BP’s American entanglements

By Laurie Bennett

May 5, 2010 at 7:10am

Much as we’d like to write off BP as a British invader, the company is as American as the Honda Accords made in Ohio.

BP is not only a top energy provider to the U.S.; it is also a defense contractor. Its directors sit on the boards of major American companies. It is a contributor to American political campaigns and an employer of Washington lobbyists.

The interactive map above shows U.S. entanglements of BP board members, along with lobby shops representing BP America Inc.

Not surprisingly, board connections include the London-based financial company, HSBC, which has extensive business interests in North America.

BP board members also have current and former connections to many U.S. businesses, including Citigroup, McKinsey & Company, General Electric and Sara Lee.

The company dialed down its British image in 2000 when it changed its name from British Petroleum to BP. To underscore a commitment to green energy, it also switched to a corporate logo resembling a sunflower.

In Washington, the firm employs a herd of lobbyists, including powerhouses such as the Podesta Group.

The Center for Responsive Politics, which monitors lobbying and campaign spending, puts BP on its Heavy Hitters list. The company’s campaign contributions between 1989 and 2010 exceeded $6.2 million, with Republican candidates getting 70 percent of the funds.

BP’s energy contracts with the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency total more than $5 billion.

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  • #1.   Yves Bouillet 05.18.2010

    I am one in several 100 millions of users who worship internet. However sometimes it’s a bit baffling ,… would it be possible to receive a simple answer to I suppose is a simple question?:
    Who owns B.P ? Zimbawe? Chile? Luxemburg ? Andorra ? The US? , UK ?….searching for one hour on the net I found myself unable to find the answer…may be I am eventually mentally retarded…

  • #2.   GIA 06.09.2010

    OMG - Yves - I have been asking that same question - how can everyone be calling for Obama to “take over” BP - Can he really take over a company that is not American?

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