Andrew Wood, CEO, Worley on his company’s business acquisitions and its strategic vision
How has the acquisition of Jacobs ECR impacted upon the company’s operations?
During the last year our company has undertaken one of the most transformative and dynamic changes in its history with the acquisition of Jacobs ECR, and in the process have positioned Worley as a pre-eminent global professional projects and asset services firm in the energy, chemicals and resources sectors. Our new merged business now employs over 58,100 people across 51 countries. Our combined expertise establishes us as a global sector leader across the hydrocarbons, chemicals and mining, minerals and metals sectors.
In October 2018, we established the Transition Management Office, as a dedicated team to manage the integration of Jacobs ECR with WorleyParsons to create Worley. The programme is on schedule, with system integration, synergy realisation, customer engagement and organisational transformation progressing to plan.
Our attention to keeping our people safe is unwavering. Both heritage organisations have strong safety cultures which underpin our shared vision for safety as Worley. This company-wide commitment to working safely continues to deliver industry leading results.
A key focus of the management team has been ensuring the strengths from both organisations’ cultures are reflected in Worley. The team has made it a priority to ensure the Worley culture continues to evolve and grow as the group moves from transition to transformation.
What are the next steps in the medium term?
Worley has a clear strategic focus in the energy, chemicals and resources sectors. Our immediate focus is to complete the integration of Jacobs ECR and realise the cost, margin and revenue synergies. A transformation strategy is being developed which will enhance the company’s leadership position in energy, chemicals and resources, capture the opportunities presented by the global energy transition, and change the way the company operates by leveraging automation and the use of digital products. We are shaping our strategy by understanding the mega trends influencing the world in which we operate, by listening to our customers and working alongside them to address their challenges and by engaging our people.
We’re seeing contract awards across all sectors, geographies and phases of projects. These contract wins provide us with a solid platform of early positions for the next wave of investment. We’re now seeing our customers move into that next phase of investment.
What is the role you play in the energy transition?
The global energy transition is gaining pace including a shift towards low carbon intensity electrification of the world energy supply. There are opportunities for Worley to strongly support the energy transition across our core sectors. Specifically, the shift towards gas and lighter fuels is an area where Worley is well placed to support our customers as they move into the future.
The current medium-term picture continues to indicate the global energy transition will open opportunities across all markets that we serve. These opportunities combined with our deep domain knowledge and expertise in the power and new energy space, means Worley is well positioned to support our customers in leading and navigating this new world. The energy transition will require innovative thinking and adoption of new technology, and our company is well positioned to make a significant contribution to that transition.
Worley is now the largest Tier 1 provider of engineering services for renewables, and new energy technologies and has considerable experience gained from working on more than 1,350 New Energy projects globally. We have teams helping governments develop their green hydrogen road maps and are seeing our waste to energy resources in high demand. We have recently elevated our offshore wind energy business by acquiring 3sun Group Ltd who are specialists in that sector.
We are excited about the opportunities the rapidly changing global energy system presents, and we are well placed to support our customers navigate the energy transition to capture these opportunities.
The panel you are speaking on focuses on gas and LNG and new markets. How do you see the prospects for supply and demand for gas and LNG?
Oil and gas are expected to increase annual sanctioned investment through to 2025, which is consistent with what we are seeing in our early phase consulting group, Advisian, which is witnessing a strong wave of early phase interest in building LNG import facilities in emerging markets. With these new LNG sales channels comes the increase in demand for more liquefaction volumes.
That said, the challenge with these many and varied LNG import opportunities has been in gaining the final investment decision. On one side you have the variable LNG priced cargos – from a growing spot market - on the other side is the often heavily regulated fixed pricing associated with national power utilities.
We are seeing that the most successful models involve three parties with a common development goal. Firstly, the LNG supplier (this can be the LNG producer, trader or shipper), secondly the end user (typically, in the case of emerging markets, this is the national gas or power utility) and thirdly the project programme manager and facility operator. It is this last role that Worley typically fulfils.