John Davison Rockefeller, 1839/7/8 - 1937/5/23
その後 現在 Standard Oil of Ohio（ソハイオ） BP Standard Oil of Indiana（スタノリンド） アモコ Atlantic & Richfield Atlantic Richfield
Standard Oil of New York（ソコニー） ヴァキュームと合併
エクソンモービル Standard Oil of New Jersey(エッソ) エクソン Standard Oil of California（ソーカル） Gulf Oilと合併
シェブロン Standard Oil of Kentucky ソーカルが買収 Continental Oil (Conoco) Phillipsと統合 コノコフィリップス
1901年 William Knox D'Arcy がペルシャの油田探査を開始。
資金繰りがつかずBurmah Oil Companyが肩代わり。
1909年 油田を発見、Anglo Persian Oil (APOC) を設立
1935年 Anglo Iranian Oil に改称。
1954年 The British Petroleum Co Ltd. に改称。
Standard Oil of Ohio（ソハイオ）と提携して開発することを決める。
1999年 BP、Amocoと合併し、BP Amoco plc.となる。
2000年 ARCOと合併、社名をBP plc. に変更。
The birth of BP
BP's origins go back to
May 1901, when a wealthy Englishman, William Knox
obtained a concession from the Shah of
Persia to explore for and exploit the oil resources of the
excluding the five northern provinces which bordered Russia.
Having been granted the concession, D'Arcy employed an engineer,
George Reynolds, to undertake the task of exploring for oil in
Persia. Severe weather, difficult terrain, the absence of a
developed infrastructure, the shortage of skilled local labour
and the problems of dealing with neighbouring tribes in the
absence of a strong central government -- all conspired to make
Reynolds' pioneering task an exceptionally arduous one. Years
passed without oil being discovered in commercial quantities,
despite Reynolds' persistence.
Meanwhile, the costs mounted, stretching D'Arcy's resources to the point where he sought outside financial assistance. This came in 1905 from the Burmah Oil Company, which provided new funds for his venture.
More exploration in Persia followed without success, until eventually, in May 1908, Reynolds and his helpers struck oil in commercial quantities at Masjid-i-Suleiman in southwest Persia. It was the first commercial oil discovery in the Middle East, signalling the emergence of that region as an oil producing area.
After the discovery had been made, the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (as BP was first known) was formed in 1909 to develop the oilfield and work the concession. At the time of Anglo-Persian's formation, 97% of its ordinary shares were owned by the Burmah Oil Company. The rest were owned by Lord Strathcona, the company's first chairman.
Although D'Arcy was appointed a director and remained on the board until his death in 1917, he was not to play a major part in the new company's affairs. His role as the initial risk-taking investor was past and the daunting task of developing the oil discovery into a commercial enterprise shifted to others, amongst whom one stands out: Charles (later Sir Charles, then Lord) Greenway. Greenway was one of Anglo-Persian's founder-directors, becoming managing director in 1910 and chairman, after Strathcona, in 1914.
Greenway, anxious to avoid falling under the domination of Royal Dutch-Shell, also turned to another potential source of revenue and capital: the British government. The basis of an agreement to mutual advantage lay in Greenway's desire to find new capital and an outlet for Anglo-Persian's fuel oil; and, on the government's part, in the desire by the Admiralty (then headed by Winston Churchill as First Lord) to obtain secure supplies of fuel oil, which had advantages over coal as a fuel, for the ships of the Royal Navy.
After lengthy negotiations, agreement was reached in 1914 shortly before the outbreak of World War I. Anglo-Persian contracted to supply the Admiralty with fuel oil and the government injected £2 million of new capital into the company, receiving in return a majority shareholding and the right to appoint two directors to Anglo-Persian's board.
Although the government undertook not to interfere in Anglo-Persian's normal commercial operations, its shareholding introduced an unusual political dimension to the company's affairs. In later years, the government shareholding was reduced and - apart from a tiny residual holding - ended in 1987.
Post-World War 1
Further expansion followed in the decade after World War I. New marketing methods were introduced, with curbside pumps replacing two-gallon tins for the distribution of motor spirit (or, gasoline). Anglo-Persian also marketed its products in Iran and Iraq; it established an international chain of marine bunkering stations, and in 1926 began to market aviation spirit. New refineries, much smaller than the plant at Abadan, also came on stream -- at Llandarcy in South Wales in 1921 and at Grangemouth in Scotland in 1924. Moreover, the company's majority-owned French associate had a refinery at Courchelettes, near Douai. On the other side of the world, in Australia, a new refinery at Laverton, near Melbourne, was commissioned in 1924.
Exploration was carried out not only in the Middle East, but also in other areas, such as Canada, South America, Africa, Papua and Europe.
By the time Greenway retired as chairman in March 1927, he had realised his main strategic goal of establishing Anglo-Persian as one of the world's largest oil companies, with a substantial presence in all phases of the industry. In 1935, the company was renamed the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company.
Post-World War II expansion
During the post-war reconstruction of Europe, the high demand for oil enabled Anglo-Iranian to expand its business greatly. The company's sales, profits, capital expenditure and employment all rose to record levels in the late 1940s. The refinery at Abadan was by this time the largest in the world. Moreover, crude oil production from the company's Iranian oilfields kept Iran at the top of the league of Middle East oil producing countries.
Meanwhile, Anglo-Iranian entered the field of petrochemicals. An agreement with the Distillers Company in 1947 resulted in the formation of a joint company, later to become known as British Hydrocarbon Chemicals, which produced basic materials from naphtha at Grangemouth. A second petrochemicals complex was built at Baglan Bay in South Wales in 1961.
One of the effects of the Iranian nationalisation crisis was that the company was forced to broaden its operations to make good the loss of oil supplies from Iran, on which it had depended. Crude oil production in other countries, notably Kuwait and Iraq, was greatly increased; and new refineries were built in Europe, Australia and Aden. In another development, in 1952, the company commissioned its first lubricating oils plant at Dunkirk. Two years later, it began marketing BP Visco-Static, Europe's first multigrade oil.
Nationalisation in Iran
While the company was expanding its operations in the late 1940s, it was also engaged in talks with the Iranian government about the terms of its oil concession. Long and complex negotiations failed to produce an agreement, and in 1951 the Iranian government passed legislation nationalising the company's assets in Iran, then Britain's largest single overseas investment. The nationalisation precipitated a major international crisis in which the British and US governments became deeply involved. The company's operations in Iran were brought to a halt.
Only after three years of intensive negotiations was the crisis resolved by the formation of a consortium of oil companies, which, by agreement with the Iranian government, re-started the Iranian oil industry in 1954. Anglo-Iranian - which was renamed The British Petroleum Company in 1954 - held a 40% share in the consortium.
New sources of crude oil
Although all of these events were important for the company, it was hydrocarbons under the North Sea and under the permafrost of Alaska that were to play the key role in transforming BP into the company it is today. Earlier, in 1959, the Dutch had discovered a giant gas field on the edge of the North Sea at Groningen. This discovery encouraged others to begin searching for hydrocarbons offshore. BP scored the first success in British waters when, in 1965, it found the West Sole gas field, which it brought on stream two years later. The search for oil spread farther north, and in 1970 BP discovered the Forties field -- the first major commercial find in the UK sector.
A foothold in America
Meanwhile, in Alaska, BP was rewarded for ten years' exploration effort when, in 1969, it announced a major oil discovery at Prudhoe Bay on the North Slope. When it became clear that, through its large share in Prudhoe Bay, BP owned part of the biggest oilfield in the USA, the company decided that its Alaskan oil could best be handled by a well-established US refining and marketing company.
Accordingly, it signed an agreement with the Standard Oil Company of Ohio in August 1969. This company, the original John D. Rockefeller Standard Oil, was the market leader in Ohio and was strongly represented in neighbouring states.
Under the agreement, which became effective from 1st January 1970, Standard took over BP's leases at Prudhoe Bay and some East Coast downstream assets that BP had acquired in 1968. In return, BP acquired 25% of Standard's equity, a stake that would rise to a majority holding in 1978 when Standard's share of Alaskan production passed 600,000 barrels a day.
The 1970s was the decade of the two great oil price shocks (1973 and 1979/80) that were to have serious effects on the world's economies. It was also a decade when the major oil companies saw a decisive change in their old concessionary relationships. Like its major competitors, BP lost direct access to most of its supplies of OPEC oil as the OPEC countries took control of production and prices.
The 1973 price explosion had a dramatic effect on demand. BP's oil sales started falling for the first time since 1952 (with the exception of 1957, the year of the Suez crisis). By 1978, sales had recovered somewhat; but then came the Iranian revolution and another major rise in the price of oil. In 1979, BP suffered further blows when its assets in Nigeria were nationalised and its supplies from Kuwait cut back. By 1980, its sales were down again.
The entire oil industry was affected by the events of the 1970s. But thanks to BP's large investment programme in areas outside the Middle East, the company showed, as it had done in Iran in 1951, that it could survive. As noted, of key importance were the developments of its oilfield discoveries in the North Sea and Alaska. In the autumn of 1975, BP pumped ashore the first oil from the North Sea's UK sector when it brought the Forties field on stream. This field development was financed by a bank loan of £370 million, then the largest wholly-private bank advance ever arranged. At its peak, Forties produced half a million barrels a day, equivalent to one-quarter of the UK's daily oil requirement.
Since the early 1980s, BP has developed many more oil and gas fields in the North Sea. Among these have been, in the UK sector, Magnus (commissioned in 1983), the Village gas fields (1988), Miller (1992) and Bruce (1993) and, in Norwegian waters, Ula (1986) and Gyda (1990).
In Alaska, meanwhile, the construction of the 800-mile Trans-Alaska Pipeline System enabled the Prudhoe Bay field to come on stream in 1977. In 1981, the Kuparuk field also started production, and towards the end of 1987 the world's first continuous commercial production from an offshore area in the Arctic was achieved when the Endicott field was commissioned.
Today, BP's other oil and gas producing countries include Abu Dhabi, Australia, Colombia, Norway and Papua New Guinea.
1987 - Three major events
The year of 1987 was dominated by three historic events in BP's development: the company's £4.7 billion offer for the 45% of Standard Oil it did not already own; the sale by the British government of its remaining holding in BP; and, as the year ended, the start of BP's successful bid to acquire Britoil, the UK-based oil exploration and production company. After acquiring Standard Oil outright, BP combined its existing interests in the US with Standard's operations to form a new company: BP America. The merging of Standard Oil into BP gave the group access to the full potential of the world's biggest market as well as to Standard's considerable cash flow. Today, about one-third of BP's fixed assets are in the US.
When the government came to sell its remaining 31.5% shareholding in BP in October 1987, few could have forecast the collapse in the world's stock markets that was to occur between the opening and the closing of the offer. The outcome was naturally a disappointment to BP. But even if the hoped-for international broadening of the company's ownership did not fully materialise, the number of names on BP's share register more than doubled to around 600,000.
The share sale did attract one large new investor - the Kuwait Investment Office, which, by early 1988, had built up a 21.6% stake in BP. After an investigation by the UK's Monopolies and Mergers Commission, the government endorsed the Commission's findings that the KIO's holding could operate against the public interest. The KIO was therefore required to reduce its stake to not more than 9.9% of BP's stock. In 1989, BP purchased (and then cancelled) 790 million BP shares from the KIO, so reducing the holding.
The third major event of the year was BP's bid for Britoil, whose purchase was completed in 1988. The success of the £2.8 billion acquisition meant that BP almost doubled its exploration acreage in the North Sea and reinforced its position as the largest oil and gas producer in the area
After the diversifications of the 1970s and early 1980s BP found - like other companies which followed a similar course - that it experienced mixed success in managing its 'new' businesses. Towards the end of the decade, in a change of strategy, the company decided to concentrate on its core, hydrocarbon-based activities. To that end, it began a series of divestments. In early 1988, BP sold its subsidiary, Scicon, and so withdrew from the computing services industry. After developing its minerals interests successfully during the 1980s, the company sold most of the business to RTZ in 1989 and disposed of the balance during the next few years. Similarly, most of BP Coal was sold in 1989 and 1990. The company did not begin to sell its nutrition interests until 1992, but by the middle of that year the divestments programme was well advanced.
Responding to change
From the early 1970s, BP's centre of gravity has shifted westwards, away from the Middle East where its origins were laid. Having diversified into other industries, the company is now focusing again on its core activities in petroleum and chemicals. In 1989, the company launched a campaign to introduce a stronger corporate identity, featuring a restyled BP shield and an emphasis on the colour green. And in a complementary programme that was to prove highly successful, BP started to re-image its global network of service stations in a new design and livery.
At the same time, in the quest to find new sources of oil and gas, BP's explorers began to focus their skills more and more on the regions of the world that for political or technical reasons remained relatively unexplored - Colombia, the republics of the Former Soviet Union, and the deep water areas of the Gulf of Mexico, for example. And in all its operations, BP maintained its policy of striving to be an industry leader in health, safety and environmental standards.
To equip itself for the challenges of the 1990s and beyond, the company introduced, in a programme called Project 1990, major changes in its organisation and way of working to improve efficiency and flexibility. To help further in the running of BP, the roles of chairman and group chief executive were split in 1992.
1889: Formed by John D.
Rockefeller and incorporated as the Standard Oil Company
(Indiana), Amoco's first challenge was to build a refinery in
northwestern Indiana specially designed to refine high-sulphur
crude oil from a field near Lima, Ohio.
1910: One of the major factors in its early growth was the advent of the automobile. In 1900 there were only 8,000 cars in the US. By 1910, the total was more than 450,000. In 1911 Amoco was selling some 88% of all the kerosene and gasoline in the midwest.
1912: In response to the rising demand for gasoline, it opened its first service station in 1912 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Also in 1912, a year after Amoco became independent of Rockefeller's Standard Oil Trust, company scientist William Burton and his colleague, Robert Humphreys, received a patent for the thermal cracking process that doubled the yield of gasoline from a barrel of crude oil, while also boosting its octane rating. The Burton-Humphreys process was credited with averting a gasoline shortage during World War I.
1920s - 1930s: In the 1920s and 30s, Amoco sought to secure its own sources of crude oil, as well as better means of delivering it to its refineries, and in 1931 formed its exploration and production business - the Stanolind Oil and Gas Company.
1935: The Hastings field in Texas was discovered in 1935. The 30s were a period of intense exploration, with 1,000 wells drilled in 1937 alone.
1939-45: During World War
II, the company made significant contributions to the US's
defense effort, producing aviation gasoline, developing a new
all-weather motor oil for trucks and tanks and discovering a
process to produce toluene - a basic element of TNT.
1940s: Amoco Chemicals evolved from a small refinery by-products operation in Wood River, Illinois, in the early 40s. Through the acquisition of the Pan American Chemicals Company and the creation of the Indoil Chemical Company in 1948, it built its sales of chemicals such as poly-butanes, oxo-alcohols, detergent alkylates, benzene and aromatic solvents.
1947: After a slowing of exploration during the War, Amoco resumed its industry leadership in 1947, when it drilled the world's first well out of the sight of land off the Louisiana coast, in the Gulf of Mexico.
1948: Amoco introduced a hydraulic fracturing process called Hydrafrac to the industry, increasing crude oil and natural gas production worldwide.
1948: Global growth began when Amoco opened its first exploration office in Calgara, Alberta, Canada, In 1949, it completed its first successful Canadian well.
Late 1940s - 1950s: The post-war economic boom resulted in an even higher demand for gasoline products, and Amoco responded by adding three more refineries and more than doubling the combined crude running capacity of all its refineries between 1945 and 1957.
1958: Amoco chemicals
scientists developed a process for purifying terephthalic acid,
creating PTA - a superior and more economical basic chemical for
polyester fibre production.
1968: Through the acquisition of Avisun Corporation and Patchogue-Plymouth, Amoco moved into the manufacturing and marketing of woven polypropylene carpet backing. That company ultimately became Amoco Fabrics and Fibers Company.
1970s - 1980s: During the 70s and 80s, Amoco focused on more economic means of production and modernized its refining system, closing obsolete facilities and becoming more efficient. It also introduced self-service stations. Its Chemicals operations expanded globally, when Amoco built the world's largest PTA plant at Cooper river, South Carolina. It also developed additional chemical plants in Belgium, Brazil, Mexico, South Korea and Taiwan.
1980s- 1990s: The late 80s and early 90s saw intense exploration activity worldwide - in the UK, North Sea, Norway, Venezuela, Sharjah, Russia, China, Trinidad and Egypt among other countries. The company also increased its domestic reserves with the purchase of Tenneco Oil Company's Rocky Mountain division properties in 1988. It acquired Dome Petroleum Company's holdings the next year, more than doubling its crude oil reserves in Canada, and becoming one of the largest natural gas producers in North America.
1988: Amoco initiated its Renewal Process, in response to the recession of the 80s and subsequent decreased profitability, downsizing and increased global competition. "The renewal process is our central approach to managing Amoco. It consists of management initiatives that are designed to make us think and work more effectively and efficiently," said Amoco CEO Larry Fuller.
1990s: In conjunction with the Renewal process, the mid to late 90s were highlighted by increased partnering
August 11 1998: Amoco and BP announced that they had agreed to unite their global operations through a merger. The joining of the two companies represented the world's largest ever industrial merger.
Since its founding more than 100 years ago, Amoco Corporation grew from a small, regional company in the United States to a global petroleum and chemicals enterprise, with operations in more than 30 countries.
This timeline is an edited version of an article which first appeared in 1998 in Shield, the international magazine of the BP Group.