PetroBank ‘reseller’ role for Landmark. (June 1997)

Landmark’s alliance with IBM extends offering to Data Bank arena.

Hitherto, Landmark has been conspicuous by its absence in the deployment of national and large oil company databanks. With an OpenExplorer view of, simultaneously, a PetroBank bulk data store and an OpenWorks database this situation is set to change.


Landmark Graphics Corporation has just announced that it has expanded its business relationship with IBM Corporation to include a value-added reseller (VAR) agreement for IBM PetroBank Master Data Store. Customers can now look to Landmark to provide "an integrated E&P information solution from desktop applications through archived data management". "Data has become the new currency of exploration and production, and companies around the world need a flexible and scaleable information environment that doesn't require them to replicate data into a specified format or into a single repository," said John Gibson, executive vice president of Landmark's Integrated Products Group. "We are pleased to announce this new agreement with IBM that provides our customers with even more choices so they have the most usable and appropriate solution to meet their specific business needs." Chip Nemesi, general manager of IBM's Process and Petroleum Industry Solutions, said, "Customers tell us every day that their major exploration and production data issues are the challenges of accessing, sharing and analyzing data in a timely fashion. The linkage of Landmark's information management solutions with IBM PetroBank Master Data Store provides the broadest level of exploration and production data management functionality available on the market today." Landmark's information management solution provides "extensive flexibility for creating networked environments that can merge data from multiple sources and formats". This approach "provides the flexibility to develop a scaleable solution that leverages existing as well as new data sources".


Now of course this marriage will involve some repackaging probably on both sides of the equation. After all, the OpenExplorer/OpenWorks combination is being marketed as a data delivery system covering the corporate to project levels of access. Landmark categorize OpenExplorer as their new "regional or enterprise data management system that is designed to support distributed asset teams with an open, scaleable and flexible environment to meet specific business needs throughout exploration and production". While PetroBank is described in the same breath as "an exploration and production technical data management solution for archiving data at the corporate, regional or national level with highly secure data access, retrieval and delivery capabilities".


Spot the difference – both OpenExplorer and PetroBank offer the end user an ArcView based GIS front end to the corporate datastore! While the announcement of the PetroBank/VAR agreement does offer Landmark a fast track to the regional databank marketplace it does take the wind out of the sails of OpenExplorer. In our humble opinion, it would have been "cleaner" to position OpenExplorer as Landmark's corporate to project data management system, rather than to cloud the issue with the PetroBank hook-up. After all despite all the claims about POSC compliance, Epicentre based data models and all than, PetroBank is based on a very early release of Epicentre, while the seismic part of OpenWorks will be based on the Discovery subset if and when that appears. In other words, they will not be compatible. And an E&P shop will have two different databases using different data models to maintain and understand. Of course a link up between OpenExplorer and a regional PetroBank extra muros would be a very useful extension to the vision offered to the explorer.

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