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A series of portraits of VINCI Energies employees. They hail from a whole range of backgrounds and personal career paths, and work around the world in one of the multiple business activities that allow VINCI Energies to prosper.

Blessed with a dual Italian and German background, Michael Erspamer has made his mark at Omexom Germany as its Technical Director for Transmission Lines, with a firm emphasis on innovation.

Michael Erspamer does not get bored. As the technical director for transmission lines at Omexom Germany, he works in a sector with a reputation for technologies and working methods that have barely changed since the 1950s. But his day-to-day experience certainly does not reflect this rather old-fashioned image of the business. The subjects he works on are more redolent of the high-octane world of innovative startups than of electrical transmission with its good old-fashioned transmission towers.

The latest innovation to his credit is an innovative catenary roller system to make the installation of high-voltage lines safer. A minor revolution against the traditional system! But Michael Erspamer has already moved on to the next challenge. “I’m currently working on several other assignments,” he says. “One is about 3D modelling of transmission towers and using augmented reality to optimise their installation in the field. Two others involve drones and AI.”

He continues, “The first of these aims to maximise and rationalise the management of the steel road plates for access and assembly areas. The second will make it possible to safely and remotely check and inspect assembly quality on installations.”

Not forgetting one final project: a robotic system for carrying out line maintenance work, particularly in risky situations.

Innovation and diversity

As well as the innovative dimension of the projects he runs, Michael Erspamer particularly appreciates the diversity of the subjects and the people he works with. “I work just as well with engineers as with digital specialists and all kinds of experts from Omexom or Axians.”

Environmental initiatives from VINCI Energies are another source of motivation. “Previously, the recycling of old conductors [conducting cables generally made from aluminium alloy] by separating the steel from the aluminium took place in Pakistan,” says Michael Erspamer. “The products were then shipped back to Europe Naturally, the carbon footprint was not great. But Omexom now plans to use a tool called Alu Separator, which can complete the operation on site.

“VINCI Energies’ policies, processes and methods suited me down to the ground. Its international network offers countless opportunities.”

Aged 43, this Swiss-Italian engineer from Brixen in South Tyrol, Italy’s northernmost province, where most people are German-speaking, has come a long way since 2006, when he started out in the family construction and electrical distribution business.

He explains: “The size of our business excluded us from large-scale projects. So, after five years, I went looking for a partner to help us reach critical mass.” His dual Germanic and Italian background eased the negotiations with the German energy infrastructure specialists GA Gruppe. In 2012, the entity formed of the two companies was acquired by VINCI Energies, and two years later, this new Group subsidiary took on the Omexom brand.

A greener future

For the manager, this was a real godsend: “VINCI Energies’ policies, processes and methods suited me down to the ground. Its international network offers countless opportunities.”

In 2015, Michael Erspamer took the opportunity to collaborate in a Joint Venture together with Fabricom on two major projects in Belgium. “This international experience was hugely rewarding for me. I learned a lot, especially in terms of organisation and safety, thanks to the high degree of professionalism on view.” At the same time, in 2017, he took responsibility for the machinery fleet in Germany.

Since his appointment as Omexom Germany’s Technical Director for Transmission Lines in 2021, Michael Erspamer has been managing two business units from Italy, where he is still based. The first is a group of a dozen or so engineers specialising in the construction of Overhead transmission lines. The second, named Mobility and Equipment Solutions, consists of a dozen experts in machinery and maintenance.

So, there is no shortage of work to be done over the next few years. And Michael Erspamer mostly sees the future as green. He would ultimately like to shift toward a role tackling environmental issues – the thesis he is currently writing on urban mobility is testament to that. After all, the opportunities are endless at VINCI Energies.


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