Digitalization Drives Sustainability and Financial Performance for Equinor

Credit: Arne Reidar Mortensen/Equinor.

Equinor, Norway’s energy giant formally known as Statoil, is majority owned by the Norwegian government and has operations in 36 countries around the world. It offers an excellent case study for the journey of digital transformation and what it can achieve in terms of a company transformation.

Åshild Hanne Larsen, chief iniformation officer and senior vice president for corporate information technology at Statoil; Ouriel Lancry, partner at Bain and Company; and Mehran GulProject lead for digital transformation of industries at the World Economic Forum recently wrote about Statoil’s path to digitization in “A Step-by-Step Guide to Digital Transformation” for the World Economic Forum.

They wrote that, “transforming a company into a digital enterprise is tough. Many companies have had some success, but few have completed this metamorphosis. No comprehensive playbook, or even checklist, exists for executives to follow.”

According to Equinor, however, and the authors’ case study, the transformation has been a successful one, with the company trumpeting that, “digitization is on everyone’s lips these days—but, at Equinor, it’s already part of our DNA. Our story is one of innovation and technological development.”

The company goes on to say that the technology is not an end in itself.

Rather, Equinor is investing in digitization, “not because digitization and innovation are goals in themselves, but because digitization is a key enabler for our strategy. We will produce oil and gas more effectively with lower greenhouse gas emissions, be a leader within carbon capture and storage, and invest substantially in renewable energy.”

Trine Svalestad, head of digitalisation on the Johan Sverdrup field, said that digitization is “about streamlining and being more efficient,” which, in turn, frees her up from repetitive tasks, allowing her to challenge herself and pursue innovation.

Svalestad said, “Our job is to use digitalization to increase safety, improve earnings, and reduce carbon emissions on a field which, at peak production, will account for 25% of all Norwegian oil and gas production.”

That’s a theme echoed by Bjorn Otto Sverdrup, senior vice president of sustainability at Equinor, who told Forbes, “we really believe that technology and digitalization will turn the industry upside down, for the better. Technology has the potential to rapidly bring down costs, make operations safer, and lower our carbon footprint. And digitalization is a key priority.”

And Equinor is using technology to be more sustainable, too, he said, noting the company is using “sensors that can detect methane leaks at the wellsite and provide real-time data to understand what’s really happening.” This helps the team fix problems as fast as possible when they appear.

“It’s not just about running a smarter business. It’s also about running a more sustainable business,” Sverdrup said.

Read the full story here.

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