Wellpro Group struck a deal to enter the Middle East in May, with an aim for leveraging an existing footprint to speed the way.
“The idea was that it would give us a platform to build from quite quickly and we’ve managed to achieve that,” Wellpro’s CEO Jim Thomson told Energy Voice.
Wellpro sees the Middle East and Asia as its focus areas in the near term, with Thomson saying the company has “the ability to respond quickly to issues operators have as we have equipment that’s primed and ready to go already on the ground”.
The company was established in early 2018 with a focus on well intervention. The service the company provides is similar wherever in the world it is operating, but there are aboveground issues that must be considered. “There are some local challenges. You’ve got to understand how things work in the Middle East, and the differences between the countries within the GCC. The industry in the Middle East is much more multicultural than it is in the North Sea, so we have to adapt as appropriate, whether it’s in terms of doing business or on the job itself.”
Most of the company’s work comes from service companies, although there is some call from operators, whether they be state-owned or independent. Thus far, Wellpro has worked primarily outside the United Arab Emirates, Thomson said, but there are encouraging signs from the market and the executive noted there were “going to be more opportunities for us. We have also had positive feedback from operators we have worked with in other parts of the Middle East, and hopefully those relationships will help us in the long-term.”
Demand for Wellpro’s work comes when complexity increases. “Where there’s more wells being drilled, more longer horizontal wells, the need for intervention increases, particularly when it comes to the completion phase and later during the life of the well.” Given the amount of work under way in the Middle East, and growing complexity, “the more of a need there is for coil tubing during the completion process, as well as through the life of the well”.
In the Middle East there is a trend for long horizontal sections, Thomson said, noting a comparison with similar work in North America. “It can be challenging to get to the bottom post frac, hence the increased need for coil tubing to do that.”
Wellpro would be “delighted” to work with Abu Dhabi’s ADNOC, he continued, in support of “their aggressive plans for increased production and are confident we can support them”.
There continues to be demand from the North Sea, but the higher volume of work in the Middle East makes its appeal inevitable. Looking further afield, Wellpro is focused on the eastern hemisphere and has established a presence in Malaysia. This will serve as “a starting point for our business in Asia and we aim to expand in that region and beyond”. Thomson did not rule out moving into the Americas and that may come in the future, he said.
“We’re building a strong team of people, who are passionate about delivering the service and we continue to talk with good names, I’m confident more will come. We have a strong, experienced team in well intervention and in the regions we are working in, so it all bodes well for a positive future,” he said.