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23 Feb 2022

Kent welcomes Lakshmi Venkatesh and Usman Darr

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The Engineering and Consulting team is on a mission to continually enhance Kent’s standing as a world-class consulting and engineering partner to our clients. Our technical expertise, enabled by our standardised delivery model and a leading-edge digital approach, is how we’re doing just that.

This month, we announce the appointment of two key leaders joining the team to drive our plans forward for the upward trajectory we’re on.

Welcome to Lakshmi Venkatesh who has recently joined as Vice President & General Manager of our Global Engineering Centre (GEC) in Mumbai. A highly efficient and competitive GEC is at the core of our engineering delivery model and Lakshmi’s know-how, experience and drive will support both the assurance quality in the minds of our clients and the continued enhancement of our GEC capabilities.

 A graduate of Chemical Engineering from UDCT (the University of Bombay, Department of Chemical Technology) Mumbai, Lakshmi has a career spanning 38 years.  This career has seen her grow from Graduate Engineer at Larsen & Toubro to the Head of Petrofac Mumbai and Director of Petrofac Indian offices.

As a thought leader and engaging speaker, Lakshmi is no stranger to industry conferences, both in India and overseas. Also residing on the faculty for Post Graduate Diploma in Chemical Technology Management for students at ICT in 2019 & 2020. The awards and recognition for Lakshmi’s contribution to the industry further confirm the remarkable engineer we have joining us:

  • Awarded the EVE (Excellence Values Energy) award in 2012 for recognition of people who live the values and go above and beyond their day job. H
  • Recognised by MEPEC (Middle East Process Engineering Conference) in their Leadership Excellence for Women Awards (LEWA) in 2013.
  • Women of Achievement runner-up award.  Dedicated to recognising professional excellence among women in the Middle East by the Prime Minister of Bahrain.
  • Woman Executive of the year in the Oil & Gas Industry in 2019 by the Federation of Indian Petroleum Industry (FIPI) and the award presented by Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, the Honourable Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel.

The good news continues as we also welcome Usman Darr on board later this month (expected 21st February).  Usman joins as Managing Director Engineering and Consulting (E&C) UK (Engineering) with responsibility for developing our UK-based Engineering business.  He will work collaboratively alongside Les Newman as Managing Director E&C UK (Consulting).

Usman will strategically drive the growth of our FEED + business with Les centred on further developing our Consulting (pre-FEED) proposition. The establishment and growth of a client recognised FEED + engineering centre in the UK is critical to both our continued development in the Energy Transition and Low Carbon markets as well as conventional O&G markets.

Usman brings experience and passion in the development of FEED and Engineering capability in the UK, he has experience and recent success across our market portfolio of conventional Oil & Gas and the UK Low Carbon sector including Green / Blue Hydrogen, Waste to BioFuels, Offshore Wind and CCUS.

With a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of London, Usman is a 30-year veteran of our industry and has worked with British Gas, Granherne and most recently Petrofac as VP Engineering & Consulting Services.

Usman believes business development plays an essential role in our front-end business unit and will be a catalyst for leveraging the wider services of our business as he develops our engineering centre expertise globally.

Join us in giving Lakshmi and Usman a warm virtual welcome to the Kent team.

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