Expanding knowledge through collaboration

In a challenging environment, no one player is able to succeed on its own. Collaboration enhances our competitiveness and further enables the expansion and strategic integration of our global business.

As our business has grown into new markets and products, so too has our collaborative network expanded, encompassing other energy producers, engineering companies, service providers, equipment manufacturers, R&D institutions, and universities.

We are also offering venture capital and technical support to energy and chemical start-ups aligned with achieving our business objectives.

Our investments in, and support for, a wide spectrum of research initiatives and alliances, at home and abroad, affirm our commitment to become a global leader in the development of energy-related technologies while also supporting the creation of a knowledge-based economy in the Kingdom.

Domestic alliances

To further boost the spirit of innovation in the Kingdom, we participate in the Saudi Arabia Advanced Research Alliance Agreement (SAARA), an alliance formed to promote intellectual property commercialization and technology development. Our participation in this initiative includes providing project funding and technology projects for potential development to SAARA’s commercial entity known as the Research Products Development Company (RPDC), a partnership with government, academia and research.

We engage with key national stakeholders, including the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM), and KAUST in the pursuit of high impact research and technology initiatives of strategic importance to our business. Our participation centers on initiatives aimed at advancing nascent technologies, accelerating the Kingdom’s ability to conduct advanced scientific research, and promoting entrepreneurship and the development of new technology enabled businesses.

Research performed as part of our multifaceted interactions with the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM), located adjacent to our headquarters, spans upstream and downstream focus areas, including enhanced oil recovery, reservoir quality prediction, near surface seismology, drilling optimization, sub-quality gas treatment, CO2 capture and utilization and the upgrading of heavier crude oils to lighter, more valuable grades. Also with KFUPM, we are working to establish a world‐class Petroleum Engineering and Geosciences College. In 2017, we completed retrofitting a building and the construction of two new buildings to house state-of-the-art laboratories on the KFUPM campus and at the Dhahran Techno Valley Science Park.

In our local region, we signed Memoranda of Understanding with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and with Masdar, a renewable energy and sustainable urban development company based in Abu Dhabi, UAE. With ADNOC, we plan to collaborate to identify technologies that could deliver improved performance and efficiency across the oil and gas value chain. The agreement with Masdar enables collaboration on sustainable and renewable energy development to yield advancements in clean electricity generation and carbon capture. 

Our acquisition of Converge®, a polyol technology, will enable us to transform emissions into value.

Exploring energy solutions through our Global Research Network

Our corporate venture capital subsidiary, Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV), headquartered in Dhahran and with a presence in North America, Europe, and Asia, invests globally in startup and high-growth companies developing technologies of strategic importance to us. In 2017, SAEV made six new investments and piloted five technologies from its portfolio companies.

Our Global Research Network enables innovative research in high‐impact, long‐term, value-creating domains. Comprised of three in-Kingdom research centers and eight satellite research centers and technology offices in strategic international locations, the network is dedicated to addressing global energy and sustainability challenges and creating substantial competitive advantage for our business.

We collaborate with a network of academic and industry research partners, including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, Imperial College, Tsinghua University, KAIST (the Korean Advanced Institute of Science and Technology), and IFPen on topics related to the global challenge of a sustainable energy future.

In 2017, we started construction to expand our Exploration and Petroleum Engineering Advanced Research Center (EXPEC ARC) in Dhahran. The expansion project includes laboratories and offices for 850 professionals and support staff. We also launched construction of our new R&D center at KAUST.