History of the EIC

Celebrating 80 years of the EIC

It’s been an incredible journey for the EIC and its members, starting way back in London in 1943 with 13 petroleum equipment manufacturers.

Over the years, we’ve expanded our products, services and offices around the world, now supporting over 950 member companies across all energy sectors.
In February 1943, thirteen firms met in London to form the Council of British Manufacturers of Petroleum Equipment (CBMPE), as we were known then, to look at how companies could benefit when the post-war reconstruction of the oil industry began.
The CBMPE's first official Executive Committee meeting is held in March. The first item on the agenda was to appoint the first Chairman, Mr S. T. Robson, and the first Honorary Secretary (role now known as Chief Executive), Mr Thomas Lacey Bonstow, affectionately known as TLB. Under their inspiring leadership, the council’s journey began.
In June, the CBMPE formed its first committee: Advisory Engineering. Back then, it had been the council that spoke to operators and then converted that into news that was distributed by paper and in committees to its members.
In October, Engineering Liaison Committee formed to garner oil companies’ problems and needs of members.
First meeting for members is held in January. Our first ever speaker, Dr. A. E. Dunstan, was present.
The month of February, with the council completing one year with a full-time staff of two, was packed with news: membership grows to 100 companies, a Finance Committee is formed and the first ever monthly summary of weekly news is sent to members.
First edition of Classified List, a publication with all members and their offerings, is published in November.
Publications Committee formed in April.
In September, the Economic Committee was formed and the first Guide to British Petroleum Equipment (The “Guide”) was developed. Today's incarnation of the Guide is EICSupplyMap, a fully searchable, online database of the detailed capabilities of all 3,500 British energy supply chain companies with £1m-plus revenue.
First overseas trade mission to the Caribbean is carried out. It took three months and the trip was done by ship.
Representatives from the CBMPE were part of the Petroleum Equipment Industry Committee of the British Standards Institution (BSI).
By the time we had 200 members, the British Petroleum Equipment News is launched. It's published online since 2016 and is now called Inside Energy.
Following the mission to the Caribbean in 1946, S. T. Robson toured the Middle East in late 1947 “with a view to investigating the possibilities of the sale of United Kingdom equipment in this area”. Robson’s itinerary was carried out by trains, planes and ship. He was welcomed in Bahrain by Russel Brown, General Manager of the Bahrain Petroleum Co. (BAPCO).
Overseas Representation Organising Committee formed in May.
The CBMPE completed its first mission to the United States.
Mission to the Netherlands.
The CBMPE was registered on 30 March 1951. Its HQ was located at 79 Buckingham Palace Road .
Information Service, what we would know today as our Market Intelligence services, is developed.
The CBMPE had a staff of 13 employees by December 1953.
First time that the CBMPE engaged with representatives from other energy sources after an approach from the UK Atomic Energy Commission in June.
First mission to Canada, which later originated our first Country Report.
Council’s first Inaugural Chemical and Petroleum Engineering Exhibition (CPEE), jointly arranged by the CBMPE and British Chemical Plant Manufacturers Association (BCPMA) during June.
The CBMPE was behind the creation of the British Refinery Constructors (BREFCON) consortium, which in September 1958 was awarded a contract by Petrobras worth £4m (£65m today) for the supply of equipment to the new Duque de Caxias Refinery in Rio de Janeiro.
The British Oil Equipment Credits (BOEC), a wholly owned subsidiary of the CBMPE, is created. According to CBMPE’s own words, BOEC was “formed to promote schemes for the sale on deferred terms to overseas purchasers of capital plant and equipment made in the United Kingdom for the petroleum industry".
First stand took to an exhibition at the 5th World Petroleum Congress, which took place in 1959 in New York.
Our fourth mission was to Argentina and Chile.
Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) was a BOEC client, with £7 million in orders.
Our address at the time was 2, Princes Row, Buckingham Palace Road.
The CBMPE has its first ‘composite stand’, the pre-cursor to the successful UK Pavilion model we have today, at Inter-Oil.
A fifth mission was carried out, again in South America (Chile, Colombia, Peru and Venezuela).
A mission to the Middle East took place, covering Iran, Iraq, and Kuwait.
Kuwait was visited again by a CBMPE mission. Saudi Arabia was also part of the route.
The council marked its Silver jubilee with the first of two Brighton Conferences, based on the then new idea of ‘Talks with Users’, to bring member companies and key oil operators together. Deemed a great success, it was afterwards recommended to continue regular and direct dialogue between members and operators.
Mexico received the Council’s 8th mission.
First time that the CBMPE and the Board of Trade ran a joint venture exhibition, in Rotterdam at OPEX 1968. Eleven member companies were on the stand, helped by the National Economic Development Council.
The CBMPE led another trade delegation to Kuwait starting between late 1970 and April 1971.
First council move into North Sea Operations: in July 1971, three members decided to "take the plunge" into the field of servicing and supplying equipment for North Sea Operations. Shell and BP talked to members about the “enormous” opportunities for British manufacturers.
In October, CBMPE was involved in the International Exhibition of Machinery and Equipment for the Chemicals, Foodstuffs and Food and Drink Industries in Utrech. Our HQ in 1971 was located at 118 Southwark Street.
Formation of the Joint and Contractors Committees in November.
North Sea Action Committee formed in February.
The CBMPE sponsored two one-day petrochemical exhibitions in the Netherlands.
We partnered with the British Overseas Trade Board to take UK companies to South America’s first energy exhibition. Energy ‘78 was held in São Paulo, Brazil, on 10-16 April 1978. The CBMPE HQ was located at 178-202 Great Portland Street in London.
A really pivotal change for the council happened when a new ‘Working Party for Energy’ was appointed by the Board with these Terms of Reference: “It is agreed that it is desirable that CBMPE should extend its field of activity to cover the energy industry as a whole."
Broadening its member base and activities, the CBMPE changes its name to the Energy Industries Council (EIC) and opens its new London office in Notting Hill Gate. Membership grows to 250 companies.
Formation of Energy Advisory Committee in July 1981 to widen scope of Council activities.
Looking to re-establish links after the revolution, a mission to Iran is planned.
Public Relations Committee reformed in November.
First EIC seminar on the environment, Energy and the Environment, covering atmospheric emissions, water pollution, government attitudes, onshore exploitation of energy resources, nuclear energy, and alternative energy. The Department of Energy considered it to be “Terrific. It’s about time an organisation such as the EIC discussed this subject”.
Formation of the Power Committee.
A Water Committe is formed to meet member demand in the water and waste management markets.
The council celebrated its golden jubilee by holding a series of events to raise money for the MacMillan Nurses Fund charity, raising £60,000 in 1993
First EIC stands taken at both OTC and ONS.
In what was termed the ‘Way Ahead’ mission statement of 1995, EIC described itself as: “A major trade association serving interests and activities of our members in the following industries - oil & gas, petrochemical, chemical, power generation, transmission and distribition, nuclear waste processing and storage, water, waste water and sewage processing, and coal processing.”
The EIC opens its first office outside the UK in Houston, United States.
Similarly to the golden jubilee's donation figures, impressive levels of funds were raised for the Save the Children charity and its patron HRH the Princess Royal, Princess Anne, attended the Annual Dinner in 1997.
EIC Vision 99 was presented to the Board with the straplines ‘energizing your business’ by ‘providing a unique global service’. Central to Vision 99 were several objectives, including to open EIC offices in key energy centres around the world, to offer a real-time global interactive intelligence system to members, and to be the voice of the energy industry. This clear and inspiring vision, accompanied by a ‘£1m Expansion Programme’ press release, enabled huge scope for growth and global influence for the EIC in the decades to follow, and the council arguably is still following that vision today.
EIC project lists started to be sent by email for the first time. Two years before, the council’s ‘Communications Working Group’ noted that EIC distributed almost half a million pages of information to its 240 members annually, urging a more paperless approach.
An EIC office opens in Aberdeen.
The EIC's first ever UK Pavilion is organised at ADIPEC, in Abu Dhabi.
The EIC launches The Projects Database, a forerunner of what would become EICDataStream. The Singapore and Rio offices are opened.
During Rio Oil & Gas in October 2000, a local paper hailed the “largest trade mission ever brought to Rio de Janeiro”, with approximately 100 companies. The delegation was led by Stephen Byers, Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, alongside the EIC, NOF and SDI.
The first ever EIC Connect (initially known as EIConnect) event takes place in Manchester. EIC Global Energy magazine is launched, later to be renamed and rebranded as Energy Focus.
The Dubai office is opened.
The EIC registers its 500th member.
The Teesside office is opened.
EICDataStream is launched, a complete rewrite of the Projects Database, continuing its journey to become one of the world’s leading CAPEX project-tracking databases. An EIC Training department is formed.
The EIC’s Head Office moves to a new location on the South Bank of the River Thames in Vauxhall. Prince Andrew was part of the opening ceremony.
The EIC opens an office in Beijing.
The EIC’s Asia Pacific (APAC) office, previously in Singapore, moves to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
In September, the EIC APAC Opening Ceremony is officiated by Grant Shapps, then Chairman of the Conservative Party, and Wee Yiaw Hin, EVP Petronas. In attendance were former EIC CEO Claire Miller, CFO Ian Molloy, Head of EIC APAC Azman Nasir and more than 100 guests and members.
The third major version of EICDataStream is launched, adding new capabilities, greater depth to project data and a new, simpler user interface.
Publication of the first Survive & Thrive report, a critical annual assessment of the successful growth strategies used by energy supply chain leaders to adapt to challenging market conditions.
EICAssetMap is launched, the only operations and maintenance database to map all major UK facilities across all energy sectors.
Non-UK legal entity companies now welcomed into EIC membership – the first of them being Al-Yaseah, now a Board member, in the UAE.
EIC Connect events held in Indonesia and the US for the first time.
The EIC celebrates its 75th birthday and surpasses the 600-member mark.
EICDataStream tracks over 21,000 projects worth a cumulative US$10tn. First Market Intelligence hub set up in Kuala Lumpur.
The EIC Connect event model is taken to Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia for the first time.
The first edition of the Brazil Energy Future Summit was organised in Rio, with an evening reception at the MAR museum.
The EIC Connect event model is taken to Mexico and South Korea for the first time.
EICSupplyMap launched, the only UK database of all 3,500 British energy supply chain businesses and their detailed capabilities (defined as companies with revenues surpassing £1m).
A second Brazil Energy Future Summit was held in Rio by the EIC. In São Paulo, in partnership with the Brazilian Machinery Association (ABIMAQ), we arranged the Internationalisation in the Oil and Gas Sector event. In Brazil, the EIC also led the annual UK & Brazil: Partners in Energy trade mission.
In celebration and recognition of the 25th anniversary of the Houston office, the City of Houston, Mayor Sylvester Turner and Governor Greg Abbott officially proclaimed 28 August 2020 as Energy Industries Council Day.
EIC Consult and External Affairs function launched. A second Market Intelligence hub is set up in Rio.
ExxonMobil joins EIC as our first operator member.
100 members milestone reached in Malaysia.
UK Energy Supply Chain (UKESC) ministerial taskforce set up co-chaired by EIC CEO Stuart Broadley and UK Energy and Export ministers.
EIC wins National Pavilion Award at ADIPEC.
Two EIC ‘firsts’ reached: 800 members (year average) and 100 employees around the world.
EICDataStream tracks over 12,000 projects worth a cumulative US$13tn.
EICTV and Event Solutions function launched.