Alliances Allow a Smooth Technology TransferWed, 01/20/2016 - 18:34
Q: What makes the strategic alliances formed by GDT Offshore so important, and what criteria define your selection of affiliates?
A: The alliances are fundamental because the offshore arena is relatively small and only companies with capital, experience, and aptitude can compete. We are a medium- sized company, bringing new technologies from abroad, and our added value lies in identifying the latest developed tools in the international oil and gas industry so that these can be applied in Mexico. Making alliances with large international companies allows us to contribute to the local industry by supporting them in developing their business in the region. KW Limited is one of the companies with which we have an alliance. We are a client of this company and we supply directly to the end customer. This model speeds up the sale process, as we have a master service agreement in place with KW and we take advantage of our network in the local market. Our foreign partners save costs by avoiding administrative expenses because there is no need for them to establish offices in Mexico. Our international partners are also an important component of our model because being in constant contact with them enables us to remain up to date with any technological development or innovation, which provides us with an advantage, given how quickly technology changes.
Q: You have 25 years’ experience working in the industry. What changes have you witnessed with the introduction of assimilation models?
A: Bringing new technologies can make a considerable difference on the way local industry operates, something we have noticed particularly in the offshore pipeline sector, where practices are now quite different from what was being carried out five years ago. For instance, PEMEX is now developing oil and gas reservoirs characterized by high pressure levels and high temperatures, which creates new challenges and forces the implementation of new engineering solutions in the pipelines’ design, construction, and operations. We anticipate more opportunities in terms of pipeline construction and maintenance with the introduction of new oil companies in Mexico. Another main challenge that we have experienced recently in the upstream segment is the high levels of H2S, CO2, and heavy oil, so we are developing technologies and methods to address scenarios that may have been overlooked in the past.
Q: Do you see the deepwater sector, which currently lacks infrastructure, as an area of opportunity for the company?
A: We first began to focus on Mexican deepwaters ten years ago, and the technology we have been implementing in the industry is actually deepwater technology applied in shallow waters. Most of the companies that we are allied with are major players in deepwater industry. GDT Offshore and our partners have been active in this segment, cooperating with PEMEX in the training of its personnel, performing leading engineering activities in the Lakach field, and developing conceptual design for new offshore fields. We do not think infrastructure is a problem, since the Mexican offshore industry has been well established for years now. However, in terms of regulation, serious problems can arise if the right expertise in the field is missing. It is vital to understand the extent of our responsibilities as companies working within the deepwater oil industry.
Q: Where would you like to see GDT Offshore in five years, and what strategies are you implementing to achieve these goals?
A: For new oil companies entering the Mexican deepwater sector, we can offer our services to optimize costs, establishing local content and providing our knowledge of logistics. We provide added value, and the companies with which we already work are aware of this and recommend us to potential clients. We also put an emphasis on local content, since employees from Mexico know the country’s particular environment, and although we can bring in highly specialized staff from abroad, the inherent knowledge possessed by a Mexican employee is indispensable. We want to be the leading company in our field, so we are developing talent in the company by sending young employees abroad to gain more knowledge and skills. GDT Offshore aims to reach a level where it can be seen as the most qualified provider of the type of services we offer, and the company seeking to excel in our field in terms of local support.