Petris’ plans to merge with Application Sevice Provider (ASP) GeoNet Services, revealed in the September issue of PDM, have been thwarted. Late last month, GeoNet closed its doors for good.
GeoNet had an innovative business model as a high profile advocate of upstream e-business. The idea was to offer end-users access to software on a pay-as-you-go basis, eliminating costly up-front license fees.
In the event, GeoNet failed to reach critical mass and its backers were not prepared to fund the company through the merger with Petris. Recent events did not help, as GeoNet president Eric Deliac told PDM, “Following the takeover of GeoNet shareholder ISIS by Coflexip, and the attack on the World Trade Center, raising further finance has proved impossible.”
Petris is still planning to resuscitate GeoNet’s business and intends to couple its ASP offering with the Petris Winds Enterprise data management system.
Petris president Jim Pritchett told PDM, “Our plans remain as reported in PDM, except that not all the shareholders are participating in the additional investment (only ours). We have hired some of the key and former GeoNet employees, including chairman Pat Herbert, and are starting an ASP service at Petris with the same product vision. We will keep the name Petris.”
GeoNet’s demise is likely to be felt strongly by some of the 70 software vendors that were hoping to use the ASP service. ASP offered smaller vendors the chance of reducing their individual marketing and support effort, by working through the GeoNet hub.
What remains to be tested is the viability of an independent ASP business in the upstream. With Schlumberger’s Livequest and Landmark’s GrandBasin, the major vendors offer their own ASP service. Although a pay-per-use service for smaller vendors appeared attractive, GeoNet’s high profile failure has likely dented confidence in the new technology.
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