3. 11. 2023
Christening of HUTIRA residential regulators, specialist presentations and debate on the future of the gas industry. We celebrated 33 years on the Czech market
Our HUTIRA brand has been operating on the Czech gas market for 33 years now. This August, we decided to treat ourselves with a small gift to mark this important anniversary by launching in-house production of B NG series residential gas pressure regulators. To mark this occasion, we decided to hold a christening ceremony in the middle of September for this two-stage regulator designed for residential use. The event featured an attractive programme with the participation of several key personalities from the Czech gas industry, including an interesting discussion on the future of this promising field.
The history of HUTIRA is intrinsically linked to Francel, a company which was already producing its own natural gas pressure regulator as far back as the 1960s. In June 1993, Ivo Hutira Jr. and Vráťa Maly set off on a journey to visit the headquarters of this French company. Their mission was extremely successful with an agreement on cooperation being reached between the two parties. Four months later, the Engineering Test Institute issued a decision allowing for installation of the first 500 residential regulators in the Czech Republic.
Over time, these imported regulators from France established themselves as the best-selling regulators in the Czech and Slovak region. “At that time, shortly after the Velvet Revolution, the then Czechoslovak Federal Republic experienced a gas boom. However, the domestic producer failed to respond adequately to market demand, creating a situation which represented both a significant challenge and a tremendous opportunity for us,” explains Ivo Hutira Jr., adding that negotiations to allow use of the imported regulators in the domestic gas network took a now hard-to-believe two years and six months.
Thirty-three years later, the first residential gas pressure regulator bearing the label Made in Czech Republic is now rolling off the production line in Popůvky. “Today we already produce these regulators in the Czech Republic under the HUTIRA brand. We are proud to be bringing home production of these regulators after more than thirty years. We hope that with this step, we will contribute towards revival of the gas industry in our country,” says a smiling Monika Zitterbartová, Managing Director of HUTIRA green gas and Marketing Director of the HUTIRA brand.
The production line has a capacity allowing for production of 50,000 regulators per year and our main aim is to supply regulators in particular to customers in Central Europe. This therefore represents a key milestone for our brand and the Czech gas industry as a whole.
A number of distinguished guests came to celebrate this important milestone in the history of the Czech gas industry, among them Petr Mašek, Director of the Engineering Test Institute in the 1990s; Jan Brothánek, Chairman of the District Mining Office for the South Moravian and Zlín Region; Jan Pokorný, former head of the Energy Regulatory Authority and also Pavel Káčer, former Managing Director of GasNet Služby, s.r.o.
A varied programme awaited all of the guests at our company’s head office, hosted by Monika Zitterbartová together with Čeněk Absolon, Director of the Brno Regional Chamber of Commerce. After a presentation by the owner Ivo Hutira Jr., there was a lively discussion about the principles of the circular economy, advocacy of natural gas as a sustainable source of energy (the so-called “Gas Advocacy” phenomenon) and the future of the gas sector in Central Europe.
“Whereas others are shifting production to Eastern Europe and Asia, we, on the other hand, are bringing production back to the Czech Republic. We believe that the gas industry has a great future in the Czech Republic. We have absolute confidence in it, a fact which is confirmed by our investment in the production line,” said Radek Kundrata, Director of Sales, Marketing and Development at HUTIRA.
The thematic block ended with unveiling of the production line and a christening ceremony for the residential gas pressure regulators. The ceremonial act was performed by Božena Hanáková, a senior manager with a proven track record at HUTIRA, Ivo Hutira Jr. and Sr., Petr Mašek and Pavel Káčer.
You can watch the full baptism here.