Our history

BG Group has transformed from an offshoot of a former nationalised utility into an international energy business focused on exploration and production and LNG.

Since 1997, when the company was formed, our total resource base has jumped from 3.6 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) to around 18 billion boe*.

Today, we have more than 5 000 employees and operations in more than 20 countries and are ranked among the 15 largest companies listed on the London Stock Exchange.



20 Years: The making of an international oil and gas giant

View infographic    Download infographic (PDF 9MB)

In picures

“I have spent 39 years in this industry and have worked with all types of oil and gas companies all over the world. When I decided to join BG Group it was on the basis of the exceptionally exciting opportunity the portfolio presented.”

Andrew Gould Chairman of BG Group

First LNG voyage

Our global gas experience dates back to the 1950s. A forerunner to BG Group, the UK’s Gas Council began looking at LNG as a potential replacement for manufactured gas.

In 1959, a pioneering voyage took place, transporting LNG from Lake Charles in the US to Canvey Island by a converted naval vessel, the Methane Pioneer. Among those on board was Sir Denis Rooke, who went on to become Chairman of British Gas.

This experiment paved the way for the world’s first LNG export scheme: a 15-year contract with Algeria to supply just under 1 million tonnes per annum to the UK.

This foresight and innovation demonstrated over half a century ago by the Gas Council is still part of our DNA and critical to the on-going success and future of BG Group.

The Gas Council became British Gas, which was privatised in 1986, before being split a decade later into separate and distinct businesses, including BG Group.

LNG heritage

Two demergers

In 1997, British Gas demerged into two separately listed companies:

  • BG plc, which took charge of the exploration and production, and international downstream operations of British Gas, as well as the British transmission and distribution business (Transco); and

  • Centrica plc, which took over the British retail business of the former British Gas.

In 2000, there was another demerger, in which two new companies were formed: BG Group plc and Lattice Group plc, with the latter inheriting the Transco business.

Read more about our demerger history (PDF 0.08Mb)

Developing distinctive capabilities

Following the second demerger, BG Group grew strongly and developed a portfolio of high-quality assets across the gas chain, including Egypt, Trinidad and Tobago, and Kazakhstan, as well as the UK North Sea.

Increasingly, though, we have focused on developing two highly distinctive capabilities: a world-class exploration business and our unique LNG model. These core strengths, facilitated by our commercial agility, remain fundamental to our strategy.

Our major growth projects


  • In Australia, we identified the potential to develop abundant new supplies of energy in the form of coal seam gas – a form of natural gas high in methane – and supply this energy in the form of LNG to the energy-hungry markets of Asia.
  • Our commercial agility and vast experience in natural gas and LNG allowed us to sanction the Queensland Curtis LNG (QCLNG) project in October 2010, less than three years after our initial investment in Australia.
  • This project, which will be the world’s first to convert coal seam gas into liquefied natural gas, is on track to deliver first LNG in 2014, just six years after our arrival.
  • In its first phase, QCLNG will be a two-train 8.5 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) project, a key supply source for BG Group’s Asia-Pacific customer portfolio totalling over 15 mtpa of LNG sales.


  • Between 2006 and 2009, our exploration team participated in large and exciting discoveries in a new frontier play: the Santos Basin, offshore Brazil.
  • These fields – which were discovered deep beneath the ocean floor under two kilometres of salt – are among the largest made in the last few decades.
  • We did it at a time when few companies were willing to risk expensive exploration in ultra-deep waters in virgin territory. The pay-off was huge: the Santos Basin finds have given BG Group net reserves and resources of six billion boe, with an upside potential of eight billion boe net. (This is BG Group’s view, not the operator or relevant consortium. In 2012, BG Group received independent certification from Miller and Lents of the reserves and resources within our 'big-five' Santos Basin discoveries.)
  • BG Group, and our partner Petrobras, are making good progress with the plan to deploy 15 floating production, storage and offloading vessels by 2018.

* From 2013, BG Group is adopting the Petroleum Resources Management System published by the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE-PRMS) for reserves reporting. Reserves (proved and probable) as at 31 December 2013 are shown under SPE-PRMS, together with the estimates under SEC definitions which was the previous basis for measurement. 

  • All Countries
  • Areas of Palestinian Authority
  • Australia
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Cyprus
  • Egypt
  • Global
  • Honduras
  • India
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Norway
  • Singapore
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Tunisia
  • UK
  • Uruguay
  • USA
  • All Categories
  • Exploration
  • Financial
  • Global energy marketing & shipping
  • Innovation
  • LNG
  • Production
  • Results
  • Sustainability
  • Technology