Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Axis chief urges operators to ease pressure on supply chain

Axis Well Technology chief executive Jim Anderson
Axis Well Technology chief executive Jim Anderson

The boss of an Aberdeen oil field services consultancy has urged operators to ease the pressure on the supply chain after another challenging year for industry.

Axis Well Technology chief executive Jim Anderson said customers were still demanding services and products at unsustainably low prices.

Mr Anderson said the squeeze on suppliers had been tighter in the UK North Sea than in other basins across the globe.

Axis has made a “big international push” and attracted new customers to improve its financial performance, he said.

The company provides consultancy services spanning the oil and gas asset life cycle from exploration to abandonment.

It operates across all oil producing regions, apart from Australia, and opened a new office in Abu Dhabi in 2017.

The management team’s strategy appears to be paying off. Accounts published by Companies House show that Axis returned to the black in the year to January 31, 2018, recording pre-tax profits of £1.48 million.

Axis, whose north-east offices are in Aberdeen and Westhill, Aberdeenshire, reported pre-tax losses of £32,000 a year earlier.

Revenues increased by 37% to £18.2m in 2017-18.

Mr Anderson said the results provided some evidence that market conditions were improving.

He also said the firm was in “recruitment mode”, having hired 12-14 people in the last 10 months, mainly in the north-east.

The business now has a 155-strong team of full-time staff members and associate consultants.

In its pre-downturn heyday, the company could call upon 160-165 people, but the figure dropped to just over 100 during the “depths of the recession”.

Despite the upturn in Axis’s fortunes, Mr Anderson accused oil producers of “hanging onto profits” at the supply chain’s expense.

He said: “Operators are still paying rates based on $28 oil. They are posting fantastic profits, but there is a lack of willingness to work with the supply chain. A lot of pressure is being put on.

“Prices are still ‘soft’ in the UK continental shelf and customers need to work with us. Some are closing the door completely. That’s why we’ve had a big international push.”

Mr Anderson is encouraged by the recent spate of acquisitions of mature North Sea assets by private-equity backed firms motivated by a desire to prolong production.

Axis was launched by Mr Anderson, with just five employees, in 2001.

The group is a former Offshore Achievement Awards winner, landing the gong for great large company in March 2013.

It also enjoyed success at the 2014 Oil and Gas UK Awards, scooping one of the top honours for small and medium-sized firms.

Mr Anderson, who has also been a finalist in the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards in the past, was born and brought up at Strichen, in Aberdeenshire.

He served as an apprentice agricultural engineer, but moved into oil and gas and joined US firm Schlumberger in 1981, where he stayed until 1998, working around the world and specialising in dealing with high-pressure, high-temperature wells.

He left Schlumberger to become a consultant before setting up Axis.

Axis was acquired by a private-equity firm, Elysian Capital, for an undisclosed sum in 2013.

Mr Anderson said Elysian had been very supportive during the downturn and was fully behind the management team at Axis.

Recommended for you

More from Energy Voice

Latest Posts