Five minutes with: Tony Azizi, Weatherford International
Tony Azizi is the vice president for the Arabian Sea at Weatherford International
This month, we put Weatherford International in the hot seat for a quick-fire round of questions.
What is Weatherford’s focus at the moment?
Our focus remains on helping our customers deliver their targets. We have production and efficiency-related goals, with strong HSE and service quality as key requirements. We focus on promoting technology and our people, who are subject matter experts, to provide services and products that meet the expectations of the customer. These may be different for different customers because we have a diverse customer base, but we have a “can-do” mentality and are one of the main companies that provide competitive services to our customers.
What are some trends that have been impacting business for Weatherford?
The oil and gas sector has obviously gone through something of a depressed period, since 2015, so the trend for our customers has been to move from offshore to onshore projects, and as well, they have been moving from a discrete services contracting environment to an integrated contracting environment where all the services are provided under one contract. There was a substantial decrease in activity in the past few years, but it is starting to improve and the aim and main objectives are efficiency, reducing costs, and increasing production.
What are the biggest opportunities in the region?
There is a great opportunity for us to expand into integrated projects where many of our customers are moving towards. We want to engage more and more with integrated projects. In terms of efficiency, customers are always looking to reduce their lifting cost, and we believe we have the technology and services that enable them to reduce those costs. We are also focusing on introducing technologies and promoting current technologies to help our customers increase production, not necessarily by drilling new wells, but also by optimising production rates of existing wells.
What are the challenges associated with working in an integrated contracting environment?
There is a trend to move more risk from the customer to the services provider in this environment. When you move to integrated projects, you will have to assume a certain level of risk. Before, if there was non-productive time on a project, that would mostly stay with the customer, but with integrated projects, it would move to the services provider, as one example of shifting risk. But we have aligned ourselves with our customers, and we believe that we can gain market share and closeness to them.
Weatherford is currently undergoing a transformation, will this impact the Middle East as a focus area for the company?
It is good for our company, and many of our customers see it that way. It means that we will have more room to maneuver and we will probably be more aggressive to gain market share. The Middle East has been, for many years, a focus for our company, and we believe that we have the right technology, services, and people to deliver solutions to our customers. Our customers here are undented by the oil and gas price shifts, and their projects are long term. We believe that if we continue to come up with new technologies and align ourselves with our customers, we can become their preferred partners, and Weatherford recognises that the region is an important operational area.