Creating value through people, technology and skills.
Creating value through people, technology and skills.
Our business operates in more than 67 countries around the world, employing 30,000 people, and has followed a path of digital transformation for several decades: we’ve been using data for geological research and developing our own algorithms since the 1970s. Our digitalization process recently saw us launch the industrial supercomputer HPC4 at the Green Data Center in Ferrera Erbognone, near Pavia, just south of Milan. We see digital transformation as a way of constantly creating value, which improves access to energy, ensures the safety of our plants and workers, strengthens our economic and operational performance and speeds up operating and decision-making processes, all of which will become ever more data-driven in future. It is a process with roots in the past, but that looks to the future, aiming to make our work ever more integrated and efficient. Our digital transformation covers our entire business model, involving people, technology and skills, and allows us to achieve extraordinary results. One example of this is Zohr, the largest discovery ever made in the Mediterranean Sea, which recently reached its production targets a year ahead of the original Development Plan.
Eni has been embracing digitalization for the past three decades. It was doing so long before the industry started talking about the subject and over time has managed to turn the need to process large volumes of information into a substantial competitive advantage.
Technological progress has always gone hand-in-hand with developing the skills of Eni’s staff, creating a winning blend. The company recently began a far-reaching digital transformation process, involving innovation in workflows and organisational models in addition to new technology. In mid-September, a Digital Business Unit was launched to define the company's digital strategy and implement the transformation in an integrated manner right across the business. The unit is responsible for coming up with digital initiatives, including promoting channels for open innovation, helping to integrate new digital skills and, above all, launching a major change-management programme.
Digital transformation is a great opportunity for all, requiring a change in culture at every level of the company and an innovative approach to work. As a result, in partnership with ECU, a large-scale training programme has already been launched.
Numerous digital transformation initiatives are already underway: a call for innovation aimed at Italian start-ups; the first in-house hackathon; innovative operational training courses using virtual reality; internal training programmes to increase knowledge of the digital world; and forging relationships with universities to attract new talent. There is much more in the pipeline.
The increasing use of digital tools to complement the technical experience of Eni staff represents a major change in working practices. Eni is a true pioneer in the development of advanced analytics practices.
The company’s digital transformation in the Drilling & Completion field is based on three elements: artificial intelligence, used to support operational decision-making; virtual reality, used to simulate operations; and advanced robotics, used to automate drill deck operations. This transformation will allow us to achieve a trio of major objectives: improved safety on the rigs, better performance and better planning of wells.
At the beginning of this year, Eni, in collaboration with Saipem, completed the full digitalization of the Scarabeo 8 rig. This operation allowed a digital twin to be created, enabling a virtual reproduction of the well to be constructed and more difficult operations to be simulated in a safe environment. The digital twin also improves operational safety and efficiency thanks to innovative operational training, which is both quicker to complete and more effective.
We believe that digital technology is the key to sustainable development, accelerating economic growth and improving access to energy and environmental protection. We need to adapt to a world that requires increasing amounts of energy, with a growing population and huge imbalances and economic contrasts between different geographical areas. Digital technology can also help us achieve the sustainable development goals set by the UN for 2030. Energy has a key role to play in the challenges facing the world, which is why we launched a project in partnership with the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment to develop a model that identifies the development goals where our business activities and related projects can make a difference. Digitalization will allow us to cut 12.1 Gt of CO2 by 2030 and will increasingly be the driver behind countries’ economic development.
The Green Data Center is the digital technology hub where we launched HPC4, the most powerful supercomputer in the industrial world. It can complete an incredible 22.4 million billion mathematical operations per second and its calculations aid our exploration work. In addition, the Green Data Center is home to a permanent exhibition called eMage that allows visitors to explore the topic of digitalization, something which has been part of Eni’s DNA from the very beginning.
We are an energy company and as such have a responsibility to be carbon neutral in the long term and to make an increasingly positive impact on society. We have always wanted to create added value in the countries where we work: this is known as the Dual Flag approach and is based on the conviction that oil-producing countries should be self-sufficient in terms of their energy supply. We see access to energy as a fundamental tool for the development of the countries where we have a presence and help to develop local energy systems. Two examples of this approach are the M’Boundi field in Congo and the Kwale Okpai plant in Nigeria, which take advantage of local natural gas supplies. In addition, OCTP in Ghana, the only non-associated gas development project in sub-Saharan Africa dedicated in its entirety to the domestic market, will guarantee at least 15 years of stable, reliable and affordable gas supplies to the country. Eni’s business model is shaped with the creation of long-term value in mind, both for the company and for its stakeholders and shareholders. This is based on achieving its profit and growth targets, promoting efficiency and operational excellence and preventing business risk. Today, Eni’s digital transformation is predominantly founded on asset integrity and safety. For this reason, innovation and digitalization play a key role in our business model and help us look with more confidence to a future based on the circular economy.