Halliburton is one of the world’s largest providers of products and services to the global energy industry, with corporate headquarters in Houston and in Dubai. It employs more than 60,000 people, representing more than 140 nationalities working in approximately 80 countries. 

Ahmed Kenawi, Senior Vice President, Middle East and North Africa Region, notes that the Middle East is an extremely important region for Halliburton, for both the company’s short-term objectives and its long-term vision.

“Halliburton has had a presence in the Middle East and North Africa region for many years,” he says. “We were logging in Saudi Arabia in the 1940s, more than 65 years ago. We value the stability of the business through global economic fluctuations, and the significant growth opportunities that the region has to offer. These are two key reasons why Halliburton has a strong interest in growing our footprint and business platform in the ME/NA region.”

Halliburton was founded in 1919 by Erle P. Halliburton as a cementing company, but over the last almost 100 years it has grown tremendously. It now serves the upstream oil and natural gas industry throughout the life cycle of the reservoir – from locating hydrocarbons and managing geological data, to drilling and formation evaluation, to well construction and completion, to optimising production through the entire life of the field. 

Halliburton focuses on three key market segments—deep water, mature fields and unconventional resources—and this focus has produced superior results in recent years. 

It is easy to see the progress made by Halliburton in unconventional resources. The company has maintained market leadership in North America, with performance that has exceeded expectations. Before the recent decline in market conditions, growth was twice what had been anticipated, and service intensity has been higher than expected. 

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“We deliver the lowest cost per barrel of oil equivalent—the result of our surface efficiency combined with our subsurface insight and customised chemistries,” Kenawi says. “Although unconventional resources are still a relatively small part of our business internationally, we are growing this segment of our business. There is a willingness to innovate in these markets, and new technologies are being adopted rapidly. For example, we have successfully introduced our CYPHER Seismic-to-Stimulation Service in the Middle East region, and recently executed the first hydraulic fracturing job with seawater in Saudi Arabia, as well as a second job that used local sand as the proppant.” 

The second key area is mature fields, which account for more than 70 percent of the world’s oil and gas production, with many in the secondary or tertiary production phases. The Halliburton strategy in this segment is focused on integrated solutions that enable customers to realise greater recovery potential by improving performance on existing wells, optimising reservoir management, and identifying new profitable areas in the reservoir. The company’s integrated project management strategy in mature fields is paying off with significant project awards, and with a robust pipeline of integrated project management contracts, it is well-positioned for growth.

The final key area is deep water. In the last decade, 60 percent of global oil discoveries have been in deep water. Although the Middle East and North Africa have few opportunities in this arena, the region still merits attention, Kenawi noted. In this challenging arena, the strategic aim is to grow market share by employing leading-edge capabilities to help eliminate uncertainties and ensure ultra-reliability for customers at every stage of the exploration and development process. There have been headwinds in the deepwater market as a result of higher costs and lower energy prices, leading operators to shift investment from deep water to land in search of better returns. However, Halliburton continues to gain share in this slower-growth environment. 


“Our integrated service capabilities, infrastructure and technologies mean that we are well-positioned to outgrow the market, as we have over the past three years,” Kenawi says. “We will continue to leverage the investments we have made in these areas to drive growth. Furthermore, we are well-positioned to navigate any market conditions. The experience and commitment of our management team, our highly skilled people, and our innovative technologies will continue to enable us to execute our strategy and deliver value to our stakeholders.”

Since the days of Halliburton logging in Saudi Arabia in the 1940s, there have been massive changes in the energy industry globally. One of the biggest has been the increasingly important role played by technology. The exploitation of hydrocarbons is becoming more difficult—well paths are more deviated, wells are deeper and hotter, and have higher pressures. Also, traditionally, hydrocarbons have been found in conventional reservoirs, like carbonates or clastic reservoirs. But now, attention is being shifted to recovery from the source rocks in unconventional reservoirs. The economics of effectively and efficiently developing an unconventional reservoir are challenging. Technology is helping address all these issues.

New technologies are enabling Halliburton to go to the most hostile environments to record data for full evaluation of a reservoir’s potential. With new drilling technology, Halliburton can now accurately place wells with the high precision required to maximise reservoir connectivity, and with new technology it can now effectively stimulate unconventional wells to make the economics of recovery a viable proposition. Halliburton has a number of world records and market-leading technologies that demonstrate its commitment to working in these extreme environments and new arenas, across the oilfield life cycle.

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