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Appointment strengthens asset integrity for operators.

Lloyd's Register (LR), a leading global provider of engineering and technology-centric professional services, has made a new senior appointment in the UK which will benefit the country's oil and gas operators.

Stuart Oswald joins LR from Maersk Oil (now Total) where he held the role of Operations Manager for the Quad 9 and Gryphon Alpha FPSO. He brings to LR extensive operator experience in his new role as UK Operations Director of asset integrity and maintenance optimisation services.

"Having worked in the oil and gas sector for more than 30 years, Stuart has demonstrable technical expertise and proven experience implementing change," says James Drummond, LR's Global VP of Asset Integrity and Maintenance Optimisation. "As we grow our business in a challenging market, Stuart brings that necessary insight, business development, and vision we need to realise our full potential and become the leading global provider of engineering and technology-centric professional services in UK. We are delighted Stuart joins us at the start of our next growth phase for the North Sea and the UK."

Oswald accrued extensive operator experience with Maersk Oil as their Operations Manager and Deputy Asset Manager, in which he created and reorganised the company's offshore manning and transfer programme and provided oversight on employee and crew multi-skilling. This included the transfer of 300 Petrofac personnel over to Maersk Oil. During this time, he found ways to increase performance and manage expenditure in a cost-pressured industry, and has continued to strengthen an HSSEQ culture. Experience also includes operational assistance to Gryphon, GP3 and Janice installations, the Culzean concept stage and Golden Eagle stakeholder management. Prior to Maersk, Oswald held roles with Aker Solutions and Amerada Hess.

"Industry's needs are growing more complex," says Oswald, LR's new UK Operations Director for asset integrity and maintenance optimisation services. "Demand for higher performance, improved integrity management, and the introduction of new technology is driving change, and I want to ensure LR is the preferred partner of choice for current and new customers in each of these areas."

Oswald explains that the UK oil and gas industry needs essential guidance and technical support as it transitions forward from what has been a very tough period of market economics.

"Being part of LR's asset integrity and maintenance optimisation business enables me to contribute on aspects of performance and safety to help the industry make good decisions," highlights Oswald.

"Data is critical to the way we think and make decisions, and how we use that data to predict intelligent awareness of what is happening around us enables proactive action to be taken affordably and efficiently, saving millions of pounds and potentially even lives."

Oswald's appointment is timely with LR's launch of its latest Technology Radar Special Report, titled ‘Predictive Analytics in Oil and Gas: The future in focus', which was launched at ADIPEC 2018 in Abu Dhabi.

"Data and digital tools shed light on the dark corners of operational inefficiency, and predictive analytics gives companies a very powerful spotlight to see every detail. Companies must be patient and persevere," says Oswald.

"The legacy of past incidents and offshore disasters has shaped current operations, but importantly it is how we now embrace the role of data and technology to create an even safer future. The more data intelligently gathered, the more it is analysed, the more lessons are learned, and the greater the efficiencies and visibility."

Strategically LR's asset integrity and maintenance optimisation business has a very significant part to play in the future of the UK Continental Shelf – a region that is increasingly active as operators continue to strive for efficiencies, reduced lifting and operating costs, with assets that are extended beyond original design life. As new players acquire assets that established players are looking to divest, robust integrity and maintenance optimisation strategies are critical.

LR is working on a number of assets fixed, floating and onshore where there have been issues with the originally developed maintenance programme.

"Often there is little recorded basis for many of the tasks and companies wish to adopt a reliability-based approach, taking into account relative high costs associated with equipment functional failure," says Oswald. "Determining the reliability of equipment is a key component in the calculation of revised inspection and testing intervals and the use of our online optimisation tool gives a high degree of understanding and transparency to our customers."

Optimisation of maintenance has invariably led to a net reduction in annualised maintenance costs which is one of the benefits of using LR's asset integrity and maintenance optimisation integrated service. Often assets are only managing to liquidate safety critical maintenance tasks while other maintenance transfers to backlog. Oswald is quick to point out that optimising helps to address this balance and frees up technicians from unnecessarily repetitive tasks, to address this maintenance backlog.

"LR has delivered more than 30% reduction in costs for its customers and these results typically illustrate that this work will pay for itself within a period of 12 months." LR is encouraged to see maintenance optimisation continuing to grow across its customers, and it intends to push this expertise further with several new appointments in US, Middle East and in Asia.

"Creating this network of asset integrity and maintenance optimisation expertise is a key part of our strategy as we look to take advantage of a recovering upstream market and explore other downstream opportunities," highlights Drummond.

Oswald will be based in Aberdeen at LR's offices in the Prime Four Business Park, at Kingswells, Aberdeen, UK.

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