May 7, 2012


London, a business segment of Schlumberger Ltd., introduced its trademarked ObliQ sliding-notch broadband acquisition and imaging technique that enhances low-frequency content of marine seismic data and increases the penetration depth of seismic imaging to extract rock properties. It optimizes seismic bandwidth by combining variable streamer depth acquisition with a proprietary deghosting methodology and a newly developed broadband seismic source. Company officials said the proprietary processing approach is applied early in the sequence, making the data suitable for both time- and depth-domain analysis. Enabled by the trademarked Q-Marine point receiver marine seismic system, the ObliQ technique can also be used with other WesternGeco technologies to combine broad bandwidth with full-azimuth, long-offset acquisition. This combination is particularly important for imaging below complex structures such as subsalt and sub basalt, the company said.

Merichem Co.,

Houston, named Ronald J. Buras as vice-president and general manager of Merichem Process Technologies. His duties include leadership of the business unit sales, marketing, product execution, R&D, and financial performance. He succeeds Tom Varadi who retired at the end of March after 27 years with Merichem including 6 years as vice-president and general manager of this business.

Prior to joining Merichem, Buras held sales and management positions at Baker Hughes Inc. and Betz Process Chemical Inc. For the last 21 years, he was employed by UOP LLC, a Honeywell company, where he was sales director for UOP's process plants, process equipment, and gas processing product lines. Buras holds a bachelor's degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Louisiana, Lafayette, and a master of business administration degree from the University of New Orleans.

Multi Products Co.,

Millersburg, Ohio, named Kevin Brady as president in charge of all day-to-day business matters including sales, marketing, and operations. He will work with the established team at Multi and will be responsible for energizing the company's growth plan with new products, services, and geographic expansion. Brady joined Multi from Verdande Technology AS in Houston where he was vice-president of sales and marketing. Prior to that, Brady worked for Halliburton Co., Knowledge Systems, and Precision Drilling Corp. primarily in sales, marketing, and field engineering. He is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in geology and earned an MBA in marketing from the University of Houston. Brady is a member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers. Founded in 1966, Multi delivers well optimization solutions to the oil and gas industry. Products include plunger-lift systems for tubing and casing, wellhead controllers, pump-jack control systems, vapor recovery systems, and wellhead hardware including motor valves and chokes.

T.D. Williamson Inc.,

Tulsa, promoted Bruce Thames to senior vice-president and chief operating officer overseeing completion of strategic TDW initiatives, as well as driving the day-to-day execution of business around the world. Thames has 25 years of experience in the international oil and gas industry. He has a strong operating background and disciplined approach to management, with particular emphasis on engineering, product development, operations, and market development. Thames joined TDW in 2005 as director of business development. He subsequently served as vice-president of North American operations and, most recently, vice-president for the eastern hemisphere and was instrumental in building the company's operational capabilities throughout Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific. A native of Spring, Tex., Thames holds a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from The University of Texas. He is a member of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America and the Pipeliners Club of Tulsa. Currently based at the company's regional headquarters in Nivelles, Belgium, Thames will relocate to TDW corporate headquarters in Tulsa later this year.

FMC Technologies Inc.,

Houston, signed a 4-year agreement with Petróleo Brasileiro (Petrobras), Brazil's national oil company, to supply pre-salt subsea equipment including as many as 130 subsea trees, subsea multiplex controls, and related tools and equipment. Company officials said the total award would amount to $1.5 billion if all of the subsea equipment included in the agreement is ordered. The initial call-off is valued at $900 million and includes 78 subsea trees in water depths to 8,200 ft off Brazil. The equipment will be engineered at FMC's South American Technology Center and manufactured at FMC's subsea facility, both in Rio de Janeiro. The subsea trees will achieve 70% Brazilian local content, and deliveries are to commence in 2014.

Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC),

The Woodlands, Tex., awarded a contract to the uniquely named epic software group inc., also in The Woodlands, to create a multimedia web application to showcase "many of the exciting new environmentally sustainable technologies now available or being developed in the energy industry," officials said. It is to be an interactive demonstration of conventional drilling contrasted with videos and 3D animations of new tools and techniques to reduce the environmental impact of energy production. The focus is to be on the environmentally sensitive coastal areas of Texas. Technologies will include closed-loop mud systems, small-footprint rigs, advanced hydraulic fracturing systems, and high efficiency water handling and processing systems. The web-based application will be available to the public and used in workshops "to develop a new breed of skilled individuals who understand the bigger picture," said HARC officials. The first phase of the project is scheduled for completion at the end of September with additional phases to follow. HARC is manager of the Coastal Impacts Technology Program (CITP).

Aker Solutions ASA,

Oslo, is investing NOK 500 million ($87 million) in its subsea business to double capacity of its manufacturing plants in Tranby, Norway, and Port Klang, Malaysia. It also will establish a new service base in in Labuan Federal Territory in East Malaysia. These investments are in response to a wave of existing orders and recognition of the growing market demand, said company officials. It is expected to increase the firm's market share in subsea production technologies including subsea trees, control systems, pumps, and work-over systems. About 80% of the investments will be made this year, including the purchase of new machines, equipment, and tooling. Investments will continue throughout 2013 and 2014. Aker Solutions has two other Asia Pacific subsea service bases in Perth, Australia, and in Kakinada, India.

The company plans to build a $60 million state-of-of-the-art umbilical manufacturing plant in Pekan, Malaysia, to expand capacity and strengthen its position as a leading producer of steel tube umbilicals. The new facility close to Kuantan on the east coast of Malaysia will complement existing umbilicals factories in Moss, Norway, and Mobile, Ala. Aker Solutions already opened its regional head office for umbilicals in Kuala Lumpur managed by Crawford Tennant, an industry veteran and former head of the Aker Solutions facility in Port Klang. The Pekan facility is scheduled to begin operations in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Aker Solutions also was contracted by Yantai CIMC Raffles Offshore Ltd. to supply a complete drilling equipment package for a jack up rig being built by the Chinese yard. The contract value was not disclosed. The rig is of the 2000E jack up design, and the contract includes options for three more jack ups of the same design. The equipment is to be delivered in 2013 and will be provided from Aker Solutions' production units in Kristiansand and Asker, Norway; Erkelenz, Germany; and Houston.

Aker Subsea AS was contracted by Subsea 7 SA for design and fabrication of a control umbilical for Statoil ASA's Svalin C project on the Norwegian continental shelf. Contract value was not disclosed. The work includes a 6-km control umbilical, connectors, engineering, and project management. Management, engineering, and procurement will be at Aker Solutions' headquarters in Fornebu, Norway. Manufacturing will be in Moss, Norway. Svalin is a fast-track oil field project in the middle of the North Sea 8 km southwest of the Grane field and 185 km west of Haugesund. Water depth is 120 m.

Aker Oilfield Services AS signed a $1.9 billion 8-year contract with Statoil ASA to provide a full range of heavy subsea well intervention and light drilling services on the Norwegian continental shelf. The contract includes options for three additional 2-year extensions. Contract value for the initial 8 years is $1.9 billion. Work will be performed from a new-build Category B well intervention rig to be owned and operated by Aker Oilfield Services. It is a semisubmersible unit designed for year-round well intervention and light drilling tasks including through-tubing rotary drilling, wireline, coil tubing, high-pressure pumping, well testing, and cementing services as well as ROV operations. It will operate in water depths to 500 m. Officials said an EPC contract to build the Cat-B rig is under negotiation with "reputable yards." The rig's derrick and handling system will be provided under a subcontract to the chosen rig yard by Aker Solutions' drilling technologies business managed from Kristiansand, Norway. Aker Solutions already has access to the necessary funding but is also considering various options for asset financing of this investment. The rig is expected to start operations in the second half of 2015.

Aker Solutions Singapore Pte. signed a 2-year frame agreement to be sole supplier of all surface wellhead equipment, installation, and lifecycle services for Egyptian oil giant Badr Petroleum Co. (Bapetco) in Egypt's Western Desert. Value of the contract was not disclosed. The contract will be delivered out of Aker Solutions' surface products manufacturing center in Batam, Indonesia, which was upgraded in 2009 to increase by more than 50% its production and assembly of surface wellheads and trees. The contract was signed and booked as order intake in the first quarter.

Aker Solutions MMO AS reported BP Norway AS exercised its option to extend until April 2014 an existing maintenance and modification contract for the Ula, Valhall, Skarv, Hod, and Tambar fields. Work under the extended contract will last until April 2014. Value of the contract is estimated at NOK 800 million-1.2 billion. The original contract was signed in 2005. Scope of work includes maintenance support services and brownfield modification projects covering engineering, procurement, fabrication, and offshore installation. The contract employs 200 people in Stavanger, 20 in Egersund, and 300 in offshore rotation.

Tata Steel Ltd.,

Mumbai, India, has contracted to supply more than 48,000 tonnes of steel pipe from its 42-in. mill in Hartlepool, England, for Enterprise Products Partners LP's new crude oil export pipeline in the Keathley Canyon area of the Gulf of Mexico. Value of the contract was undisclosed. The steel company will provide 105 miles of 18-in. diameter line pipe to be laid as deep as 7,000 ft to transport oil from the Lucius Development Project, which has the capacity to produce more than 80,000 b/d, officials said.

Kvaerner ASA,

Oslo, through its Kværner Stord AS subsidiary received a letter of award from A/S Norske Shell for engineering, procurement, construction, and management for modifications and projects at the Ormen Lange-Nyhamna onshore facilities on the west coast of Norway. The contract is a framework agreement for 6 years with options for extensions. The estimated contract value is NOK 6 billion, excluding options. The Nyhamna plant processes natural gas from the Ormen Lange field in the Møre Basin in the southern part of the Norwegian Sea. The contract scope includes all modifications and projects on the Ormen Lange-Nyhamna facility to accommodate increased project activity over the next 5-10 years. This includes gas from new fields such as Linnorm and Aasta Hansteen (formerly Luva), officials said. The project organization will be located at several places. Engineering and project management will be conducted by Kvaerner at Stord, and engineering and modification work will be delivered by Aker Solutions' offices in Oslo, Kristiansund, and Tromsø. When finalized, the sub-contract with Aker Solutions is expected to run NOK 850-950 million. A large number of suppliers from mid-Norway will be involved.

Kiewit-Kvaerner Contractors, a 50/50 joint venture between Peter Kiewit Infrastructure and Kvaerner, was authorized by ExxonMobil Canada Properties to proceed with work on the Hebron Project gravity based structure project in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. That follows substantial completion of front-end engineering and design services and awards the next phase, which includes detailed engineering, procurement, and construction-related services. Kvaerner estimates its share of this work at $125-150 million.

Ulterra Drilling Technologies LP,

Ft. Worth, opened a new stock point in Hammond, La., strategically located to support drilling activity in Mississippi, Alabama, south Louisiana, and the Gulf of Mexico. Rob Smith will oversee the new location, which will offer a full line of matrix and steel body PDC bits designed specifically for Gulf Coast applications. Ulterra , a leading provider of premium PDC drill bits and downhole tools, said it will soon open a stock point in Lake Charles, La.

Cameron International Corp.,

Houston, agreed to buy the drilling equipment business of the energy division of TTS Group ASA, Bergen, Norway, for $270 million plus a turnover-based earn-out model for 3 years. Offshore Handling, part of the TTS Energy division, is not included. The acquisition expands Cameron's offshore capabilities. "The transaction is all cash, and with $900 million in cash on the balance sheet, Cameron should have no problem paying for the deal," said analysts in the Houston office of Raymond James & Associates Inc. The deal is expected to close by mid-year, subject to review and approval by the Norwegian competition authorities.

National Oilwell Varco Inc.,

Houston, agreed to acquire Schlumberger Ltd.'s Wilson Distribution business in an all-cash deal. Terms were not disclosed. The combined entity with more than $4 billion in revenues will be the second largest distributor to the energy industry and will increase NOV's midstream and downstream segments. Analysts at Barclays Capital Equity Research said, "The sale by Schlumberger is not surprising considering the lower margin, low tech nature of distribution. Given that Wilson reported directly to Schlumberger's Chief Financial Officer Simon Ayat rather than a division president, we had expected a sale for some time." This is NOV's second large purchase this year after Denmark-based NKT Flexibles I/S. "Typical of an NOV deal, the Wilson acquisition helps to consolidate a market with only a few big players, leverages NOV's core competencies, and offers NOV the opportunity to wring additional profits out of an underperforming asset (Wilson's margins are roughly half those of NOV's Distribution segment)," said Barclays Capital analysts. "NOV's distribution sales are 30% NOV-manufactured products, and Wilson's broader footprint should allow NOV to increase sales of its pipes and other PSS products, including those from recently acquired Ameron [International Corp.], through new channels."

Wilton Engineering Services Ltd.,

Middlesbrough, England, secured a multi-million pound contract with Subsea 7 to build support clamps for DONG Energy A/S's Siri Caisson Support Project in the Danish sector of the North Sea. Wilton Engineering has the major task of fabricating large caisson clamps. This permanent solution consists of installing three piles next to the Siri subsea storage tank and connecting them to the caissons with the fabricated clamps including cable stays. Siri is in the northwest of the Danish sector of the North Sea. The platform is moored in 197 ft of water and is a combined wellhead, processing, and accommodation facility. Subsea 7 obtained an offshore engineering and construction frame agreement with DONG Energy last June. Wilton Engineering is the international design, engineering, and fabrication segment of the Wilton Group.

Expro International Group Ltd.,

Reading, England, successfully completed a project measuring oil and gas production rates for land wells in Brazil's Amazonas state in collaboration with Petrobras. The project in the Chibata region began in April 2011 and included deployment of a complete well testing kit, using computerized control for oil and gas ration data. Expro's well testing kit measures performance of wells and provides data to plan optimal production. It includes safety systems, solids management systems, and multiphase flow meters. Expro has more than 35 years' experience providing well-testing services to the oil and gas industry worldwide.

More Oil & Gas Journal Current Issue Articles
More Oil & Gas Journal Archives Issue Articles
View Oil and Gas Articles on