Winners and losers on a 3.6bn-euro oil market Ziarul Financiar by Roxana Petrescu, 23 Aug 2007
The H1 financial results for the major Romanian oil companies – Petrom, Rompetrol, Lukoil and MOL, reveal not only different growth rates, but also contradictory developments. Where and why have these differences occurred?
The diverse results were not only because of each company’s different business structures, but also the way each oil firm reacted to the very strong RON in the first half of the year.
At market level, MOL, Petrom and Rompetrol lost between 3% and 9% of their registered turnovers for the first six months of last year. Lukoil Romania, the fuel distribution unit of Russian-based Lukoil, supported the market and witnessed a 52% growth rate in H1.
Overall, the market value of all the four major players reached a similar level compared with last year. In terms of profit, MOL, Rompetrol and Lukoil registered increases. It was only Petrom that witnessed a decline.
For Rompetrol and Lukoil, which recently experienced losses, the first half meant profit. The factor that drove the two companies into the black was the high quantity of refined crude oil. Additionally, both refineries process imported crude oil, which has a dollar-denominated price. Exported production is also dollar-denominated, which yields a fairly constant profit margin, irrespective of RON or price fluctuations for oil barrels.
In H1, Rompetrol Rafinare generated a net income worth 15.4m RON (4.68m euros), in line with Romanian accounting standards (RAS), compared with losses of 34.8m RON (9.8m euros) in H1, 2006. However, the turnover derived by the company that operates the Petromidia refinery fell by 8% against the first half of 2006, to 2.29bn RON (687m euros).
Petrotel Lukoil, the refinery controlled by Russian-based Lukoil, registered a profit worth 7.5m euros, (even higher than the one reported by the refinery owned by Dinu Patriciu) amid a turnover worth approximately 452m euros.
Petrom also saw improvements in the refining sector, despite a 6-week inspection at the Arpechim refinery. However, Petrom’s results were significantly affected by the exploration and production sectors. Firstly, output shrank in H1 and secondly, the total domestic output was assessed against the price of an oil barrel at around $2 less than in H1, 2006. As a result, the production (calculated in dollars) was then sold to refineries, but against a very strong RON. Therefore, the revenues from exploration and production were twice hit. In H1, Petrom posted a net profit of 266m euros (887m RON) and a turnover worth 1.6bn euros (5.4bn RON), down 9% in euros.
Regarding marketing, almost all the oil companies registered a decrease, except Lukoil, which registered an over 50% turnover increase due to network expansion.
MOL saw sales shrink by 7% to 255m euros in H1, due to the filling station exchange with Petrom, which reduced MOL’s market share.
Major oil firms’ H1 figures
Rompetrol Rafinare generated a net income worth 15.4m RON (4.68m euros), in line with Romanian accounting standards (RAS), compared with losses of 34.8m RON (9.8m euros) in H1, 2006
Petrotel Lukoil registered a profit worth 7.5m euros and a turnover worth around 452m euros
Petrom posted a net profit of 266m euros (887m RON) and a turnover worth 1.6bn euros (5.4bn RON), down 9% in euros