Dashboard in Canada, fall 2015
November saw an important international mission for Phil Doherty (COO) Simon Jones (CSO) and Piers Corfield (CEO). Admittedly the meticulous planning for the excursion was thrown a curve ball when we were offered the opportunity to present to Saudi Aramco ventures in London, compounded by an invitation to meet with BP the following day. As it transpired, Phil and Simon shouldered the responsibility of the first three meetings on Tuesday 24th, with Piers arriving at 7pm on the same day.
The foundation stone for the visit to Calgary in Alberta (the heart of the Canadian oil and gas sector just south of Edmonton, the industry’s engineering centre) was an opportunity to present to the pipeline integrity committee of CEPA (the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association) attended by representatives of Canada’s/North America’s largest pipeline infrastructure companies.
Aided and abetted by Lars Hinrichs (our Calgary based investor who has recently joined the company from the Technology and Innovation team at Devon Oil) and key contacts of his (you know who you are) had planned an intense schedule of meetings was set up in advance to ensure maximum benefit was achieved.
The meeting provided a unique opportunity to gather feedback and insights from company’s facing a broad spectrum of challenges, which could then be contrasted with similar input from operators in S America, the Middle East and Africa. Environmental, community relations and regulatory requirements were all high priorities, particularly in view of recent changes of administration in both federal and provincial governments.
The team held a broad spectrum of meetings with operators, government representatives, prospective strategic/technical partners and investors, but the welcome was universally warm and engaging. On one evening, whilst endeavouring to wind down after another round of meetings (in a packed bar filled with those celebrating Thanksgiving and watching the American Football) we found ourselves sitting next to an engineer and his party who transpired to be a multi-millionaire (in oilfield services) who, unbeknownst to ourselves, settled our bill for all of our food and drink!
We received great support and hospitality from our friends at Norton Rose Fulbright, who were generous enough to host a meeting with a directional drilling company who are prospective strategic partners both in N America and beyond.
Such was the success of our trip, that we are in the process of opening an office in Calgary to provide a formal base of operations for team members visiting from the UK and for Lars. Further announcements of the outcomes of our meetings will be announced in due course.