Mergers to trim European marketing sector

Mergers among the petroleum giants and network rationalization will lead to the closure of 20,000 service stations in Western Europe by 2004.This is the view of Datamonitor PLC, London, which said that the fiercely competitive fuel retailing market in Western Europe continues to suffer from low operating margins and stagnant fuel demand."Within this environment," said the analyst, "oil companies are undergoing strategic and operational change, and many have considered mergers and acquisitions as a means to survive."According to a new report from Datamonitor, Western European service stations will be purged as the trends of merger activity and network rationalization continue and downstrea...

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