Harnessing the power of water to protect life, and improving lives

Water is essential to life itself – and that means providing access to it is critical

The importance of water and the essential part it plays in everyday life is beyond dispute. Without water, we, Mother Earth and everything living on it would simply not have evolved, let alone exist!

We all know the importance of water, but how do we get access to it and other essential fluids, and how does it get distributed? Natural gravity can certainly move water, but in most cases it’s pumps that play the lead role. Pumps are such a big and often unseen part of our lives: they and their systems are among the least recognised, yet one of the most important elements of our daily lives.

We turn on the tap when we’re thirsty, but we depend on water for more than just our survival. It’s essential for growing and producing what we eat and drink, and for removing our wastewater or sewage. Water and pumps also play crucial roles in transportation, fuel, electricity, medicines and protection from fire.

The list goes on and on: moving water and fluid of many other kinds is critical to everything in everyone’s lives – and it’s all made possible by pumps.

Can one type of pump do it all?

There is a large variety of pump types and sizes on the market, all designed for specific jobs and tasks, from fire protection pumps, pumping water from the basement to the top of a high-rise structure, food and beverage production pumps and pumps used for cooling water at power stations, to pumps that provide fire safety on offshore rigs or transport drinking water to remote and arid locations. Pumps are everywhere and they are the very heart of every fluid-handling system, which means selecting the correct, most reliable pump for each specific job is important. A pump that fails to run could have catastrophic consequences.

All of the above is firmly recognised by SPP Pumps, one of the world’s market-leading pump manufacturers, and for 148 years SPP Pumps has proudly flown the flag for British manufacturing and engineering. With over 70 per cent of SPP’s products and solutions exported worldwide, the company has achieved global recognition for its expertise, service level and exceptional capabilities in a highly competitive market. Winning the coveted Pump Manufacturer of the Year award numerous times, most recently in 2023, speaks for itself.

Robert Tichband, Chief Operating Officer, SPP Pumps; Alok Kirloskar, Managing Director, SPP Pumps, Laura Hurcombe, Head of UK Manufacturing, SPP Pumps; Joseph Clark, Engineering Manager, SPP Pumps

How does a company stay ahead of the competition for so long?

The past 148 years might not have been always plain sailing, most recently thanks to the challenges Covid-19 threw at us all, but SPP Pumps has cleverly evolved with the times with a clear focus on customer and market requirements, quality, sustainability and efficiency. Innovation, expertise, product development, reinvestment in resources and an experienced and passionate specialist team are all key elements to SPP Pumps’s success.

SPP Pumps is not just proud to manufacture and sell market-leading pumps and pumping solutions while keeping the impact on the environment down. The company is also proud to be renowned and trusted globally by a demanding and complex market. 

Knowing the key markets

Although the company is a pump specialist across a wide range of industries, three crucial sectors stand out: fire, energy and water.

For fire, think high-rise buildings where water needs to be pumped hundreds of metres against gravity to the top floor for the correct distribution to the fire sprinkler system throughout the structure.

For energy, think offshore oil and gas production, which has to maintain fire safety in the harshest of environments.

For water, think drinking water being pumped for thousands of miles across arid land in extreme weather conditions.

SPP Pumps provides specialist pump solutions for all these sectors, and its impressive portfolio of products can be found in famous high-rises such as the Shard in London and the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. More than 2,000 of SPP’s fire protection packages are protecting offshore projects worldwide, and both its drinking water and sewage solutions can be found in large areas and cities in the Middle East.

Pump manufacturing, the environment and sustainability

In a world where sustainability and environmental protection are major factors, companies are looking for ways to operate in a more sustainable fashion and to reduce their impact on the environment. Like many others, SPP Pumps has fully embraced the challenge. Its journey towards net zero started by not only developing a dedicated environmental and sustainability department but also by partnering with a specialist consultancy.  

Sustainability at SPP Pumps is very much linked with efficiency:

  • Producing quality pumps and pumping solutions for maximum long-lasting performance through efficient manufacturing and servicing capabilities
  • Quality, well-serviced pumps mean maximum efficiency both in performance and energy consumption and reduce the requirements for further raw materials, such as when buying a new pump

This highlights the investment options of CAPEX versus OPEX. Do you invest in new equipment as the efficiency of a pump decreases? Or do you keep the existing solution running long-term at full efficiency with regular maintenance and/or refurbishment?

SPP saw a niche in the market and rolled out specialist service centres in both the UK and other parts of the world, servicing and refurbishing pumps made by both SPP and other pump manufacturers to the highest standard and efficiency – all supported by its team of industry-renowned field service engineers. With this division one of the fastest growing within the company, it is safe to say that the concept has been well received by the market. New and brilliant business ideas are always refreshing, even more so if they support and promote sustainability.

Sharing in success

Success is what all companies strive for, whether that’s defined by financial gain or something else. SPP Pumps is certainly succeeding, and aims to continue that journey and reach new goals. But also high on SPP’s agenda is sharing its success via its corporate social responsibility programme. SPP Pumps plays an important part in supporting the company’s local community in Gloucestershire, UK, with initiatives from sponsoring youth sports clubs and the tech lab in the local library to regular donations to the local food bank and the Great Oak Hospice. 

From global recognition for its excellence, products and solutions to sharing its success with the local community, the SPP Pumps purpose statement covers it all: Protecting Life. Improving Lives.

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