20-Questions with COO Henrik Lundin

As Mr. Henrik Lundin transitions from Norway to New Zealand to take on his new role as COO with TAG Oil, we wanted to give shareholders a chance to get to know him a little better.

Below are 20 questions that should give you more insight into the life of Henrik, as he leads TAG into its next phase of growth.

1. Give us a little bit of background on your work history.

I started work with Tanganyika Oil in the fields of northern Syria for about three years, transitioning into reservoir engineering towards the end. Then I moved on to Lundin Petroleum, first in Geneva and later on to Norway, where I worked as a senior reservoir engineer on Johan Sverdrup and Edvard Grieg, to name two projects.

2. What about your education?

I graduated from Colorado School of Mines with a bachelor of science in petroleum engineering. The rest is all about learning in the office and in the field.

3. What are your proudest work achievements to date?

I helped appraise the Johan Sverdrup oil field from a reserves range of 100 to 400 million barrels of oil equivalent to its current range of 1.65 to 3 billion barrels of oil equivalent.

4. You spent time in the field in Syria – can you tell us a bit about that experience?

Syria is a country with a proud and long history. I found the people there to be very friendly and I’m glad I got to live and work there in a time before ISIS. In terms of work, it was good to be out learning the ropes in the field, because you start to understand that everything isn’t as clear cut as it can seem from behind a desk.

5. What are the three things you hope to do to improve TAG Oil as a company?

First, I want to contribute to further building on the TAG spirit, which is so strong, and the organization’s teamwork. Then, to increase production and reserves from existing fields. And finally, my goal is to help grow the company both through the drill bit and through M&A.

6. What will take top priority on your list of responsibilities for TAG over the next 24 months?

First priority is to get the waterflood going at our Cheal field. Then prioritize the exploration targets, look at M&A opportunities, and always, to review processes and costs along the way.

7. What excites you the most about TAG Oil and why did you join?

I saw TAG as a company that has a lot of potential within its existing acreage. It’s also one of the few small companies that I saw could survive the low oil price, and come out stronger with a large potential to grow.

8. Moving across the world to take on a new job is a substantial commitment. What are you going to miss most about Norway?

Family and friends, of course, and the long summer nights.

9. What do you expect to enjoy most about New Zealand?

The warm, intelligent, accessible people, and the stunning nature. New Zealand is one of the few places that can compete with Norway for that.

10. The Lundin name is famous in natural resources circles. What is your relationship with the Lundin family?

It was my uncle, Adolf Lundin, who founded the Lundin Group of companies, and now it is my two cousins, Lukas and Ian, who are running it. So I have oil in my blood.

11. TAG is commencing a waterflood program imminently – what is your view on how much production and resource uplift this should deliver?

With a waterflood you could see a doubling of the recovery factor. So while I’m not given to predictions like this, and it’s hard to estimate the exact uplift in production, an educated guess is 50%.

12. Where do you see TAG in three years?

Double – if not triple – the production, and having expanded into a second country.

13. What is the greatest challenge you see TAG facing in the near future?

A big goal is getting a second producing asset. We have good opportunities lined up.

14. Where do you see the price of Brent oil at the end of this year and next?

That is, of course, the million dollar question. I know the oil price will eventually rise again, but how fast that will happen is hard to predict.

15. Compared to other projects you’ve worked on, what technical or operational similarities (or differences) do you see in the Taranaki Basin?

I can draw similarities to my work in Syria with regards to the operations. And I hope to bring in some of the technical thinking from my offshore experience in Norway to TAG. There are some strong correlations between Norway and the Taranaki.

16. Are there any technical or operational techniques you are excited to try in New Zealand that have been successful elsewhere?

Waterflood, for sure. This is one of the most common practices to increase oil recovery and I see a lot of opportunity for TAG wells.

17. How would you describe the TAG opportunity to future investors?

TAG Oil is a focused company with little debt, a strong foundation in existing assets, and with a truly great potential for growth.

18. What one businessman/woman do you most admire and why?

I feel obliged to say my uncle, Adolf Lundin, and with good reason. He saw potential where others didn’t and was willing to take calculated risks. I try to live by his motto of “No guts, no glory!”

19. What do you foresee as the key to our industry’s future growth?

As transportation is the largest consumer of crude oil, I see a continued strong growth for gasoline driven cars from the developing world. In 2011, about two-thirds of all cars were in OECD countries. (OECD is the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, an organization of 34 countries founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade.) From here on out, I believe the middle class in non OECD countries will continue to grow, hence increasing the demand for cars.

20. What is the best advice you ever received when embarking on your career?

If you do something you love, then everything becomes more fun.