SIMMONS EDECO is the joint forces of Simmons Group — a Canadian company that began operations as a drilling contractor in 1962 — and EDECO (English Drilling Equipment Company) which was founded in 1931 with the manufacturing of oilfield and water well drilling equipment. In 1996 EDECO joined the Simmons Group and in January 2012 the company was collectively renamed SIMMONS EDECO to better reflect the organization’s global operations and enable better worldwide recognition.
In its early days as a drilling contractor, Simmons Drilling Ltd. worked primary in Saskatchewan and Alberta, Canada. The organization quickly expanded into a number of different facets of the oil and gas industry including seismic, salt cavern engineering, drilling equipment manufacturing and operating a gas transmission pipeline to oil sands plants in Northern Alberta, Canada.
It was in the late 1970’s, that Simmons began to pursue international opportunities. In the 34 years since securing its first contract in Indonesia, the organization has continued to diversify and work in many international markets. In 1991 Simmons bought the Indonesian contractor PT Mutiara Biru Perkasa. In 1996, the company started operations in Eastern Europe with Anglo Albanian Petroleum – a consortium of British and German interests, the Albania National Oil company and the World Bank — to perform shallow-well remedial services. Operations in Albania continued until 2018 when the company sold the Albania branch to an Albanian entity, AlbDrilling.
In 1996 the Simmons Group acquired Kenting Drilling which included Edeco Petroleum Services Limited out of the UK. Edeco was one of the first specialist companies established to support offshore operations in the North Sea. During its early years, it was responsible for the original design of much new equipment and brought out the first all-steel portable percussion drill. Edeco also introduced the first beam-type pumping units for water wells, designed on oilfield principles, during this pre war period.
Edeco was well known in the drilling equipment field, but developed more towards the mining, geotechnical engineering, construction and water well applications after the Second World War. In 1947, the company established its own manufacturing works for the production of diamond drilling rigs and associated equipment. A period of growth followed and subsidiary companies were established in Germany and Trinidad.
With the discovery of North Sea gas and the increase in offshore drilling, in 1964 Edeco formed North Sea Drilling Services, a specialist service company that became the main supply base for drilling operations in the North Sea.
The mining, geotechnical and construction divisions of Edeco as well as the oilfield activities grew rapidly in the 1960s. The company’s oilfield interests started with a machine shop and supply base but soon expanded as gas field development accelerated. In the1970‘s oilfield supply facilities were established while English drilling activities developed and grew as a result of significant business from the coal and construction sectors.
Edeco’s oilfield activities date back to 1972 when Kenting, from the Trimac Group of Canada, moved a rig to the UK to drill exploration wells. The enterprise grew and was involved in coal exploration for the National Coal Board from the late 1970s to the mid 1980s. This activity together with an increasing interest in onshore exploration and development of oil and gas resources in the UK provided steady growth over the period to about 1996 when the Simmons Group acquired Kenting’s assets, including Edeco Petroleum.
Today SIMMONS EDECO’s core business is onshore drilling, workover operations and wellhead maintenance services for international oil, gas, gas storage, geothermal and geoscientific markets.