John B. Gerstenlauer

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Biographical Information

"Mr Gerstenlauer joined the Company from BASF's Wintershall Nederland Group, The Hague, where he was Managing Director. A US citizen, Mr Gerstenlauer holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Marine Biology, Civil Engineering and a Master of Science degree in Ocean Engineering. He has written numerous technical papers on Petrophysical topics and drilling techniques. Mr Gerstenlauer's oil & gas industry career began when he joined Shell Coastal Division, New Orleans, as a Petrophysical Engineer in 1979. Over subsequent years, he assumed increasingly senior production engineering and drilling engineering roles within various New Orleans-based Shell operating divisions including Coastal, Onshore and Offshore until joining Shell Oil subsidiary Pecten Cameroon Inc as Engineering Manager in 1985, where he was responsible for 50,000 bopd of operated offshore production, and a further 120,000 bopd of non-operated offshore production.

"Mr Gerstenlauer returned to Shell Offshore East and Coastal Divisions, New Orleans in 1989 as Production Superintendent before transferring to Shell Oil subsidiary Pecton do Brasil Ltd as Engineering Manager in 1990, and then in 1993 he was seconded to Canadian Occidental Yemen ("CanOxy Yemen") as Operations Manager. At CanOxy Yemen Mr Gerstenlauer managed the project from start-up to full production of 210,000 bopd. In 1996, Mr Gerstenlauer joined UMC Petroleum firstly as International Engineering Manager and then International Operations Manager focussed mainly on West African offshore projects. Following UMC's planned takeover by Ocean Energy in 1998, Mr Gerstenlauer joined Wintershall AG, Kassel, Germany as Project Manager then Consultant before becoming Managing Director of Wintershall Nederland Group, The Hague in 2003."[1]

A report from DEcember 2011 noted: "‘We have not drilled a dry hole,’ enthuses Gerstenlauer, following the third successive upgrade of estimated oil in place at Shaikan, a 40 per cent increase to between eight billion and 13.4 billion barrels. He suggests that there is room for ‘perhaps two more significant upgrades’ at Shaikan and would certainly agree that Gulf Keystone is having notably more luck in pursuing its goals than the silent film policemen of the same name.

"Entrepreneurial oilman Kozel, who has also founded Pittsburgh-based oil and gas explorer Texas Keystone, floated Gulf Keystone on AIM at 48p in 2004 with an array of Algerian prospects, from which he was anxious to diversify. As luck would have it, Ashti Hawrami, whose consultancy company ECL delivered the ‘Competent Person’s Report’ both for the AIM float and on the Algerian prospects, later disposed of ECL and conveniently became natural resources minister of the Kurdish Regional Government, an instance of how inhabitants of the global village of the resources business can pop up in the most useful of places. " [


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  1. Gulf Keystone Petroleum Board, organizational web page, accessed September 24, 2012.