Will refinery restructure lead to a sale?

A restructure at the Total Lindsey oil refinery (LOR) is set to take effect from spring 2013.
Total LOR, which has seen more than £600m of investment in the last few years, is to become a separate operating company, and will take responsibility for the daily running of the group’s refining, logistics and storage terminals interests throughout the UK.
Total has already tried to find a buyer for its Lindsey oil refinery on previous occasions, Fuel Oil News quizzed an industry insider as to whether being a separate entity would make the refinery a more attractive proposition?
“Not really, as I don’t think this is much more than a formalisation and integration of operational and reporting arrangements following the 2011 sale of the marketing business.
“The original sale structure was unusual, splitting away primary logistics and the associated terminals along with the commercial/industrial fuels sales to distributors, direct commercial customers, bitumen and aviation from those parts of the marketing organisation sold under Project Mary – principally to Rontec.
“Any prospective buyer is taking on not only a refinery, but also some downstream elements, which they may not want…”
Jacques Beuckelaers, who has taken over as general manager from Nigel Tranter, said:  “The new organisation will streamline our services so that there’s a direct link from refinery to storage and then on to our customers. The ambition of Total LOR is to be a truly customer-focused organisation providing the best quality products with a first-class service.”