EnergySys’ Managing Director, Dr Peter Black, was recently in Houston, Texas, seeking to further expand our business there. In this interview, we get the chance to catch up with Peter, learn about our relationships in the USA, and see what exciting things EnergySys have in the pipeline.
Hi Peter. Do you go to Houston often? What was the purpose of this visit?
I’m in Houston twice a year at least, but with some of the opportunities we have there it looks like that will increase to once a quarter.
Are there any trends, or common themes/pain points specific to the US market, you see emerging from the meetings you had? What do you think this means for the industry?
In common with the rest of the industry, there’s a focus on managing costs and increasing productivity. People there are ahead of other countries in their recognition that cloud is going to play an increasingly important part of the solution. In addition, they are much more comfortable with the concept of cloud, and are ready to adopt innovative solutions wherever they come from.
Oil and gas IT is experiencing a revolution. There seems to be an increase in the number of companies looking for a better, more efficient way to do their production allocation and reporting. Would you agree?
Absolutely. The traditional application space is increasingly recognized as a serious problem. Many products need custom coding to meet customers’ requirements, and the cost of support and deployment on premises is really high. Typically, there’s no easy upgrade path so a new release means a costly upgrade project. It’s frequently the case that companies take money for software maintenance, and then demand that customers pay substantial amounts to implement a new version. The EnergySys architecture, delivered in the cloud, frees customers from the acquisition and management of on-premises software. It’s more secure, offers more performance, and can be configured quickly and easily without coding. And regular upgrades with new functionality are done with minimal service interruption and at no additional cost. It is an example of the best of what oil and gas companies can get in the cloud.
Do you think the attitude to cloud has shifted over the past few years?
Undoubtedly, though the US has definitely been open to cloud solutions for some time. EnergySys has undoubtedly changed a lot of people’s ideas, as the power and functionality of the system has made it obvious just what an application platform built for the cloud can deliver.
Your trip gave you the opportunity to catch up with our US Partner, Brian Eukel from Pumpjack Online. Is there anything exciting in the pipeline?
Currently, Pumpjack Online is our sole sales agent in the US, and they’re doing a terrific job in generating new opportunities and closing deals. The team there provides a fully outsourced production data management service for a number of companies, using EnergySys as the platform, and I see this as a huge opportunity for growth. Many companies struggle to adequately resource the job of managing the data, internal and regulatory reporting, and processing of partner reports. Pumpjack Online can take all of that on for a simple monthly fee: it’s a great solution that demonstrates what partners can do to add value to the EnergySys Platform.
So, enough of business! Did you get up to anything interesting during your trip?
Can I plead the Fifth? Actually, no trip to the US would be without at least one trip to the steakhouse, and the hard bit is choosing which one. It’s no use asking for advice, as everyone has their own favourite that they claim is way better than any other.
When will you be going back to Houston?
We have a private function at the residence of the Consul General in Houston in December, as a prelude to the holiday season and to thank some of our customers and friends for their support. I’ll definitely be there for that.