Billionaire petrochemical corporations around the world
With nearly 385 production sites and 105,000 employees around the globe, German-based mega-conglomerate, BASF, is currently the...
With nearly 385 production sites and 105,000 employees around the globe, German-based mega-conglomerate, BASF, is currently the world’s leading chemical company. The company services customers with high-quality products and intelligent system solutions, and maintains partnerships in almost every country in the world. In 2009, BASF’s sales reached an impressive €50.7 billion, which is a 21 percent spike from 2008. The company constantly seeks out new market opportunities. By leveraging its new technologies and maintaining sustainable development principals, the business has a huge advantage over any competition.
A primary focus of the largest German oil and gas producer is exploring, and producing, on oil and gas-rich regions in the Caspian Sea, Europe, North Africa, Russia and South America.
Dow Chemical Company (USA)
A wide range of technology-based products and solutions, and a global presence within approximately 160 countries have helped to create one of the most successful petrochemical companies in the world. Dow Chemical is centered on extremely high-growth sectors including agriculture, coatings, electronics, energy and water.
Each of the 52,000 employees takes responsibility for managing chemical products so as to ensure minimal negative effects on the environment, as well as on people. All products are manufactured, stored, transported, used, disposed and recycled with a very high regard for safety.
Sales in 2009 came to an extraordinary $45 billion. The company produces over 5,000 products, which are manufactured at 214 various sites, within 37 countries around the world.
Most people in the world have heard of ExxonMobil at some point or another. ExxonMobil Chemical is one of the largest petrochemical companies around the globe and is well-positioned as a worldwide leader in the industry. The company has experienced significant innovative breakthroughs since its inception in 1920. Many ExxonMobil Chemical sites are combined with refining operations within one entity in order to better service its customers.
Sustainability is a primary focus of the company. As environmental issues are a major concern for the business, it regularly seeks out ways of reducing emissions and establishing processes that are more efficient in saving energy. Emissions are regularly publicly reported, and ExxonMobil continually supports research to better understand climate-change issues. Additionally, through the use of technology, the company strives to minimize its impact on the environment, while also maintaining its role in meeting the world’s demand for petrochemical products. The company’s estimated annual revenue is $55 billion.
The Reliance Group (India)
The Reliance Group is a global leader and the largest polyester yarn and fibre producer in the world. Additionally, the company is among the top five to ten producers in the world in major petrochemical products. Reliance is the largest private-sector corporation in India, and its flagship company, Reliance Industries Limited, is a Fortune Global 500 company. The company’s annual revenues are in excess of $44 billion.
Much of the company’s success and growth can be attributed to its backward vertical integration strategy. The business originally specialized in textiles, and then progressed into the business of polyester, fiber intermediates, plastics, petrochemicals, petroleum refining and oil and gas exploration and production. The company is fully integrated along the materials and energy value chain.
Reliance Industries Limited, founded by Dhirubhai H. Ambani, operates world-class manufacturing facilities throughout India, including Allahabad, Barabanki, Dahej, Hazira, Hoshiarpur, Jamnagar, Nagothane, Nagpur, Naroda, Patalganga, Silvassa and Vadodara.
LyondellBasell Industries (Netherlands)
With 59 manufacturing sites in 18 countries throughout North America, Europe, Africa-Middle East, South and Central America, Asia Pacific and Australia-New Zealand, this petrochemical business is responsible for the entire value chain, from refinement to end use. LyondellBasell Industries is the largest producer of polypropylene and polypropylene compounds. Additionally, the company is a worldwide leader in polyolefins technology and refined products, such as biofuels. LyondellBasell is also a top supplier of technology licenses, as well as catalysts for polyolefin production.
Products are sold in over 100 countries around the globe and, as demand continues to increase, expansion for the company is inevitable. The company’s 2009 revenue reached approximately $31 billion. With 14,000 employees worldwide, LyondellBasell prides itself on its reputation for delivering high value to customers. The company practices responsibility, manufacturing products safely. Facilities operate in a socially responsible manor, protecting the environment, as well as the health and safety of people.
Ofwat allows retailers to raise prices from April
Retailers can recover a portion of excess bad debt by temporarily increasing prices from April 2022, according to an Ofwat statement.
The regulator confirmed its view that levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue, thereby allowing "a temporary increase" in the maximum prices. Adjustments to price caps will apply for a minimum of two years to reduce the step changes in price that customers might experience.
Measures introduced since March 2020 to contain the spread of Covid-19 could lead to retailers facing higher levels of customer bad debt. Retailers’ abilities to respond to this are expected to be constrained by Ofwat strengthening protections for non-household customers during Covid-19 and the presence of price caps.
In April last year, Ofwat committed to provide additional regulatory protection if bad debt costs across the market exceeded 2% of non-household revenue.
Georgina Mills, Business Retail Market Director at Ofwat said: “These decisions aim to protect the interests of non-household customers in the short and longer term, including from the risk of systemic Retailer failure as the business retail market continues to feel the impacts of COVID-19. By implementing market-wide adjustments to price caps, we aim to minimise any additional costs for customers in the shorter term by promoting efficiency and supporting competition.”
There are also three areas where Ofwat has not reached definitive conclusions and is seeking further evidence and views from stakeholders:
- Pooling excess bad debt costs – Ofwat proposes that the recovery of excess bad debt costs is pooled across all non-household customers, via a uniform uplift to price caps.
- Keeping open the option of not pursuing a true up – For example if outturn bad debt costs are not materially higher than the 2% threshold.
- Undertaking the true up – If a 'true up' is required, Ofwat has set out how it expects this to work in practice.
Further consultation on the proposed adjustments to REC price caps can be expected by December.
"While it’s great that regulators are helping the industry deal with bad debt in the wake of the pandemic, raising prices only treats the symptoms. Instead, water companies should head upstream, using customer data to identify and rectify the causes of bad debt, stop it at source and help prevent it from occurring in the first place," she said.
"While recouping costs is a must, water companies shouldn’t just rely on the regulator. Data can help companies segment customers, identify and assist customers that are struggling financially, avoiding penalising the entire customer in tackling the cause of the issue."
United Utilities picks up pipeline award
A race-against-time plumbing job to connect four huge water pipes into the large Haweswater Aqueduct in Cumbria saw United Utilities awarded Utility Project of the Year by Pipeline Industries Guild.
The Hallbank project, near Kendal, was completed within a tight eight-day deadline, in a storm and during the second COVID lockdown last November – and with three hours to spare. Principal construction manager John Dawson said the project helped boost the resilience of water supplies across the North West.
“I think what made us stand out was the scale, the use of future technology and the fact that we were really just one team, working collaboratively for a common goal," he said.
Camus Energy secures $16m funding
Camus Energy, which provides advanced grid management technology, has secured $16 million in a Series A round, led by Park West Asset Management and joined by Congruent Ventures, Wave Capital and other investors, including an investor-owned utility. Camus will leverage the operating capital to expand its grid management software platform to meet growing demand from utilities across North America.
As local utilities look to save money and increase their use of clean energy by tapping into low-cost and low-carbon local resources, Camus' grid management platform provides connectivity between the utility's operations team, its grid-connected equipment and customer devices.