Solomon Associates Introduces New Study to Help Refineries and Olefin Plants Control the Rising Cost of Turnarounds

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Performance improvement company reports that turnaround-related expenditures have increased 15 percent annually since 2000, provides new benchmarking study to help refiners get a handle on costs.

The Solomon Associates Turnaround Study is designed to help refineries and olefin plants better manage turnaround costs, which have tripled this decade.

With the Turnaround Study, we extend this methodology to examine all aspects of the turnaround process, analyzing labor expenses, work hours, materials costs, incident rates, lost production for turnaround outages, and more.

With industry data showing that turnaround costs have nearly tripled for refineries and olefin plants worldwide this decade, Solomon Associates, the leading performance improvement company for the global energy industry, announced today the launch of a new study to help refining and petrochemical companies better manage turnaround-related expenditures. The Worldwide Refining Turnaround Performance Analysis (Turnaround Study) is the first industry-wide study that enables refiners to improve their turnaround efficiency through a comprehensive, apples-to-apples comparison to peer data.

"More than 80 percent of the world's refining facilities entrust Solomon Associates with their most sensitive operational data, which we use as the basis for a proprietary, confidential comparative analysis that helps our study participants to identify and close gaps in their performance," said Dave Bossung, executive vice president of Solomon Associates. "With the Turnaround Study, we extend this methodology to examine all aspects of the turnaround process, analyzing labor expenses, work hours, materials costs, incident rates, lost production for turnaround outages, and more."

A "turnaround" is the planned, periodic inspection and overhaul of the units of a refinery or chemical plant, including safety checks, preventive maintenance, and repair. It typically requires the shutting down of all or part of a refinery or chemical plant for a period of up to several weeks. According to industry data compiled by Solomon Associates, the cost of turnarounds has risen by 15 percent annually from 2000 to 2008, largely as a result of labor cost increases, material cost increases, and scope of work increases during this period. The number of work hours devoted to turnarounds, for example, increased by 10 percent annually during this period. The Turnaround Study was prompted by inquiries from major refiners seeking the assistance of Solomon Associates in improving turnaround performance.

"While refining companies are aware that turnaround costs have been rising, they have had little objective basis for identifying areas where these costs can be better managed," said Glen Young, manager of the Turnaround Study. "That's why we created this study. The Turnaround Study is an invaluable tool for accurate planning, executing, and budgeting of turnarounds, as well as for illustrating opportunities for performance improvement."

Interested companies may learn more about the Turnaround Study by visiting http://www.solomononline.com/turnaround or by contacting Glen Young at 972.739.1802 or glen.young(at)solomononline.com.

About Solomon Associates
Based in Dallas, HSB Solomon Associates LLC is the world's leading performance improvement company for energy companies seeking to identify and close gaps in operational performance. Combining proven, patented methodologies with objective data analysis, and led by a team steeped in hands-on operational experience, Solomon Associates consistently helps clients with energy-intensive assets achieve greater efficiencies, enhanced reliability, and improved margins. Solomon Associates is part of HSB Group, Inc. To learn more about Solomon Associates, visit http://www.solomononline.com.

Contact:    
Cathy Baradell        
(972) 235-3439        

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