, and why is it gaining market share?
NS: Hydronic balancing is paramount for the efficient operation of heating and cooling systems. With our pressure independent control valve Cocon QTZ, we offer a solution that helps to simplify this process and to save energy. The valve combination consists of an automatically operating flow controller and a control valve. This combination ensures that the volume flow in the terminal unit required for room temperature control is kept at a constant level — irrespective of differential pressure variations in the installation. Our Cocon QTZ is especially suited for fan coil units, chilled beams, chilled ceilings and convectors. We also offer the Cocon QTZ as part of our Flypass multifunctional connection fitting for connecting e.g. fan coils or chilled ceiling modules. It is easy and versatile, and will bypass initial flushing without involving the terminal units whereas its quick and compact installation helps to save costs and avoids leaks.
PM Engineer: What should installing contractors and specifying engineers know about this product?
NS: As all our products, the Cocon QTZ is of high-quality, long-lasting and always reliable. It is easy to install, and it easily fits into flexible systems. The Cocon QTZ operates up to a maximum pressure of 362 PSI and a maximum differential pressure of 87 PSI. They are available in sizes ranging from 1/2 inch to 1 1/4 inch. Once installed and preset, the valve does not require readjustment even if the installation is extended or modified. Hence, our Cocon QTZ combine highest quality with an optimum of flexibility.
PM Engineer: Does Oventrop offer any kind of specialized training for its products? Where can readers find out more information on this?
NS: Oventrop provides specialized training on our products through our local sales team, but also through our technical support team at our North American subsidiary. More information on our products as well as contact information can also be found on our website www.oventrop-us.com.