With an engineering degree from Oklahoma State University and graduate work in industrial engineering, Richard Spears has worked in the upstream oil and gas industry since 1979, starting as a field engineer for Halliburton. Today, Richard is one of the managing directors of Spears & Associates, an oilfield market research firm founded in 1965. The firm has 500 clients worldwide, including all major oil companies, all major service companies and over one hundred private and institutional investors. Richard has been with the firm since 1985 and has been an active member of SPE since then. In addition to his responsibilities with Abrado Richard is on the board of directors of several oilfield service companies: Varel International, a global drill bit manufacturer; Federal, a subsea connector manufacturer; Allied Wireline, an openhole and cased hole logging company; and W-Technology, a manufacturer of MWD components. Board responsibilities include Audit, Compliance, Compensation and Strategy.
C. Mitchell Cox is a partner at Turnbridge Capital, a Dallas based private equity firm. Prior to joining Turnbridge, Mr. Cox advised, invested in and served on the Board of Fiberspar Corporation, the leading provider of fiber-reinforced spoolable pipe to the oil and gas industry, and also co-founded and continues to serve on the board of Abrado Wellbore Services, an independent provider of completion assurance services to the global oil and natural gas industry. Formerly, Mr. Cox was a Managing Director at Deutsche Bank, where he served as Co-Head of North American Energy Investment Banking and held global responsibility for coverage of the oilfield service industry. From 1992 to 2000, Mr. Cox was with DLJ, where he focused on advisory, investment banking and principal investing in the energy sector. From 1985 to 1990, Mr. Cox worked for ARCO International Oil & Gas Company in a variety of domestic and international assignments that included engineering, operational and commercial responsibility. Currently, Mr. Cox serves as Director on the Boards of Aereon Industries and Pipe Pros. Mr. Cox holds a Bachelor of Science in Petroleum Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and a Masters of Business Administration from the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration.
Matt Anstead is an Investment Director with Energy Ventures based in Houston. Prior to joining Energy Ventures, Mr. Anstead was a Vice President with Simmons & Company International, where he managed private equity funds focused on investments in oilfield services companies in Western Europe. Earlier in his career he worked as a Senior Associate for Booz & Co, an Analyst for Wood MacKenzie and a field engineer for Schlumberger. Currently, Mr. Anstead serves on the board of Abrado and OsComp in Houston, Romar International in Aberdeen and Fotech Solutions in London. Mr. Anstead holds a Masters of Business Administration from London Business School and a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College London.
Paul Howlett has a track record of achievement spanning more than 30 years in the upstream oil and gas service sector, particularly in the development, early adoption and commercialisation of down-hole drilling and completions technologies. Paul is the holder of more than 30 granted patents, many with significant commercial success. He was instrumental in the domestic and international growth of two down-hole technology based companies, having joined a fledgling SPS in 1995 and later founding Caledus in 2003. Paul has developed strong relationships with E&P companies both at IOC and NOC level, as well as independent operators. He has operated at field service level, sales and operations management, during his time at BJ Services and Nodeco, as well as senior management roles at director level as Managing Director/CEO and CTO. Paul established Sudelac in 2011, based in Aberdeen, to develop well cementing equipment and currently manages the business whilst at the same time consulting to assist a number of other SME companies.
Mr. Esslemont has 30 years of international oil & gas industry experience in petroleum technology, drilling operations, and general management. Sandy started his career as a petroleum engineer with Shell International and specialized in drilling engineering. His experience led him into drilling rig and turnkey management positions for Forasol-Foramer before becoming a project manager in London with Baker Hughes Inteq. Mr. Esslemont was appointed CEO of Roxar, a Norwegian based oilfield technology company in 2001. During his tenure as CEO Mr. Esslemont delisted the company from the Norwegian Stock Exchange and successfully managed two private equity leveraged buy-outs prior to an eventual relisting of the company on the Norwegian Stock Exchange in 2007. In 2008 Mr. Esslemont became the President, Western Hemisphere for Expro International, a UK publically listed oilfield services firm before leaving in 2009 to become CEO of SensorTran Inc., a venture backed fibre optic sensing technology company based in Austin, Texas. Following the successful management of a competitive sales process and role of integration consultant to Halliburton, Mr. Esslemont assumed the role of CEO for Abrado Wellbore Services based in Houston in 2012. He has a BSc in Mechanical Engineering from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, is an active member of SPE and currently serves on the board as a non-executive director of Varel International, a global drill bit manufacturer.