Matthew Chinn, COO New Equipment Solutions, Dresser Rand Business Unit, Siemens Plc
How long have you been at your current company and how did you come to be in the oil and gas industry?
I have been at Siemens since 1994 having spent most of my career in rotating equipment businesses. I first got involved in O&G in the mid 80’s in Saudi Arabia where I worked for 5 years
Aside from low commodity prices what do you believe is the greatest challenge to our industry’s future growth?
The greatest challenge to our industry’s growth is changing the way we do business, particularly when it comes to embracing digital transformation. Analytics, machine learning and other data-driven solutions can boost performance, enhance efficiency, and reduce costs by transforming raw data into actionable information.
However, while other industries began their digitalization transition years, if not decades ago, the oil and gas industry is only at the beginning of the digitalization S-curve. The “lower for longer” price environment is accelerating many companies’ interest, since they are under pressure to push their operations into new levels of efficiency.
Now the biggest hurdle seems to be how to start. So we always say going digital isn’t an overhaul. It’s a journey. More specifically, it’s a collaborative journey. We work with oil and gas customers to proactively explore digital oil and gas enterprise solutions and how they map against their specific business requirements and challenges. In most cases, the first step is to simply get connected. Then we encourage them to adopt integrated, modular solutions that can be scaled up over time, since these minimize risk and interruptions, enable the investment to be spread out over time, and enhance the “comfort level” at all levels of the enterprise.
This approach reinforces the journey approach – no one can fully foresee how digitalization will ultimately shape the oil and gas world. But what is clear is that every decision is data driven, and the earlier you can share that data at the beginning stage of a project’s life cycle (the concept phase), the more value you can create for your operations
How do you ensure you are in a position to overcome this challenge?
Siemens has been at the forefront of every phase of industrial evolution, from Mechanical production through water and steam power to electrification and mass production to Automation. Siemens is known as a major industrial corporation, but it is also is one of the world’s 10 largest software companies. Siemens is one of the early adopters of digital solutions in many industries, and we have seen meaningful results…
- all the way from patient diagnoses in health care,
- to guaranteed on time arrivals of trains on the Barcelona-Madrid high speed rail network,
- to 30% more vehicles being produced in the Maserati factory
We are now taking that experience into O&G. The O&G industry is conservative, but digitalization is not a passing trend. It will change how companies work internally, how they work with suppliers and with customers. It will fundamentally change contracting and business models and bring clients and service providers much closer into strategic partnerships.
Where do you see the greatest opportunity in today’s global oil and gas markets and how will you capitalise on this?
The big opportunity is digitalization. But it is not digitalization in the sense of an IT initiative. It is digitalization as a business transformation initiative, enabled by IT. .
Digitalization is about embarking on a journey with partners to continuously transform and make the business more competitive. We have been doing this for numerous years outside of O&G and the key to success is harnessing the value of the digital transformation process at the concept phase of projects and continuing throughout the life cycle of these assets.
If you could wave a magic wand over our industry, what would you change and why?
If the wand works I would want it to change the industry approach on data sharing…
Consider the benefit of a service provider like Siemens being able to monitor a fleet of motors, compressors, turbines, generators and other electrical equipment across the entire global installed base, and feeding back the insights gained from that as analytics and diagnostics to all users. This would give companies the benefit of lessons learnt beyond their individual sites and provide them with access to deep Subject Matter Expertise from the OEM. But that is only achievable if data is shared and this is a fundamental shift in mindset in O&G.
What are the strategic priorities for your company in the next 12 months?
- Lead the digital transition in oil and gas
- Apply our electrification and automation domain expertise for oil and gas
- Leverage existing products/services with value creation in oil and gas
What differentiates your company from similar companies working in the region(s) in which you operate?
Siemens brings a combination of expertise, depth of portfolio, and history that few others can. As an engineering and industrial equipment manufacturer, with deep electrification and automation expertise, Siemens provides products and solutions across the oil and gas value chain, and optimizes those assets through digitalization with data analytics and software. With our 160+ years of experience leading innovation transformations in other industries, we are uniquely positioned to lead the digitalization transformation and apply software solutions from other industries to oil and gas.
How would you describe your company in one sentence to a new client/partner/investor?
Ingenuity for Life – we develop the most innovative technology, we have the smartest manufacturing concepts and when we combine these with our digital foresight we create ingenious solutions. – Ingenuity for Life.
What takeaways would you like attendees at our World Oil & Gas Week to go home with regarding your company?
Collaboration is critical. We must combine the clients’ in depth knowledge of their business and their domain expertise, with the partner’s knowledge of products and how to integrate products into solutions, knowledge of automation, and of software and data analytics.
What advice would you pass onto a recent graduate wishing to work in oil & gas?
I would advise new graduates to broaden their portfolios and consider the demand for software and electronic engineers in our industry as more and more companies are turning to a new range of technologies, including remote monitoring, data analysis, and image analysis technologies. There is an increasing need for engineers who can operate these new systems and contribute to the development of future technologies.
How do you prefer to spend your spare time?
I enjoy tennis and if I had more spare time I would definitely play more tennis.
What’s your favourite holiday destination?
Guadeloupe in the Caribbean