21st Century For BP Commerce Essay

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British Petroleum merged with Amoco (formerly Standard Oil of Indiana) in December 1998,[34] becoming BP Amoco plc.[35] In 2000, BP Amoco acquired Arco (Atlantic Richfield Co.)[36] and Burmah Castrol plc.[37] As part of the merger's brand awareness, helped the Tate Modern British Art launch RePresenting Britain 1500-2000[38] In 2001 the company formally renamed itself as BP plc[35] and adopted the tagline "Beyond Petroleum," which remains in use today. It states that BP was never meant to be an abbreviation of its tagline. Most Amoco stations in the United States were converted to BP's brand and corporate identity. In many states, however, BP continued to sell Amoco branded petrol even in service stations with the BP identity as Amoco was rated the best petroleum brand by consumers for 16 consecutive years and also enjoyed one of the three highest brand loyalty reputations for petrol in the US, comparable only to Chevron and Shell. In May 2008, when the Amoco name was mostly phased out in favour of "BP Gasoline with Invigorate", promoting BP's new additive, the highest grade of BP petrol available in the United States was still called Amoco Ultimate.

In April 2004, BP decided to move most of its petrochemical businesses into a separate entity called Innovene within the BP Group. BP sought to sell the new company possibly via an initial public offering (IPO) in the US, and filed IPO plans for Innovene with the New York Stock Exchange on 12 September 2005. On 7 October 2005, however, BP announced that it had agreed to sell Innovene to INEOS, a privately held UK chemical company for $9 billion, thereby scrapping its plans for the IPO.[39]

In 2005, BP announced that it would be leaving the Colorado market.[40] Many locations were re-branded as Conoco.[41]

In 2006, when Chevron Corporation gave exclusive rights to the Texaco brand name in the U.S. Texaco sold most of the BP gas stations in the southeast. BP has recently looked to grow its oil exploration activities in frontier areas such as the former Soviet Union for its future reserves.[42] In Russia, BP owns 50% of TNK-BP with the other half owned by three Russian billionaires. TNK-BP accounts for a fifth of BP's global reserves, a quarter of BP's production, and nearly a tenth of its global profits.[43]

In 2007, BP sold its corporate-owned convenience stores, typically known as "BP Connect", to local franchisees and jobbers.[44]

On 12 January 2007, it was announced that Lord Browne would retire as chief executive at the end of July 2007.[45] The new Chief Executive, Tony Hayward, had been head of exploration and production. It had been expected that Lord Browne would retire in February 2008 when he reached the age of 60, the standard retirement age at BP. Browne resigned abruptly from BP on 1 May 2007, following the lifting of a legal injunction preventing Associated Newspapers from publishing details about his private life. Hayward succeeded Browne with immediate effect.[46]

On 1 April 2010, Chevron purchased some BP gas stations in Mississippi and changed them to the Texaco brand.[citation needed]

On July 27, 2010, BP confirmed that Bob Dudley would replace Tony Hayward as the company's CEO.[47]

Financial data in millions of US$

Year 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009

Sales 180,186 236,045 294,849 249,465 265,906 284,365 361,341 239,272

EBITDA 22,941 28,200 37,825 41,453 44,835

Net Results 6,845 10,267 15,961 22,341 22,000 20,845 21,157 16,578

Net Debt 20,273 20,193 21,607 16,202 16,202

The Board Members are:[48]

Carl-Henric Svanberg - Chairman

Byron Grote - Chief Financial Officer

Andy Inglis - Chief executive, Exploration and Production

Antony Burgmans - Non-executive director, board of Mauritshuis, AEGON, Unilever

Cynthia Carroll - Non-executive director, CEO of Anglo American, also board of De Beers

Sir William Castell - Non-executive director chairman of The Prince's Trust

Paul Anderson - Non-executive director

Robert Dudley - CEO (as of October 1, 2010)

Iain Conn

George David vice-chairman of the Peterson Institute for International Economics

Ian Davis - Non-executive director

Douglas Flint, CBE director HSBC

Dr DeAnne Julius, director of Chatham House

David Jackson, company secretary

Environmental record

BP was named by Mother Jones Magazine, an investigative journal that "exposes the evils of the corporate world, the government, and the mainstream media",[49] as one of the ten worst corporations in both 2001 and 2005 based on its environmental and human rights records.[50][51] In 1991 BP was cited as the most polluting company in the US based on EPA toxic release data. BP has been charged with burning polluted gases at its Ohio refinery (for which it was fined $1.7 million), and in July 2000 BP paid a $10 million fine to the EPA for its management of its US refineries.[52] According to PIRG research, between January 1997 and March 1998, BP was responsible for 104 oil spills.[53] BP patented the Dracone Barge to aid in oil spill clean-ups across the world.[54]

A Gulf petrol station in Louisville, Kentucky using the previous BP prototype. BP purchased all Gulf stations in the southeastern United States in 1980s after Chevron, Inc. was forced to divest the stations by the United States Justice Department.

As of 11 February 2007 BP announced that they would spend $8 billion over ten years to research alternative methods of fuel, including natural gas, hydrogen, solar, and wind. A $500 million grant to the University of California, Berkeley, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, to create an Energy Biosciences Institute[55] has recently come under attack, over concerns about the global impacts of the research and privatisation of public universities.[56]

Solar panel made by BP Solar

BP's investment in green technologies peaked at 4% of its exploratory budget, but they have since closed their alternative energy headquarters in London. As such they invest more than other oil companies, but it has been called greenwashing due to the small proportion of the overall budget.[57]

In 2004, BP began marketing low-sulphur diesel fuel for industrial use.

BP Solar is a leading producer of solar panels since its purchase of Lucas Energy Systems in 1980 and Solarex (as part of its acquisition of Amoco) in 2000. BP Solar had a 20% world market share in photovoltaic panels in 2004 when it had a capacity to produce 90 MW/year of panels. It has over 30 years' experience operating in over 160 countries with manufacturing facilities in the U.S., Spain, India and Australia, and has more than 2000 employees worldwide. BP has closed its US plants in Frederick, Maryland as part of a transition to manufacturing in China. This is due in part to China's upswing in solar use and the protectionist laws that require 85% of the materials to be produced in China.[58] Through a series of acquisitions in the solar power industry BP Solar became the third largest producer of solar panels in the world. It was recently announced that BP has obtained a contract for a pilot project to provide on-site solar power to Wal-Mart stores.[59] In the 2006 annual report Lord Browne noted that BP now has a total wind generation capacity of nearly 15,000 megawatts. 15,000 megawatts would be sufficient to provide power to approximately 15,000,000 typical American households simultaneously. This makes BP one of the largest generators of wind power in the world.[citation needed]

Climate change

BP was a founding sponsor of the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit in 1971, the research unit that was at the center of the Climategate scandal in November 2009.[60]

BP Amoco was a member of the Global Climate Coalition an industry organisation established to promote global warming scepticism but withdrew in 1997, saying "the time to consider the policy dimensions of climate change is not when the link between greenhouse gases and climate change is conclusively proven, but when the possibility cannot be discounted and is taken seriously by the society of which we are part. We in BP have reached that point.".[61]

In March 2002 Lord Browne of Madingley declared in a speech that global warming was real and that urgent action was needed, saying that "Companies composed of highly skilled and trained people can't live in denial of mounting evidence gathered by hundreds of the most reputable scientists in the world."[62]

BP is a sponsor of the Scripps Institution CO2 program to measure carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere.[63]

2010: Deepwater Horizon oil spill

Main articles: Deepwater Horizon oil spill and Deepwater Horizon explosion

Anchor handling tugs combat the fire on the Deepwater Horizon while the United States Coast Guard searches for missing crew.

Public protest in New Orleans following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

On 20 April 2010, the semi-submersible exploratory offshore drilling rig Deepwater Horizon exploded after a blowout; it sank two days later, killing 11 people. This blowout in the Macondo Prospect field in the Gulf of Mexico resulted in a partially capped oil well one mile below the surface of the water. Experts estimate the gusher to be flowing at 35,000 to 60,000 barrels per day (5,600 to 9,500 m3/d) of oil.[72][73][74] The exact flow rate is uncertain due to the difficulty of installing measurement devices at that depth and is a matter of ongoing debate.[75] The resulting oil slick covers at least 2,500 square miles (6,500 km2), fluctuating from day to day depending on weather conditions.[76] It threatens the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Texas, and Florida.

The drilling rig was owned and operated by Transocean Ltd [77] on behalf of BP, which is the majority owner of the Macondo oil field. At the time of the explosion, there were 126 crew on board; seven were employees of BP and 79 of Transocean. There were also employees of various other companies involved in the drilling operation, including Anadarko, Halliburton and M-I Swaco.[78]

The U.S. Government has named BP the responsible party, and officials have committed to hold the company accountable for all cleanup costs and other damage.[79][80] BP has stated that it would harness all of its resources to battle the oil spill, spending $7 million a day with its partners to try to contain the disaster.[81] In comparison, BP's 1st quarter profits for 2010 were approximately $61 million per day.[82] BP has agreed to create a $20 billion spill response fund administered by Kenneth Feinberg.[83][84][85] The amount of this fund is not a cap or a floor on BP's liabilities. BP will pay $3 billion in third quarter of 2010 and $2 billion in fourth quarter into the fund followed by a payment of $1.25 billion per quarter until it reaches $20 billion. In the interim, BP posts its US assets worth $20 billion as bond. For the fund's payments, BP will cut its capital spending budget, sell $10 billion in assets, and drop its dividend.[83][86] BP has also been targeted in litigation over the claims process it put in place for victims. A class action lawsuit was filed against BP and its initial claims administrator, the ACE, Ltd. Insurance Group company ESIS.[87]

BP began testing the tighter-fitted cap designed to stop the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico from a broken well for the first time in almost three months.[88] The test began Wednesday, July 14 with BP shutting off pipes that were funnelling some of the oil to ships on the surface, so the full force of the gusher went up into the cap.[88] Then deep-sea robots began slowly closing - one at a time - three openings in the cap that let oil pass through.[88] Ultimately, the flow of crude was stopped.[88] All along, engineers were and still are watching pressure readings to learn whether the well is intact.[88] Former coast guard admiral Thad Allen, the Obama administration's point man on the disaster, said the government gave the testing go-ahead after carefully reviewing the risks.[88] "What we didn't want to do is compound that problem by making an irreversible mistake," he said.[88]

[edit] Stock decline and takeover speculations

After the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill BP's stock fell by 52% in 50 days on the New York Stock Exchange, going from $60.57 on 20 April 2010, to $29.20 on June 9, its lowest level since August 1996.

Approximately 40% of BP shares are held by UK shareholders, and 39% in the USA.[89] BP's UK dividends represent approximately one-seventh of all dividend payments in the UK and form the basis of many pension schemes.

Some market commentators suggested BP may have to cut its dividend,[90] be broken up,[91] file for bankruptcy or be taken over by another oil company[92] as a result of the spill and associated liabilities.[93][94] Financial analysts suggests 4 possible scenarios. One is that the oil leak stops, political pressure abates, and the cleanup costs are manageable. A second is that a competitor attempts to take over BP, either in cooperation with the company or as a hostile bid. The share price would vary according to political pressure and factors related to the suitor and/or BP. A third scenario is that the leak is stopped but with delays. There is uncertainty of the clean up payments. BP stock prices rebound but not completely. A fourth scenario is that the leak is not resolved, political pressure continues leading to bankruptcy.[95]

There are speculations in the press, based chiefly on comments from Fred Lucas, Energy Analyst at J.P. Morgan Cazenove, that there would be a takeover of the company, focusing on possible bids from Exxon or Shell at a presumed price of £88 billion.[96] In addition, BP executives have held talks with a number of sovereign wealth funds including from Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Qatar and Singapore, for creation of a strategic partnership to avoid takeover by other major oil companies.[97] BP has either rejected or refused to react to these overtures.

Following the Oil Spill, on July 27, 2010, BP announced a net loss of $16.97 billion during the second quarter of 2010, with the oil spill costing $32.2 billion so far.[98] Also on July 27, 2010, BP confirmed that CEO Hayward would resign and be replaced by Bob Dudley on October 1, 2010.[98]

Mist mountain project

There have been some calls by environmental groups for BP to halt its "Mist Mountain" Coalbed Methane Project in the Southern Rocky Mountains of British Columbia and for the UN to investigate the mining activities.[99] The proposed 500 km² project is directly adjacent to the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park.[100]

Canadian oil sands

BP is one of numerous firms who are extracting oil from Canadian oil sands, a process that produces four times as much CO2 as conventional drilling.[101] The Cree First Nation describe this as 'the biggest environmental crime on the planet'.[102]

2006-2010: Refinery fatalities and safety violations

From January 2006 to January 2008, three workers were killed at the company's Texas City, Texas refinery in three separate accidents. In July 2006 a worker was crushed between a pipe stack and mechanical lift, in June 2007, a worker was electrocuted, and in January 2008, a worker was killed by a 500-pound piece of metal that came loose under high pressure and hit him.[108]

Under scrutiny after the Texas City Refinery explosion, two BP-owned refineries in Texas City, and Toledo, were responsible for 97 percent (829 of 851) of wilful safety violations by oil refiners between June 2007 and February 2010, as determined by inspections by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Jordan Barab, deputy assistant secretary of labour at OSHA, said "The only thing you can conclude is that BP has a serious, systemic safety problem in their company."[109]

[edit] 2009: North Sea helicopter accident

Main article: April 2009 North Sea helicopter crash

On 1 April 2009, a Bond Offshore Helicopters Eurocopter AS332 Super Puma ferrying workers from BP's platform in the Miller oilfield in the North Sea off Scotland crashed in good weather killing all 16 on board.[110][111]

[edit] 2010: Deepwater Horizon well explosion

Main article: Deepwater Horizon explosion

The 20 April 2010 explosion on BP's offshore drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico resulted in the death of eleven people and caused the biggest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry.[112][113][114]

[edit] Political record

[edit] 2007: Propane price manipulation

Four BP energy traders in Houston were charged with manipulating prices of propane in October 2007. As part of the settlement of the case, BP paid the US government a $303 million fine, the largest commodity market settlement ever in the US. The settlement included a $125 million civil fine to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, $100 million to the Justice Department, $53.3 million to a restitution fund for purchasers of the propane BP sold, and $25 million to a US Postal Service consumer fraud education fund.[115][116]

[edit] 2008: Oil price manipulation

In May 2010, the Supreme Court of Arbitration of the Russian Federation agreed in support of the country's antimonopoly service's decision to a 1.1 billion Ruble fine ($35.2 million) against TNK/BP, a 50/50 joint venture, for abusing antitrust legislation and setting artificially high oil products prices in 2008, TNK and BP declined comment.[117]

[edit] Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline

BP has been criticised for its involvement with Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline, due to human rights, environmental and safety concerns.[118]

[edit] Colombian pipeline

In July 2006, a group of Colombian farmers won a multi million pound settlement from BP after the company was accused of benefiting from a regime of terror carried out by Colombian government paramilitaries to protect the 450-mile (720 km) Ocensa pipeline.[119]

[edit] Contributions to political campaigns

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, BP is the United States' hundredth largest donor to political campaigns, having contributed more than US$5 million since 1990, 72% and 28% of which went to Republican and Democratic recipients, respectively. BP has lobbied to gain exemptions from U.S. corporate law reforms.[120] Additionally, BP paid the Podesta Group, a Washington, D.C.-based lobbying firm, $160,000 in the first half of 2007 to manage its congressional and government relations.[121]

In February 2002 BP's chief executive, Lord Browne of Madingley, renounced the practice of corporate campaign contributions, noting: "That's why we've decided, as a global policy, that from now on we will make no political contributions from corporate funds anywhere in the world."[122]

Despite this, in 2009 BP used nearly US$16 million to lobby US Congress, breaking the company's previous record (from 2008) of US$10.4 million.[123]

[edit] BP and Russia

See also: Russia in the European energy sector

BP is one of the few Western energy companies with major investments in Russia, a country which has failed to obey the Energy Charter Treaty. It has been subject to controversies. In 2008 Igor Sechin, a former GRU agent and later official in Vladimir Putin's government, did private negotiations with BP CEO.[124]

A report observed in January 2009:[125]

Disruption to EU gas supplies in January 2009 - as Ukraine quarrelled with Russia and pipelines were shut down - exposed EU reliance on Russian gas. A dependence that does not support EU energy security, but does support BP's financial security. That financial security depends on BP maintaining its position as a bridge between Russian resources and EU customers. Given the company's turbulent relationships in Russia, BP draws on the EU to help it maintain that position. The EU assists BP because, while it may not be in the long term interests of the EU to depend upon Russian gas, EU energy policy currently relies on it. Without BP, it would have to rely on Russian state companies, most notably Gazprom. As TNK-BP is currently the only major oil and gas company in Russia with no state involvement, and the only major energy company in the country not majority-controlled by Russians, it is a key partner for the EU.

BP's Russian joint venture filed bankcrupty in June 2010.[126]

In 2003 The Guardian published intelligence reports that the GRU has allocated money towards hiring or training eco-warriors and mercenaries to sabotage the 1,100-mile Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline project, which was under construction and would have reduced Europe's energy dependence on Russia. The consortium was headed by BP.[127] During the 2008 war, the pipeline was a major target of Russian forces.[128]

[edit] BP corporate and retail brands

BP petrol station in Zanesville, Ohio using previous BP prototype.

[edit] Corporate branding

BP Amoco changed its name to BP in 2000, and introduced a new corporate slogan: "Beyond Petroleum." It replaced its "Green Shield" logo with the Helios symbol, a green and yellow sunflower pattern similar to the emblem of the Green Party of Canada. These changes were intended to highlight the company's interest in alternative and environmentally friendly fuels. In July 2006, critics pointed to the relative lack of press coverage about a spill of 270,000 gallons of crude oil that spread into the Alaskan tundra. Critics noted this as evidence that BP had successfully greenwashed its image, while maintaining environmentally unsound practices.[129][130]

In 2008, BP was awarded a satirical prize, the "Emerald Paintbrush" award, by Greenpeace UK. The "Emerald Paintbrush" award was given to BP in order to highlight its alleged greenwashing campaign. Critics point out that while BP advertises its relatively minimal investment in alternative energy sources, the majority of its investments continue to go into fossil fuels.[131] BP was also one nominee for the 2009 Greenwash Awards.[132]

[edit] BP

Until 31 December 1998 the company was formally registered as the British Petroleum Company plc. In January 1999 following a merger the company took on the Amoco name.[133] The new name BP Amoco plc was retained until May 2001.[134][135] The transition to the BP plc name was managed by BP's advertising agency, Ogilvy & Mather and PR consultants, Ogilvy PR. The change of name culminated in BP's new logo and re-branding in the first quarter of 2001.[136]

The Helios logo (Helios is the name of the Greek sun god), represents energy in its many forms. The company owns the two letter internet domain bp.com, which the company registered 10 November 1989. BP is among the earliest brands to own such a short domain name.[137] BP's tagline is "Beyond Petroleum"; according to the company this represents their focus on meeting the growing demand for fossil fuels, manufacturing and delivering more advanced products, and enabling the material transition to a lower carbon future.[138]

By the end of July 2010, independent BP station owners reported sales down 10 to 40 percent in the quarter after the Gulf oil spill and, while some hoped BP would return to the Amoco brand once used by many of the stations, others considered that would be a gamble because BP put so much effort into the brand.[139]

[edit] ampm

Main article: ampm

ampm is a convenience store chain with branches located in several U.S. states including Arizona, California, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Washington, recently in Illinois, Indiana, Georgia and Florida, and in several countries worldwide such as Japan. In the western US, the stores are usually attached to an ARCO gas station; elsewhere, the stores are attached to BP gas stations. BP Connect stations in the US are transitioning to the ampm brand.

[edit] Aral

In Germany and Luxembourg, BP operates its petrol retail chain under the name Aral after acquiring the majority of Veba Ã-l AG in 2001 and rebranding almost all of its BP filling stations to Aral.

[edit] ARCO

Main article: ARCO

ARCO is BP's retail brand on the US West Coast in the seven Western states of California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Idaho, Arizona, and Utah. BP acquired ARCO (formerly the Atlantic Richfield Company) in 2000. ARCO is a popular "cash only" retailer, selling products refined from Alaska North Slope crude at the Cherry Point Refinery in Washington, a plant in Los Angeles, and at other contract locations on the West Coast.

[edit] BP Travel Center

BP Travel Centers are large scale destination sites located in Australia which on top of offering the same features of a BP Connect site with fuel and a Wild Bean Cafe, also feature major food-retail tenants such as McDonald's, KFC, Nando's and recently Krispy Kreme, with a large seating capacity food court. There are also facilities for long-haul truck drivers including lounge, showers and washing machines all in the same building. There are 4 travel centers located in South East Queensland: two on the Pacific Highway (Coomera and Stapylton) and two on the Bruce Highway (Caboolture). A fifth travel centre was opened in 2007 at Chinderah in northern New South Wales.

[edit] BP Connect

BP Connect is BP's flagship retail brand name with BP Connect Service stations being operated around the UK, Europe, USA, Australia, New Zealand and other parts of the world. BP Connect sites feature the Wild Bean Cafe, which offers cafe-style coffee made by the staff and a selection of hot food as well as freshly baked muffins and sandwiches. The food offered in Wild Bean Cafe varies from each site. BP Connect sites usually offer table and chair seating and often an Internet kiosk. In the US, the BP Connect concept is gradually being transitioned to the ampm brand and concept. Some BP Connect sites around the UK ran in partnership with Marks & Spencer with the on-site shop being an M&S Simply Food instead of a BP Shop.

[edit] BP Express

BP Express was the flagship BP brand prior to the introduction of BP Connect in 2000. There are still some BP Express sites operating around the world but most have been either upgraded to Connect or changed to an alternative brand. BP Express offers a bakery service but doesn't have the selection of food offered in the Wild Bean Cafe and usually coffee is only available through a self service machine.

In the Netherlands BP is opening unmanned stations with no shops or employees. These stations are called BP Express.[140] Some of these stations used to be 'ordinary' BP stations, some are new to the BP network. Apart from these stations BP Express shopping does also exist in the Netherlands.

[edit] BP Shop

A BP petrol prices sign outside a BP Shop garage in the United Kingdom (prices in UK pence per litre)

BP Shop is commonly used on smaller, mainly independently owned sites. Products vary in each BP Shop but consist usually of a selection of convenience store-style food and automotive products.

BP 2go branded petrol station in Australia

[edit] BP 2go

BP 2go is a franchise brand used for independently operated sites in New Zealand and is currently being rolled out throughout Australia (although not all BP 2go stores are franchises in Australia). BP 2go sites mainly operate in towns and outer suburbs in New Zealand. BP 2go offers similar bakery food to BP Connect but in a pre-packaged form. Some BP Express sites around New Zealand and Australia that were considered too small to be upgraded to BP Connect were given the option to change to BP 2go; others were downgraded to BP Shop. Staff at some BP 2go sites wear a different style of uniform to the rest of the BP branded sites; however in company-owned and operated 2go sites in Australia the same uniform is worn across all sites.

[edit] Castrol

Castrol is a brand of motor oil and other lubricants which is entirely a BP brand but tends to retain its separate identity.

[edit] Air BP and BP Shipping

Air BP is the aviation fuel arm, BP Marine the marine fuels and lubricants arm, and BP Shipping is the shipping arm within the BP group.

BP Shipping provides the logistics to move BP's oil and gas cargoes to market, as well as marine structural assurance[141] on everything that floats in the BP group. It manages a large fleet of vessels most of which are held on long-term operating leases. BP Shipping's chartering teams based in London, Singapore, and Chicago also charter third party vessels on both time charter and voyage charter basis.

The BP-managed fleet consists of Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs), one North Sea shuttle tanker, medium size crude and product carriers, liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) carriers, and coasters. All of these ships are double-hulled.[142]