Transforming the LNG time scale

16/05/07


Kathleen Eisbrenner has three big hats to wear, but just one strong focus. “We want to get LNG to where the market needs it, anywhere in the world,” she says. “And we want to do it quickly.” As President and CEO of Houston-based Excelerate Energy, Kathleen is in a strong position to do that. “We are a private company with good access to capital and a very innovative and motivated commercial and technical team,” she explains. “So we can move quickly and by using proven concepts in LNG in new ways we have been able to transform the LNG timescale.”

Kathleen combines the roles of strategic planner, day-to-day commercial manager and mentor for her staff. “I trained as a civil engineer, worked as a pipeline engineer and spent all my career in the gas business,” she says. “It is so much fun to be able to bring that experience to the global LNG market, and to see our concepts leading the way.” Excelerate Energy has developed the Energy Bridge system, which uses regasification technology on LNG vessels and smart delivery solutions to get LNG supplies into markets without the long delays associated with conventional LNG terminals.

“We have our US Gulf Gateway working now,” she says, “and we hope to have our North-East Gateway working by the end of 2007. But before the end of 2006 we will be delivering LNG direct from our ships into the HP pipes at Teesside, UK, and we will also begin moving LNG into Pakistan next year.”

Excelerate has been a technical leader in combining offshore discharging technology with regasification and LNG shipping, and by the end of this year will be operating six LNG vessels, with two more, larger LNG RV vessels building in Korea for 2008 delivery, and a further two which Excelerate’s partner Exmar is building will probably also join the Energy Bridge fleet. Kathleen says the technology has worked exactly as expected, and the new ships are slightly larger and more efficient but follow the same basic principles. “However,” she says, “more than technology, I see our core competence as the ability to get the right permits and get operating quickly where gas is needed. In the UK we got all the permits in 12 weeks, and in Pakistan it was even quicker. We effectively can become another well feeding an existing distribution system, and as we carefully choose established local partners, that smoothes the path. We are going to be rolling this out globally wherever the price signals are right.”

Partnership is a key part of Kathleen’s philosophy. “We will soon have over $2bn of assets in this business,” she says. “And we have learned a lot too, so our message to anyone else who wants to get into this is clear - come and talk to us. We make a good, flexible partner.”

When Excelerate was looking for a global technology and verification partner, they chose
Bureau Veritas. “We wanted a global outlook, a company which was receptive to new ideas
and technology, and which had global credibility in the LNG field to certify our new ideas,”
explains Kathleen. “Bureau Veritas gave us all of that and are a pleasure to work with too.”

Contact us

Bureau Veritas

Phone: +33 1 42 91 52 91

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