Caltex in Philippines

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More Than 85 Years of Philippine Partnership


Caltex gained its foothold in the Philippines in 1917 when Texas Company (as Texaco was then known) began marketing its products in the Philippines through a local distributor, Wise and Co. Four years later, Texaco (Philippines) was formally established and opened its office in Binondo, Manila. Eleven years later, its Pandacan warehouse depot was converted into a key distribution terminal to bring products by barge to nearby provinces.

In 1936, Caltex (Philippines) Inc was formed when Texaco joined forces with the Standard Oil Company (California). On the same year, Caltex improved its position dramatically—it increased its capitalization from an initial PHP 2 million to PHP 200 million—transferred to a new office, and opened depots and service stations nationwide, making it the country’s number one oil company.

But three years of plunder and neglect during World War II wreaked havoc on the company’s facilities. The Pandacan Terminal was destroyed and the Caltex network of depots and service stations were rendered inoperative. After the Liberation, Caltex sought to rebuild and re-establish its distribution and service station facilities.       

In 1951, construction of the Caltex Refinery in San Pascual, Batangas began on a 125-hectare lot. No less than then Philippine President Ramon Magsaysay was present when the US$60-million Caltex refinery was inaugurated in 1954, becoming the first petroleum refinery in the Philippines. On the same year, Caltex affiliates California Asiatic Oil and Texaco Overseas Petroleum explored the Cagayan Valley for oil deposits. In 1956, Caltex moved its main offices into its own building on Padre Faura Street in Ermita, Manila.

The roaring 1960s were marked with a series of milestones that helped Caltex reestablish itself as the country’s premier oil company. The year 1960 saw Caltex introducing Boron gasoline to meet technical advances of automotive engineering. By 1961, Caltex had 2,400 employees and four major installations operating five depots in Luzon, 12 in the Visayas region, and three in Davao. The following year, the Caltex Refinery was already supplying 50% of the country’s national consumption for petroleum products. In 1969, two 108-kilometer pipelines were built from Batangas to Manila that provided a more economical and reliable means of transporting oil products from the Caltex Refinery.

The Seventies saw the company on an energy search in the country. Caltex began searching Palawan for oil in 1972. Two years later, it built and opened the Philippines’ first island wharf and storage complex in its Batangas refinery complex to handle deliveries from very large crude carriers (VLCCs). A VLCC can deliver 300,000 tons of crude, which provided at the time about 10 days of the nation’s crude oil needs. In an effort to help the national government’s total energy program, Caltex spearheaded geothermal exploration in Kalinga Apayao and studies on alternative energy sources in 1977.

Among the company’s milestones in the 1980s was Caltex’s acquisition of Mobil Philippines’ marketing network, including 500 stations and several depots. It also launched its revolutionary CX-3 gasoline with deposit-control polybutene amine additive in 1982.

The 1990s heralded more progress for Caltex’s operations in the Philippines. By 1994, Caltex had the most number of depots and the largest retail network in the country. It upgraded the refinery to 72,000 BPD capacity. Havoline Formula 3 motor oil was introduced.

The first Star Mart outlet in Sucat, Parañaque, was opened to the public in 1995, marking Caltex’s foray into convenience retailing.  In 1996, the familiar red star Caltex logo was given a new look by adding the color of deep ocean green to the new Caltex logo that was launched.

The dawn of the new millennium ushered in the merger of Caltex’s two parent companies to form ChevronTexaco—the second-largest US-based energy company and the fifth largest in the world, based on market capitalization. Currently celebrating its 125th anniversary, ChevronTexaco employs more than 50,000 working in about 180 countries around the world, producing and transporting crude oil and natural gas, and marketing and distributing fuels and other energy products. Its associated brands are sold in approximately 30 countries across Asia-Pacific, southern Africa and east Africa.

As its more recent accomplishment, Caltex operates a world-class finished product import terminal in Batangas with a storage capacity of roughly 2.7 million barrels.

Starting 2006, in line with the change in its parent company’s name from ChevronTexaco Corporation to Chevron Corporation, Caltex (Philippines), Inc. became known as Chevron Philippines Inc. while the Caltex brand and logo that customers recognize as a symbol for quality fuels remain unchanged at service stations and retail outlets.

2006 was also the year that Caltex with Techron with unbeatable cleaning power was launched. Techron® contains powerful detergents which remove deposits from fuel injectors, intake ports and valves.  By keeping the engine clean on the inside, Caltex with Techron gives a car more power, better fuel economy, higher reliability, fewer emission and smoother ride.

In May of 2007 -  Caltex Power Diesel officially became a biodiesel with the additional 1% CME (Coconut Methyl Esther) as part of CPI’s compliance with the Philippine Biofuels Act  of 2006. This was followed two years later, in 2009, with the roll out of Caltex E10 with Techron®, the only ethanol blended product in the Philippine market with the technologically advanced, patented fuel ingredient, Techron®, making it unbeatable in cleaning vital engine parts for improved combustion, reduced exhaust emission, and better vehicle performance.

In 2009, 7-Eleven convenience stores began replacing Star Mart in Caltex service stations, heralding the start of CPI’s partnership with Philippine Seven Corporation (PSC), local franchisor of the popular 7-Eleven convenience store chain. The strategic alliance between the two brands gives patrons more value and richer experience as they enjoy the benefit of getting their fuels and consumer products all in the same location. Twenty one more 7-Eleven stores would open in Caltex service stations in Metro Manila by the end of the year.

Also in 2009, Caltex Diesel with Techron entered the market, replacing Caltex Power Diesel. Caltex Diesel with Techron® D is a new and improved diesel which contains the exclusive Techron D additive to control deposits, help maintain fuel injector cleanliness and enable optimum engine performance.

As Caltex celebrates its 75th anniversary in July 2011, it has withstood the test of time that despite changes in the past and changes to come in the future,  the commitment that Caltex has shown to the Philippines will remain the same.