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HomeFeaturesAstron Energy, BP, and Engen announce big plans for South Africa

Astron Energy, BP, and Engen announce big plans for South Africa

In the past few weeks, Astron Energy, BP, and Engen announced that they are planning to invest significantly in their domestic operations.

This comes after news broke that rival fuel franchise Shell is exiting South Africa and selling its 600-plus forecourts and service stations.

Astron Energy

Astron Energy is one of the newer players in the fuel game, taking over Caltex’s local infrastructure in August 2022.

With over 800 retail sites, a blending plant in Durban, and a refinery in Milnerton, it is one of the few industry participants that is currently refining its own fuel instead of relying on imports – an area in which it sees plenty of potential.

Axola Myendeki, Acting General Manager of Commercial and Industrial for Astron Energy, said the company is actively looking at investing in its refining operations to enable it to produce cleaner fuels in the future as well as assist South Africa with energy security.

“From a perspective of energy security and remaining in the country, we see a lot of upside in terms of the future prospects of the country and we will probably be making additional investments into the refining capacity and energy securitization in the country,” said Myendeki in a CapeTalk interview.


BP celebrated its 100th anniversary on South African soil on 9 May and used the occasion to announce its strategy to “refresh and re-energise” the business for the future.

Firstly, the organisation is working on expanding and upgrading its portfolio of over 500 service stations within our borders while simultaneously growing the number of forecourts owned by black entrepreneurs or run by black franchisees.

Secondly, it intends to “redefine convenience retailing” by enhancing its forecourt offerings with new brands and products.

Lastly, BP is working on optimising its supply model through a new integrated strategy which it believes will boost its market share in South Africa.

“BPSA’s strategy fits into the global group’s broader focus on reimagining energy, as BP pivots from being an international oil company that produces resources to an integrated energy company that delivers solutions for customers,” said CEO Taelo Mojapelo.


Engen and Vivo Energy announced the completion of their merger on 21 May 2024, seeing Vivo Energy purchase a 74% stake in the service station franchise.

As a result, the Vivo Energy Group now boasts over 3,900 service stations and more than two billion litres of storage capacity across 28 African markets.

Going forward, Engen’s new owner said it is taking a “business as usual” approach to avoid disruption to customers, partners, suppliers, and employees at service stations; however, it said that it will place a strong focus on delivering “added value and benefits” for customers and stakeholders.

In this endeavour, Vivo Energy is creating a new 5% employee share ownership programme which will result in Engen South Africa being 26% owned by historically disadvantaged persons.

On top of this, the company committed to invest a significant amount of capital expenditure to maintain and grow Engen’s footprint in South Africa, and it will integrate renewable solar power generation into its operations in support of the country’s just energy transition.

“The combination of Vivo Energy and Engen to create a pan-African champion not only benefits customers in South Africa and across the continent, but also sets up the new Group to achieve its vision to be Africa’s leading and most respected energy business,” said Chris Bake, Chairman of Vivo Energy.

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