Why our new North Sea presence is so important for Geoforce

nsThis week, Geoforce announced the opening of our new office in the United Kingdom, along with the appointment of Chris Gorman as our UK Country Manager. We are very excited about this expansion, just as we were when we added offices in Perth, Western Australia, and Macae, Brazil over the past 12 months or so.

In our press release, Chris Gorman talks about the importance of the North Sea market to Geoforce, and I’d like to elaborate on this. This region offers some unique aspects that are a particularly good fit for our company:

1.) The North Sea region is home to some of Geoforce’s earliest and largest customers. From the beginning, companies based there have understood the value that tracking of equipment assets can bring to the industry.

2.) Over the years, we’ve made countless trips to visit our existing customers in Aberdeen and elsewhere in Europe; now we finally have the boots on the ground to match our “be where our customers are” strategy.

3.) As the home to many “mature” fields in which it is very expensive to extract oil and gas, North Sea operators experience even higher margin pressures on operations than others.

4.) This pressure coincides with one of Geoforce’s key benefits: that successful GPS tracking and asset management initiatives can make a significant, positive impact on operating margins.

5.) In the States, Aberdeen is sometimes referred to as “the Houston of the North Sea” due to the concentration of technology and talent. However, once you spend time in Aberdeen, it’s easy to see why locals there refer to Houston as “the Aberdeen of North America”.

6.) We’ve continually been impressed by the commitment to innovation, safety and efficiency that we see every time we visit the North Sea region, so it’s no surprise that there has been a huge export of ideas, talent, technology, and regulatory influence from the region - yet another reason it is a natural fit for Geoforce.

7.) In particular, it is Europe and the North Sea region that provided the impetus, several years ago, for Geoforce to develop the world’s only IECEx/ATEX zone 0 approved tracking device, the GT1 global asset tracker.

8.) European customers have always been helpful and proactive in suggesting improvements in our overall solutions, and we’ve learned a lot from them.

All told, we are extremely charged up about the potential for Geoforce’s growth in the North Sea area.

For our customers and prospects in Europe, and particularly you Aberdonians, we are looking forward to spending more quality time and building closer relationships in the future.

A final farewell to 2013

This past year was one of monumental development for Geoforce. The new directions, people and opportunities the company experienced are some we won’t soon forget.

 

One of the most visible changes was how quickly we are growing as a company.  In 2013, our installed base of oilfield and other customers once again grew tremendously, and we added roughly 50% to our employee roster and started our second headquarter office expansion in as many years.  Along with employee growth, we started our year off by expanding internationally and opening the first ever Geoforce international office in Macae, Brazil.

 

In early spring, our hardware engineers worked with a Pennsylvania high school’s Mythbusters class to launch a Geoforce prototype GPS tracking device into the atmosphere to see if their vessel could reach an altitude of 100,000 feet.

 

We also had many recognized achievements in 2013. We hit personal milestones; the Geoforce app now processes over 1,500,000 asset tag readings a day. We were named #16 on Metroplex Technology Business Council’s (MTBC) Fast Tech list, #75 on the Dallas 100, and #116 on Deloitte’s Fast 500, and our Vehicle Service Verification module won the General Industry Service Award at the Southwest Oil & Gas Awards gala in Fort Worth, Texas. Additionally, I was named a finalist for the MTBC CEO of the Year, and our CFO, Vincent Hsieh, was a finalist for the Dallas Business Journal’s CFO of the Year.

 

On September 3rd, we announced that Geoforce had raised a significant round of equity financing from Houston Ventures and Palmetto Partners, two of Houston’s most respected investment firms, so that we could increase Geoforce’s product development, customer operations, and geographic expansion at a more rapid rate.

 

Late in the year, we began to offer field installation and other services to augment our hardware and software offerings and deliver our customers an even better and more complete “end-to-end” customer experience. Our software product continued to evolve, as, among other things, we added Driver Invoice Verification and Missed Rental Days to our software offerings. Last but definitely not least, in Q4 2013, we launched the latest version of the GT1 Satellite GPS tracking device that received  IECEx/ATEX Zone 0 certification – making it the world’s first satellite tracking device with that rating.

 

Our year had so many memorable moments, and as we look to 2014 our company can’t help but get excited for what’s to come.

 

 

 

Why are we taking Institutional Equity investment now?

 

Houven_toplogoOn September 3rd, we announced that Geoforce had accepted a significant round of financing from Houston Ventures and Palmetto Partners, two of Houston’s most respected investment firms.  For those who know me well, I thought I’d proactively address a few questions that are surely headed my way, such as:

 

 

  • Why now?  Haven’t you always wanted to maintain full control of Geoforce, so that you can mold it into a company that excelled across the board?

 

  • You’ve made it into your sixth year without institutional equity investors, and the company is already financially sound.  Has something changed? 

 

  • Will anything at Geoforce be different going forward?

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The Geoforce GT-1 GPS Tracker – Made in America

For Geoforce, the decision to manufacture the GT-1 domestically made the best sense for our business.

 

We are very proud of Geoforce’s recently released GT-1 Satellite GPS Asset Tracker’s superior ruggedness, global reach, as well as its revolutionary capabilities.  And we are equally proud of another key difference between the GT-1 and other products on the market.  It is designed and manufactured entirely in the United States.

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Why acquiring Sypes Canyon makes sense for Geoforce

As I’m sure you know by now, on September 1st Geoforce completed the acquisition of Sypes Canyon Communications.

 

It’s funny that Geoforce’s first acquisition would be a satellite device company, because, for years, I swore that we would never build our own hardware. I’ve always believed that the real value delivered is not in a piece of equipment – it comes in using the data to solve business problems for our customers.  So it was always our intention to rely on outside partners to make the hardware we deploy, using a “best of breed” strategy.

 

So what changed? Well, in the end we simply were dissatisfied with the hardware products offered in the market to serve the Oil & Gas industry. We needed something that was more rugged, more global, in fact something revolutionary. The only way to do that was to have something built just for us.

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6th Fastest Growing in DFW – Now That’s Something to Talk About!

I usually don’t get too excited about awards Geoforce receives, and we’ve received a number of them in the past couple of years, like Boston Strategies’ Oil & Gas Supply Chain Excellence Award, and LAGCOE’s Spotlight on New Technology Award. Don’t get me wrong, the recognition is nice, but most awards are somewhat subjective – and they aren’t necessarily an indicator of business success. Remember the company that won the coveted Malcolm Baldridge Quality Award some time ago, and then was bankrupt a few years after that?

 

But I do have to puff out our collective chests a bit about the award that was announced today by the Metroplex Technology Business Council: Geoforce was named the sixth fastest growing technology company in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area for 2009 to 2011. The award is based on very objective criteria: demonstrated revenue growth. Now that’s a meaningful statistic.

 

We narrowly missed the Top Five companies, who were feted at a major event last Friday at the Tech Titans Gala at the Hilton Anatole. Ranking in that group would have been nice, but just missing out does have a couple of silver linings:

 

  1. It gives us a great goal for next year.
  2. That was one less business dinner we had to attend to keep us away from the kids (on a weekend no less).

I really do need to brag about the team a little bit. Each year, Geoforce has managed to double its business, and that would not be possible without an amazing team of people in every area: developers, business development and sales, operations, finance and administration. Kudos to the entire group, this recognition belongs to all of you.

John McNulty Joins Geoforce as Head of Software Product Development

John McNulty Joins Geoforce as Head of Software Product Development

John McNulty Joins Geoforce as Head of Software Product Development

It’s been an exciting and eventful first quarter of 2012 at Geoforce, Inc. We continued our rapid growth and added several meaningful new customers and added new functionality to our GPS asset tracking software platform. To manage these new opportunities, John McNulty has joined Geoforce as head of software product development. In this role, John oversees the strategy and development of the firm’s web-based software platform and products which integrate a range of wireless-based technologies.

 

John brings to Geoforce deep experience identifying, creating and delivering software products for high-growth mobile and telecommunications companies and has the management acumen to ensure we successfully bring to market the new products customers are seeking to expand their businesses.
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The Geoforce Story

President of Geoforce

James MacLean, President of Geoforce

Thanks for stopping by the new Geoforce blog. We are truly excited about the opportunity this forum will offer to interact with our customers around the world. Our team will use this blog to discuss technology, ideas and events that impact our industry, our company and our customers. We hope you will find the discussion insightful, engaging, and enjoyable.
 

For an opening topic, I’ll share the Geoforce Story.

 

Starting my career as a field engineer with Schlumberger, I experienced first-hand the need for real-time visibility of equipment and materials. Performing some of the early deep-water exploration in the Gulf of Mexico for BP required millions of dollars’ worth of equipment to arrive at the right rig – at the right time – or risk downtime that would cost my client as much as $400,000 per day. The job out there is tough enough without having to worry about where the equipment is and how it is doing.  Any assets used must be properly maintained and rugged – without fail.  Through these experiences, the concept for an enterprise-grade technology platform that could provide up-to-the-minute visibility of field equipment began to take shape. Continue reading