ATCO was founded as part of MetaCorp, a conglomerate of companies in a wide variety of markets. At this time mostly active in the transport business for Exxon’s Oil Refinery (Lago).
Not only transporting regular cargo, but also moving extraordinary cargo such as parts for the expansion of the plant. Throughout the last half century Atco has constructed and maintained a tradition of high quality transportation services on the island. Despite increasing competition, Atco maintained the edge by using amongst others state of the art, innovative equipment. It is therefore Atco introduced the first Roll on Roll off container systems in Aruba, enabling containers of 40 feet to be transported without the use of a chassis. Afterwards, Atco broadened its horizons and expanded its heavy lift and transport activities. This division now enables the company to handle weights up to but not limited to 500 metric tons.
ATCO opened its first ready-mix facility.
Due to the closing of the Exxon refinery in 1985 many residents and companies left the island to seek opportunities elsewhere, forcing the Aruban people in general to direct their focus on tourism. In order to shift this secondary source to the main source of income, new hotels had to be built and existing ones had to be expanded. ATCO did not waste any time and took the opportunity to set up the first ready mix facility on the island. This facility has since grown to be the largest ready mix facility in Aruba, supplying a great deal of the market in its entire ready mix needs.
ATCO expanded its activities with a Block Production facility.
Having all the necessary raw materials, manpower and rolling equipment, ATCO decided to expand its activities again in 1995 with a block production facility. The ever-increasing demand on construction materials led to a dramatic increase in production and thus ATCO had to become more efficient than ever.
The old block facility was replaced with a high-tech fully automated block & paver plant capable of producing 3 times the volume of the previous facility but including pavers and specialty blocks.
From simple masonry block production, ATCO is now able to produce a wide variety of colored blocks, split blocks, blocks and pavers. These specialty blocks add another dimension to the taste of the consumers and the creativity of designing architects, appreciated in modern construction nowadays. Up to mid-2002 almost all pavers were imported from Venezuela and some from the Netherlands. ATCO started producing pavers at the end of 2002 and quickly took over the market with quality pavers at better prices than imported pavers. Giving the local paver importer the opportunity to become an exclusive retailer and so retain their market share was an important strategic move for both companies.
ATCO is ISO 9001 and OHSAS 18001 Certified.
In 2006, ATCO started with ISO 9001: 2008– OHSAS 18001 Certification. ISO 9001:2008: This standard is based on a number of quality management principles including a strong customer focus, the motivation and implication of top management, the process approach and continual improvement. Using ISO 9001:2008 helps ensure that customers get consistent, good quality products and services, which in turn brings many business benefits. OHSAS 18001 (officially “BS OHSAS 18001:2007”) is an internationally applied British Standard for occupational health and safety management systems. It exists to help all kinds of organizations put in place demonstrably sound occupational health and safety performance.
ATCO unveiled its New Block Plant at Barcadera.
In September 2008, Atco unveiled its new block plant at Barcadera. The brand new Rekers block-plant from Germany consists of an investment of approximately 7 million Florins. This plant can produce about 5.000 blocks per hour. This ultra-modern plant has a completely computerized system that is able to produce products of a very high quality. When referring to quality one should mention that the output of this new plant surpasses the U.S and European norms. The new products vary from blocks, pavers and even pots. The difference between the old and the new plant is the fact that the new one offers more options in the shapes of blocks and pavers. The pavers come in a wider variety of colors, a more sleek finish and less rough than before. Atco’s vision in regard of this plant is to broaden the horizon for Aruba.
ATCO is now Atco Concrete Products N.V.
ATCO consisted out of 3 divisions: Atco (ready-mix, block and paver production), Ecotech (waste management) and Caribbean Heavy Lift (container hauling, heavy lifts and transport). In 2010, Atco ceased to exist and 3 new companies were formed out of the already existent divisions. The division Atco ready-mix, block and paver production is now an independent company within Metacorp named Atco Concrete Products N.V.
Atco Concrete Products N.V. upgraded the existing batch plant into a Stetter’s Vertical Concrete Mixing Plant, which has a state-of-the-art mixing technology and it is the first to be installed in the Caribbean and South America.
Atco Concrete Products continuously aims to improve its quality, performance and efficiency standard. In 2011, the time came to upgrade the existing batch plant into a Stetter’s Vertical Concrete Mixing Plant. This brand new plant manufactured in Germany has a state-of-the art mixing technology and it’s the first to be installed in the Caribbean and South America. Stetter vertical concrete mixing plant incorporates the know-how of more than 45 years of development, engineering and production of concrete mixing plants. Constantly evolving technology as well as optimization of the details has led to the high efficiency and reliability which characterize Stetter vertical plants today.
The weighing and batching technology is a quality-determining component of each concrete mixing plant. This plant ensures fast and precise weighing of aggregates and has optimal dust protection. The plant is a tower as opposed to the traditional plants of several components. The tower is setup in a way where all products are “dropped” vertically into the scales and into the mixer by means of free fall. In other words, all material is available for batching in a matter of seconds, making its batching extremely efficient. Several components of the plant are covered in plastic which decreases the normal wear and tear associated with these types of plants. Furthermore, the Stetter plant is equipped with moister meters that precisely indicates the amount of water in our aggregates even on the rainiest days. The moister in sand is corrected automatically within split seconds. In other words, Atco knows with accuracy what is being delivered. In comparison with other batch plants, this new plant has many advantages, such as:
Size: compact with a small foot print,
Speed: Very fast by using advanced technology,
Batch size: Perfect mixes even for small batches,
Energy: optimized in usage, free fall technology and fast switch off for all motors not in use
Maintenance: optimize in maintenance cost because of compact construction in a close environment
Dust and Environmental: This is a clean plant in a close system.
Safety: Has the highest standard in safety by having all areas closed while in operation.
Atco Concrete Products N.V. has a new Cement Silo
Since the beginning ATCO Concrete Products NV, has relied on cement bags in order to keep its production of concrete and blocks running. The blowing of cement is not only a time consuming process but it was also an extremely dirty part of our daily operation. Therefore, in order to continue with our vision for improvement, creating a cleaner workspace, cleaner environment altogether, improving the consistency and availability of cement, a new silo was necessary.
After years of planning, months of pile forming, foundation pouring, steel erecting, and laying of pipes, ATCO Concrete Products new cement silo is in its operational phase. Standing as the highest structure in the area, the silo has a height of 40 meters, which can be seen from a very long distance. The new silo has the capacity to store up to 4000 tons of dry bulk cement. The cement is stored in the silo and unloaded into trucks which load underneath the silo. The cement is transported to the 2 plants, batch plant and block-plant, in cement trailers pulled by tractor on a daily basis. The trailers have a capacity to load 30 tons of cement each and are loaded with cement in a matter of minutes, which are then transported to the plant for processing. On pictures can see as the tractor pulls out from underneath the silo with one of its cement trailers it is towing. The discharge process is fully automated, and controlled by the same driver which handled both trailers.
The construction for supporting the silos massive weight was a feat in itself. The project required a substantial amount of concrete piles which were prepared during the day and poured before or at the end of each working day, working long hours to make sure this project remained on time and in its scheduled time frame. Resting above 82 concrete formed piles lies a massive 305 cubic meter concrete foundation, poured in 1 shot. In order to stay on schedule the entire foundation steel for the silo was prefabbed outside, and lifted into place by crane. So how does the cement get into the silo? This is done through 175 meters of underground piping and 40 meters of vertical piping on the side of the silo. The pipe runs underground through ATCO’s new property and through the Harbor of Barcadera. Pumped via a special pneumatic ships/vessels, cement is loaded into the silo on a 4-6 week basis, making sure that the silo is always in a proper level of inventory.
So the next time you are visiting our clean facility or see from your house that tall white new landmark we call our Silo, you can always think about the hard work, and great pride that went into its development and which we will continue to develop with ATCO Concrete Products NV
Atco Concrete Products N.V. set to maximize efficiencies with a Waste Recycling Plant.
ATCO Concrete Products has taken ownership of a turnkey C&D Waste Recycling plant from CDE Global to process construction and demolition waste for use in concrete production. The ever-increasing demand for construction materials on the island of Aruba led to a dramatic increase in production and thus ATCO had to become more efficient than ever. ATCO took the opportunity to set up a ready mix facility on the island in order to meet the demand for new hotels following an increasing focus on tourism. This facility has since grown to be the largest ready mix facility in Aruba, supplying a large proportion of the market.
The addition of the washing plant from CDE paves the way for future growth and increased efficiencies with the production of 2no. Washed recycled aggregates (5-10mm, 10-20mm) and also 1no. Washed recycled sand at -5mm.
Previously, ATCO’s concrete products were manufactured using imported aggregates to ultimately avoid the need for excavation from Aruba’s environment. The investment in the CDE plant enables ATCO to recycle construction and demolition waste such as stone, concrete and bricks into high quality, commercially viable washed sand and aggregates. The advantages of this process are essentially two-fold. This technology not only avoids the need for excavation of the surrounding environment but also enables ATCO to save on the costs of importing materials from neighboring countries, allowing them remain competitive by passing on the cost savings to the end user
With the remote location of the ATCO site, on-going support was a key issue for consideration at the outset of the project. The CDE Project Management process ‘ProMan’, proved vital in this instance and allowed ATCO to be closely involved from the initial design stage, through to manufacturing, logistics, installation, commissioning and beyond. Atco Concrete Products ultimate aim is to produce the highest quality products possible and to provide a first class service to our customers. The Preventative Maintenance Inspections from CDE will allow us to maintain our position as Aruba’s number one provider for blocks, pavers, sand, stones and concrete by producing the maximum level of processed material to an exceptionally high quality.
Atco Concrete Products is ISO 14001 Certified.
In June 2015, Atco Concrete Products has been certified with ISO 14001. The ISO 14001 standard requires that an organization put in place and implement a series of practices and procedures that when taken together, result in an environmental management system.