Oil & Gas Innovation Centre appoints chief operating officer

The Oil & Gas Innovation Centre (OGIC) has appointed Ernie Lamza as its chief operating officer (COO).

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Mr Lamza brings more than 30 years’ experience in upstream oil and gas activities to the role. His career has spanned business, technical and technology management, technical consultancy, brown and green field engineering, operations support and process engineering.

OGIC was established last year to accelerate the pace of technology development for the oil and gas sector by linking SMEs with research and development capabilities within Scotland’s universities and research institutes. OGIC’s priority areas are: improving exploration outcomes; well construction, drilling and completions; enhanced oil recovery; asset integrity and life extension; shale gas exploitation; subsea; product optimisation and decommissioning.

As COO, Mr Lamza will support the project management team with his technical knowledge while partnering with OGIC’s chief executive, Ian Phillips, to provide strategic direction for the organisation.

Mr Lamza holds a BSc in Chemical Engineering, is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, and holds an MSc in Technology Management. He has worked in the USA, Egypt and Aberdeen for companies including Conoco, PGS Production and Penspen. Prior to joining OGIC he was with SBM Offshore in Monaco, reporting directly to the chief technology officer and providing business and commercial direction for the company’s $40million a year research and development programme.

Ian Phillips, chief executive of OGIC, said: “Ernie is a fantastic addition to the team at OGIC. With his extensive industry background in technology, Ernie understands first-hand the issues which companies have to deal with when they are looking to embark on innovative projects and will play a key role in our work with SMEs in Scotland to bring new technologies to market.

“Since officially launching at the end of last year we have seen a big demand for our advice and expertise. Expanding our team will help to ensure that we can work effectively with businesses and the academic community to bring new technology to market which meets some of the most pressing needs of the industry in the UKCS and internationally.”

Mr Lamza said: “Working with companies on innovative projects which have the potential to help secure the future of the UKCS will be both extremely challenging and rewarding. OGIC is facilitating new collaborations between industry and the country’s leading academics and researchers targeted at some of the most pressing issues within our sector. I look forward to playing my part in this process.”

OGIC provides a single access point to the knowledge and capabilities of Scottish universities for the oil and gas industry. It can also provide project management support and part-fund projects with the potential to deliver technology solutions to the exploration, production and decommissioning challenges facing the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS). It effectively links around 2,500 oil and gas operators and service companies to more than 450 academic staff and researchers in Scotland working in oil and gas related areas.

For further information on OGIC and its work see the www.ogic.co.uk website.

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