Gulf Oil

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Gulf Oil was a major global oil company from the 1900s to the 1980s. The eighth-largest American manufacturing company in 1941 and the ninth-largest in 1979, Gulf Oil was one of the so-called Seven Sisters oil companies. Prior to its merger with Standard Oil of California, Gulf was one of the chief instruments of the legendary Mellon family fortune; both Gulf and Mellon Financial had their headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Gulf's former headquarters, originally referred to as "the Gulf Building" (now the Gulf Tower office condos), is an art-deco skyscraper. The tallest building in Pittsburgh until 1970, when it was eclipsed by the U.S. Steel Tower, it is capped by a "step pyramid" structure several stories high. Until the late 1970s, the entire top was illuminated, changing color with changes in barometric pressure to provide a weather indicator that could be seen for many miles.

Gulf Oil Corporation (GOC) ceased to exist as an independent company in 1985, when it merged with SOCAL, with both re-branding as Chevron. However, the Gulf brand name and a number of the constituent business divisions of GOC survived. Gulf has experienced a significant revival since 1990, emerging as a flexible network of allied business interests based on partnerships, franchises and agencies.

Gulf, in its present incarnation, is a "New Economy" business. It employs very few people directly and its assets are mainly in the form of intellectual property: brands, product specifications and scientific expertise. The rights to the brand in the United States are owned by Gulf Oil Limited Partnership (GOLC), which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Cumberland Farms and operates over 2,100 service stations and several petroleum terminals; it is headquartered in Framingham, Massachusetts. The corporate vehicle at the center of the Gulf network outside the USA, Spain & Portugal is GOI, a company owned by the Hinduja Group. The company's focus is primarily in the provision of downstream products and services to a mass market through joint ventures, strategic alliances, licensing agreements, and distribution arrangements.[2] Gulf Oil International has its head office in the City of Westminster, London.[3]

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