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September 21, 2021

Is the oil & gas sector seeing the beginnings of a cloud investment boom?

By Nicu Calcea

The oil & gas industry is seeing changes in cloud investment across several key metrics, according to an analysis of GlobalData figures.

Cloud is one of the key themes across global industries, with top companies around the world completing cloud deals, hiring for cloud roles and mentioning it in company reports at the start of 2021.

GlobalData’s thematic approach to sector activity seeks to group key company information on hiring, deals, patents and more by topic to see which industries are best placed to weather the disruptions coming their way.

These themes, of which cloud is one, are best thought of as “any issue that keeps a CEO awake at night”, and by tracking them, it becomes possible to ascertain which companies are leading the way on specific issues and which are dragging their heels.

One area in which there has been a decrease in cloud investment among oil & gas companies is in the number of deals. GlobalData figures show that there were five cloud deals in oil & gas in the second quarter of 2019. By the second quarter of 2021, that number was three.

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Hiring patterns within the oil & gas sector as a whole are pointing towards an increase in the level of attention being shown to roles related to cloud. There were 1,850 actively advertised-for open oil & gas roles within the industry in the second quarter of this year, up from 631 in the same quarter last year.

It is also apparent from an analysis of keyword mentions in financial filings that cloud is occupying the minds of oil & gas companies to a lesser extent.

Cloud was mentioned in 30 company reports of the biggest oil & gas companies in Q2 2021. This figure represents a decrease compared to the same period in 2019, when 103 industry filings mentioned cloud.

Cloud is decreasingly fueling innovation in the oil & gas sector. There were, on average, 18 oil & gas patents related to cloud granted in the second quarter of 2019. That figure has fallen to five patents in the last quarter of 2020.

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