May. 5, 2020

Ahmad El Tannir

UAE, Abu Dhabi

Ahmad El Tannir

General Manager, Al Masaood Oil & Gas

If a company has a product, solution, or service that meets ADNOC's prequalification and registration processes, the doors are open for newcomers and competition.


Ahmad El Tannir is the General Manager of Al Masaood Oil & Gas, which was established in 1971 and is based in Abu Dhabi. Hired in 2009, the company went into a major restructuring at the end of 2014. Appointed to lead this transformation, he oversaw the company's new vision and executed the new strategic plans set by the company's board members. Prior to this, he had wide experience in management and leadership roles in the US banking sector. He holds an MBA from the University of Phoenix and is working on his doctorate of business administration at Swiss Business School in Dubai.

Can you provide an overview of the company and how it has developed since its inception?
Al Masaood Oil & Gas is a family-owned business established by the late Rahma Al Masaood in 1971. We started as a small trading company and over time developed with greater exposure to the oil and gas sector. At the time of the union, the government began expanding the exploration and production activities, where we shifted our focus to the oil and gas industry. The late Sheikh Zayed was instrumental in building the infrastructure of the country and attracting international companies that brought expertise. Al Masaood's strategy was to align our activities with the government's vision, which is how the company grew. Our services are diverse and cover a broad spectrum in the sector, while we also have a substantial oil and gas-trading arm. We also represent and partner with more than 70 international companies in the UAE under agency partnership agreements. We aim to be a family-orientated company with a global presence that maintains international standards. Our proactive business approach means we actively explore opportunities in other regions, most of which are based around trading and services. For example, in Algeria and Turkmenistan, our business developed from selling safety protective products to service contracts.

What are some of the core services you provide across the UAE, and how do you anticipate these will evolve?
Some of our primary services in the UAE include plant maintenance, asset integrity, corrosion monitoring, drilling services, safety services, engineering, consulting, design, and commissioning. As for our in-house services, we provide tubular running, air drilling services, plant maintenance, corrosion engineering, NDT, and auditing. We have been involved in trading for many years and are proud to represent remarkable international brands such as safety, mechanical, electrical, and chemical products that are used throughout the industry, as well as other sectors such as construction and municipality works. Interestingly, we have ambitious plans to start manufacturing along with services for training, catering, and logistics. These services will enhance our in-country value. We wish to expand our offshore logistics services, namely supplies for offshore vessels. We are expanding the size of our jetty from 140m to 520m to develop and integrate these services. We plan to integrate our operations away from the city center. It will be beneficial to have our employees' amenities such as accommodation, canteens, and a shopping center along with a guest house for VIPs, training center, exhibition center, trading warehouses, and head offices all in one area. This facility is called our Megabase project and will create efficiencies in manpower, logistics, and operating costs. In short, it will be like a mini-industrial city.

How have recent concession agreements impacted your decision to scale up services?
ADNOC's announcement of the five-year expansion plans will have an overwhelming effect on the local sector, with AED500 billion to be invested in the oil and gas sector for the upcoming five years, 70% of which will be spent on downstream and 30% on upstream. Al Masaood can add value to this expansion plan. ADNOC has been quite clear about its in-country value (ICV) expectations for both local and foreign companions. It wants local companies to invest and gather expertise from foreign ones. ADNOC has formed partnerships with many international companies, which is encouraging as it incentivizes local players. The ICV program has a significant influence on both foreign and domestic organizations engaged with the sector.

What work are you doing in regard to cost optimization and life cycle challenges?
Cost optimization has been a lucrative segment of our business for decades. Now that it is time to give back, companies with massive profits have to regulate margins. Several organizations did not optimize or make discounts, and as a result, lost substantial business. If a company has a proper product, solution, or service that meets ADNOC's prequalification and registration processes, the doors are open for newcomers and competition. The whole industry is being positively affected.