PRESS RELEASE: Viper Celebrates 15 Years of Innovation
July 5, 2022
To celebrate the milestone of Viper’s 15th year in business, all employees from both the Aberdeen and Portishead offices were invited to join a company away day at Aldwick Estate, a beautiful vineyard in North Somerset. The day started with an opening presentation from Managing Director Edward Davies and a thought-provoking look back at Viper over the past 15 years with a founders Q&A session. This was followed by a collaborative staff workshop and fun team activities, along with an optional vineyard tour. A social dinner with live music in the evening provided a chance for employees across the business to catch-up and reflect on the day.
From initial concept to 15 years of success
On 2nd July 2007, Neil Douglas and Max Nodder started Viper Subsea with two employees and £45k of initial working capital. Having known each other since 1997, the pair first discussed the concept in April of 2006 in Norway over a beer and a pizza. The basis for the new business was to provide engineering and products solely focussed on hydraulic and mechanical equipment for the subsea oil and gas industry.
15 years on, Viper has grown at a rapid rate, focusing on Research and Development, investment in new technology, and an active Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program. The company rebranded and changed its name to Viper Innovations in 2016; paving the way for a technology transfer from the subsea to rail industry in collaboration with Network Rail.
Today, Viper is a high-tech innovative & disruptive hardware and DaaS model business serving the subsea oil & gas, rail and other industrial sectors with proprietary technology and products. The electrical integrity subsea products and services still remain a key focus, as well as V-LIFE, which recently reached 150 installations worldwide. The company has achieved a number of awards and accreditations, including the Queens Award for Enterprise in 2016.
The initial team of three has expanded to offices in Portishead and Aberdeen, populated by 62 employees plus five International Business Development Consultants. Managing Director Edward Davies and Finance Director Hugo Mansfield were appointed over the last two years. Neil and Max remain very involved in the business as Directors, working together with Edward and Hugo to shape Viper’s next 15 years… and beyond!
Viper’s Directors and Co-owners reflect on their incredible 15 year journey…
“We started with a 5 year plan and here we are celebrating our 15th year. We delivered against the 5 year goals but enjoyed the journey so much, there was never any question about continuing, albeit with greater ambitions. It has been so satisfying having worked with many outstanding individuals within the company, having seen the development of staff, and finally having been part of the transition to a well established and respected entity that has a superb future.
There have been a number of milestones along the way which we can look back on with pride and satisfaction, but the single stand-out moment was receiving the Queens Award for Enterprise – specifically when the Lord-lieutenant of Somerset, Anne Maw, came to the Viper offices to present the award to all the staff. That was a special day for all at Viper” – Neil Douglas, Viper Director and Co-owner
“It’s amazing to think back how a chat, just bouncing some ideas around during a few beers and a bite to eat can turn into something as tangible and concrete as Viper. Reflecting back, it was that initial decision ‘just to do it!’ that was the all important step. Without that, there would be no Viper. The rest is about creativity, spotting opportunity, employing lots of really great people, investing, looking to the future, adapting for the future, and of course a little of the inevitable blood, sweat and tears. The list goes on. It’s been a truly fantastic ride, one both Neil and I reflect on as one of the best decisions we ever made. The future’s bright! Let’s raise a glass to Viper and the next 15 years.” – Max Nodder, Viper Director and Co-owner
Shifting to insight from data
Viper’s Managing Director, Edward Davies, joined the business in 2020, and brings experience as a consultant, non-executive and executive director working for multiple fast-growing businesses. Edward highlights Viper’s evolution over the years, moving from mechanical engineering to software and data…
“Viper has come a long way in a short period of time. It has also evolved significantly, away from mechanical engineering to electronics, software and data. Its physical products are all important and the development of the technology remains key, but equally key is the software and the use of data to provide customers with insights in relation to their critical electrical systems. So, the essence of Viper continues to evolve, drawing on its history of innovation.”
Viper’s people are a key ingredient to its growth, which has been reflected in the number of bright minds and highly qualified staff employed by the business. Edward discusses the importance of Viper’s people in the company’s ongoing success.
“Viper is first and foremost about its people. They create the technology, iterate and sustain it, sell it, install it and manage our customer relationships. Viper’s ongoing success is dependent on us continuing to have great people who are brought into the Viper journey and demonstrate our “Viper Behaviours’ Model” which is part of ensuring that we are a high performance team as a whole and in our constituent parts. Our intent is to build on our investment in our people, engaging them more within the wider business and ensuring that development focuses on them being the best they can be whilst they are with us and then beyond.”