Updated: Dec 15, 2020
Recovery and renewal? Read my views on the on the year ahead for Archer Knight and the wider market.
What can we expect to happen in energy markets in 2021?
Oil and gas demand took a hit this year from the pandemic. But there are reasons for optimism in 2021 for the supply chain, subsea contractors, vessel owners and other offshore companies. Billion-dollar contracts are waiting in the pipeline. Long-term contracts and framework agreements are already in place for rig drill support, construction, installation and decommissioning. Companies which have the right focus on how they are positioned and where they can add value to a project can find opportunities here.
Renewable projects, including offshore wind, have also seen delays due to the pandemic, but this is very much still a growth area. Low-carbon solutions are being adopted for everything from the boilers in people’s homes to the cars they drive. The UK Committee on Climate Change's Sixth Carbon Budget increases the projected role for offshore wind of up to 140 GW by 2050. We expect to see more demand for offshore wind projects and developments in the year ahead.
“Companies which have the right focus on how they are positioned and where they can add value to a project can find opportunities”
How will industries adapt to a post-COVID world?
I think we need to stop using phrases like ‘getting back to normal’. ‘Normal’ is completely subjective and businesses need to consider the opportunities which will arise from the disruption. As an industry, we need to have a ‘pandemic-alert’ mentality and think about how we ensure sustainability if we’re ever restricted in the same way – or worse.
I also think that the experience of this year will accelerate the trend towards energy transition, and we need to embrace this move without vilification of hydrocarbons.
It’s not a case of either/or. The net zero journey is about taking a realistic path towards a more sustainable world. Just like a perfectly executed Olympic relay race, the transition needs the baton to be passed at the exact equilibrium point, make the move too soon or too late and it won’t work.
“As an industry, we need to have a ‘pandemic-alert’ mentality and think about how we ensure sustainability if we’re ever restricted in the same way – or worse.”
What are Archer Knight’s priorities for 2021?
You can expect to see much more from us in the year ahead. We are expanding our geographical footprint and increasing stakeholder engagement.
In April 2020, we launched Flowline, our software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform, bringing our clients up-to-the-minute data on the offshore industries. We are excited about Flowline’s continued evolution. We are always improving its data analytics and machine-learning capabilities, to provide our clients with even better insight into the market opportunities ahead of them. Flowline currently has more than 220 users through 35 companies in 16 different countries.
Meanwhile, we are also growing the consultancy side of our business. Our diving and safety services business, led by Derek Beddows, will see more work on providing companies with more support to make their operations safer and raise competence levels. 2021 will see the start of our new accreditation process, in partnership with Orion Group (read more here) and collaborating with contractors and operators to create bespoke diving safety management systems.
“We are excited about Flowline's continued evolution.”