The public sector oil marketing companies expanded their operations during 2020, the year when coronavirus pandemic hit, even when the demand had plunged drastically due to COVID-19 restrictions.
For the major part of 2020, the petrol and diesel sales remained below the pre-Covid levels, the PSU oil companies— IndianOil, Hindustan Petroleum, and privation bound Bharat Petroleum— continued to invest in expanding their retail outlets with the three adding 5482 retail outlets in the 10-month period of FY21 up to January end 2021.
Of the total 5482 retail outlets, IOC added 2147, BPCL – 1,792, and HPCL – 1543 retail outlets in the April-January period of FY21.
The private sector on the other hand remained mute on their marketing initiatives adding a mere 376 fuel outlets.
BPCL also maintained the lead in retail outlet petrol throughput: the company’s petrol throughput per retail outlet (RO), a key efficiency indicator, was 56.2kl/month in Q3FY21 vs 52.4 for HPCL and 49.5/48.3 for IOCL/others.
For diesel, the brokerage said, it cannot be properly ascertained due to the lack of proper bulk-direct sales data company-wise. Players like RIL have reported much higher overall throughput/RO, though diesel has a B2B character, which can be utilized to push higher volumes. BPCL, nevertheless, has reported a total throughput/RO of 170kl/month in FY20 vs 147/152/154 for IOCL/HPCL/industry.
Based on Q3FY21 reported figures, IOCL’s market share in petrol fell from 40.4 per cent to 40.0 per cent YoY and in diesel (incl bulk), it declined from 43.7 per cent to 42.6 per cent.
Total volume market share also fell from 39.9 per cent to 39.5 per cent. Meanwhile, BPCL, HPCL, and private/others gained in auto fuels.
The total market share of BPCL/HPCL improved by 35bps/68bps, though private/others lost 62bps. IOCL’s diesel market share improved by 64bps QoQ from 41.9 per cent in Q2.