Jonathan Nitschke earned his stripes in his father’s operation John Nitschke Drilling (JND), which at its sale in 2012, was one of Australia’s largest private drilling and energy service providers, with a team of 200 employees.
Jonathan evolved from leasehand to CEO, growing the company to a fleet of 16 rigs, and securing major contracts with BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, BMA, AGL, QGC and Arrow Energy.
In 2013, Jonathan established Nitschke Energy, adopting the nimble, innovative philosophy his father’s company was renowned for. He ordered and helped design the first two innovative XDR 75,000 lb rapid service rigs, which no other company had at the time.
He introduced the new SAFE-T-Catwalk pipe handling system to enable automated and hands-free operating of tubular and sucker rods. The rig and equipment packages were customised to increase productivity and deployment speed, minimising the number of equipment loads.
By 2016, Nitschke Energy had secured their first contract with ICON Energy in Queensland. A subsequent long-term contract with SANTOS to supply rod rig and work over services followed in South Australia’s Cooper Basin.