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Seven companies have come to dominate the oil and gas industry which is instrumental in meeting the energy needs of individuals and companies in every country in the world. The lone British firm among this elite group is BP, which runs exploration, production, and refinement in addition to cultivating new clean energy sources for a changing political and economic climate. The BP headquarters in London is charged with managing the broader strokes of the company’s machinations, while its numerous regional offices manage day-to-day operations elsewhere.
The headquarters in London, in lovely Westminster, manage the international aspects of the company’s various partnerships. The offices in Aberdeen and Sunbury-on-Thames support the London office in operations in the North Sea. The BP headquarters in the United States, where the company generates most of its revenue, is located in close proximity to the company’s oil production operations in the Gulf of Mexico off the south coast of the United States.
What Is BP?
British Petroleum, more often referred to as BP, is an English oil and gas company headquartered in London. The firm is one the seven so-called “supermajors” in the oil and gas industry. It is the sixth-largest energy company in the world by market capitalization and the twelfth-largest company of any kind by revenue. BP engages in oil exploration, production, refinement, and distribution. In more recent years, the company has also moved into the production of biofuels, wind energy, and solar energy.
In 1908, the Burmah Oil Company established a subsidiary called the Anglo-Persian Oil Company, which eventually changed its name to the Anglo-Iranian Oil Campany in 1935. The company changed its name again in 1954 when it finally became the British Petroleum Company. Until 1959, the company operated solely in the Middle East and primarily in modern day Iran.
In 1959, BP began operating in Alaska in the United States, and shortly thereafter the company became one of the first to strike oil in the British portion of the North Sea. These lucrative developments put BP in an advantageous position to begin acquiring other, smaller oil and gas companies while expanding operations globally thereby laying the groundwork for the companies present international ubiquity. The pinnacle of this rise to global relevance is perhaps embodied by the 1998 merger of BP and Amoco, the American oil and gas giant.
Vertically Integrated Operations
As we mentioned above, one of the reasons BP is consistently among the most profitable companies in the world is its vertically integrated business model. The company conducts exploration and production operations in 25 countries worldwide. Their refinement process can be conducted at any of 11 refineries or 15 petrochemical plants in which BP owns a stake. From there, the oil or petrochemicals produced and refined by BP can be distributed at any of the company’s nearly 19,000 service stations across the globe.
In addition to its primary operations and wholly owned subsidiaries, BP owns a roughly 20% stake in the Russian oil and gas giant Rosneft, which operates a majority of the oil exploration, production, and refinement in Russia, a country that is home to a bevy of untapped oil reserves which promise to impact oil and gas markets for decades into the future.
In total, BP produces between 4 and 5 million barrels every day and the company has proven reserves in excess of 19 billion barrels, meaning the company’s position among the “supermajors” is secure.
Stock Exchanges and Share Price
Shares of BP are traded primarily on the London Stock Exchange, although secondary shares can be acquired on the New York Stock Exchange and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The share price for BP stock has remained fairly stagnant amid the natural market fluctuations over the last decade or so; however, BP remains an attractive investment option based on the nearly 7% dividend earnings with which the company rewards its investors.
BP’s Global Relevance
BP is an essential player in meeting the demand for oil and gas worldwide. Without the breadth of its operations, a reduction in the global oil supply would drastically increase oil prices. The company is also responsible for a sizable contribution to employment in all 80 of the countries in which it has some sort of presence. In the coming decades, BP will have the opportunity to become a leading proponent of clean and low carbon energy alternatives.
Contribution to the Oil Supply
As we have alluded to before, BP operates exploration and production all over the world. In some cases the company does so in places where other, similar firms would be unable or unwilling to engage with the requisite legal and logistical challenges of doing business. For instance, they work in the North Sea, much of which is English waters, making operations legally difficult for foreign oil companies. They are also an important presence in Prudhoe Bay in Alaska, where supply lines are stretched to their absolute limit.
Research and Development
As more people become interested in alternative and low emissions sources of energy, BP has devoted considerable capital to researching and developing effective and economically viable solutions in wind energy, solar energy, and the production of biofuels; thus BP is well-positioned to adapt to the future landscape of the energy industry and compete with similar firms cultivating similar new income streams.
BP employs 3,500 professionals in its various offices in the United Kingdom and roughly 14,000 in North America, where the bulk of its operations take place. These figures fail to account for the tens of thousands of professionals who work for a subsidiary of the company in other countries or a company in which BP owns a sizable stake, not to mention the tens of thousands more who work to procure and deliver the various goods and services BP purchases to maintain the functionality of the firm.
Provide Information on BP Headquarters
BP’s origins essentially mandate the primary BP headquarters must be located in London, a duty the company has not shirked. However, BP must maintain offices all around the world to support their operations on every continent with the exception of Antarctica. To this end, the company has a large regional headquarters in Houston, Texas in the United States. That location is actually charged with the management of the firm’s most presently profitable enterprise in addition to overseeing offices all over the world.
The international BP headquarters is located in the heart of London at 1 St. James Square in Westminster. The building occupies an area encompassing what was once both No. 1 and No. 2 St. James Square in addition to several now demolished houses. The company acquired the space in 2001 and had the headquarters designed to reflect the Georgian architecture common in the neighborhood. The offices there house the company’s executives and serve as the primary location for conducting international affairs.
In addition to the London-based BP headquarters, the company operates several other offices in the United Kingdom, most of which are devoted to BP’s operations in the North Sea between the United Kingdom and Ireland. The most notable of these offices are located in Sunbury-on-Thames, near London, and in Aberdeen, Scotland.
Headquarters in the United States
Despite the company’s British origins, nearly one-third of BP’s business interests are held in the United States and the Americas are home to the greatest concentration of BP’s employees. The BP headquarters in the United States is located on the outskirts of Houston, Texas, although there is another wholly owned subsidiary of BP, the BP American Production Company, which is headquartered in New Mexico.
These offices support the three segments of BP’s oil exploration and production in the United States: Prudhoe Bay in the far north of Alaska, the Lower 48 states, and the Gulf of Mexico. In the 21st century, the Gulf of Mexico, just off the coast of Southeastern Texas and not far from Houston, has been the most consistently productive location for BP’s oil production.
BP’s other operations around the globe are myriad. The largest operations in Africa are in Northeastern Egypt and off the coast of Angola. The largest operations in Southeast Asia include a partnership with an Indonesian firm in the Indian Ocean and an exploration project in the South China Sea. In the Near East, the company has substantial interests in Iraq and the Caucus Region. Perhaps BP’s most remote endeavor is the exploration and production of oil deep in the outback of Western Australia.
BP is a multinational oil and gas company based in the United Kingdom. The international BP headquarters is located in St. James Square in the heart of London. This headquarters oversees European operations and BP’s various international entanglements with oil and gas companies the world over. Despite the company’s British origins, most of BP’s revenue comes for the company’s operations in the United States. The BP headquarters charged with managing daily affairs in North America is in Houston, Texas near the Gulf of Mexico, one of the company’s most profitable locales.