Its refinement technology focuses on upgrading high-grade petroleum coke and removing sulfur.
With approximately 32,700 employees in 40 countries, it has assets of $171 billion with core competencies in petroleum exploration, production, refining, supply, marketing and transportation as well as natural gas gathering and processing and chemicals and plastics production. The company has a 50 percent interest in Colorado-based natural gas liquid producer DCP Midstream, LLC and Texas-based petrochemical company Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC. This paper will provide an assessment of the existing company in terms of its current status, including stock trading and financial standing, and the issues that have significant effect on its performance.
ConocoPhillips is actually the recent marriage between two pioneer oil companies in the US, Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Company. The two companies merged on August 30, 2002 amidst some speculation that the $15.5 Billion deal was a necessary move for the two contenders to avoid being out-competed by bigger petroleum companies. At the time of the merger, oil prices had taken a disastrous turn downward that threatened the survival of smaller gas companies. The merger was expected to save about $750 million in overhead costs, mostly based on planned downsizing of some of the combined roster of 58,000 employees. ("Analysts: Phillips-Conoco merge to survive," 2001)
Isaac Elder Blake founded Conoco in November 25, 1875 as the Continental Oil and Transportation Co. that would bring in petroleum in bulk to the pioneers of Ogden, Utah, making it more affordable and convenient for individual use. In the course of operations, Blake developed new uses for petroleum including benzene, ready mixed paints, birthday candles and paraffin chewing wax, but the focus was more on gasoline for use in automobiles. Continental built the first filling station in the West in 1909. By 1913, Continental was the top petroleum marketer in the Rocky Mountain region and an attempt by Standard Oil to take over the company was rebuffed by order of the Supreme Court. In 1929, Continental Oil merged with Oklahoma-based Marland Oil because each company could benefit from each other's strengths, marketing know how from the former and supply of crude oil for the latter and was named Continental Oil Company, assets including 3,000 wells and retail outlets in 30 states. Conoco stock began trading in the New York Stock Exchange in September 15, 1929, just in time for the stock market crash.
The company survived only by drastically cutting overhead costs and expanding refinery capacity under the direction of Dan Moran. He was succeeded by Leonard F. McCollum who led Conoco overseas, acquiring oil fields in Dubai and retail acquisitions in Europe. He diversified the company to such an extent that by 1972 Conoco was worth more that $2.3 Billion in assets. On September 30, 1981, in the midst of political and economic ups and downs and a threatened hostile takeover, Conoco merged with DuPont, which resulted in the former becoming a wholly owned-subsidiary of the latter, until Conoco separated from Dupont in 1997 to become an independent oil company. ("Conoco History," 2005)
It was in 1905 that the Philips brothers hit their first oil well, eventually