Western is a Houston-based company engaged in the development of North American liquefied natural gas export facilities. Managed by a seasoned team of executives experienced in the LNG and related energy infrastructure industries, Western is developing an integrated solution for delivering abundant, low-cost Canadian natural gas to markets that need it most. Western has chosen Wison Offshore & Marine Ltd. ("Wison") to provide the liquefaction vessels and has the backing of a fund managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management, LLC (such fund, "Apollo"). Together with Wison, Apollo, and other partners, Western is working to bring first-class LNG export projects to Western Canada.
Western has been evaluating mid-scale LNG solutions and identifying sites for development of next-generation liquefaction plants since 2015. By deploying innovative floating liquefaction technology at inland locations, specifically those that have existing pipeline access to natural gas basins, Western is opening up markets for these resources, which are stranded behind burgeoning shale production.
The very nature of Western's floating liquefaction facility results in virtually no long-term impact to its surroundings. At the end of the project’s life, the floating facilities can be removed and the berths and other land-side facilities restored to their original states. What’s more, the markets to which the LNG is headed will benefit nicely from the corresponding reduction in CO2.
Mr. Thames founded Western LNG in 2015. Prior to that Mr. Thames held several senior positions at Cheniere Energy Inc., the industry pioneer in exporting LNG from the lower 48 US states. Mr. Thames was Senior Vice President of Cheniere Energy Inc. and President of wholly-owned Cheniere Marketing LLC, where he was responsible for Cheniere’s commercial activities and its LNG trading business. In this role he developed the commercial model for Sabine Pass Liquefaction and led the team that negotiated and entered into its sales and purchase agreements. Mr. Thames later became Cheniere’s Chief Financial Officer and led the initial public offering of Cheniere Energy Partners Holdings LLC, the proceeds of which were used as equity capital to launch Cheniere’s Corpus Christi LNG export project.
Prior to joining Cheniere in 2005 Mr. Thames worked in finance and risk management roles at an interstate natural gas pipeline holding company that was formed after the bankruptcy of Enron Corp in 2001, and prior to that at Enron itself, from the time he joined the company in 1999. Prior to that Mr. Thames was responsible for a centrifugal pump engineering and testing group at Flowserve Corp’s Los Angeles facilities, and worked in the research and development group of predecessor BW/IP International starting in 1992. Mr. Thames has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin, an MS in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University, and an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management, and is a registered Professional Engineer.
Mr. Bertrand has 25 years of experience in the EPC industry. Prior to joining Western, Mr. Bertrand worked with Fluor in engineering and project management roles on several multi-billion dollar EPC projects. Subsequently, he held leadership positions with CB&I Lummus, and VP positions with Bechtel and Wison Offshore & Marine, focusing on the LNG and floating LNG markets. Mr. Bertrand brings a well-informed perspective on project contracting and execution.
Mr. Mellen has been engaged in the U.S. natural gas and power industries for the past 25 years, and most recently worked for Methanex Corp., securing gas supply and transportation capacity for their methanol plants in several countries including Canada. Prior to that Mr. Mellen worked for Chesapeake Energy and Cheniere Energy securing markets for sales of natural gas. He also worked for Calpine Corporation and Koch Industries.
Mr. Kerrigan has more than 25 years of energy finance experience in banking, investment banking and private equity. His focus is primarily on the upstream, midstream and power industry. Prior to joining Western, Mr. Kerrigan served as Senior Vice President of Finance at Sunnova Energy Corporation; Senior Vice President of Investment Banking at Pritchard Capital Partners, LLC; and Managing Director for CIT Energy focusing on providing junior and senior capital to upstream clients. He has also worked for a variety of energy companies and financial institutions focusing on structured finance.
Mr. Humphrey has over 45 years of engineering and construction experience, having served as the project director at Cameron LNG Export. He was also responsible for pre-award activities and EPC project execution at the Cameron and Freeport export projects. He oversaw FEED execution for Mozambique LNG, Kitimat LNG, Elba Island, Golden Pass, Singapore, Peru LNG, and several US receiving terminal expansion projects. He has also been responsible for project execution at Northwest Shelf LNG in Australia, MLNG Dua in Malaysia, and various pre-project development activities at LNG facilities in Qatar, Australia, Oman, Nigeria, Malaysia, UAE, Indonesia and Alaska.