Shell Press Conference 2003

“Making Magic With the Mundane”

Shell’s Hazira LNG Storage Terminal in Gujarat was under construction and Shell wanted to showcase the progress of work to the media. The task at hand was to create an impactful media event at a mundane under-construction site. The idea was to surprise the audience by revealing the huge concrete terminals under construction in a moment of awe. The event was to culminate with the international employees of Shell being introduced to Indian culture through evening entertainment.

The Challenges:

  • Of the two terminals under construction, one was 90% complete and the other was only 10% complete. The challenge was to hide these two huge structures prior to revealing them by generating an element of surprise at a site that was dull, dusty and under construction.
  • All the event production had to be undertaken under very high wind speeds as the location was open on all sides and adjacent to the Arabian Sea.
  • The entire team, even the unskilled temporary labour that was hired on daily wages, had to be trained thoroughly to follow the stringent HSE (Health, Safety and Environment) norms so as to not violate any policies of Shell.

The Solution:

  • In order to hide the two huge terminals from arriving audience, a one km long tunneled walkway was created, which opened into an air-conditioned hangar. Thus, the invited audience was unaware of the huge proportions and presence of the storage terminal to be launched.
  • The tunnel was interesting lined with paintings on environment made by the children of thousands of Shell workers deployed on site.
  • The temperature within the hangar was maintained through air-conditioning even as the closed hangar transformed into an open one during the course of the event, by installing AC machines that were four times the required capacity.
  • The 120 ft wide wall of the hangar weighing over 15 tons, which served as a backdrop with video screens, was suddenly split during the event to reveal the gigantic terminals up close which took the audience by surprise and created the perfect media moment.
  • Aesthetics of the structures were taken care of by covering the imbalance between the progress of construction of the two structures by cladding one with a huge Shell banner and the other with an India banner which were capable of withstanding high wind speeds of over 150 kmph.
  • A one month long training on HSE norms was imparted to over 500 unskilled labourers and supervisors who were contracted to work on the project.
  • The project also had an Indian cultural evening for Shell’s foreign delegates and their families in the form of evening entertainment.

The Impact:

  • A pleasantly surprised audience resulted in unimagined media coverage for a mundane unfinished construction site.
  • The families of the Shell employees felt proud of being associated with the company through the participation of their children in the painting competition.
  • Shell’s foreign delegates were introduced to the rich Indian culture apart from being wowed by the event production to reveal the two under-construction terminals successfully.


  • Project Name
    Shell press conference 2003
  • Client Name
  • Industry Name
    Oil & Gas
  • Project Type
    Product launch and Press Conference