Technology investments, regardless of industry, come with risk, and startup investments are often met with even more hesitation. While startups promise to bring greater innovation, major organizations fear these young, unestablished companies could bring even greater risk to mission-critical projects.
Take the oil and gas industry, for example, which is turning to innovative tech solutions to combat regulatory changes, political pressure, a shrinking workforce, shareholder demands, and other challenges. To remain competitive, major oil and gas players are looking to invest in big data analytics, machine learning, and other Industry 4.0 solutions to quickly improve upon their long-established business dynamics, seeking lower costs and improved production outcomes. It’s the perfect task for an agile startup partner—if only it was so easy to find the right one.
While there are plenty of innovative firms out there today, each comes with just a budding track record, making it difficult to instill trust in oil and gas companies looking to make significant investments.
Altira’s Fund VI Partnership
Fortunately, oil and gas venture capital firm Altira recognized these obstacles for operators and developed the Fund VI partnership to remove these barriers. Their funding model allows Altira to collaborate with leading oil and gas companies as investment partners—currently Apache, Devon Energy, EQT, and Pioneer Natural Resources—as they discover and validate new technologies to improve operations and advance the industry. Investing in the partnership fund provides these companies with low-risk access to startups offering solutions that are easy to adopt and scale.
At the same time, the fund provides the startups in its portfolio with accelerated access to Altira’s Fund VI investment partners. Armed with resources from Altira and guidance from these industry leaders, these innovative firms can build the momentum they need to expand and scale their own businesses, while also increasing acceptance among the investment partners.
Seeq is one of these startups. In 2018, Altira invested $23M in Seeq through the Fund IV partnership, identifying Seeq’s advanced analytics applications as an answer to a leading problem for process industry firms as they experience increased access to operational and equipment data.
Gaining Rapid Insight from Your Data with Seeq’s Predictive Analytics
While organizations now enjoy enhanced visibility into both historical and near-real-time data, most cannot leverage it because they still lack the advanced analytics applications to discover transformational insights. These companies have become data rich but information poor (DRIP), as process engineers continue to use tedious, cumbersome methods for analyzing data, such as spreadsheets—which hinder visibility into the broader business context necessary to increase efficiency and profitability.
Image source: Automation.com
Seeq takes these organizations beyond spreadsheets. It combats DRIP by drawing relationships and correlations among detailed data types through automated cleansing, easy-to-implement calculations, and contextualization. The application empowers engineers and other frontline subject matter experts to improve operational performance based on accurate and reliable insight.
A maintenance report for heat exchangers created with Seeq Organizer. The report includes charts and KPIs generated in Seeq Workbench alongside clarifying comments and pictures.
When it comes to the oil and gas industry, companies are spending billions of dollars each year trying to track their process data, which is collected from hundreds of thousands of sensors. All too often, this data is trapped in data silos owned by middle management. If and when process engineers receive access to this data, they still need to spend weeks or months cleansing it in spreadsheets to determine their next decision. But with Seeq, they can uncover those insights within minutes, and begin to answer questions at the speed of thought.
With Altira, Seeq not only gains exposure to the oil and gas companies experiencing these obstacles, but it’s also given the opportunity to build relationships with senior management, receive input on development roadmaps, and more. As a result, Altira’s investments have also accelerated the four investment partners’ collaboration with Seeq, with all four of the partners having used Seeq since 2018.
Harnessing the Power of Big Data Analytics and Machine Learning
As the oil and gas industry continues to face constant change and pressure while trying to remain competitive, major companies will require even greater assistance from innovative firms with the big data analytics and machine learning offerings they need. Models like Altira’s Fund IV offer a solution for these companies to address these obstacles, while being equally advantageous to the startups they invest in, including Seeq.
To learn more about how Seeq helps oil and gas companies combat industry challenges and to see the application in action, request a demo today.