We fit together like hand in glove, said Eivind Reiten, who was in charge of Hydros refinery and marketing division at the time. Reiten was appointed chairman of the board of the new partnership Hydro-Texaco a.s., which came into operation 1 January 1995.
The new company combines Hydro’s strong position in Scandinavia with Texaco’s international knowledge and experience. Hydro-Texaco was to operate a total of 1,150 petrol stations; 450 in Norway and 700 in Denmark. Very few of these compete directly with one another.
Petrol, diesel, heat and lubricants
The partnership also covers the diesel, heating and lubricant oil markets. Texaco no longer has its own marketing system for petrol and oil in Sweden, so Hydro Olje’s activities in Sweden will continue as an independent company.
The reason given for the merger was the sharp competition in the petrol market and the opportunities for operating a larger system more efficiently. It was seen that the companies would be more powerful together than on their own.
In line with the agreement, Hydro-Texaco has its administrative centre in Copenhagen, with separate marketing companies in Denmark and Norway.
A 20 per cent market share
The 1993 figures indicated that Hydro and Texaco together would gain a market share of just under 20 percent for petrol in Norway. The equivalent market share for petrol in Denmark would be around 17 percent.