Slimmer BP is looking more digestible

The British oil group sold the Carson refinery, south of Los Angeles, and its 800 dealer-operated petrol stations in southern California, Arizona and Nevada for $2.5-billion. The sale brings the divestments BP has made since the start of 2010 to $26.5-billion. It said it was on track to achieve $38-billion of asset sales by the end of next year.

BP has been selling off non-core assets since the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf. The cost of the world's biggest offshore spill is still rising, forcing the group to set aside a further $847-million recently, increasing the potential bill to $38-billion. BP maintains that it has turned the corner, but its second-quarter figures disappointed the London financial sector with a 35% drop in underlying profits.

BP has become a takeover target in the wake of the disaster, which has damaged its reputation and finances. The disposals have made it a "much smaller meal" to digest, according to Louise Cooper, analyst at London broker BGC Partners, who said it was "no longer a 10-course feast".

BP remains under the cloud of the spill because it is yet to reach a settlement with the US department of justice, and it is locked in a dispute with its partners in the Russian TNK-BP venture, which makes up 10% of group profits.

As part of the refinery deal, BP is also selling storage and distribution assets, including more than 100km of pipeline and several marine, land storage and product marketing terminals.

New owner Tesoro would retain the majority of the 1700 staff at the refinery, petrol stations and other assets, said BP, which put the Carson and Texas City refineries, two of its five in the US, up for sale in February last year. Texas City remains unsold. – © Guardian News & Media 2012

PW Botha wagged his finger and banned us in 1988 but we stood firm. We built a reputation for fearless journalism, then, and now. Through these last 35 years, the Mail & Guardian has always been on the right side of history.

These days, we are on the trail of the merry band of corporates and politicians robbing South Africa of its own potential.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Advertisting

Tension over who’s boss of courts

In a letter, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng questions whether Justice Minister Ronald Lamola has acted constitutionally

SABC sued over ‘bad’ clip of Ramaphosa

A senior employee at the public broadcaster wants compensation for claims of ‘sabotage’

Soundtrack to a pandemic: Africa’s best coronavirus songs

Drawing on lessons from Ebola, African artists are using music to convey public health messaging. And they are doing it in style

In East Africa, the locusts are coming back for more

In February the devastating locust swarms were the biggest seen in East Africa for 70 years. Now they’re even bigger

Press Releases

The online value of executive education in a Covid-19 world

Executive education courses further develop the skills of leaders in the workplace

Sisa Ntshona urges everyone to stay home, and consider travelling later

Sisa Ntshona has urged everyone to limit their movements in line with government’s request

SAB Zenzele’s special AGM postponed until further notice

An arrangement has been announced for shareholders and retailers to receive a 77.5% cash payout

20th Edition of the National Teaching Awards

Teachers are seldom recognised but they are indispensable to the country's education system

Awards affirm the vital work that teachers do

Government is committed to empowering South Africa’s teachers with skills, knowledge and techniques for a changing world

SAB Zenzele special AGM rescheduled to March 25 2020

New voting arrangements are being made to safeguard the health of shareholders

Dimension Data launches Saturday School in PE

The Gauteng Saturday School has produced a number of success stories