In 1955 the New Zealand Government sold their shares in British Petroleum to the company and in 1957 the name was changed to bp Oil New Zealand Ltd.
In 1964 bp took on an interest in refining through an ownership stake in New Zealand’s only refinery at Marsden Point.
The 1970s were a time of great change. bp invested in a range of ventures in New Zealand, including becoming involved in salmon farming on the shores of Stewart Island and an extensive forest farm on the North Island’s east coast.
In 1972 bp New Zealand took a 60% interest in Europa. The combined group became New Zealand’s largest marketer of petroleum products. The two companies continued to operate independently under separate brands until 1989.
There were more changes in store for bp and the industry in the 1980s, with unleaded petrol, CNG and LPG becoming available to New Zealand drivers. 1981 saw the introduction of ‘Service with a Smurf’, as people throughout New Zealand got caught up in ‘Smurfmania’ collecting the little blue figures from bp stations.
The New Zealand oil industry was deregulated in 1988. The following year the Europa brand was replaced with the bp shield. bp imagery changed again in recent times with the introduction of the bp Helios, which we see today.
With a history of leading the industry in 1999, bp became the first oil company in New Zealand to introduce service stations with solar powered canopies and championed they way with quality convenience retailing.
Today, bp New Zealand has over 210 service stations throughout New Zealand and employs directly over 2000 people who are committed to providing New Zealanders with the best in fuel, lubricants and convenience retailing.