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The Largest Canadian Petroleum Companies
Although Canada hosts a large number of petroleum companies, only a few of these companies handle the major share of production and profits of petroleum in Canada.
Canada is home to the third largest oil reserve in the world, making petroleum an important economic activity for the country. Additionally, Canada is the fourth largest exporter of oil and the world's fifth largest producer. In 2015, for example, 21,951,950 cubic feet of crude oil were produced daily. In order to process such large quantities of oil, Canada has a large number of petroleum companies operating within its borders. Less than 20 of these companies, however, are responsible for the majority of petroleum production, refining, and marketing. This article takes a closer look at some of the largest petroleum companies in Canada.
The Largest Petroleum Companies In Canada
Suncor Energy became the largest petroleum company in Canada after it merged with Petro Canada in August of 2009. Today, it has a market capitalization valued at $51.46 billion. In 2010, Suncor was named the 4th most valuable company in the country. Its headquarters are located in Calgary, Alberta and it specializes in producing synthetic crude from oil sands. This company produces an average of 680,000 barrels of oil and 346,000 barrels of oil sands every day. Suncor has also increased its activity in terms of developing patents, reporting a 250% increase between 2005 and 2010 compared to 2000 to 2004.
Canadian Natural Resources is the second largest petroleum company in Canada with a market capitalization value of $41.86 billion, making it the 7th most valuable company in the country. This oil and gas exploration, development, and production company is also Canada’s second largest producer of natural gas. Its headquarters are located in Calgary, Alberta and it has field operations located in Western Canada (93% of oil production), the North Sea (4%), and West Africa (3%). In 2011, Canadian Natural Resources produced an average of 598,526 barrels per day. The majority of its product sales are comprised of oil sales (90%).
The third largest petroleum company in Canada is Imperial Oil, which was originally founded in 1880 in the city of London, Ontario. Today, this organization is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta and has a market capitalization value of $39.53 billion. Since December of 2012, ExxonMobil has owned 69.6% of this company. In turn, Imperial Oil owns 25% of Syncrude, one of the largest oil sands corporations in the world. The majority of its production occurs in the Norman Wells oil field of the Northwest Territories and the Alberta Oil sands area. In addition to producing oil, this company also produces petrochemicals and manages retail stores. Some of its convenience stores include: Tiger Express, Esso service stations, and On the Run.
Enbridge is the fourth largest petroleum company in Canada. It got its start in interprovincial pipelines in the 1940s. Today, it has several functions including energy transportation, distribution, and generation. This organization manages some of the longest crude oil and liquid hydrocarbons transportation systems in the world, as well as the longest natural gas distribution system in Canada. It has a market capitalization value of $37.82 billion. It has continued to grow since its opening and in the early 2000’s, Enbridge began several large projects, including the Northern Gateway Pipelines and the Alberta Clipper Pipeline. Additionally, it acquired the Sarnia Photovoltaic Power Plant in 2009, when it was still the largest in the world.
The chart published below offers a more detailed list of the largest petroleum companies located in Canada.
The 5 Biggest Canadian Oil Companies
There are a vast number of oil companies operating and based in Canada. The majority of the oil produced, refined and marketed in the country, however, is performed by less than 20 of those companies. Research and development, or R&D, and alterations in processes, along with acquiring new technology and tools, consistently has the largest companies competing against one another to slide into the number one place.
Many Canadian producers are developing an interest in new energy technologies and the growing value of licensing rights. This has caused a shifting focus in conducting research and development to produce patents. Some oil companies utilize patents as tools to negotiate new deals.
Some of the largest and most productive oil companies in Canada are Suncor Energy, Inc. (NYSE: SU), Enbridge, Inc. (NYSE: ENB), Imperial Oil, Ltd. (AMEX: IMO), Canadian Natural Resources, Ltd. (NYSE: CNQ) and TransCanada Corp. (NYSE:TRP).
Suncor is the largest company, in terms of total revenue, in Canada. It has a market capitalization of nearly $42 billion. It was established in 1919 as the subsidiary of a company now known as Sunoco Inc. More than any other company, Suncor has led the development of the Athabasca tar sands. The tar sands are an area of crude oil deposits located in the northern region of Alberta that hold a potential supply of trillions of barrels of petroleum.
The company has four refineries that function at high capacity, and upstream, midstream and downstream operations. Suncor also operates nearly 2,000 gas stations around Canada. The value of the company's real estate holdings alone, where its production facilities are located, is in the billions of dollars.
Enbridge is based in Calgary and is noted as one of the largest energy delivery companies in the country. It has a market cap of almost $40 billion. The main focus for the company is transportation, distribution and generation of energy throughout North America, serving Canada and the United States primarily. In these two countries, Enbridge is responsible for operating the longest crude oil and liquid hydrocarbons transportation system worldwide. Because the company is first and foremost a distributor of energy, it owns and runs the largest natural gas distribution network in Canada. Its distribution services extend to provinces such as Quebec and Ontario and to the state of New York.
The company was first incorporated by Imperial Oil in 1949 and later bought its independence and began operations under its current name. It advanced several of its largest projects in the 2000s, including the Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines project and the Alberta Clipper pipeline project in 2006, the latter becoming operational in 2010.
Imperial Oil has a market cap of over $30 billion. As of 2012, Exxon Mobil Corp. has nearly a 70% ownership stake in the company. Imperial Oil is a major producer of crude oil and natural gas and a significant petroleum refiner for Canada. It also is a petrochemical producer and marketer for the nation, with retail and supply networks from one coast to the other. The company's headquarters are in Calgary, after moving from Toronto in 2005. It has significant holdings in the Alberta Oil Sands.
Canadian Natural Resources, Ltd.
Canadian Natural Resources, or CNRL, is one of a few oil companies that is wholly Canadian. For the first 20 years of its operations, the company had little recognition, but the development of the Athabasca sands presented a perfect opportunity and thrust it into the national spotlight. CNRL not only operates in Western Canada, but has expanded operations around the world, generating billions of dollars in Europe and even more from its light crude blocks in Africa. As of July 2015, CNRL, with a market cap of $27 billion, is one of the largest natural gas and crude oil producers in the world.
TransCanada Corporation is among the top North American energy/oil companies, headquartered in Calgary, with a market cap of $26 billion. It is developing operations on an energy infrastructure in North America. The company’s network of pipelines is comprised of approximately 2,200 miles of oil pipelines, along with over 40,000 miles of gas pipelines connecting essentially all of the sizable gas supply pools in North America.
List of Canadian Oil & Gas Companies
There are 100s of Oil & Gas companies operating inside Canada varying from large international players such as Suncor Energy Inc., Encana Corp. and Cenovus Energy Inc., right down to small junior players based in Alberta. The Canoils Database provides coverage of every single publicly listed Canadian Oil and Gas Companies on the TSX and the TSX-Venture exchanges, providing clients with all their production data, their financials, M&A deals and much more.
You can download a full Top 100 report which includes production and oil weighting for each company.
Canadian Oil & Gas Companies Covered by CanOils
(Production-based peer groups set as of June 30th, 2016)
- ARC Resources Ltd. (TSX:ARX)
- Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (TSX:CNQ)
- Cenovus Energy Inc. (TSX:CVE)
- Crescent Point Energy Corp (TSX:CPG)
- Encana Corporation (TSX:ECA)
- Husky Energy Inc. (TSX:HSE)
- Imperial Oil Ltd. (TSX:IMO)
- Peyto Exploration & Development Corp. (TSX:PEY)
- Suncor Energy Inc. (TSX:SU)
- Tourmaline Oil Corp. (TSX:TOU)
- Advantage Oil & Gas Ltd. (TSX:AAV)
- Athabasca Oil Corporation (TSX:ATH)
- Bankers Petroleum Ltd (TSX:BNK)
- Baytex Energy Corp. (TSX:BTE)
- Bellatrix Exploration Ltd. (TSX:BXE)
- Birchcliff Energy Ltd. (TSX:BIR)
- Bonavista Energy Corporation (TSX:BNP)
- Bonterra Energy Corp. (TSX:BNE)
- Canacol Energy Ltd. (TSX:CNE)
- Cardinal Energy Inc. (TSX:CJ)
- Cequence Energy Ltd. (TSX:CQE)
- Crew Energy Inc. (TSX:CR)
- Enerplus Corporation (TSX:ERF)
- Freehold Royalties Ltd. (TSX:FRU)
- Gran Tierra Energy Inc. (TSX:GTE)
- Kelt Exploration Ltd. (TSX:KEL)
- Lightstream Resources Ltd. (TSX:LTS)
- MEG Energy Corp. (TSX:MEG)
- Niko Resources Ltd. (TSX:NKO)
- Northern Blizzard Resources Inc. (TSX:NBZ)
- NuVista Energy Ltd. (TSX:NVA)
- Painted Pony Petroleum Ltd. (TSX:PPY)
- Paramount Resources Ltd. (TSX:POU)
- Parex Resources Inc. (TSX:PXT)
- Pengrowth Energy Corporation (TSX:PGF)
- Penn West Petroleum Ltd. (TSX:PWT)
- Perpetual Energy Inc. (TSX:PMT)
- Pine Cliff Energy Ltd. (TSX-V:PNE)
- PrairieSky Royalty Ltd. (TSX:PSK)
- Raging River Exploration Inc. (TSX:RRX)
- RMP Energy Inc. (TSX:RMP)
- Seven Generations Energy Ltd. (TSX:VII)
- Spyglass Resources Corp. (TSX:SGL)
- Storm Resources Ltd. (TSX-V:SRX)
- Surge Energy Inc. (TSX:SGY)
- TORC Oil & Gas Ltd. (TSX:TOG)
- TransGlobe Energy Corporation (TSX:TGL)
- Trilogy Energy Corp. (TSX:TET)
- Twin Butte Energy Ltd. (TSX:TBE)
- Vermilion Energy Inc. (TSX:VET)
- Whitecap Resources Inc. (TSX:WCP)
List of Oil Companies in Canada
- In 1967, we pioneered commercial development of Canada’s oil sands – one of the largest petroleum resource basins in the world.
- Since then, Suncor has grown to become a globally competitive integrated energy company with a balanced portfolio of high-quality assets, a strong balance sheet and significant growth prospects.
- Across our operations, we intend to achieve production of one million barrels of oil equivalent per day.
Address: P.O. Box 2844, 150 – 6 Avenue S.W., Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2P 3E3
- Canadian Natural is one of the largest independent crude oil and natural gas producers in the world.
- The Company continually targets cost effective alternatives to develop our portfolio of projects and to deliver our defined growth plan, thereby creating value for shareholders. We have a proven, effective, value driven strategy that works.
- We have an effective and efficient, diversified combination of assets in North America, the North Sea and Offshore Africa, which enables us to generate significant value, even in challenging economic environments.
- We continually strive for safe, effective, efficient and environmentally responsible operations while developing our diverse asset base.
- Our balanced mix of natural gas, light oil, heavy oil, in situ oil sands production, oil sands mining and associated upgrading facilities, represents one of the strongest and most diverse asset portfolios of any energy producer in the world.
- As we develop our assets, the Company is transitioning to a long life, low decline asset base which provides increasing and sustainable free cash flow.
- Our financial discipline, commitment to a strong balance sheet, and capacity to internally generate cash flows provide us the means to grow our company in the long term.
Address: 2500, 855 – 2 Street S.W., Calgary, AB T2P 4J8
- Husky Energy is one of Canada’s largest integrated energy companies.
- It is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, and is publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols HSE and HSE.PR.A.
- The Company operates worldwide with Upstream and Downstream business segments.
- Husky’s balanced growth strategy focuses on consistent execution, disciplined financial management and safe and reliable operations.
Address: 707-8th Avenue SW, Box 6525, Station “D”, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2P 3G7
- We build and operate the energy infrastructure that North America needs.
- Experts in our field, known for our solid financial track record, for our integrity and high standards of corporate governance and business ethics, we are committed to being a good neighbour.
- With more than 60 years experience, TransCanada is a leader in the responsible development and reliable and safe operation of North American energy infrastructure.
- Our network of wholly owned and affiliated pipelines taps into virtually all major natural gas supply basins in North America.
- TransCanada leads the North American pipeline industry and the world in system integrity.
- We’ve demonstrated an exceptional record of system reliability and safety.
Address: 450 – 1 Street SW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2P 5H1
- Over the past 65 years, Enbridge has become a leader in the safe and reliable delivery of energy in North America and is proud to be recognized as one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World.
- We transport energy, operating the world’s longest, most sophisticated crude oil and liquids transportation system.
- We have a significant and growing presence in the natural gas transmission and midstream businesses, and an increasing involvement in power transmission.
- We generate energy, expanding our interests in renewable and green energy technologies including wind and solar energy and geothermal.
- We distribute energy, owning and operating Canada’s largest natural gas distribution company, and provide distribution services in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and New York State.
Address: 3000 Fifth Avenue Place, 425 – 1st Street S.W., Calgary, Alberta, T2P 3L8 Canada
- Encana is a leading North American energy producer that is focused on growing its strong portfolio of diverse resource plays producing natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids.
- By partnering with employees, community organizations and other businesses, Encana contributes to the strength and sustainability of the communities where it operates.
Address: 1800, 855 – 2 Street SW, PO Box 2850, Calgary, AB , T2P 2S5
- At Cenovus, we‘re committed to being a responsible developer of one of Canada’s most valuable resources – the oil sands.
- We apply fresh, progressive thinking to minimize our impact on the environment while safely producing energy resources the world needs.
- And we take great pride in what we do and in how we do it.
Address: 421 — 7 Ave SW, PO Box 766, Calgary, AB T2P 0M5
- Talisman Energy Inc. is a global upstream oil and gas company, headquartered in Canada.
- Talisman has two main operating areas: the Americas (North America and Colombia), and Asia-Pacific.
- Talisman is committed to conducting business safely, in a socially and environmentally responsible manner, and is included in the Dow Jones Sustainability (North America) Index.
- Talisman is listed on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges under the symbol TLM.
Address: Suite 2000, 888 – 3rd Street S.W. , Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2P 5C5
- Nexenis an upstream oil and gas company responsibly developing energy resources in the UK North Sea, offshore West Africa, the United States and Western Canada.
- A wholly-owned subsidiary of CNOOC Limited, Nexen has three principal businesses: conventional oil and gas, oil sands and shale gas / oil.
Address: 801 – 7th Avenue S.W., Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2P 3P7
- Canadian Oil Sands is a pure investment opportunity in light, sweet crude oil.
- Through our 36.74% interest in the Syncrude project, we offer a solid, robust production stream of fully upgraded crude oil, exposure to future crude oil prices, potential growth through high-quality oil sands leases and an attractive dividend.
Address: 2500 First Canadian Centre, 350-7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta T2P 3N9
- Founded in 2006, Athabasca Oil Corporation, an Alberta based company, is focused on the sustainable development of oil sands in the Athabasca region in northeastern Alberta and light oil resources in northwestern Alberta, Canada.
- Athabasca holds
4.0 million net acres of mineral leases in the northwestern and Athabasca regions of Alberta.
Address: Bow Valley Square 4, Suite 2000, 250 6th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2P 3H7
- Penn West Petroleum Ltd. (TSX: PWT) (NYSE: PWE). Penn West is one of the largest conventional oil and natural gas producers in Canada.
- Our goal is to be the company that redefines oil & gas excellence in western Canada.
- Based in Calgary, Alberta, Penn West operates a significant portfolio of opportunities with a dominant position in light oil in Canada on a land base encompassing approximately five million acres.
- Penn West is a development and production company focused on profitability with goals of growing production per share, cash flow per share and strengthening its balance sheet position.
- We are committed to maximizing the efficiency of our capital programs and the reliability of our production base while growing the oil and liquids weighting of total production.
Address: Penn West Plaza, Suite 200, 207 – 9th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta T2P 1K3
- ARC is one of Canada’s leading conventional oil and gas companies.
- Our operations are focused in five core areas across western Canada, and provide us with an extensive resource base of high quality oil and natural gas development opportunities.
- Founded in 1996, ARC has a long history of expertise and providing superior long-term returns to shareholders.
- Since day one, our vision has been to be a leading oil and gas producer as measured by quality of assets, management expertise and long-term returns; to achieve this we have focused on what we call ‘risk managed value creation’.
- To us, this means viewing growth as an option rather than a mandate, operating with capital discipline and maintaining a strong balance sheet and financial flexibility.
- ARC trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker ARX, and pays a dividend to its shareholders.
Address: 1200, 308 – 4th Ave S.W. Calgary, Alberta T2P 0H7
- Crescent Point Energy is a conventional oil and gas producer, But we’re anything but conventional.
- We’re dynamic, disciplined and driven by results.
Address: 2800, 111 – 5th Avenue SW, Calgary, AB T2P 3Y6
Although there are numerous oil companies operating in Canada, the majority of production, refining and marketing is done by fewer than 20 of them. [ 1 ] According to the 2010 edition of the global 2000 compiled by Forbes, [ 2 ] canoils.com [ 3 ] and any other list that emphasizes market capitalization and revenue when sizing up companies, as of December 30, 2010 [ 4 ] these are the largest Canadian-based oil and gas companies (they are either based entirely in Canada or majority Canadian owned). However more recent changes, possibly mergers or a stronger showing in the price of oil may mean a few of the oil sands producers are underrepresented (many Canadian companies are increasingly dependent on production from that source, which is hurt severely when oil prices decline below 50 to 60 dollars a barrel since costs per barrel traditionally exceed $28 and non-upgraded bitumen (<10 o API) produces about 1.7 fewer barrels per metric ton than West Texas Intermediate oil (according to calculation). [ 5 ] A few of the larger companies (like Pacific Rubiales Energy and Penn West Exploration) didn't make the Forbes list because its ranking system takes many different factors into account. Syncrude and Irving Oil are also leaders in the Canadian industry, with Syncrude being the top producer of oil sands crude and Irving Oil operating the largest oil refinery in the country. [ 6 ] Also, based on the price paid for a 9% share in Syncrude Canada Ltd by Sinopec the company could be worth as much as US$50 billion. [ 7 ] Canadian oil company profits which were down 90% in 2009 as a result of the financial crisis are on pace to reach $8.4 billion in 2010; Helping profits in 2010 is the smaller price gap between West Texas Intermediate oil ($85/bbl) and Western Canadian heavy crude ($65/bbl) with the price of upgraded synthetic oil surpassing WTI when supply falls (before being upgraded to synthetic crude, heavier oil produces fewer barrels of oil per metric ton than lighter oil). [ 8 ] [ 9 ] The two largest (Suncor and CNRL) are 2 of the 7 most valuable Canadian companies (November 2010). [ 10 ] All of Canada's fortune 2000 oil and gas companies are headquartered in Calgary, Alberta (including smaller ones 2,412 oil and gas companies are based in Calgary). [ 11 ]
Ongoing research and development involving extraction technology and processing methods have slowly chipped away at many of the barriers to bitumen production. Many Canadian oil companies have a lot of exposure to heavy oil through assets in Alberta and so they stand to benefit when research into more efficient and cost effective solutions yields positive results (Petrobank has numerous patents related to extraction technology that at least one major engineering firm considers 17% more efficient than the widely used steam assisted gravity drainage). [ 12 ] In the summer of 2010 a research team at Hokkaido University revealed that they had discovered a catalyst that significantly improves the efficiency while lowering costs related to the processing of bitumen. [ 13 ] Also among major Canadian producers, interest in new energy technologies is rising, a direct result of both heightened interest in raising the proportion of the oil sands that can be recovered (10% in late 2010, which means 1.6 trillion barrels are at stake) and the growing value of licensing rights. That has resulted in a shift in focus over to patent producing research and development. Cenovus Energy has used its patents as a tool to negotiate deals. [ 14 ]
Profiled and ranked is every Canadian oil and gas company with a market cap ranking top 500 worldwide and the eight largest by revenue (Nexen made Forbes list but not the top 500 companies according to market capitalization but it had the highest revenue among all other petroleum companies according to this list, addax petroleum became part of Sinopec). Eight of the ten most profitable companies of the oil and gas sector operating in Canada are represented here. [ 15 ]