The Nature of the Firm in the Oil Industry: International Oil Companies in Global Business, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

The Nature of the Firm in the Oil Industry

International Oil Companies in Global Business, 1st Edition

By Basak Beyazay


168 pages

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Firm-to-firm relationships, along with the overall structure of industry, have changed markedly over the past decades. Replacing the model of vertical integration with one of global business, firms have started to outsource more by using a wider global network. At the same time, they have begun to increase their control and coordination along the value chain to remain competitive, blurring the boundaries between companies. Understanding the nature of the firm and its role in coordinating the supply chain will help firms to better define global competitive strategies.. The challenges that lie ahead for global business render obsolete the traditional model of procuring each service without long-term supply chain management. Current trends suggest that in the future there will be even deeper supply chain integration in most industries.

The Nature of the Firm in the Oil Industry aims to facilitate the understanding of ‘the firm’ via the analysis of the specific relationship between international oil companies, which are among the world’s biggest firms and which act as ‘core system integrators’, and the oil services companies, which help to find, extract, produce and distribute oil along the petroleum industry supply chain. This relationship serves as an example of deep integration by core system integrators and provides insights into the change in the nature of the firm in the era of modern globalization. Aimed at researchers and academics, The Nature of the Firm in the Oil Industry offers a thorough examination of this relationship in an effort to shed light on the nature of the firm, both in the oil industry and in global business today. It is a humble attempt to better understand the firm in a crucial industry.


"There is an abundance of theorising about global value chains, but painfully little in-depth analysis of real world examples. Dr. Beyazay has undertaken a unique, path breaking study of the value chain of the oil and gas industry. It provides a remarkable insight into the relationship between the oil majors and their key suppliers in the upper reaches of the value chain. It deserves to be widely read by scholars, business practitioners and policy-makers."Professor Peter Nolan, Director of the Centre of Development Studies, University of Cambridge "The functioning of the global oil industry hinges on the relationships between different types of firms, and especially between oil services companies and the private or state-owned oil companies that hire them. This book offers a rigorous and current analysis of these relationships and how they are evolving over time. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in how today's oil industry actually works."Mark Thurber, Co-editor and contributor to Oil and Governance; research scholar at Stanford University

Table of Contents

1. Global Value Chain & Changes in the Nature of the Firm 2. Petroleum Value Chain & Its Transformation 3. Impact of the Changes on the IOC–OSC Relationship 4. Case Studies: IOC & OSC Relationship in Selected Sectors 5. Conclusion

About the Author

Basak Beyazay-Odemis received her PhD and her MPhil degree at the University of Cambridge in the Centre of Development Studies. Prior to her studies in Cambridge, she obtained a double diploma of ENA (Promotion Copernic) and a Master in Public Administration at the Ecole Nationale d’Administration (ENA) in France, and a BA in the Francophone Department of Political & Administrative Sciences of Marmara University in Turkey. Her principal areas of research include energy markets, international oil companies, the oil industry and the economies and policies of developing countries including her native country, Turkey. She currently works as an energy trader at an international oil and gas company in London.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in International Business and the World Economy

As ever-increasing proportion of the world's business takes place across national borders, the need to understand the motive forces behind international business becomes greater. Transnationals are now, in many cases, as important as national governments in shaping trade flows and economic trends. As this series demonstrates, international business is not just the preserve of the largest companies, but impacts on all aspects of business and economic activity. This series is essential reading for policy makers as well as researchers in international business and applied international economics.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / International / General
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / International / Economics
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Industries / Energy Industries
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Power Resources / Nuclear
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Power Resources / Fossil Fuels