Cameron International knows how to work under pressure. A leading manufacturer, provider, and servicer of oil and gas industry equipment, the company makes products that control pressure at oil and gas wells, including blowout preventers, chokes, controls, wellheads, and valves. It also makes integral and separable reciprocating engines and compressors used in oil and gas and power-generation applications. Cameron International sells its products, which are used for offshore, onshore, and subsea applications, under more than 60 brand names including Ajax, Cameron, Cooper-Bessemer, Demco, LeTourneau, Natco, Petreco, and Willis.
The company provides oil and gas production systems used to control the pressure and flows of oil and gas wells. Through its Valves segment, Cameron International provides valves and other equipment used to control the flow of oil and gas through wellheads, gathering lines, and transmission systems. Through its compression segment, formed from the merger of the company's Cooper Energy Services and Cooper Turbocompressor businesses, Cameron International provides aftermarket parts, engine compressors, turbo chargers, and controls.
In 2010 a BP rig in the Gulf of Mexico exploded and sank, spewing oil into the Gulf. The blowout preventer on the system, made by Cameron International, failed to work properly. A board of inquiry was set up to find out the cause of the disaster, and a separate government report found that the company's blowout preventer proved incapable of stopping the high-pressure flow from the doomed well. The company claimed that its equipment met industry standards, and it was not found liable in any legal proceeding, although it did pay $82.5 million to settle with BP.
Despite this incident Cameron International reported a major growth in revenue and income in 2010, thanks to a rebounding global economy, high oil prices, and increased demand for oil and gas exploration and production activity, especially in the shallow shelf Gulf of Mexico and West Africa. An increase in demand for valves for pipeline and refinery projects globally also drove up the company's revenues.
Cameron International reported robust revenue growth in 2011, reflecting a strong global oil and gas exploration market (especially in North America) which resulted in increased demand for the company's products across all of its business segments. But higher operating costs and litigation and settlement costs related to the BP well incident dragged down the firm's net income in 2011.
Cameron International has pursued a strategy of growth through joint ventures and the acquisition of companies that complement its existing core businesses. In 2012 the company formed a 60%-owned joint venture with Halliburton, OneSubsea, to make and develop products, systems, and services for the subsea oil and gas market. Cameron will contribute its existing subsea division and receive $600 million from Schlumberger. Schlumberger will contribute its Framo, Surveillance, Flow Assurance and Power and Controls businesses.
Cameron International moved into the lucrative shale market in the US Northeast in 2011 through the acquisition of West Virginia-based Industrial Machine & Fabrication, a leading aftermarket service provider for reciprocating engines and compressors.
That year it also expanded its drilling equipment portfolio, buying LeTourneau Technologies Drillings Systems and Offshore Products divisions from Joy Global for $375 million.
Cameron International traces its roots to the mid-1800s when it made steam engines to generate power for plants and textile and rolling mills. – less