Digital transformation in oil and gas sector set for growth

Kyndryl's large-scale, multi-cloud technology deal with refinery operator Motiva Enterprises underscores a broader industry trend; other IT channel news.

Digital transformation in oil and gas appears poised for growth as companies look for increased efficiency in an unpredictable market.

The award of a megadeal last week provides a sign of increasing interest: Kyndryl, an IT infrastructure services provider, inked a $160 million digital transformation and cloud services pact with the owner of the largest North American oil refinery.

Houston-based Motiva Enterprises, a wholly owned affiliate of Saudi Aramco, distributes Shell and 76 fuel brands and operates the Port Arthur Refinery, which has a crude capacity of more than 630,000 barrels a day. Kyndryl, with headquarters in New York, will work with the company to establish a hybrid, multi-cloud environment.

"Oil and gas customers are investing more than ever in key growth technologies, like cloud and AI, to power modern solutions," said Matt Milton, president of Kyndryl U.S. "This is where our work together is increasingly focused."

Prospects for growth

A recent study from Frost & Sullivan pointed to an expanding oil and gas market. The San Antonio market research firm noted that "digital transformation is occurring on a massive scale due to the need for increased efficiency, safety and sustainability."

Frost & Sullivan's forecast pegged the oil and gas automation market at $24.6 billion by 2025, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 7.5%.

Oil and gas customers are investing more than ever in key growth technologies, like cloud and AI, to power modern solutions.
Matt MiltonPresident, Kyndryl U.S.

More evidence of industry activity comes from Digital Intelligence Systems (DISYS), an MSP and staffing firm based in McLean, Va. The company last month entered a partnership with ComplianceQuest, which provides environmental health and safety (EHS) offerings for the oil and gas industry.

DISYS' managed services division will provide digital transformation services under the agreement, while ComplianceQuest will offer its EHS product suite.

Navigating rapid change

The digital transformation trend arrives at a time of turbulence in the energy industry. The Russia-Ukraine war has further complicated a sector already dealing with COVID-19's supply chain issues.

The Motiva-Kyndryl agreement aims to address those challenges, moving more of the oil company's business to the cloud for improved operational efficiency. Kyndryl will also look to simplify Motiva's in-house IT services.

Kyndryl is working with customers to "navigate a period of rapid change," Milton said, noting the company's history of running mission-critical services in the oil and gas sector. Kyndryl spun out of IBM in November 2021.

Most common digital transformation objectives chart
A push for greater efficiency is one factor driving digital transformation in oil and gas.

Accenture Ventures backs Tim Berners-Lee startup

Accenture Ventures invested in Inrupt, the enterprise software startup co-founded by World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee.

Inrupt aims to change the way organizations handle data, provide more transparency and prevent data silos with its Enterprise Solid Server platform based on the open source web technology Solid. Businesses and government organizations can use the platform to create vaults of personal data from disconnected sources for consumers and citizens.

Inrupt also joins Accenture Ventures' Project Spotlight program, which connects software startups with the Global 2000 for co-innovation.

Partner roster updates

  • Rave Mobile Safety, a software company based in Framingham, Mass., has formed a new partnership with value-added distributor ImmixGroup, a subsidiary of Arrow Electronics. This relationship will bring communication and collaboration technology to the public sector. With Rave's FedRAMP solution available through federal contract vehicles, government agencies can deliver emergency communications and ensure compliance of incident procedures.
  • GTT Communications, a cloud networking provider based in McLean, Va., is partnering with Arc Solutions, a company that provides integrated network offerings in the Middle East. GTT said the relationship creates better economies of scale for its enterprise services, including internet and managed SD-WAN, in that region.

Products for service providers

  • FlexIP Solutions, a managed communications services provider in Montville, N.J., debuted Flex Contact Center Pro Plus, a contact-center-as-a-service offering sold through MSPs and other partners. As part of the offering, FlexIP provides professional and managed services for MSPs' customers. FlexIP also handles billing, customer support and help desk services. As for the latter, MSPs have the option of sending help desk calls directly to FlexIP or taking the calls, logging them in their professional services automation systems and submitting tickets to FlexIP. In both approaches, FlexIP works with customers to resolve their issues or answer their questions, a company spokesperson said.
  • Cytracom, a network security company in Dallas, rolled out a cloud-based, secure network platform for channel partners in the U.S. and Canada. The offering, ControlOne, includes a software-defined perimeter, secure remote access, zero-trust security, unified threat management, event attribution and reporting, and security posture management.
  • StorPool Storage, a storage software provider, has launched tools the company said will enable MSPs to build cloud infrastructures for running mission-critical workloads. StorPool, based in Sofia, Bulgaria, partners with technology partners, solutions partners, hardware manufacturers and distributors.

Other news

  • NTT Data, a digital business and IT services provider based in Plano, Texas, has acquired Vectorform, a digital product development and consulting firm in Detroit. Vectorform's 80 team members will join NTT Data's consulting and digital transformation business.
  • Pythian Services, a cloud services provider based in Ottawa, tripled its SAP services revenue from 2020 to 2021. The company offers SAP workload migration, managed services and big data analytics services. Pythian cited a footwear manufacturing customer that migrated its SAP offerings from an on-premises deployment to SAP Hana, which resulted in a performance boost of more than 70%.
  • Asperitas Consulting, a cloud services company in Chicago, launched a professional services offering for large and midmarket companies. The company's Application Modernization Accelerator Framework is designed to move customers' critical applications to a modern cloud infrastructure. The framework uses containerization, serverless technologies and continuous integration/continuous delivery among other cloud architecture components.
  • Zoom Video Communications unveiled its Zoom Up Partner Program, which the San Jose, Calif., company described as a unified global partner framework. The program lets qualified partners in select countries resell Zoom Phone with Zoom calling plans.
  • Presidio, a digital services and solutions provider based in New York, has obtained Dell Technologies' Titanium Black status, the top tier of Dell's partner program.

Executive appointment

LucidLink, a cloud service vendor based in San Francisco, named Rupert Watson as director of EMEA alliances and channels. Watson previously worked with LucidLink as a reseller and held positions at Jigsaw24 and Avid.

Additional reporting by Kristen Gloss.

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