Marathon Oil

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Marathon Oil Corporation
Traded as NYSE:  MRO
S&P 500 Component
ISIN US5658491064  OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg
Industry Petroleum industry
PredecessorThe Ohio Oil Company, U.S. Steel
Founded1887 (1887)
Headquarters Marathon Oil Tower
Houston, Texas, United States
Key people
Lee M. Tillman, President & CEO [1]
Products Petroleum
Natural gas
Production output
438 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (2,680,000 GJ) per day [1]
RevenueDecrease2.svg US$ 5.522 billion (2015) [1]
Decrease2.svg US$ -3.03 billion (2015) [1]
Decrease2.svg US$ -2.204 billion (2015) [1]
Total assets Decrease2.svg US$ 32.311 billion (2015) [1]
Total equity Decrease2.svg US$ 18.553 billion (2015) [1]
Number of employees
2,300 [2]  (2017)
Marathon Oil Tower, the headquarters of Marathon Oil MarathonOilTowerHoustonTX.JPG
Marathon Oil Tower, the headquarters of Marathon Oil

Marathon Oil Corporation, usually simply referred to as Marathon Oil, is an American petroleum and natural gas exploration and production company headquartered in the Marathon Oil Tower in Houston, Texas. Marathon Oil is incorporated in Ohio. [3]


Current operations

As of December 31, 2015, the company had 2.163  billion barrels of oil equivalent (1.323×1010 GJ) of estimated proven reserves, of which 44% was in the United States, 32% was in Canada, 12% was in Equatorial Guinea, and 11% was in other countries in Africa, primarily Libya.

The company has concessions with the Waha Oil Company in Libya. Libya accounts for 235 million barrels of oil equivalent (1.44×109 GJ) of estimated proved reserves, although the company did not sell any product from these operations in 2015 since operations were interrupted by civil and political unrest. [1]

In Canada, the company was focused on the Athabasca oil sands project, in which the company owned a 20% interest. [1]

The company's proved reserves consisted 40% of petroleum, 32% synthetic crude, 19% natural gas and 9% natural gas liquids. [1]

In 2015, the company sold 438 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (2,680,000 GJ) per day. [1]

In 2015, the company derived 13% of its revenues from sales to Irving Oil and 11% of its revenues from sales to Shell Oil. [1]

In 2016, the company plans to spend $1.4 billion on capital expenditures, of which $1.2 billion will be spent in North America, including $600 million in the Eagle Ford and $200 million in the Bakken formation. [1]

The company owns 277,000 net acres in the Bakken formation. [1]


Marathon began as The Ohio Oil Company in 1887. In 1889, it was purchased by John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil. It remained a part of Standard Oil until Standard Oil was broken up in 1911. In 1930, The Ohio Oil Company bought the Transcontinental Oil Company and established the "Marathon" brand name. In 1962, the company changed its name to "Marathon Oil Company".

In 1982, Mobil made a hostile offer to buy the company; however, the board of Marathon Oil rejected the offer and instead sold the company to United States Steel. A legal battle ensued thereafter. [4]

After the merger, the headquarters was moved to Houston, Texas in 1990 but the company's refining subsidiary maintained its headquarters in Findlay, Ohio.

In 1984, Marathon purchased the U.S. unit of Husky Energy for $505 million. [5]

In 1998, Marathon and Ashland, Inc. contributed their refining operations to Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC, now Marathon Petroleum. [6]

In 2001, USX, the holding company that owned United States Steel and Marathon, spun off the steel business and, in 2002, USX renamed itself Marathon Oil Corporation. [7]

In 2003, Marathon sold its Canadian operations to Husky Energy. [8]

In 2003, the company sold its interest in the Yates Oil Field to Kinder Morgan for approximately $225 million. [9]

In late 2003, Marathon Oil and its partners Noble Energy and AMPCO started the Bioko Island Malaria Control Project (BIMCP) in Equatorial Guinea. Malaria control activities included indoor residual spraying, improved diagnosis and case management, and capacity building to contain future outbreaks. BIMCP had proven being successful in reducing malaria transmission, reducing the proportion of children with malaria parasites, and improving iron status. BIMCP is perceived as a model of hands-on corporate involvement in a humanitarian effort with government, non-profits and academic organizations to reduce the burden of malaria in countries located in Equatorial Africa. [10] The president of Equatorial Guinea, Obiang Nguema, is one of the world's worst dictators, according to Parade Magazine. Marathon's humanitarian efforts have mitigated some of the criticism resulting from its dealings with Nguema's regime. In 2008, Marathon Oil and Lestis Private Capital Group started the Central Basin Control Project (CBCP) [11]

In 2007, Marathon acquired Western Oil Sands for $6.6 billion and gained ownership of its 20 percent stake in the Athabasca Oil Sands Project in northern Alberta and other assets in the midwestern United States. The Athabasca project's Muskeg River Mine was producing approximately 155,000 barrels a day of bitumen at the time. [12]

In 2011, Marathon completed the corporate spin-off of Marathon Petroleum, distributing a 100% interest to its shareholders. [13]

In June 2013, Marathon sold its Angolan oil and gas field to Sinopec for $1.52 billion. [14]

In September 2013, Marathon announced it would sell a 10% stake in an oil and gas field offshore Angola for around $590 million to Sonangol Group. [15]

In June 2014, Marathon Oil Norge AS (“Marathon Norway") was acquired by Det Norske Oljeselskap ASA for US$2.1 billon. [16]

See also

Related Research Articles

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Syncrude Canada Ltd. is one of the world's largest producers of synthetic crude oil from oil sands and the largest single source producer in Canada. It is located just outside Fort McMurray in the Athabasca Oil Sands, and has a nameplate capacity of 350,000 barrels per day (56,000 m3/d) of oil, equivalent to about 13% of Canada's consumption. It has approximately 5.1 billion barrels (810,000,000 m3) of proven and probable reserves situated on 8 leases over 3 contiguous sites. Including fully realized prospective reserves, current production capacity could be sustained for well over 90 years.

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Although there are numerous oil companies operating in Canada, the majority of production, refining and marketing is done by fewer than 20 of them. According to the 2013 edition of Forbes Global 2000, and any other list that emphasizes market capitalization and revenue when sizing up companies, as of March 31, 2014 these are the largest Canada-based oil and gas companies. However more recent changes, possibly mergers or a stronger showing in the price of oil could mean a few of the oil sands producers are underrepresented; this is because Canadian companies are increasingly dependent on production from that source, which is hurt severely when oil prices decline below 50 to 60 dollars a barrel since costs per barrel traditionally exceed $28 and non-upgraded bitumen produces 1.7 fewer barrels per metric ton than West Texas Intermediate oil. A few of the larger companies don't show up in the Forbes list because its ranking system takes many different factors into account. Syncrude and Irving Oil are also leaders in the Canadian industry, with Syncrude being the top producer of oil sands crude and Irving Oil operating the largest oil refinery in the country. Also, based on the price paid for a 9% share in Syncrude Canada Ltd by Sinopec the company could be worth as much as US$50 billion. Canadian oil company profits quickly recovered from the financial crisis; In 2009 they were down 90% but in 2010 they reached $8.4 billion; Helping profits is the smaller price gap between West Texas Intermediate oil ($85/bbl) and Western Canadian heavy crude ($65/bbl) with the price of upgraded synthetic oil surpassing WTI when supply falls. The two largest are 2 of the 11 most valuable Canadian companies. 2,412 oil and gas companies are based in Calgary, Alberta alone.

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  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 "10-K". Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  2. "Marathon Oil". Fortune. Retrieved 2019-01-08.
  3. "10-K". 10-K. Retrieved 1 June 2019.
  4. "Mobil Corp. v. Marathon Oil Co.: Tender Offeror's Right to Injunctive Relief Recognized". Pace Law Review. April 1983.
  5. SALPUKAS, AGIS (March 30, 1984). "MARATHON WILL BUY HUSKY UNIT". New York Times .
  6. Breed, Alan G. (May 16, 1997). "Ashland, Marathon Announce Alliance". Kentucky New Era .
  7. "United States Steel Corporation Form S-4, September 7, 2001" . Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  8. "Husky snaps up Marathon assets". The Globe and Mail . August 21, 2003.
  9. "Marathon to Sell Interest in Yates Field to Kinder Morgan Energy Partners". PRNewswire. October 30, 2003.
  10. "Investor Relations - Marathon Oil Corporation". Marathon Oil. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  11. "More of the World's Worst Dictators". Parade Magazine. March 22, 2009.
  12. "Marathon to buy Western Oil Sands for $6.5B". CBC News. July 31, 2007. Retrieved 12 July 2017.
  13. "Marathon spin-off gives Ohio fifth largest refiner". Associated Press via Yahoo! Finance. June 30, 2011.
  14. China's Sinopec buys Marathon's Angola oil fields for $1.52 billion, Reuters, June 23, 2013
  15. Marathon Oil to sell stake in Angolan field for $590 million, Reuters, September 10, 2013
  16. Det norske acquires Marathon Oil Norge AS, June 2, 2014