Robert Willes

Managing Director

Challenger Energy Ltd


Robert has over 25 years of extensive international experience in the oil and gas and energy industries – primarily with BP.  He holds an Honours Degree in Geography from Durham University in the UK, is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators, and was formerly a Director of the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA).

His early career with BP involved several positions in petroleum product supply, trading, and marketing, and as a lead negotiator for numerous gas transactions in Europe.  He subsequently joined BP’s Group Mergers and Acquisitions team, where he led the divestments of Burmah Castrol’s Chemicals Division and Great Yarmouth Power Ltd, and advised the Corporation on a number of acquisition opportunities.

In Australia, Robert was BP’s General Manager of the North West Shelf LNG Project.  In this role, he had accountability for strategy, production, safety, marketing, and profitability.  He secured BP’s investment approval for the North West Shelf Train 5 LNG Expansion, managed the negotiation of several key LNG contracts with Japanese utilities, and oversaw the closing of the North West Shelf’s Project’s landmark, A$25 billion LNG sale into China.

Robert also had overall accountability for BP’s interests in the Browse LNG and Greater Gorgon LNG Projects, and for Business Development activities in Asia Pacific.  In this latter role, he developed new hub strategies around the Bontang and Tangguh LNG Projects in Indonesia, secured multiple conventional and unconventional Production Sharing Contracts in Kalimantan and West Papua, Indonesia, and was instrumental in securing VICO’s Coal Bed Methane-to-LNG Project in Kalimantan, Indonesia.

More recently, Robert was CEO of Eureka Energy Limited, and was instrumental in managing the recommended A$107m On-Market Takeover by Aurora Oil and Gas Limited.