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Bender Consulting Predicts Key Trends and Merger and Acquisition Activity for the Oil & Gas Sector in 2010
Date:1/16/2010

ctivity on the upstream side.
  • On the downstream side, it will cause uncertainty - and a "wait it out" mentality. Cap and trade could lead to distressed downstream assets on the market - Valero, Sunoco, Tesoro and other independent refiners could be acquired.
  • U.S. supermajors will not likely increase acquisition of foreign downstream assets. Far reaching legislation could push supermajors toward exiting the downstream business - or drastically optimizing it to maintain outlets and full value chain insight.
  • "Shrink to Grow" Downstream Mentality:
    • Supermajors will continue to optimize and reduce downstream headcount and markets of operation. Result will likely be net job loss.
    • While tight margins and cap and trade complexity will push supermajors to strongly consider exiting the downstream business, our prediction is that they will remain in order to maintain their brand and knowledge gained from exposure to the full value chain. We anticipate that they will look to build capability to further exploit "full value chain knowledge" for profit (ex: increased trading for profit; strategic market acquisition, etc).
    • ConocoPhillips will not be acquired. New international refining capacity (China and India) will continue to squeeze refining margins. Again, combining this with the "unknown" of cap and trade creates an environment of too much complexity to acquire new downstream assets.
    • Independent Refiners (Valero, Sunoco, Tesoro, etc.) could be in trouble. Depending on the degree of cap and trade legislation, this current business model may require drastic transformation or it could become extinct. It's hard to see how they could survive significant legislation.
  • Reducing Risk is a Priority:
    • Trading value at risk (VAR) exposure will be minimized in 2010 as executives do not truly understand trading and will look to minimize exposure. '/>"/>

    SOURCE Bender Consulting
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