TPI in numbers

60: Number of students enrolled in the Tawazun work-study programme

5,400kg: Maximum weight TPI’s milling machines can bear

1,300°C: Furnace temperature required for vacuum-hardening process

Source: TPI

TPI snapshot

Date established 2007

Main business sectors Precision manufacturing, aerospace and defence

Main business region UAE

Chief executive officer Muaatasem Awda

Tawazun Precision Industries Structure

Tawazun Precision Industries (TPI) is a precision machining manufacturer based in Abu Dhabi. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tawazun Holding, the industrial and commercial investment arm of the UAE Offset Programme. Tawazun helps to secure investment to develop companies that contribute to the diversification of the UAE economy beyond a reliance on oil and gas revenues. 

TPI changed its name from Emirates Precision Industries in September 2010, three years after the company was founded. It is based in Abu Dhabi’s Tawazun Industrial Park.

The company is organised into six departments: production; surface treatment; plastic injection moulding; engineering/research and development, servicing; and quality control. Production is TPI’s largest department both in terms of staff and equipment. Two-thirds of TPI’s 130 employees are engineers in the fields of industry, manufacturing, and production.

Tawazun Precision Industries operations

TPI’s production department includes 30 computer numerically controlled (CNC) production machines. To be able to compete with well established precision engineering companies, TPI aims to use the most up-to-date manufacturing technologies available. To this end, the firm has forged several partnerships with international equipment suppliers. This includes the supply of CNC milling machines manufactured by Switzerland’s AgieCharmille and Germany’s DMG, and turning machines – hi-tech lathes – made by Austria’s Emco.

Number of employees
2007 4
2008 25
2009 79
2010 130
2011f  204
f=Forecast. Source: TPI 

TPI’s engineers design, develop and prototype production processes and parts. Engineers work with customers from an early stage in a product’s development to make sure prototypes work as efficiently as possible. The engineering team comprises computer-aided design (CAD) designers and programmers, toolmakers and machining engineers.

TPI makes components for a range of industries. To date, the company’s main customers have been other Tawazun subsidiaries, including small-arms manufacturer Caracal International, for which it produces about 80 per cent of its parts.

The company is working to expand its customer base and last November signed an agreement with European aircraft manufacturer Airbus to supply machined metallic components for civilian and military aircraft. TPI will begin to supply Airbus in early 2011, becoming the first UAE company to supply Airbus with components.

TPI also supplies parts to US oil field products company National Oilwell Varco (NOV).

As well as manufacturing new components, TPI serves other machining companies by retrofitting and repairing machine tools.

Tawazun Precision Industries ambitions

TPI is looking to move away from a reliance on Tawazun subsidiaries for its customer base. It has identified aerospace as the key growth sector for the company in 2011 and beyond.

This aligns with the broader plans of the Abu Dhabi government, which has identified aerospace as a key sector for non-oil investment in the emirate. TPI is collaborating with Mubadala Aerospace – part of the government-owned investment vehicle Mubadala Development Company. Mubadala Aerospace is targeting the maintenance, repair and overhaul sector within the aerospace industry, through Abu Dhabi Aerospace Technologies – a Mubadala joint venture with Sikorsky Aerospace Services of the US.

Production capacity, milling machines 
2010 30
2011f 36
f=Forecast. Source: TPI 

TPI has also identified the oil and gas market as a sector that offers it great potential for growth. While investment in the oil and gas sector itself is not part of the Tawazun brief, manufacturing and supplying parts for the industry does fall within its emerging industries remit.

TPI began working with NOV this year, supplying downhole components for the Houston-headquartered oil field products and services company. It has identified several other oil and gas companies with which it wants to work, with the aim of supplying both local and international oil and gas companies locally manufactured oil and gas components.

TPI is promoting itself as a parts provider for international oil and gas companies working in the UAE that do not have the capacity to produce parts in the country themselves. As well as targeting international firms operating in the UAE, TPI says it wants to develop a UAE export industry in precision-engineered components.