Castrol Realigns Distribution Channels

Castrol Industrial North America Inc., Naperville, IL, plans to realign its distribution channels to focus on its strengths. The company plans to reduce the number of its suppliers and the industries it serves.

Castrol Industrial North America Inc. is part of BP, one of the world’s largest energy companies, and is focused on the manufacturing and marketing of fuels, lubricants and petrochemicals.

“We are reshaping our distribution channels in order to better serve our customers by creating clear space for both direct and distribution channels to operate freely while complementing each other,” said Vasu Kulkarni, marketing manager for Castrol Industrial North America. “We believe these actions will deliver improved customer focus, reduced complexity and provide Castrol with a sustainable growth platform.”

Castrol currently has more than 85 distributors in North America. The company will determine over the next two to three months by how much it will reduce that number.

Castrol has acquired about 10 companies over the past 15 years and maintained the channels it inherited. But according to the company, not all the current distributors are equipped to sell the full Castrol line of products and services. Some sell only metalworking fluids, while others sell Castrol’s range of lubricants.

The reorganized distribution channel will be able to sell and service the full range of Castrol offerings. Whether Castrol will go direct or through a distributor will be determined by multiple factors, the company said, including the customer’s market segment, requirements, preferences and locations.

Castrol Industrial will further its direct sales’ focus on certain industries automotive, metals and machinery manufacture and aerospace. It also plans to grow its severe lubrication application business in the mining, cement and engineered wood industries.

“We currently are significant players with sufficient business in these industries,” Kulkarni said. “What we are doing is focusing on those industries and markets where we have an inherent advantage in terms of our product portfolio, service offering and delivery management.”

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