Ayman Khattab, President, Gulf & North Africa, Baker Hughes, speaks about the company’s strategies and digitalisation innovations…
How has the change in the company’s organisation impacted upon operations in the region?
Baker Hughes, our new identity, doesn’t in any way impact our operations or organisational structure. Our day-to-day operations and our customer-base remain unchanged and we continue to bring the same level of experience, expertise and regional presence as Baker Hughes. As the new Baker Hughes, we have announced to the world our new brand and position as an energy technology company. We will help lead the transformation of our industry and provide solutions for a new, low carbon future.
We have a diverse portfolio of solutions that span the entire energy value chain. Our new name and brand, as we have announced, better reflect our vision. We will continue to bring the strengths of the company’s diversified portfolio, which positions us as a company like no other. We take energy forward – making it safer, cleaner, and more efficient for people and the planet, and will continue to unlock the power of engineering, science, and data to redefine what’s possible.
Is there going to be a new focus on the Middle East in the coming years?
The Middle East has always been and will continue to be a key market for Baker Hughes and our commitment to the region is unwavering. In fact, we have a strong footprint already in all key regional markets and we continue to expand our offering through new partnerships and investments. And this goes beyond a business partnership; we are partnering in the progress of the countries through our long-term investment in building local competencies. In the UAE, for example, we have six facilities focused on manufacturing, maintenance and training; as a company, we’re investing in building a strong localised infrastructure to serve the energy needs of the country. Our concerted focus on the region is further underlined by our strategic partnership agreement with ADNOC to support the growth of its subsidiary, ADNOC Drilling into a fully-integrated drilling and well construction provider. We are the sole provider of proprietary technology that will help deliver more competitive well completion times, greater drilling efficiency and better well economics. We also see huge potential in countries such Oman, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Algeria, while markets such as Libya, Sudan, Yemen, Mauritania and Pakistan have growing needs where our capabilities can drive value creation through outcome-performance.
Is Baker Hughes looking to form any major new partnerships in the near future?
Yes, we are always exploring new opportunities and innovative business models that bring value to our customers and for our company. We use our global scale, diverse portfolio, and technology expertise to spark innovation, unlock value, and create opportunities for our customers. We share their vision to achieve industry-wide efficiencies.
This is reflected in our partnership with ADNOC. It is the first time an international partner takes ownership in an existing ADNOC services business, validating the industry shift to partnerships - a great example of the kind of new collaboration and approach to driving industry-wide efficiencies.
In another strong example of our focus on innovation and supporting our customers to achieve their vision, we have partnered with ENOC to co-develop VitalyX, a real-time lubricant monitoring system. VitalyX can be deployed in multiple industries using large machinery, and the advanced cloud-based system is designed to detect and measure key lubricant properties in real-time.
In the beginning of 2018, we extended our partnership with Petroleum Projects & Technical Consultations Company (Petrojet) to include a long-term manufacturing partnership between the two companies. Allowing Petrojet to provide manufacturing services for Baker Hughes’ upstream oil and gas operations in Egypt, including the fabrication, construction, and testing of heavy-duty structures and components for Baker Hughes’s subsea production system for Phase two of the Zohr gas field, situated in the Mediterranean Sea, off the Egyptian Coast.
What do you intend to heighten the company’s focus on, either in terms of operations or technology?
Operations and technology are integral to our vision: As mentioned, we are an energy technology company – our focus is on bringing advanced solutions and technologies to our customers to help move energy forward. Both technology and operations go hand in hand and operational excellence is the foundation to introduce new technology solutions. In fact, as a leading partner to the energy industry, we are also investing and deploying new energy solutions to reduce the carbon footprint of our customers’ operations around the world – another example of our focus operational efficiency for the greater good.
Is digitalisation set to play a major role in the company in the coming months?
Of course, digitisation is integral to our role as an energy technology company. We are transforming the terabytes of data produced by energy operations every day into meaningful, actionable insights for our customers to improve outcomes. Whether the data is analysed at the edge or in the cloud, our solutions are helping to lead the energy industry’s cyber-physical transformation.
A great example of our digitisation strengths is the launch of BHC3 Reliability, the first artificial intelligence (AI) software application developed by the BakerHughesC3.ai joint venture. The joint venture brings together the diverse technology expertise of Baker Hughes with C3.ai’s unique AI software for enabling digital transformation of the oil and gas industry.
We believe AI is going to change the energy landscape and the way our organisations look. BHC3 Reliability uses deep learning predictive models, natural language processing, and machine vision to continuously aggregate data from plant-wide sensor networks, enterprise systems, maintenance notes, and piping and instrumentation schematics.
What would you like to see as the focus of ADIPEC this year?
One of our key focal areas is to introduce Baker Hughes, as the energy technology company, to our customers and partners. We will highlight how, with operations in over 120 countries and more than 67,000 employees, we are designing, manufacturing and delivering leading technology solutions for our customers. We drive productivity and improve outcomes for ourselves and our customers. At ADIPEC, we look forward to engaging with our customers and providing them an overview of our new vision and outlook. In addition, we will showcase our technologies across our product portfolio: oilfield services, oilfield equipment, measurement & controls, turbomachinery & process solutions and BHC3.
This interview first appeared in the November issue of Pipeline Magazine