Pandell: A basement start-up success story
Pandell acquires LandWorks to better serve both companies' customers in the mining and energy industries
One mining supplier success story is still being written in Calgary, Alberta. Greg Chudiak and David Beresford founded Pandell in a basement office in 1997. Pandell has grown from two people to 180 people with 500 clients around the world. Now, Beresford focuses on the technology, and Chudiak directs his attention to the business side, including meeting with clients and trying to understand their long-term needs.
In January of 2018, Pandell acquired LandWorks Inc., which specializes in land management and GIS software for energy companies.“It’s broadened our solutions into new industries that we were very interested in,” said Chudiak, president and CEO of Pandell. “With the LandWorks acquisition, we are very excited to not just be involved in oil and gas, but renewables, utilities and mining.”
Easy-to-use subscription software
Pandell is a software company that delivers products and solutions to the mining and energy industries through a practical software subscription model. “It makes it easy for customers to use our software,” said Chudiak. Their software focuses on efficiencies in three areas: finances and accounting, tracking land assets and leases, and operational products that help field personnel increase productivity.
Pandell’s financial software tracks capital and operating expenses, and helps clients process invoices electronically directly from suppliers. The suite of land software tracks ownership, lease agreements, underground oil and gas rights, mineral surface rights, crossings and consents right-of-way documents and road usage invoicing and then centralizes this information for easy access. The operations software includes tools for improving time tracking and generating service tickets.
Over the years, Pandell has grown by responding to the needs of its customers. “(We have) a broad set of tools within each category that our customers have asked for,” Chudiak said. If a client asks for a specific solution, Pandell either builds the software product or purchases a company that will provide it. This is why Pandell set its sights on acquiring LandWorks for its customers years ago.
LandWorks’ reputation in the mining and energy industries, combined with its sophisticated GIS mapping software, makes this acquisition beneficial to both Pandell and LandWorks’ clients. “A lot of mining companies needed ways to manage their land assets effectively,” said Chudiak. “LandWorks has a long-term record of providing solutions to the industry that includes tracking the information but also presenting it on maps.”
In terms of mapping software, “LandWorks is a world-class leader in that space,” he said. Its existing GIS and land record services group, one of the largest in North America, even provides the digitalization services for translating information from traditional documents, making the electronic shift seamless for new clients.
The existing client base of both companies is happy with the business decision. Pandell is excited to provide for its existing customers as well as those of LandWorks and eventually integrate all its programs globally.
“Business as usual is the theme for now,” said Chudiak. His team will continue to touch base with clients as they move through the merger.
Responding to client needs
As a software and a service provider, Pandell focuses on making its daily operations customer-centric. Chudiak himself often meets with clients to discuss their needs, working this feedback into the company’s strategic direction.
Pandell’s customer service doesn’t end with a purchase. They walk potential clients through the values of Pandell’s software. “Once we’ve established a contract with the customer, we work with them to get everything set up,” he said. They offer a turnkey solution that includes data migration from paper or other sources to get the new client’s operations running smoothly. “From a software perspective, we provide ongoing upgrades and customer support,” Chudiak said.
“The most rewarding is when we bring on a new customer, get everything up and running, and then see they are happy when we follow up with them,” Chudiak said. “We are focused on finding solutions that impact the bottom line directly for our customers.”
Although Pandell has made it through the ups and downs of different business cycles over the years, Chudiak looks forward to the future of the company.
“It’s exciting to see our company grow from a basement start-up. It’s been quite a ride, and we are looking forward to continuing with it,” he said. “We love what we do.”