Ryan London
40

CEO & Founder, Tap Rock Resources, Golden, Colo.
21 FortyUnder40 feat. London, Ryan

Building the Tap Rock Resources team has been one of CEO and founder Ryan London’s proudest accomplishments.

“The biggest impact we’ve had on the organization is the talent we’ve been able to attract,” London says. “The team has expanded on our subsurface understanding, operational execution and acreage footprint. Our ability to execute on all these fronts is a testament to the quality of our staff."

Founded in 2015, London built the company from three employees to more than 40 and has established a two-rig drilling program in the Delaware Basin. Under his leadership, Tap Rock has deployed more than $250 million in gross development capital. 

Leading the way: Prior to the creation of Tap Rock, London led asset teams in the Haynesville and Eagle Ford shales, as well as the Permian Basin, during his time at Matador Resources Co. As the youngest executive vice president within the organization, he also managed more than $2 billion in capital programs. 

As an engineer, London knew that someday he wanted exposure in the management and finance side of the business. 

“At my former company, we went public in 2012, and I was one of the four executive team members that regularly participated in non-deal roadshows and deal roadshows for equity and bond offerings. I was in my mid-30s and helping to raise hundreds of millions of dollars for our company’s development program. While I don’t miss the grind, it’s an experience that I cherish, and I’m very thankful for.”

“I was in my mid-30s and helping to raise hundreds of millions of dollars for our company’s development program. While I don’t miss the grind, it’s an experience that I cherish, and I’m very thankful for.”

A great mentor: When London chose to pursue engineering in school and a career in oil and gas, his father, who ran his own oil and gas company for 35 years, advised him to get exposure in all technical disciplines, particularly reservoir engineering and geology. 

London holds a mechanical engineering degree from Texas A&M University and a master’s in petroleum engineering from the Colorado School of Mines, and he is a registered professional engineer. He spent the first four years of his career as a reservoir engineer before moving on to drilling and completions at a small company. 

“This experience gave me exposure to the full spectrum of the oil and gas technical world, from prospect generation to full-scale development, which enabled me to effectively engage with and ultimately manage all members of a technical team. 

“My dad’s advice, coupled with the courage he gave me to leave a great job and start my own company, is the reason Tap Rock exists today.” 

Advice for young professionals: “Be there, stay engaged and participate,” says London. “When I think back on all the best and brightest people I’ve ever worked with, they were always willing to go above and beyond the call of duty. When a situation presented itself, they were always there. They were prepared and engaged in the situation, and they were never too scared to offer their thoughts. I appreciate and admire these types of people; they are the ones that drive progress in an organization.” 

Career goals: “The goals for Tap Rock are a reflection of my individual career goals,” London says. “We want to build a highly profitable company where people enjoy coming to work and being a part of the team. We’ve grown rapidly over the past three years, but there’s already tremendous camaraderie and pride in everything we do, and we’ve been able to achieve all the short-term company goals we continue to set for ourselves so far.”