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Contract to deliver common standard to improve global offshore safety

07 April 2011

International learning and skills provider Atlas Interactive has been awarded a major contract to develop and deliver new standardised safety training to the global oil and gas industry in a deal which is expected to deliver revenues upwards of $5 million (USD) over the first year.

Delivered in partnership with OPITO, the skills body which ensures safety and competency in the worldwide oil and gas industry, the agreement will offer Atlas the opportunity to train in excess of 1.5million direct workers in exploration and production to International Minimum Industry Training Standards (IMIST) over the next two years.

This global version of the MIST programme which OPITO and Atlas have successfully piloted with over 48,000 oil and gas workers in the UK since 2009, is now being developed to standardise safety training for experienced workers in oil and gas provinces around the world.

IMIST will be launched in the Middle East in July, then rolled out across 30 countries worldwide throughout Asia, Africa and the United States. It will be delivered via e-learning and tailored to meet each region’s specific workforce, language and geographic needs.

The contract, which begins this month, supports an aggressive growth strategy for Atlas, which sees this deal as part of a strategic plan to double sales over the next three years.

Atlas chief executive John Rowley said: “This is a groundbreaking initiative in terms of the importance the industry is placing on health and safety. We are delighted to have been chosen to deliver the IMIST programme, following a competitive tender process, for this global workforce and believe this is a clear indication of the industry’s commitment to standardisation and their willingness to embrace new technologies which can create a highly effective and efficient solution.

“For Atlas, this agreement will allow us to pursue our ambitious growth strategy in terms of penetration of the international oil and gas market, particularly in the emerging markets where Atlas has already secured some exciting new projects with national and international oil companies.

The IMIST standard ensures that trainees have the necessary safety awareness and training to avoid risk and ultimately incidents. The course contains up to nine modules incorporating safety observation systems, use of hazardous substances, working at height and mechanical lifting activities.

Training is undertaken via the internet and underpinned by Atlas’ award winning innovative diagnostic tool called FAST TRACK which works by assessing a learner’s knowledge gaps under time bound conditions.  The content of the course that is then delivered to the learner is based on their personal knowledge gaps - saving time by only delivering the training that is required and ensuring 100% competency. This reduces 14 hours of classroom based content down to approximately two hours of e-learning content. Learners can take the course at any location - home, office or learning centre – at any time, therefore reducing the burden of travel time and associated costs.

OPITO, which developed the IMIST course, aims to deliver common standards in the global oil and gas workforce that improve safety and competency.

The international organisation works with Governments, national oil companies, multi-nationals and contractors to meet their skills needs to provide independent advice and guidance on effective management of workforce skills development, emergency response and occupational standards, qualifications and quality assurance of training delivery.

David Doig, CEO of OPITO Group, said: “The delivery and content of basic safety training varies dramatically from region to region and lacks consistency across the industry. Oil and gas workers should have confidence that their colleagues share the same level of safety training and the ultimate aim of IMIST is to make the working environment safer.

“Following a rigorous selection process we are delighted that Atlas Interactive will be developing and delivering the e-learning provision for the experienced worker programme. Their technical expertise, knowledge of the oil and gas business and successful track record has proven invaluable in the development of the high quality safety training package for the industry.”

Atlas Interactive, which secured private equity investment from HG Capital in 2007, has reported a highly successful twelve months with its industry-recognised safety training underpinning the scope of its e-learning specialist’s capabilities within the oil and gas sector.

Founded in 1995, Atlas provides innovative and interactive e-learning courses that deliver accelerated skills development and knowledge transfer to the global oil and gas industry. Over 350,000 people in over 600 companies, across 35 countries and 20 different languages are currently benefiting from the e-learning training provided by Atlas. The company now employs 68 people and is based at Offshore House, Science and Energy Park, Aberdeen, with offices in the Middle East, Asia and the Americas.

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