'Do you bribe to get business?' asks Parker

Vol 16, PW 22 (30 May 13) Exploration & Production

Indian onland drillers better brace themselves for some competition.

Houston-based heavyweight Parker Drilling is planning an aggressive push into the Indian market following its April 22 acquisition of UK-based International Tubular Services (ITS) for $125m. On May 7 lawyers from the UK and US plus five chartered accountants from Parker landed in Mumbai for a rigorous compliance meeting of the ITS Indian subsidiary at Vavanje village near Taloja in Raigad district.

“Parker said it wants to enter the Indian drilling market,” confirms ITS. “But not immediately, they will decide after studying the market.

” Parker representatives, he adds, met its new 80-strong Indian staff to understand the local work culture. “They gave us pamphlets on ethics,” we hear, “and asked if we give bribes to win business.

” By May 10, Parker had established two teams in Mumbai: a three member IT team and a five-member accounting team. After four days the Parker team left Mumbai on May 11 with data from the ITS office, to study later.

“Parker’s technical and commercial teams will visit India again,” we hear. ITS operates a 5.5 acre facility in Raigad with two machine shops: one providing support and repair services for downhole equipment, the other manufacturing drilling jars.

The manufacturing and repair business generates revenue of between Rs22-24cr ($5m) annually.