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BP Logo.gif
Founded 1901
Headquarters London
Employees 83,400
Products Oil and Gas Services
Website http://www.bp.com

BP is the world's sixth largest oil concern, behind Saudi Aramco, Gazprom, National Iranian Oil, Exxon Mobil and PetroChina.[1]

BP explores for oil and gas in 30 countries and has reserves of 17.7 billion barrels of oil equivalent. It is the largest oil and gas producer in the US, as well as being a top refiner. BP processes more than 2.4 million barrels of crude oil per day. The company markets its products in more than 70 countries and operates about 21,800 gas stations worldwide. [2]

In 2005, BP created an alternative energy unit with an initial investment of $1.8 billion to develop green energy sources, with what became a controversial advertising campaign (BP:Beyond Petroleum).[3] As of 2013, the company invested over $6.6 billion.

On April 20, 2010, a gas release and subsequent explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico led to the worst oil spill in U.S. history. As of the end of 2012, the company had spent $14 billion on the cleanup and other response activities.


In 1901, an English entrepreneur named William D'Arcy received exclusive rights to explore for oil in Southwest Persia. He formed the Anglo Persian Oil Company, which became a profitable concern when D'Arcy and his team discovered oil in May 1908, after have searched for eight years. Churchill argued in Parliament that Britain needed a secure oil supply to protect its global interests; a majority agreed and the UK government took a stake in Anglo Persion Oil. Anglo Persian bought British Petroleum, a subsidiary of a German company, in 1917, and eventually became BP.[4]

In August 1998, BP announced a $48 billion acquisition of U.S. oil giant Amoco. The deal closed in early 1999. Three months later, BP Amoco acquired Atlantic Richfield Co. (Arco) in a $27 billion stock swap.[5]