Vivo Energy displaces total to become top oil marketer in Kenya

Vivo Energy, the African fuels supplier owned by premier Africa-focused private investment firm Helios Investment Partners LLP and trading commodities company Vitol Group, has become the top oil marketer in Kenya in the year ended December 2017. Vivo rose to this position by displacing Total, which previously held the position.

This was made known through data released by the Petroleum Institute of East Africa (PIEA), which showed that Vivo’s share of local petroleum sales volume rose to 17.6 percent in the review period, up from 15.9 percent the year before when it was ranked second.

Total’s share fell to the third position after dropping by 0.1 percent to 15.9 percent, while KenolKobil retained its position as the second largest petroleum dealer after gaining 1.1 percent to 16.5 percent.

According to Business daily, the rise of Vivo is linked to the aggressive opening of new service stations. In the past few years, the company has opened scores of fuel stations across the country, including major towns such as Nairobi, Meru, Kisii, and Thika.

A few days ago, Vivo Energy announced it will be listing its shares on the London Stock Exchange and the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in order to acquire new sites and upgrading existing retail service stations to fulfill unrealized potential.

Vivo Energy’s rise as the top oil marketer in Kenya was largely driven by sales to motor vehicles, fuels bulk sales to small independent oil firms, emergency power producers and airlines

What you should know about Vivo Energy

Vivo Energy is the company behind the Shell brand in Africa. Helios, Vitol, and Shell created the company in 2011 when Shell divested its majority share in its downstream operations in 16 African markets.  It was established to distribute and market Shell-branded fuels and lubricants.

It is present in Kenya, Uganda, Mali, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Namibia, Madagascar, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Senegal, and Western Sahara.

Its retail network has grown from 1,300 to over 1,700 stations.

Since taking over from Shell in 2011, Vivo has spent $600 million on expanding its retail network. It sold 9 billion litres of fuel and lubricants in 2017. And this is nearly 40 percent more than when it took over.

In 2017,  Vivo energy reported adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization of $376 million, which is an increase from the $302 million recorded in 2016.