Former McDermott COO joins Tellurian

US LNG firm Tellurian has hired former McDermott chief operating officer Samik Mukherjee to help with construction and operations of its Driftwood project in Louisiana.

This move follows the decision by Tellurian’s current COO Keith Teague to retire from full time employment.

Also, Teague will continue with Tellurian in an advisory role, according to the company’s statement on Monday.

“Keith has been an integral part of my team for many years, having been responsible for the development, construction and operation of our liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects at Cheniere, and now he has led Tellurian to the construction phase of Driftwood LNG,” the firm’s co-founder and executive chairman, Charif Souki, said in the statement.

His successor Mukherjee has over thirty years of experience in the energy industry, having recently served as executive VP and COO of McDermott, the Houston-based construction and engineering provider.

Mukherjee will be responsible for all Tellurian’s asset projects including the construction and operations of Driftwood LNG.

“Over 60 mtpa of LNG capacity”

“Samik has proven results in developing and delivering over 60 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) of LNG capacity over five projects and five countries,” Tellurian’s president and CEO, Octavio Simoes, said.

“He brings strong business acumen as well as engineering experience, industry and organizational leadership and a proficiency in energy transition, and we welcome him to the Tellurian family,” he said.

In March, Tellurian issued a limited notice to proceed to Bechtel to begin construction of the Driftwood LNG terminal.

Tellurian is still working to complete financing for the project and expects to start first LNG exports in 2026.

In addition, the Houston-based firm signed three 10-year LNG supply deals for the Driftwood project for a total of 9 mtpa. These include contracts with Gunvor, Vitol as well as Shell.

Phase one of the project will include two LNG plants near Lake Charles with an export capacity of up to 11 mtpa. The full project will have 27.6 mtpa liquefaction capacity.

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