A joint venture of the US oil and gas giant Chevron and South Korean business conglomerate GS Group, GS Caltex is a 50-year-old oil refiner and petroleum products company headquartered in Seoul. The company officially launched its products for the first time in Nepal at ConMac2018, the three-day construction equipment and technology expo held in Bhaktapur on November 22-24. Gateway Incorporate Pvt Ltd is the authorized distributor of GS Caltex products in Nepal. Rajesh Nagar, managing director and CEO of GS Caltex India Pvt Ltd, was in Nepal to attend the expo and to launch GS Caltex products in the local market. New Business Age caught up with Nagar to know about the company, its business and presence in the global market, and its plans in Nepal. Excerpts:
Could you please tell us something about GS Caltex?
We are an American and South Korean JV. GS Caltex owns and operates the world’s fourth largest refinerywhich is based in South Korea. We have been manufacturing and refining a range of petroleum products, and supplying them to across the world.GS Caltexfulfils almost one-third of Korea’s oil demand. Likewise, GS group is the sixth largest conglomerate in South Korea. GS Caltex Singapore brings crude oil to Korea to refine and produce petroleum products. It is among the 10 largest companies in Singapore. GS Caltex has its lubricant manufacturing plants in Korea and India. The company is also starting a manufacturing plant in China.
Can you share something about the company’s presence in the global market?
We are supplying lubricant products across the world. Also, there are many original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) working with GS Caltex. We partner with global OEMs for R&D, providing them with our latest and technologically advanced lubricants. In South Korea, we are the market leader in the lubricants segment. The presence of GS Caltex is mostly in Asia and the Middle East, and we are further expanding. In the European and North American markets, Chevron has a better market share. So, the JV between the two groups has been quite fruitful to capture the market in different parts of the world. We export our products to almost 80 countries.
GS Caltex has its own fuel stations in Korea. Can you tell something about that?
People always get confused about the fuel stations of GS Caltex and Caltex. The fuel stations of Caltex which is owned by Chevron are in the United States and European countries, whereas GS Caltex operates fuel stations only in South Korea. I usually like to compare the size of GS Caltex with that of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) in India.
Does the company have any plans for expansion?
GS Caltex in Korea is expanding its refinery. By 2022, the company is setting up more facilities for polyalphaolefins(PAO), which is required to refine products like lubricants and greases. In Nepal, we are expanding the distribution of lubricants. We will alsodistribute base oil in Nepal, which is required for producing lubricants, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, among others items. We have a large reserve of base oil, and we manufacture Group II and Group III base oils. We don’t manufacture low-end base oils. We are also expanding our base oil section.
How is GS Caltex working to expand its market in Nepal?
We will be distributing quality products. In the automobile and infrastructure segments, the costs of equipment, machineries and vehicles are quite high. So, we make sure that our lubricants make the machines more efficient and also reduce theiroperational costs.