2009 Winner: Outstanding Commercial Achievement in Alberta Science and Technology (>25)
Company Helps Oil Industry Solve Complex Problems
What began 32 years ago as a University of Calgary spin-off research company founded by a professor and funded with government money, has grown into one of the world’s most successful reservoir simulation software companies. Computer Modelling Group Ltd. (CMG) was first known for its expertise in heavy oil. It has since expanded into all aspects of reservoir flow modelling, focusing on the development and delivery of reservoir simulation technologies that assist oil and gas companies to determine reservoir capacities and maximize potential recovery.
Importance of Simulation
“We are a very big value-add to oil companies that use our software,” says Ken Dedeluk, president and CEO of CMG. “They can increase their asset value significantly by using our technology.”
An increase in asset recovery by 1- or 2 per cent can make a difference of millions of dollars to oil companies. Mr. Dedeluk says companies involved in extracting heavy oil from bitumen don’t jump into the very expensive process without using simulation first to test the productivity of the reservoir. “Even companies with zero production use our technology to prove up assets for the future,” Mr. Dedeluk explains.
Extensive Global Presence
CMG went public 12 years ago and is traded on the TSX Stock Exchange under the symbol CMG. With a customer base of over 360 oil and gas companies, consulting firms and research institutions in more than 45 countries, CMG is one of the largest independent providers of reservoir simulation software in the world.
CMG’s unique approach to the development of numerical simulation technology, coupled with past and current client input, has advanced CMG’s technologies to the point where the company can solve the extremely complex problems and issues encountered in today’s petroleum industry. Mr. Dedeluk attributes CMG’s success to its continued focus on research and development.
Reinvesting in Tomorrow
“Our R&D spending increased by a compound rate of 24 per cent over the last six years,” he explains. “We reinvest 20 per cent of our revenue into research, and we hire people from every corner of the world to develop and enhance our products.” Of 124 staff, 60 have a M.Sc. or a PhD.
CMG seems to have hit on a winning strategy. The company’s lowest revenue growth year in the last seven years has been 18 per cent. “Our biggest accomplishment has been continuous growth,” Mr. Dedeluk says. “It’s also our biggest challenge. We are just keeping up with the demand for our product in what has been nine consecutive record years.”
Most of CMG’s clients are return customers. And that’s where CMG will continue to focus its resources. “We are keeping up with customer demands for new features,” Mr. Dedeluk says. “We are enhancing our products by doing the research and development on what our customers tell us they need.”