Acquisition of MINOL
January 1992: The Elf Group signs with the Treuhandanstalt a MOU providing for the privatization of the East-German "Combination" of MINOL oil products distribution and the construction of a refinery in Leuna to replace two old ones.
The adventure begins for the Group: an acquisition task force is sent to Berlin to conduct "due diligences". Discovery of a new world, lack of information: nothing prevents the team from giving the negotiators the elements to sign the acquisition contract on July 24, 1992. The takeover takes place in January 1993.
MINOL has invested heavily since 1990 but not always wisely and its market share melts like snow in the sun. The competitors are firing all the woods to strip the company. The land must be returned to its former owners, everything is polluted, there are no accounts available, the numbers are very numerous. Elf needs to reorganize and consolidate what has become the heart of TOTAL's business in Germany. The center of gravity goes from west to east.
The meeting of teams from the West and East, with economic cultures so far apart, is also a challenge. The French that we are play a useful and appreciated intermediary role.
The whole network is gradually put in the colors Elf and accelerated from 1994 thanks to a team dedicated to the reconstruction. The colors will change again after 2000.
Numerous improvement plans and consequent investments later, TOTAL's petroleum product distribution business in Germany became an essential and profitable asset for the MS.
On the refinery side, after lengthy negotiations, the first picking cost was given in May 1994 by the German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and the CEO of the Group, P. Jaffré. It started in the spring of 1997. The refinery, the only one created almost in Europe for 40 years, is today a key asset of the RC.