The RegO® name originated in 1908 with products for the gas-welding industry: oxygen fittings, values, and regulators that would serve the growing liquid-propane gas industry. Now, for more than a century, RegO® has continued to innovate, building capabilities and culture.
RegO® is well recognized as a specialized manufacturer of flow-control components and engineered-to-order applications. Truly countless customers have turned to its wide-ranging offerings of valves, pressure regulators and other safety devices for gases in liquid form.
RegO’s primary markets are liquid propane, industrial gases like liquid oxygen, liquid nitrogen, liquid helium or argon, as well as liquid natural gas. Gas in liquid form needs cold or pressurized conditions to take on liquid form, making it extremely dangerous, toxic or explosive, and making the rare abilities of RegO® even more valuable.
As CEO Mike Lucas explains, “These are very demanding applications, particularly industrial gas applications to get those gases to stay in liquid form. You’re often negative two hundred and forty degrees, three hundred degrees below zero.”
Safety for a century
Such conditions are not only challenging, they’re mission critical and leave no room for error.
Customers want safety, security, and peace of mind knowing that they will be safe, and that’s where RegO® Products excel. Who better to support that mission and handle these dangerous and sensitive pressurized gases at extraordinarily low temperatures, than a company with over one hundred years of solid experience? This is the real deal, a serious business in a serious field – a far cry from any trendiness or fashion.
“Our real brand proposition, our real brand value and, I think, why customers come back to us, is really the safety – I should say quality, and reliability – of the products,” says Lucas. “Safety is of utmost importance to our customers and it’s really been the long history of quality and reliability of the products.”
Further to RegO® being a leader in expertise, quality and reliability, RegO® Products has been an innovator throughout its long history and offers customers access to over five thousand active products in its catalog.
RegO® Products’ product management team stays apprised of its customers’ needs, as Lucas noted. “Understanding the applications and customers well enough that we can spot unmet product gaps or business model gaps. We look to increase operation, safety, or performance of their systems.
“We’ve been the first to market with a lot of products, but I think it’s really that peace of mind. Customers just know those products are going to work. They are designed to work and work robustly in those applications,” Lucas explained.
Of the company’s robust approach to quality, Lucas says, “Validation and verification of the design takes place at our own labs and through a third party,” in terms of product and material quality, performance requirements, standards, tolerances and accuracy.
“We have extensive quality-control processes all the way back to qualifying and validating vendors, to testing incoming components and materials,” he says, and explains that testing is done both manually and automatically to ensure high reliability and repeatability.
Based in Elon, North Carolina, where it operates four manufacturing facilities, RegO® Products is a domestic manufacturer with a global presence. The company has invested in the development of extensive global sales and distribution channels to support its domestic and global customers, as well as local and international engineering centers and test labs where its products are tested and validated.
Lucas highlighted RegO® Products’ commitment to being “Made in the USA,” which comes in the form of a $7 million capital investment plan. Over the next couple of years, its North Carolina facilities which will see the addition of fifty full-time employees and of increased capacity to meet demand. Currently, RegO® Products has seven-hundred employees globally.
Across its operations, investments in improved capacity and output are taking place. RegO® Products dedicates extensive resources to the production process. This is both to ensure quality and safety during production, and to ensure compliance with internal and external standards and requirements.
Lucas says, “We want to make sure our factories remain state-of-the-art, and remain flexible, both for growth and to take advantage of the new manufacturing technologies available.”
Not jobs – careers
To offer the best, it must be the best, and to do that RegO® has identified several ways to attract, develop and retain talent. RegO® utilizes county and state training grants, creates apprenticeship and internship programs that allow it to benefit from direct college recruitment, and offers pathways for career advancement that help it leverage the best talent.
“It’s a focus area,” says Lucas. “We’re constantly working on it so we can get good people in and we give them a career path and chances to learn more and keep them engaged and in the business for the long-term.”
Lucas described a skills matrix that RegO® Products developed that guides training and advancement activities, so employees can clearly define career targets and so establish a career path with the support of the company. Every effort is made to promote from within and there are full-time trainers on staff to help employees reach their goals.
Close attention is also paid to the culture to ensure it reflects the company’s human-centered values. This achievement serves as an additional tool to attract and retain labor and improves engagement and employee buy-in company-wide.
RegO® consciously fosters a culture based on respect, engagement and a sense of pride. In part, the company owes its longevity to the way its culture has adapted and evolved throughout its long history; as it has grown; and as the market has changed. Never has it been stagnant or complacent.
In every aspect of its operations it continues to improve and evolve to remain attentive, fast, efficient, responsive, and flexible for its customers. It is these traits which have enabled it to grow and that will position it for the future, as the company will surely need to evolve continuously to remain competitive in the accelerating changes of the global market.
Strategy for the future
Surviving more than a century in business is not random luck, especially considering the rate of failure of companies today. There aren’t many who can boast that kind of longevity. Nevertheless, just as RegO® Products has three core business streams, it has three core strategies of focus to continue the company’s advance into the future.
As the largest manufacturer in the liquid propane space, the goal for RegO® will be first to maintain product and service quality to protect existing customers, and to sustain control of its market share.
In its two other business segments, industrial gases and liquid natural gas, the plan is to more aggressively target growth, both through expanded sales channels and new product development opportunities, and to grow its market share in both segments respectively.
Beyond its three core business segments, a permanent and overarching goal of RegO® Products is to look internally to improve the reliability, responsiveness and value it offers its customers without compromising the reputation for safety and quality it has earned in the liquid gas market.