School of Mathematics and Statistics Maths & Statistics Careers

Michael Landman

Business Development Manager
BHP Billiton Petroleum
Graduated 1983

My career has led me from studying the intricacies of water swirling down the bath drain, to spending days on offshore oil rigs analysing temperature and pressure data, to putting together multimillion dollar proposals to acquire new businesses. Through all of these experiences I am constantly aware of my mathematical roots, and how my skill-set has placed me in what I believe is an advantaged position to progress these varied turns in my career.

Following my undergraduate studies in applied maths at Melbourne in the early 80’s, I had the terrific experience of six years in the US, gaining a PhD in California and doing a post-doc in the heart of New York City. My thoughts had been turning towards Australia again, and soon I embarked on a long and varied career with BHP. There I found opportunities to move from doing industrial research directed towards the petroleum division, to becoming more practically involved in the business in a number of engineering roles, where I was still able to put my computer simulation experience and analytical tools to good use. In the past few years my interests have developed in the commercial side of the business, having moved through economics, strategic planning, and now to a mergers and acquisitions role.

In my current position I still find myself wading through spreadsheets and building models for businesses. I certainly haven’t used calculus for a few years, but my maths background and ability to quickly analyse what is driving a model or a deal has certainly been recognised in the Company, and led me into plenty of interesting opportunities.

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