In 2014 Woodside celebrated the company’s 60th anniversary, 30 years of domestic gas production and 25 years of LNG exports.
These milestones not only show how far we have come in a relatively short space of time, they are testament to the hard work and belief of everyone who has contributed to that journey.
Woodside was established a year after Australia's first oil discovery, the 1953 Rough Range find near Exmouth in Western Australia.
Incorporated on 26 July 1954 as Woodside (Lakes Entrance) Oil Co NL, the company took its name from the small town of Woodside in Australia's southern-most mainland state, Victoria, with plans to explore a 520sqkm strip of land along Ninety Mile Beach in the south Gippsland region.
The company's initial 375,000-pound (A$937,000) share issue in September 1954 was over-subscribed by more than 200,000 pounds (A$500,000).
In 1956, led by Chairman Geoff Donaldson and Managing Director Rees Withers, Woodside secured the first offshore exploration license to be granted in Victoria – a 2600sqkm stretch off Ninety Mile Beach that extended 2km into Bass Strait. Woodside was drilling in water up to 60 metres deep, an unremarkable depth today, but a world-record drilling depth in the 1950s.
After 10 years without success in southern Australia, Woodside was awarded exploration rights in June 1963 over more than 367,000sqkm off north-western Australia in what is known as the North West Shelf.
Exploration drilling began in 1967 and major gas and condensate discoveries were made in 1971 at Scott Reef, 425km north of Broome, and North Rankin and Angel, north of Dampier in Western Australia. In 1972, the Goodwyn gas and condensate field was discovered to the west of North Rankin.
These fields provided the basis of the A$19 billion North West Shelf Project, Australia's largest resource project.
A contract with the State Energy Commission of Western Australia for the supply of domestic gas to industries and homes was signed in September 1980, and deliveries began in August 1984.
Today, Woodside is Australia's largest publicly traded oil and gas exploration and production company and one of the nation's most successful explorers, developers and producers of oil and gas.
A History of Achievement
1950 - 1970
1954: Woodside (Lakes Entrance) Oil Co. NL is registered and adopts the name of the town of Woodside in Victoria, Australia which is close to its oil leases.
1956: Woodside appoints Geoff Donaldson as Chairman and Rees Withers as Managing Director.
1957: Woodside drills to world-record water depths in the Bass Strait off southern Australia.
1963: Woodside pays £100 for a permit to explore 370,000km2 off the Western Australian coast, resulting in the formation of the original North West Shelf Venture between the Burmah Oil Company of Australia, Shell Development Australia and Woodside.
1964: The first aeromagnetic surveys are conducted over the North West Shelf.
1968: Woodside finds first oil at the Legendre field on the North West Shelf.
1970 - 1980
1971: Woodside makes major gas and condensate discoveries at Scott Reef, north of Broome, and at North Rankin and Angel, north of Karratha on the North West Shelf.
1972: The Goodwyn gas and condensate field is discovered west of North Rankin on the North West Shelf.
1973: Woodside discovers the Lambert oil fields on the North West Shelf.
1974: The Sunrise and Troubadour gas fields are discovered in the Timor Sea, north-west of Darwin.
1977: Woodside (Lakes Entrance) Oil Co. NL changes its name to Woodside Petroleum Ltd.
1979: State and Commonwealth governments give environmental approval for the commencement of the North West Shelf Gas Project. The Brecknock gas and condensate field is discovered adjacent to Scott Reef.
1980 - 1990
1980: The North West Shelf Project participants sign the contracts for the long-term supply of gas to Western Australian customers. Construction starts at the onshore plant on the Burrup Peninsula, North Rankin A platform and the 134km subsea pipeline to shore.
1982: Woodside is appointed operator of the North West Shelf Venture.
1984: First gas is received onshore via the subsea trunkline from the North Rankin platform.
1985: The North West Shelf Joint Venturers sign the formal liquefied natural gas (LNG) sales agreement with eight Japanese gas and power companies. Construction starts on the first two LNG processing trains, storage tanks and loading facilities at the Karratha onshore gas plant.
1986: Contracts are signed for the supply of the first fleet of LNG ships for the North West Shelf Venture.
1988: Woodside cements its Perth presence by opening a new purpose-built office at 1 Adelaide Terrace.
1989: The first LNG cargo from the North West Shelf Project arrives in Tokyo, Japan.
1990 - 2000
1990: The Woodside-operated North West Shelf Project discovers the Cossack oil field and the Yodel gas and condensate field.
1994: Woodside discovers the Laminaria oil field in the Timor Sea.
1995: The Goodwyn A platform starts production of gas and condensate and the Cossack Pioneer floating production storage and offtake (FPSO) facility begins oil production on the North West Shelf. Woodside Discovers the Corallina oil field in the Timor Sea.
1996: Woodside relocates its head office from Melbourne to Perth and moves its home listing to what was then the Perth Stock Exchange. The Woodside-operated North West Shelf Project discovers the Hermes and Perseus oil fields.
1998: Woodside discovers the Vincent oil field north-west of Exmouth in Western Australia.
1999: The Laminaria field produces its first oil through the Northern Endeavour FPSO vessel. Woodside discovers the Enfield oil field in Western Australia. The North West Shelf Project delivers its 1000th LNG cargo to Japan.
2000 - 2010
2000: Woodside discovers the Laverda oil field near Exmouth.
2001: Woodside discovers the Chinguetti oil field off the coast of Mauritania, west Africa.
2002: The Woodside-operated North West Shelf Project wins a 25-year contract to supply LNG to China.
2004: Woodside starts production from the fourth LNG processing train at the Karratha onshore gas plant. Woodside moves into its current headquarters at 240 St Georges Terrace, Perth.
2005: Woodside discovers the Pluto gas field near Karratha in Western Australia.
2006: The Nganhurra FPSO (Enfield) begins production.
2007: Construction commences on Pluto LNG.
2008: Woodside starts production from the fifth LNG processing train at the Karratha onshore gas plant.
2009: The Woodside-operated North West Shelf Project commissions the Angel gas platform. Pluto LNG commissions the Woodside Donaldson LNG vessel.
2010 and on...
2011: The Okha FPSO is commissioned for the North West Shelf Project, replacing the Cossack Pioneer.
2012: The North West Shelf Project delivers its 3500th LNG cargo. Woodside’s Pluto LNG begins production and delivers its first cargo to Japan.
2013: The North Rankin Redevelopment Project achieves start-up, with a second facility installed alongside the existing North Rankin A platform on the North West Shelf. The Browse Joint Venture selects Floating LNG (FLNG) technology as Basis of Design. Pluto LNG commissions the Woodside Rogers LNG vessel.
2014: Woodside celebrates its 60th anniversary. The North West Shelf Project marks 30 years of domestic gas production and 25 years of LNG exports.