Statoil ASA, Norway’s biggest petroleum company, will change its name to Equinor as it seeks to broaden its energy reach beyond oil and gas production.
“The world is changing, and so is Statoil,” said Chairman Jon Erik Reinhardsen in a statement. “The biggest transition our modern-day energy systems have ever seen is underway, and we aim to be at the forefront of this development.”
The name reflects the starting point for equal, equality and equilibrium, and “nor,” to signal the company’s Norwegian origin, according to Statoil, which is 67 percent controlled by the government.
The change comes just a few months after Norway’s $1 trillion sovereign wealth fund shocked the world in proposing to divest all of its oil and gas stocks, arguing that given the country’s overall exposure to oil, including its ownership in Statoil, it didn’t make sense to also tie up financial assets in the petroleum sector. Norway as a whole is also seeking to reduce its reliance on petroleum production.
Statoil said its strategy presented in 2017 set clear principles for the development of a distinct and competitive portfolio, which includes about 15 percent to 20 percent of its investments to be in “new energy solutions” by 2030. Since Chief Executive Officer Eldar Saetre took over the company in 2014, the company has increased investments in offshore wind power, and recently entered solar energy.
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