Board of Advisors
Mario Medanic was three when his father first took him away from his native Croatia and onto cargo ships carrying goods to ports across the world. From that young age, traversing the oceans became his summer occupation. He remembers landing in Tripoli at six. He was still a child when he first set foot in China.
It was good preparation for a globe-trotting life. Medanic has now scribbled 98 names on the list of countries he has visited. He speaks Croatian, English, Italian, Russian, Polish, Czech, some Chinese and some Indonesian.
And he has an unusually keen appreciation for the scale of problems affecting the industry he has spent decades learning: the business of protecting ships, bridges, refineries, petro-chemical plants, refineries and offshore platforms against a common enemy, corrosion.
It’s a profession that’s become a passion.
“You get the sickness of the rust,” says Medanic. “It gets under your skin.”
Today, Medanic serves as general manager of the CermaClad product line, a position that has him overseeing a product that, he says, is set “to change the game in cladding.” “It has a really great potential.”
It’s a view born of decades of hands-on experience with other corrosion protection technologies. Medanic began his career as a technologist with a Croatian company applying anti-corrosion coatings to ships, oil tanks and refineries. He made his way up the ranks, working as a site manager and travelling to Siberia – and even back to Libya – to oversee coating work.
He broadened his European focus by taking a position as a coatings quality control inspector with Jotun, a leading global paint producer based in Norway. He focused largely on shipbuilding in southern Europe.
Medanic certified as a Coating Inspector – Level III with FROSIO, the Norwegian Professional Council for Education and Certification of Inspectors for Surface Treatment. He used his expertise to consult on corrosion matters for some of the petroleum industry’s most important corporations, including Sipem, ENI, British Gas and British Petroleum.
His long industry background led to work with CladTek, an important producer of an anti-corrosion technology called mechanically-bonded pipe. At CladTek, he oversaw construction of a 540,000 square foot production facility. Under his leadership, the facility gained ISO certification and API qualification.
He began work with CermaClad, he says, in part because his career has shown him the problems with other technologies – problems that have grown more acute as industries like oil and gas move into reservoirs that are more corrosive and hotter, which worsens corrosion.
“I know what is bad for clients with current technologies,” he says.
Mechanically-bonded pipe, for example, is prone to major installation problems. With weld overlay protection, a different technology, the application process is slow, and the resulting product can be nearly impossible to inspect for surface cracks and surface porosity.
His passion for CermaClad, he says, comes out of a constant search “for a better solution.”