Sandvik Tube Leaders: Meet the Team – Sune Åredal

Meet the team behind the Sandvik Tube division. In our new series, we’ll introduce the faces behind this team and hear their insights on the tubing industry.

Q - Can you tell us about yourself and your background?

A - I’m from Sandviken, Sweden, so it was in my blood to become a Sandvik employee and continue the long tradition of local people working for the company. I’ve been in the industry for 31 years and achieved a degree in mechanical engineering from Uppsala University in Sweden in 2000. My hobbies include snowboarding and lifting weights at the gym, but I also like to relax by sailing my boat. I’ve always had a passion for car engines, technology, and business, and that inspired my career choice, but I also like solving challenging work tasks.

Q - What’s involved in your job role?

A - I’ve worked for Sandvik for nearly 29 years and held several positions, including technology leader for the Tube product area, project manager for Sandvik’s High Precision Tubing product unit (PU) and project manager for Zhenjiang Phase 2.

I currently work as a technical project manager and my role involves running multiple projects at the same time, so I have a variety of challenges to focus on. However, I enjoy a challenge. I get to work with a great team of people and it’s always satisfying to find a solution for our customers. Later this year, I will transfer to the U.S., where I will take up the role of technical director for our Business Unit, Tube Americas.

The most interesting job I’m working on at the moment is the final phase of the PU Sandviken Cold to PU Oil and Gas Chomutov project (see more details below), but my preparations for moving to the United States are also keeping me busy.

Q - How do you stay up to date with the industry and technology?

A - Working globally for more than 25 years has meant that I’ve built up many good contacts through networking, and we regularly share ideas and trends. I’ve always found visiting exhibitions a great way to gather information. Of course, that hasn’t been easy recently, but I also keep up to date with industry news and relevant social media.

Q - What benefits does Sandvik bring to the tubing industry?

A - Sandvik always aims to be ahead of our customers in anticipating their needs before they come to us. It means we can deliver unique, world-leading solutions at the cutting edge of current and future customer requirements.

We have almost 160 years of experience in the production of high-performance materials. Over the years, backed by extensive research and development, we have worked hard to build up unrivaled expertise in materials production. We have a genuine passion to be the best - for ourselves and our customers.

An example of this commitment has been the process to move some of our tube production operations from Sandviken, Sweden, to our enhanced and increased facilities in Chomutov, Czech Republic. The transition, which will be fully completed this year, brings together umbilical tubing manufacture for the oil and gas industry, heat exchanger tube production, and hydraulic and instrumentation tubing all in one location. The facility will set the standards for modern manufacture and bring stock availability closer to customers in mainland Europe while strengthening our ability to support product delivery anywhere in the world.

We enjoy close relationships with our customers and advise on the best products, technologies or services to suit their needs. Often, they are unaware of the wide range of solutions we can provide. So, when I get asked, ‘can you do this?’ the answer is usually, ‘yes’.

Q - What’s next for the tubing industry?

A - The number of supply companies has grown significantly over the past 15 years and I expect this trend to continue, especially in Asia. This led to greater competition in terms of cost and lead times before the pandemic. One short-term result of COVID-19 for the industry may be longer supplier lead times.

However, while it’s not difficult to make tubes, it’s hard to make good quality tubes. And it’s extremely difficult to make good tubes consistently every day. That’s why Sandvik has such an enviable reputation for being the best.

Learn more about Sandvik’s tubing products and services.

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Name: Sune Åredal
Title: Technical Project Manager
Business Unit: Tube
Location: Sweden