Less than three years ago, Phil Kirk was managing a small energy business with no revenues and about a dozen staff.
 
This year his company, Chrysaor, will, according to some estimates, be the biggest oil and gas producer in the North Sea, rivaling Total and BP.

The former chartered accountant recoils at the moniker “New King of the North Sea” but the company he founded in 2007 has gone from relative anonymity to the top ranks of producers in the UK region at breakneck speed.

“Staff and contractors now are about 1,800,” Kirk said. In 2017, the company struck a $3 billion deal for around half of Royal Dutch Shell’s UK North Sea production, followed this year by a $2.7 billion swoop for the North Sea assets of US major ConocoPhillips.

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