Reinaldo Maldonado
Regional Manager for Latin America
Impact Fluid Solutions
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View from the Top

The Value of Prevention in an Active Drilling Market

By Pedro Alcalá | Tue, 12/14/2021 - 17:33

Q: How has the drilling segment changed in Mexico throughout 2021?

A: In Mexico, we saw a concerted effort to minimize the reduction in drilling activity that other countries were experiencing as a direct result of the pandemic. The country’s most important operators invested a great amount of effort in this initiative. They achieved this by developing protocols that could safely ensure continuous access to drilling facilities and worksites. After a year and a half of implementing these strategies, we can see that they were successful, especially when compared to the drastic measures taken in other countries that resulted in a sluggish recovery in 2021. The overall economic impact of maintaining drilling activity in Mexico was overwhelmingly positive. 

Q: How has the size and diversity of your portfolios expanded over the course of the year?

A: A number of processes this year have positively impacted our operations in Mexico. One of the most important was the industry’s internationalization in regard to its logistics and inventory management practices. This was evident in the industry’s financial structure. While the Mexican Stock Exchange (BMV) has not recovered to levels prior to the 2014 downturn, we did see an improvement in overall cash flow management. Companies are trying to reduce equipment and the consumable inventories in their stocks, which they see as providing static value. This has been good for us because we can provide efficient operations in relation to their existing inventories during their drilling operations. Whenever there is a well drilling issue, consumption of these input products, such as drilling fluids, increases for service companies. These businesses must always pay more to handle drilling challenges, posing a significant financial risk, especially as operators typically restrict their exposure to this type of spending through contracting terms. Impact Fluid Solutions makes the drilling process as effective as possible, reducing the use of these additional inputs while directly benefiting the service provider. The operator also benefits. In 2021, supply chain issues arose, making drilling logistics a concern. Operators and service providers can no longer rely on consistent availability. This new reality has directly benefited us.

Q: What are some of the ways in which your products have generated tangible savings?

A: We are working in wells that can reach drilling depths of 6 kilometers. These extremely complex operations have variables that can go catastrophically wrong. Wells of this size penetrate formations with different rock varieties and sediment, resulting in an unstable drilling environment. This is particularly true of exploration wells. Our product lines reinforce the structural integrity of each formation as it is drilled in real time, a function which actively prevents structural issues, flow assurance issues and stuck pipe conditions, along with other operational nuisances caused by weak formations. Clients working in offshore fields can lose as much as US$4 million instantly when faced with these issues. So, the preventative use of our products generates an immediate tangible saving for the development and production of wells. Operators and service providers have a great deal of experience with the cost of issues going wrong, so they understand the value of prevention, when drilling is done right.

 

Impact Fluid Solutions manufactures and engineers additives for oil and gas operators, fluids companies and oil field service providers worldwide. The company offers drilling additives in various categories. It was founded in 2005 and is based in Houston.

Pedro Alcalá Pedro Alcalá Senior Journalist & Industry Analyst