Big Enough to Compete, Small Enough to Care

Acadian Contractors
Written by Grace McDermott

Acadian Contractors is one of the Gulf Coast Regions most prolific fabrication and offshore services companies. With a stake in some of the country’s largest onshore and offshore projects, and a growing international fabrication footprint, Acadian is a comprehensive leader in the increasingly diverse oil and gas sector.
Acadian has built an empire based on close client relationships and comprehensive services, but today the company’s contribution to the oil and gas industry goes much deeper. The firm’s client-centered, integrative approach has set it apart, driving company-wide growth through some of the toughest economic times in U.S. history. In an industry dominated by multinational corporate giants, the once small Gulf Coast family fabricator has emerged a great American success story.

Acadian Contractors was started as a family-run operation in the early 1970s. The company originally worked as a general fabrication contractor, dedicated to serving the regional needs of its Abbeville, Louisiana location. Troy Blanchard, the Houston division manager explains, “There is an old adage, ‘big enough to compete and small enough to care’, Acadian has been that way for almost fifty years, and we are that way today.”

In the late 1980s, CEO N.R. Broussard had the foresight to move Acadian to the current 125 acres along the Vermilion River, which facilitated access directly to the Gulf of Mexico. At the time the land was purchased, growth was the goal, but today, the company has reached unforeseeable heights. Today, the firm’s multifaceted facilities span those 125 acres and are home to a workforce of over six hundred staff.

This grassroots growth was underpinned by a commitment to service which, despite national growth, remains at the heart of Acadian today. “At Acadian, undoubtedly, when we say we are going to do something in a certain timeframe, or within a certain price range, we hold true to that,” says Blanchard. “That has been proven through the years and has allowed Acadian to maintain a significant loyal customer base and such success.”

Despite the advancement of Acadian, the company has remained privately owned and committed to the core values of personalized service which can only come from close client relationships. “The big key for us, is that we are a privately held company, managed and family owned and operated [because of this] we have a very streamlined approach to management which allows for quick decisions to be made,” says Blanchard.

Innovation is what has kept the contractor not only surviving, but thriving. Blake Broussard, a pioneer of the family legacy and the current vice president of Acadian affirms, “You see a lot of companies that think the same and stay the same, and I’m proud to say that we have not become complacent, and we have continued to diversify the company, recruiting young professional talent while growing in our field.”

From the Gulf of Mexico shelf to deepwater, Acadian’s work can be seen in nearly every major project in the Gulf Region. Although the Gulf Coast remains the company’s stronghold, increasingly its footprint is expanding outside the region and even the nation. In addition to countless onshore and offshore works in the gulf, Acadian has also carried out significant work throughout the Marcellus shale region as well as the Utica and Eagleford shale regions.

Acadian’s strength lies in its ability to tackle complex projects holistically, from start to finish. It has become a top choice for complex developments, and the firm’s most recent completion of a 750 ton Amine Treating Module and the completion of a Production & Amine Barge exemplify the extent of these capabilities. In the increasingly disjointed world of oil and gas, the promise of continuity and efficiency has been the company’s claim to fame.

Although its rise began with fabrication, the company’s focus on turn-key services which bridge the divide between fabrication and field services have gained widespread industry recognition. Comprehensive and turnkey solutions have existed in the mainstream construction industry for years, but are relatively new within the oil and gas sector. With extensive in-house capabilities, Acadian provides services which range from packaged equipment and interconnecting piping to control coating and vessel, structural and exotic metal fabrication. It even offers field services.

“As a whole, we are a very well-rounded fabrication contractor that can offer turnkey solutions for almost any client’s fabrication needs, from structural aspects to piping work,” Blanchard explains. “We do it all.”

When it comes to large oil and gas projects, there are very few contractors with the on-site infrastructure or labor force to perform both fabrication and field services. Acadian can provide a streamlined approach which cuts out the middle man and the hassle of multiple-location approval and logistics. “We provide a logistical benefit. If the client was forced to separate those components among different facilities, it slows the production, as project management and inspection services which are needed, must be applied to each different facility. At Acadian we can do everything from one central location,” says Blanchard.

Providing turn-key responses is predicated on not only industrial capability, but labor capital, which is an area in which Acadian shines. With nearly fifty years in the area, the contractor has access to regional know-how and a highly-trained, experienced team of staff, many of whom have worked with the firm for decades.

By offering a total turn-key package, Acadian provides the priceless assets of time efficiency, budgetary oversight and quality management. “Cost, scheduling and delivery is very important in this industry. Companies either live or die by whether or not they can achieve these things,” says Broussard. “We do what we say we are going to do. That’s why we have been able to establish long-lasting relationships with our clients.”

As a result of the company’s direct access to the Gulf of Mexico, it is conveniently located for both onshore and offshore projects. A significant feature of Acadian’s offerings is rooted in its advanced fabrication processes, as it specializes in both heavy structural and pipe fabrication.

As an ASME code R (repair and alterations certification) and U (pressure vessels certification) stamp fabrication shop, Acadian can accommodate all vessel fabrication requirements, from new vessel fabrication to repairs. The fabrication of each product can be customized down to the finest details in the on-site, environmentally friendly and climate-controlled, painting and blasting facility.

The company is widely known for its advanced fabrication work, but in recent years, its onshore and offshore offerings have led to new and innovative endeavors. Increasingly, companies across the oil and gas industry have focused on creating solutions to the ongoing dilemmas of offshore construction and deepwater work. Acadian has become a leading innovator within the deepwater and subsea sector, working closely with other leading oil and gas firms to address the issues of deep sea oil and gas work.

One of these contributions comes in the form of several sizeable fabrication projects for the marine well containment industry, which is dedicated solely to resolving the environmental risks of subsea drilling.

In addition to marine well containment, Acadian has also delved into the fabrication and installation of deepwater tiebacks. Deepwater tiebacks are a new and innovative technology which has been proven to improve the efficiency of oil and gas works in subsea environments.

Its increasing presence in the emerging subsea industry makes it a company well equipped to stay ahead of the curve. The company’s fabrication offerings have also been bolstered by an increasing amount of international demand which will make exports a significant growth area for years to come.

With the company achieving thirty percent growth in the last year and a stable record of healthy growth for nearly fifty years, it is a force with which to be reckoned. From the Gulf to the Marcellus shale region, Acadian is pioneering comprehensive oil and gas developments, proving to a world of corporate multinationals that service still reigns supreme.



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