The legacy transformation of BRADEAFRICA from a consulting company to a group of companies with interests in Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda is largely due to the premium the company places on its values and human capital. “Our organizational values describes our core principles.” For any institution such as the family unit to be enduring, core values such as integrity, reliability, respect, safety and creativity, must be closely knit. “This is the philosophy behind the recent overhaul of our logo, as this points towards our growth and our strategic improvement plans to maximize shareholder values,” Horace Enemugwem, Business Development Manager for BRADE says in a recent interview with the Africa Oil+Gas Report.
AOGR: Three years ago or thereabouts BRADE was at the verge of breaking into the Ghanaian industry. It eventually did after overcoming various government-imposed challenges such as the delay in getting the Petroleum Commission Permit. It then organized a synergized training secession between its Nigerian and Ghanaian staff to boost business development. Today, the reality of COVID-19 is with us. How would you say those training have impacted the BRADE business during this period?
BRADE: The 2016/2017 local and foreign trainings for BRADE staff in Ghana and Nigeria was very impactful. We achieved several benefits from the trainings, including enhancement of our capacity to deliver quality services, improvement of our work-culture and development of teamwork & leadership skills among our staff. Now, we do not just do things right, we get it right the first time and every time. We have followed up those trainings with even more in Europe and North America. And the later have facilitated business opportunities and strategic alliances with key OEM’s in Europe and the Americas.
The leadership skills acquired from the trainings aided our business focus and resilience through the pandemic. We are hopeful that other values gathered from the trainings will be utilized as upstream activities pick up in 2021. In this regard, we executed some Engineering projects in 2018 and 2019 for international clients
AOGR: Is Uganda still a big deal for you? How so?
BRADE: Yes, Uganda is still a big deal for us. Uganda is a developing market, with several opportunities and a huge growth potential. We are aware of the major developmental projects coming up in the Oil & Gas industry in Uganda and BRADE is well positioned to participate locally, with a team of experienced professionals and our investments in technology and knowledge transfer. We recently participated in two major tender opportunities for the development of Tilenga Upstream Project for Total E&P. We have received some interests to partner with globally renowned OEMs to deliver projects for Lake Albert development. Hopefully things will move quicker now with a clear plan to take FID after the tax issues between Uganda and the IOCs were resolved.
AOGR: Let‘s talk about why BRADE rebrands. What is the philosophy behind the overhaul of your logo and name? I mean, I knew you first as BRADE Consulting, then BRADE West Africa and now BRADE Africa. Should we expect any more changes in your identity or is this the real deal?
BRADE: The philosophy behind the overhaul of our logo points towards our growth, the premium we place on our values (integrity, reliability, respect, safety and creativity, all qualities that are synonymous with an enduring institution: the family unit) and our strategic improvement plans to maximize shareholder values. Our new visual language is bolder, more colorful, modern, clearer and simpler.
We commenced operation, from inception as a company (BRADE Consulting Limited) and grew into a group of companies (e.g BRADE West Africa Ghana), with interests in the Ghanaian Market and then BRADE Oil & Gas Uganda, to service the nascent industry in Uganda and Eastern Africa. BRADE has grown into an emerging African conglomerate based in Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda with business interests and operations across Africa. The Group’s activities span petroleum and energy services, manufacturing, consulting services and chemical solutions. Our new brand identity marks the start of a new era for BRADE Group, and it will not be changed soon.
AOGR: The BRADE Legacy is something I find very interesting. Could it be part of the reason you added the red tinge to your new logo?
BRADE: Yes. The red tinge was added to our new logo, as a visual depiction of the premium we place on our values as mentioned earlier. This ties into the BRADE Legacy. Our new logo is modern, clearer, and simpler. In the new logo, a new red tone has now been added to the letter “A” in the brand name.
AOGR: Why should anyone care about BRADE Africa aside from the legacy you are trying to build?
BRADE: Asides the legacy, BRADE is proudly African with 100% globally experienced indigenous workforce. At BRADE, we do not just do things right, we get it right the first time and every time. That is something people should care about.
AOGR: I know BRADE prides itself with having hands-on technical and management staff that are industry certified. When it comes to well engineering, what are your main strengths?
BRADE: Our main strengths in Well Engineering lies in our highly trained and experienced well-engineering team, ability to deliver well-engineering projects to budget and schedule, good relationship with our clients and our excellent work ethics. We deploy our best personnel and technology on every project to provide innovative solutions to technical challenges and improve the performance and economics of our Client’s assets of operators. We design cost-effective wells that deliver value to shareholders.
AOGR: What helped you manage the effects of COVID-19 and how do you intend to reinvent yourself post COVID-19?
BRADE: Our diversity. Although most of our contracted opportunities were suspended, our diversity and business interests helped us sustain cashflow and kept us busy in other service offerings. We have learnt a lot from the pandemic – and presently, we have equipped our offices with upgraded IT infrastructure to support “Work From Home.”
AOGR: What projects are you currently working on in Nigeria, Ghana, and Uganda if any?
BRADE: We have two ongoing contracts with SEPLAT Petroleum Development Company in Nigeria. We are also in the beginning stages of 2 additional field development projects in Nigeria.
Several other contracted projects have been suspended due to COVID-19 pandemic and the decline of upstream activities due to the low price of crude. Hence, we are not part of any project in Ghana at this time. Uganda should come into play in terms of projects, once we succeed in the current “Tendering” stage.
AOGR: What future plans do you have in the pipeline for expansion beyond your current operating locations in Africa?
BRADE: Our current operating locations are strategic, for easy deployment of our services and products across the sub-Saharan region in Africa. Our current operating locations also serve as launching terminals for deployment of resources and solutions for projects in nearby countries. Our plan is to consolidate and grow our operations across our existing locations, in preparation for resumption of upstream Oil & Gas activities in 2021 and beyond.
The Nigerian Oil & Gas industry promises a flurry of activities in the short term, say 6 months to 18 months. We are prepared for that. Realise that the Nigerian Oil & Gas space is quite large, when compared to any of the markets we currently play today.
AOGR: Finally, the call right now seems to be for renewables! In fact, some governments of the world have been taking proactive steps to move away from fossil fuels, the natural resource that Africa depends on heavily for its sustenance. Do you see this impacting the BRADE bottom-line in the next 10 years for instance?
BRADE: Truly, the world is shifting towards a more diversified energy mix to achieve net-zero emissions and a lot of support is being given to renewables at the moment. The argument out there is that what we need is a supplementary source of energy and not a total elimination of pre-existing source which is fossil fuel. Efforts are being made to make fossil fuel cleaner and environmentally friendly hence it will remain dominant for the next 30-plus years to provide the supply needed by the global demand.
Having said the above, we have our thinking caps on. Our Consulting arm is actively working on this. Let’s just say it is still early to let the cat out of the bag on our plans.