Solomon: ELPE Aspropyrgos refinery world’s second best

Hellenic Petroleum’s (ELPE) refinery in Aspropyrgos, slightly west of Athens, was ranked the world’s second best facility in the fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) category, in a study conducted by Solomon Associates, a leading performance improvement company in the global energy industry.

A total of 310 FCC facilities were assessed for the study. The FCC conversion process, a type of secondary unit operation, is primarily used in producing additional gasoline in the refining process.

ELPE’s Aspropyrgos unit was rated as a southeast European leader in a number of domains, including production and output availability.

Besides the lofty ranking for Aspropyrgos, the Solomon Associates study noted ELPE’s refineries have achieved a wider improvement in fundamental domains such as reliability, facility utilization, operating costs, gross profit margin and overall performance.

The study identified ground for improvement exists in energy consumption, energy efficiency and maintenance.

Apart from favorable international conditions, the study attributed ELPE’s improving results to factors such as lower crude costs, maintenance of operational costs at competitive levels, development of international collaborations for matters concerning security, technology and knowhow, as well as the digital transformation of the production process.

ELPE’s financial costs fell by 22 percent in the third quarter as a result of reduced debt levels and interest payments, a trend that has continued into the fourth quarter.

With 2017 now almost over, ELPE appears set to post a record EBITDA performance for a third successive year. This year’s figure is seen reaching 800 million euros, from 663 million posted for the third quarter. ELPE also appears headed towards a new production record. The corporate group posted a figure of 11.13 million metric tons for the third quarter.

According to sources, Fortune magazine plans to include ELPE in a list of the world’s leading energy corporations. This status has already been achieved in a Thomson Reuters list featuring its Top 100 Global Energy Leaders, as was recently revealed by the refinery’s chairman Stathis Tsotsoros.