For a new upstream service and supply company to do well, it needs to differentiate itself from the companies its customers already use.

Many of the newest startups say they will achieve that goal by combining exceptional service with products and business models that significantly reduce customers’costs. These products and services include affordable pump components, locally sourced proppants, and tools that enable operators to analyze every completion during field development. Other startups offer leasing software that automates error-prone calculations, advanced chemistries that penetrate far into the formation, remote monitoring affordable enough for stripper wells, and managed pressure drilling equipment that is easy to use and maintain.

The executives behind these startups say they are after more than money.

Permian Basin Sand

Geologist and serial entrepreneur Ben M. “Bud” Brigham, chairman of Brigham Resources LLC, is attacking well completion costs from another angle. In partnership with other seasoned oil and gas producers as well as sand mining experts, he is launching Atlas Sand, a sand mining operation in the Permian Basin.

“Quality fracture sand is integral to the Permian Basin’s success,” Brigham says. “Because much of that sand comes from outside the basin, transportation accounts for 60-75 percent of its cost. We formed Atlas to provide local sand, which presents a remarkable opportunity to…

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