The oil and gas sector is ripe for technological disruption. But how do you help a traditional well-established sector embrace cutting edge technology? Mika Tienhaara, award winning CEO of Rocsole Ltd, has the solution.
The oil and gas sector is continuously under scrutiny. From the impact of oil prices on national economies, the cost of petrol at the pump to the consumer, safety concerns or the pressures of climate change, the list of challenges is long. As in so many industries though, technology offers a way forward and spearheading this is the Finnish innovator Rocsole Ltd, led by their inspirational CEO, Mika Tienhaara.
As with large corporates in any sector, many of the large organisations within the oil and gas sector have struggled to evolve as quickly as their leaders would ideally hope for. Given that operations often take place in high risk environments, it’s understandable why oil and gas brands can sometimes be hesitant to change what has been working well historically.
An area that has caused challenges for the sector is how to improve key operating processes. One of the ambitions of operators is to be able to adapt their processes in a truly dynamic manner so that they can achieve the greatest levels of efficiency at any given time.
Many have tried to solve this challenge but a crucial piece of the puzzle has been missing until Rocsole Ltd entered the market. With their passion and understanding of how to make tech innovation truly work, they have been able to deliver products to the oil and gas sector that are delivering impressive return on investment for their clients and partners.
Their range of solutions include separator, pipeline and tank profiling solutions that are based on providing operators with a way of accurately measuring the changing state of substances within the equipment at any given point, leading the way for digital transformation for the next level of operational excellence. Using electrical tomography, the Rocsole solutions are able to carry out forensic analysis of what is happening in the equipment and therefore make crucial adjustments in the process to ensure that risks and carbon footprint are reduced and effective production is kept at the highest levels of efficiency.
Business Worldwide Magazine caught up with Rocsole CEO, Mika Tienhaara, to discuss their industry-leading approach and what the future holds for a company that thrives on challenging the status quo.
Mika, thank you for joining us. Can we start by asking you how the past 12 to 18 months have impacted you and your team at Rocsole?
From an industry perspective, the oil and gas sector has been through an extremely challenging time. The industry was already under huge pressures before COVID hit but as the pandemic gathered pace, the sector took a real hit.
Interestingly though, from our own personal point of view, the past year has been one of success and growth. We’ve had another record year and are seeing growth both in terms of our client base and the evolution of our solutions. All of us at Roscole are in very good spirits!
That’s wonderful to hear. Given that your primary target market has been impacted so heavily over the last year, what do you consider to be the key factors for your success?
I think there are a couple of key reasons. Firstly, the very purpose of our technology is to help oil and gas companies achieve a stronger return on investment than ever before.
We give them reliable, live data about crucial parts of their operations which enable them to make changes to their processes in real time. This means far greater efficiency, improved safety and reduced costs. In a time when your revenue streams are under threat, finding ways to operate more efficiently is essential.
As an example, one of our solutions is focused on separators – a key part of the process for energy companies. Research shows that more than 51% of separator failures are due to faulty level instrumentation and not being able to get accurate data on a continual basis. Our solutions help our clients address those exact issues, which are key for both higher efficiency and reduction of carbon emissions.
The second reason is that we’ve been focused on growing into new industries and have been having great success with these efforts. Whilst we know the oil and gas sector very well, our strategy and our tech should be of interest to any company where there is a process flow.
Building on that strategy of expanding into new sectors, is that partly because of the poor reputation the oil and gas industry has with regard to topics such as climate change and environmental sustainability?
No, our growth is certainly not based on any one aspect which could be attributed to poor reputation. In fact, we actually feel we should focus on sectors where there is both a need and opportunity for environmental improvement because that’s our area of expertise and we can make a real difference.
Think about it like this – our solutions help companies make their operational processes more efficient. That doesn’t just mean that they save money. It also means that they use less electricity, less heat, smaller amounts of chemicals and then also produce fewer emissions. All of those factors are great for people and for the environment.
Furthermore, our solutions aren’t merely relevant for just the oil and gas sector. As the world has embraced all things digital, the semiconductor industry has exploded. The industry is using more aggressive chemicals to keep up with the pressures of this demand, leading to the production of more toxic byproducts and chemical build up in their equipment. This is a bad thing, we can all agree.
Our monitoring tools help to mitigate these downsides and dramatically reduce the detrimental impact the industry can have on the environment. Rocsole don’t celebrate companies producing harmful byproducts as part of their processes by any means. We know we can help them and we’re working hard to do so.
It all sounds like a no-brainer. With that in mind, why would any company not wish to integrate your solutions into their processes?
Obviously, we’d like to believe there are no overwhelming reasons for companies not to adopt our solutions into their processes. However, the reality is that there are hurdles that need to be overcome. Those hurdles aren’t to do with our offering as such – it’s more of a cultural challenge within the oil and gas industry I’d say.
Many of the companies that we, and other tech innovators, work with in this sector are huge organisations. Even if you’re fortunate enough to be successful in certain parts of their operations, it’s extremely difficult for them to then roll out the approach to other parts of the company. Equally, just because you’ve effectively integrated your approach with one company, this certainly doesn’t mean that others from the same sector will embrace it. They often want to run their own pilots and assessments before committing to full integration.
This is one of the big areas of opportunity and potential improvement. The industry needs to improve its collaboration efforts, and I believe that if we can work together more, we can solve these challenges together and any roll out will be much easier, much quicker and much more successful.
One final question – what does the future hold for you and Rocsole?
Well, we’re on track with our overall purpose – to make the industry safer and enable the transition to low carbon and carbon neutral operations, but we want to keep building on the momentum we’ve worked hard to establish.
From a technological point of view there are some exciting opportunities for improvement – for example, the development of deep learning algorithms and how this will allow users to gain greater insight and control quicker than ever.
At Rocsole we play great importance on our people – they’re the beating heart of our being. Our passionate team are committed to change, and dedicated to pursuing our aims. As we grow, it’s crucial that we keep supporting our people and bringing new experts onboard to join us on our journey.
With offices based in USA, Norway, Malaysia and Finland, Rocsole is a global smart imaging process company operating across many industries. Its solutions are provided onshore and offshore, supporting automated, digitised and unmanned platform operations. For further information on this innovative organisation, its technology and up to date industry news, please visit the company website at https://rocsole.com