A not so ordinary show

The oil and gas calendar is absolutely jam-packed with trade shows. From big showpiece events like OTC and Offshore Europe to more niche events like the annual SPE Deepwater Drilling and Completions Conference, there really is, to borrow a well-worn cliché, something for everyone.

Travel the world over and you will be hard pushed to find a trade show to match that of ONS in Norway. Set amongst some of the most spectacular scenery in Europe, the conference itself can only be described as a 'festival of oil and gas'. A show where the smallest start-ups can exhibit directly alongside the biggest industry players and where the jamboree atmosphere of the old town Harbour offers the delegation a chance to catch-up with colleagues from around the globe.

The 2014 conference was no different and from our week there it was easy to see why it remains a favourite of many organisations. Norway as a country has immense pride in its oil and gas industry and walking around, the passion for innovation and new technology was clear to see. Throughout the week we saw Royal visits, children and industry CEOs converse, the sharing of knowledge, war stories and ideas with companies of all sizes; it was really a thrill to witness.

As proof of this thirst for new perspectives, the opening address of this year’s exhibition was given by Elon Musk, the South African entrepreneur responsible for TESLA motors amongst other things and one of the world's biggest voices for renewable energy, not, oil and gas.

On a personal note, my week in Norway was a richly rewarding one. You don’t realise how much you get from being at an event like this until you look back. From the knowledge, the people and the music (cue performance from one-hit wonders and Norwegian “superstars” Ylvis) ONS 2014 was an unforgettable experience. Bring on the next show.