SIA Flexitanks 2021 – A Year in Review

2021 was a year like no other with the Covid-19 pandemic and an unprecedented shipping crisis. Thankfully, SIA Flexitanks continued to deliver for our customers.

This year SIA celebrated a fantastic achievement with our 10th Year in Business. As the world’s largest independent Flexitank provider and our continued growth, SIA remain committed to further building our global operations with a commitment to a sustainable environment. We continue to diversify our product range with the introduction of several new products, and we are committed to maintaining our position as an innovative leader in the bulk liquids industry.

Take a look back at the year of 2021, a year of great success for SIA.


2021 – The Year of an Unprecedented Shipping Crisis

Shipping Port - Shipping Crisis In early 2020 when the Covid-19 lockdowns were implemented, orders were cancelled and shipping lines cancelled sailings. The result is a severe container imbalance as thousands of empty containers are in Europe and the US while they are badly needed in Asia. The situation is not helped by congested ports, lack of trucks and over booked rail roads. The good news is that experts are predicting a major improvement by mid 2022 in the shipping congestion and escalating sea freight rates.

Key factors Importers & Exporters continue to experience:

  1. The demand for space and equipment continue to far outweigh the capacity of shipping lines and this situation is predicted to continue well into the new year.
  2. Port Congestion Surcharges & GRI’s have been imposed by all major shipping lines effective since January 2021.
  3. Shipping lines continuing to omit ports the lines are also rotating port calls at short notice. Shipping lines cancelling allocations and commitments.
  4. Coastal transfers of Import and Export cargoes continue to be impacted by the reduced capacity.
  5. Severe congestion and backlog of containers at most Asian transhipment hubs (Singapore, Hong Kong, Busan & Tanjung Pelepas).
  6. Port congestion continues to be an issue across the States with key / critical choke points being Oakland, Long Beach, New York & Vancouver.
  7. All transhipment hubs (be it in Asia or Panama) are experiencing congestion as well, with delays in loading transhipment containers being 2-3 weeks, adding to the delays.

Stuck in the Suez!

March 2021, saw an amazing event in the shipping world when a ship blocked the Suez Canal. The giant container ship that blocked traffic in the Suez Canal was successfully re-floated after a long 6 days and 7 hours. The 1,400-foot-long cargo ship jammed diagonally across a southern section of the Suez Canal, leaving a total of 367 ships, including dozens of container ships and bulk carriers, unable to use the key trading route. SIA had 1,000 flexitanks en-route to Rotterdam in the vicinity but luckily our tanks were through the canal before the incident.

Shipping Crisis Evergreen Stuck in the Suez

The Evergreen container ship was stuck in the Suez Canal for 6 days and 7 hours

SIA Flexitanks Plant A Tree Project

In February of 2021, SIA were delighted to get involved in The One Million Trees in One Day project. The trees on the land project is a seasonal fixture on farms and in communities across the island of Ireland. Trees on the Land is a cross-border initiative working to establish young native trees across the 32 counties of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Our colleagues in Italy, Malaysia, Houston, Rotterdam and New Zealand also joined in and planted tress in support of the project.

Team SIA Planting Trees for the SIA Plant a Tree Project


The SIA ‘Plant a Tree’ project aligns with our commitment to a sustainable environment. Operating around the world, SIA Flexitanks remain committed to continually minimizing our environmental impact globally. We continue to meet environmental standards and continue to recover and recycle materials where practical and environmentally beneficial to do so. Find out more about our plans for a Sustainable Flexitank Environment.

SIA Flexitanks – A Top Irish Company in USA

March of 2021 saw SIA Flexitanks listed in the Ireland INC US 250 Index 2021, supported by KPMG Ireland. This listing recognizes 250 Irish Companies investing and operating in the US. The list truly reflects the strength and value of Irish FDI in the States which currently stands at $235.7 billion, of which SIA Flexitanks are proud to be listed in due to our business excellence in the United States with our head US office based in Houston, Texas.

SIA Celebrate 10 Years in Business

July saw SIA Flexitanks celebrate an amazing achievement of 10 years in business. What started off with a small team in 2011, we are now a leading provider of Flexitanks in over 70 countries with offices on 4 continents. Following the opening in Ireland and Houston, we formed a great partnership and opened up our office in Port Klang, Malaysia followed by the opening of our office in Pasir Gudang, Malaysia. SIA Flexitanks then opened our operation in Rotterdam, followed by Italy and then in 2019, we opened in Australasia. 2022 will see the our global operations expand even more as we establish SIA Africa.

10 year anniversary of SIA Flexitanks

We are now heading towards operations/ agencies and office in 80 countries. This is a truly remarkable achievement in these days of crisis and uncertainty.
– Damien McClean, SIA CEO 

Flexitank Leaders in Wine

SIA’s presence in the wine industry is going from strength to strength and we are now in a consolidated position as one of the top suppliers to all of the major global wine importers. Having completed successful trials with one of the largest wine transporters on the planet, the feedback was extremely positive with our flexitank, our fitting partners and our customer service receiving 100% approval.


For the highest end wines, SIA has developed a 40ft flexitank (The Trinity Tank) that is used in either standard containers or in temperature-controlled conditions in a refrigerated unit. The three-pod system allows shippers to load white, rosé and red wine in the same container. With the acute shortage of 20ft containers, the 40ft alternative is increasingly popular with payloads up to 27 metric tonnes.

We are proud to announce that we are now shipping wine from California, Seattle, Chile, Argentina, Cape Town, Australia, New Zealand, Macedonia, Portugal, Greece. Moldova, Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Hungary and Romania.

Flexitanks for Bulk Wine


Related Topic: Flexitanks for Bulk Wine Transport


CEO Interview with International Wine

SIA CEO – Damien McClean, was interviewed by a UK based company; IWC ‘International Wine Challenge’ in the article ‘How Your Shipping Decisions Affect the Quality of Wines‘. Damien once again gave his expert insight on the topic and talked about the advantages of using Flexitanks for wine shipments. Read the full article ‘How Your Shipping Decisions Affect the Quality of Wines’ in the link HERE


“Flexitanks have evolved to offer an efficient and safe method for wine transportation. They are made from virgin polyethylene and the premium flexitanks include an aluminium barrier to preserve the wine quality.”

ILMA Convention

Our team in the US attended the ILMA Re-Engage Conference in June 2021, in Orlando Florida. This was the first conference held in a number of years, where we got to re-engage with the ILMA members in hopes to generate more business and attention to SIA as a major player & competitor in our field. Since 1948, the Independent Lubricant Manufacturers Association (ILMA) has been the voice of member companies that produce more than a quarter of North America’s automotive lubricants and three-quarters of its metalworking fluids for customers who use their products to improve performance and increase efficiency.

Related Topic: Flexitanks for Lubricant Oils


Innovation at SIA

Innovation is at the core of our company and plays a major role in our strategy and culture. For example, in 2001, our CEO – Damien McClean patented his design of the Multilayer Flexitank and today, over 80% of the market is imitating his design. Our team at SIA remain as innovative as ever and are proud to have launched two of our innovations this past year: The Trinity Tank and the Enviro-Heater. We are committed to maintaining our position as an innovative leader and we continue to develop new and innovative products.



In the first quarter of 2022, we will be relaunching the Enviro-Heater with a lot of upgrades including a temperature regulator. Our customer feedback shows that the Enviro-Heater heats products up much quicker than the existing steam pads even in sub-zero temperatures. The newly modified Enviro-Heater is proving to be a game changer in the heating market.

SIA Enviro-Heater

SIA Enviro-Heater

Trinity Tank

In 2021, we started our trials of the revolutionary Trinity Tank – SIA’s 40’, 3 pod Reefer flexitank system that allows shippers to load multiple bulk liquids in the same container. The Trinity Tank is available in sizes of up to 40ft and is increasingly popular with payloads up to 27 metric tonnes. Using the Trinity tank opens up the 40’ higher payload market as well as the US domestic market and the refrigerated transport market for our customers, and with the chronic shortages of 20 foot containers offers customers a chance to ship in regular 40 foot containers.
Our first new 40ft reefer Trinity Bag arrived in Europe for discharge in France which team SIA assisted our customer in discharging – The product was discharged in Tavaux, France at the Solvay Plant and was a huge success!
Take a look at the photo’s below of Team SIA fitting a Trinity Tank at Palermo, Italy. 
SIA Trinity Tank Installation

SIA Continue to Expand

March of 2021 saw the launch of our new operation in Argentina, servicing our customers’ needs in the Wine market. SIA’s share of the wine market continues to grow with approval gained from one of the world’s largest wine shippers.
Our team in Asia SIA Asia is also expanding our own office network with new opportunities coming up in for Thailand, Vietnam and India, this is a great step forward in a very competitive market place.

As we continue our global expansion we will soon be establishing SIA Africa. We will soon be opening up our own operations in South Africa. South Africa will be our base to develop business throughout the continent of Africa with agencies planned for Senegal, The Gambia and Ghana.

SIA Flexitanks launch SIA Africa

SIA Flexitanks Launch Operations in Africa

NEW Products Coming 2022

Following the successful launch of our Trinity Tank system and the revolutionary EnviroHeater we continue to introduce new product innovations that are complementary to our core flexitank business.
Product Diversification is a byword for growth and a way forward for businesses to expand in the right direction to protect our business into the future. These new products will consolidate our position as a leading player in our industry. – Damien McClean, SIA CEO

Static Storage Tanks

SIA have designed, developed and supplied our first monster tank. We are working with an events company to provide potable water storage flexitanks for concerts, festivals and may other events. The tank pictured, is a massive 100,000 litres.

Static Storage Tanks

Static Storage Tanks

The SIA Bag-In-Box [BIB] System

The SIA Bag-In-Box [BIB] System

The SIA Bag-In-Box [BIB] System

Our bag-in-box industry experts approach the customers individually providing the best options for wine, juice, dairy, liquid eggs, sauces, oils or chemicals. Bag-in-box is a packaging system that includes a high-strength multi-layer bag placed in a hard case (cardboard box, barrel, box, etc.). Bag-in-box production is certified according to the highest quality standard. It is the “Mini me” of the flexitank industry. Cutting-edge machinery located in a clean and sterile manufacturing sector allow our customers to receive products that meet Global standards. We will offer a wide range of bag formats that covers all market needs, ranging from 2 litres to 220 litres.

The SIA Collapsible Liquid Containers

Our customers can help the environment and reduce handling costs by eliminating stainless or plastic IBCs (bins) and moving to our disposable FIBC (flexible intermediate bulk container) solution. By eliminating the need to wash using less energy, water and handling time. So not reusing is actually going green!

SIA CollapsiSIA Collapsible Liquid Containerble Liquid Container

SIA Collapsible Liquid Containers



Thank you Team SIA

Foremost, I want to personally thank all of our incredible employees across the globe, who are working tirelessly to load our customer’s products, providing a hugely appreciated continuity of business. I am so grateful for their work this past year and thank them for their commitment both this year and moving forward as we navigate increased volumes and opportunities.
– Damien McClean, CEO, SIA Flexitanks
SIA CEO, Damien McClean was glad to host our first SIA Global Zoom call in 2021, it was a great chance to see all our colleagues around the world. Thanks to Tay, Ellie and Miss Ong for joining in at 10pm and a special mention to our favourite New Zealander Gary Buick who came on the call at 2 am. We would like to give a special mention for Ellie’s two cats and Travis’s dog who all made the call memorable. What a great team we have built.
SIA Flexitanks global zoom call

Team SIA Global Zoom Call, 2021

Thank you to our team at SIA Flexitanks for all their wonderful contributions towards the growth and success of our company. We strive to put our clients at the heart of everything we do and we sincerely would like to thank all of our clients, the many long-term and new clients we have, for their trust, their support and their excellent cooperation with us. We have learned many valuable lessons over the past two years, and we are incredibly proud of the resilience and flexibility our team has shown in meeting our business and client needs during these difficult times.


‘I would like to thank each and every one of the SIA family for making us the great organisation that we are today. For the last decade, our customers have marvelled at Flexitanks’ ability to deliver the best tanks on time and without hassle. I’d like to take some time to thank the real stars of the show, our employees.’

– Damien McClean, CEO.

SIA CEO Damien McClean

Damien McClean, SIA CEO

May the new year 2021 bring you 12 months of success, 52 weeks of laughter, 365 days of fun, 8760 hours of joy, 525,6000 minutes of luck, and 31,536,000 seconds of happiness.


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