Panton Incorporated: Amplifying Business Processes in Energy Sector with Robust Search Platform

CIO VendorFrank Li, President & CEO
Oil and gas companies have become very innovative when it comes to technologies that carry out operations in the field. However, at the backend of these companies are the legacy systems which were developed years ago to incorporate data management and processing. Slow and slack by today’s standard, these systems have tipped the energy sector in terms of performance, and often create inefficient and error prone business processes that involve multiple and manual data inputs and paper exchanges. Further, these systems lack transparency in data processing and calculations, operating without the ability to create an audit trail. Headquartered in Houston, TX, Panton holds the vision of inculcating the energy industry with modern technologies—to make business processes intuitive, robust, automatic, transparent and informative.

Panton provides a universal platform that allows users to create, run, archive, distribute and manage a large volume of reports, using a combination of database intelligence and Excel flexibility. It advances and promotes the transformation of the sophisticated ‘software’ concept into an easily accessible ‘information repository’ for the energy industry to store, retrieve, analyze, communicate and utilize their proprietary business information anywhere and anytime. “We offer a search-oriented platform to perform business processes including transaction management, contract administration, counterparty management, supply chain management, physical nominations, scheduling and many more—essentially all aspects of business,” says Frank Li, President and CEO, Panton Inc. The program is supple, providing users with great latitude over configuration, and it can be packaged to any customization need in order to meet the individual business perspective.

Panton’s platform enables users to obtain required information by simply specifying a search term, similar to Google’s search engine, which operates without a menu structure. Analysts, as well as executives or any authorized personnel can obtain proprietary information and run business functions through keywords. The effective utilization of this search-oriented navigation of business functions reduces manual tasks by 70 percent, intensifies the pace of computation and business processing, reduces reporting turnaround time by 100 times and facilitates a 100-fold amplification of real-time business communication. “To achieve this performance, Panton deploys the five key elements of advanced technologies: cloud computing, mobile-enabled interface, search engine capability, Big Data analytics and social network of communications,” asserts Li.

Panton’s interconnected platform enhances business information sharing to an unprecedented level and facilitates extraordinary efficiencies. “Users can customize and define a project to upload and share/unshare files, photos, links and other documents with anyone authorized in the project. Colleagues can make comments, and everything is recorded chronologically. With a click, the user can obtain a report detailing the project description, status, participants, document list, comments and conversations, by time and by name,” explains Li.

The firm employs JavaScript/HTML5 technology throughout its platform. The technology makes the platform bring-your-own device (BYOD)-enabled, providing access to information from anywhere and on any device, at any point in time. For instance, a marketing manager can search and retrieve customer data on an iPad while he is en-route to a negotiation, and close the deal using the most current information.
Utilizing the cloud computation technology, the platform dramatically speeds up functional and operational processes. For example, in the natural gas settlement process, for a typical oil and gas enterprise, it takes 60 minutes to generate 1,000 settlement statements with accounting details. Using Panton’s proprietary algorithm in parallel processing in the cloud, it requires as little as 7 seconds to complete the task, more than 500 times faster than the conventional approach. Panton also provides substantially richer and more detailed statements than the existing systems.

Panton creates a centralized database for clients on the cloud. The information is input only once, avoiding duplication of data entry effort and data integrity problems. To illustrate, a truck driver can enter his natural gas liquids (NGL) transportation ticket into his smartphone when he is done with unloading the products; or a financial trader can input his hedge transactions on his laptop. Such information gets into the data center and is available for immediate use. Therefore, executives can know accurately, and on a company-wide basis, the volume of physical molecules in possession, the amount in transit, the profit or loss at any given moment, the historical profitability, and the forecast based on all known, real-time information. The platform also provides a portal for an enterprise to enable its clients to send monthly settlement statements, payments and invoices to the enterprise. It allows producers to check their statements directly and with additional setup, automate the payment transfer.

Panton ensures platform security at all levels by implementing a ‘role-based’ access control algorithm enforced in real-time. This process of identity validation prevents fraudulent access to the database. Additionally, the cloud infrastructure provides physical security and compliance services, designed to protect information and mitigate physical catastrophe. The extensive user transaction record of Panton provides an outstanding audit trail for security analysis. “We are working on further enhancement of the security measures and fraud technologies to consolidate the security assurance for both cloud applications and on-premises supported applications,” says Li.

Panton deploys the five key elements of advanced technologies: cloud computing, mobile-enabled interface, search engine capability, Big Data analytics and social network of communications

Moving ahead, Panton desires to take a significant share of the energy trading system market. Toward this end, the company has created the next generation of Energy Trading and Risk Management (ETRM) systems. The firm plans to adopt a two-pronged strategy that focuses on current and future midstream clients, and tap directly into energy trading organizations. Envisioning the future prospects for Panton, Li says, “Energy Google is a well-defined objective where the proprietary energy information is securely maintained and is made searchable for the authorized parties. With such a platform, an ‘Energy Clearing House’ becomes possible where all transactions are captured, confirmed, realized and settled in a central place. Panton, with its technology, scalability, industry experience and critical client base, is suitable to become such a platform.”

Panton Incorporated

Houston, TX

Frank Li, President & CEO

A universal platform for real-time all in one business information processing and management solution.