Economic Report 2011

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The Industry’s Structure

Operating companies active within the UKCS broadly fall into the following categories:

  • integrated majors, operating across the whole value chain from exploration and production through to refining and marketing;
  • independent companies, predominantly focusing on exploration and production
  • exploration-only companies, concentrating on exploring for new reserves
  • energy utility companies which have an exploration and production arm active within the UKCS;
  • non-operating companies which only have an equity share in assets operated by others.

The supply chain, with the very large spectrum of products and services it provides, can be segmented in various ways. However, most of these companies can be categorised as concentrating on the following:

  • reservoirs, covering such activities as seismic/data acquisition through to reservoir management;
  • wells, covering drilling and well completions
  • facilities covering design, procurement, construction, operation, maintenance and decommissioning
  • marine and sub-sea encompassing marine/sub-sea engineering, construction and operations, diving and marine logistics;
  • support and services to the E&P sector, ranging from direct support such as asset management, catering and logistics through to health, safety and environmental services, venture capital, corporate finance, banking, legal and insurance services.

figure 38 300w jpgWithin each supply chain category companies can be further segmented into tiers according to their position within the chain. Operators as the end users form Tier 1, whilst contractors are categorised according to size and range of services provided, thus being in Tiers 2 and 3. This gives a useful segregation of the industry that can assist with sectoral analysis. Support services such as finance, legal, IT, corporate and many others are provided across the industry for Tiers 1, 2 and 3. Oil & Gas UK has a membership which spans the whole range of the activities and Figure 38 illustrates how the various companies across the supply chain can be categorised, with examples given of the services provided.

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