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Visit World Bunkering's re- designed website. Featuring a new daily news service compiled by World Bunkering editor David Hughes Products & Services directory Events list Industry blog Latest technical developments Visit online to receive all the above, and more, absolutely FREE The Seahorse Club JOURNALIST AWARDS2009 Online journalist of the year Winner: David Hughes www. worldbunkering. com Also live pricing information for the major world ports. l IBIA tackles the training gap l LNG: a fuel for the future l Bringing ISO8217 up to standard World Bunkering AUTUMN 2010 WOrLd Bunkering THE ONLY OFFICIAL MAGAZINE OF AUTUMN 2010 Singapore bounces back Front Cover AUTUMN 10. indd 102/ 08/ 2010 09: 04

World Bunkering Autumn 2010 33 INDEPENDENTS I ndependent bunker suppliers continue to play a major role in the global industry, and the signs are that several of the most dynamic of these companies are set for significant expansion. That the independents are certainly not insulated from the troubles of the world economy is demonstrated by the first quarter loss of $ 13.5 million reported by Singapore- listed Chemoil. Gross contribution per metric ton ( GCMT), the company's key margin indicator, fell to $ 1.74 compared to $ 8.74 for the same period in 2009. Sales volume was down 2% to 3.7 million tonnes, " attributable to lower wholesale volumes in Europe, the Americas and Asia, but compensated by higher retail sales". Even so, Chemoil's chairman and ceo, Mr Mike Bandy, com-mented: " Despite the continued weakness in the global shipping industry, Chemoil has consolidated its market position in the retail bunker segment as reflected by our improved delivery volumes with 2.5 million tonnes for the first quarter of 2010. This represents an increase of 14% from the corresponding period last year, and accounted for about two- thirds of all our volumes. However, we face a continued narrowing of wholesale- retail spreads reaching among the lowest levels in recent years due to weak demand and the lack of cheaper fuel sources." Referring to the company's recent takeover by Glencore, Mr Bandy concluded: " Now that the uncertainty over our ownership and listing status has been resolved, our focus can be directed towards realising the potential synergies of having two major international trading houses as our shareholders and who will be our partners in delivering value for our customers and shareholders." Expanding the network Chemoil had already hit the expansion trail before the merger but is by no means alone. Peninsula Petroleum is also extending its network rapidly and has just opened a new Tokyo branch to boost sales in the Japanese and South Korean markets. The company is targeting annual sales of 1 mil-lion tonnes, according to Bloomberg calculations. Peninsula's Tokyo office is its 11th, with others including branches in Geneva, Dubai, Athens and Montevideo. A company spokesman said Peninsula was also eyeing the North American market. OW reviews structure Rapid expansion has prompted another large independent, OW Bunker, to review its structure. The company's vice president, Götz Lehsten, said: " OW Bunker has shown exponential growth over the past few years, and has put a new strategy in place to ensure that the group can sustain this level of growth and meet its ambitious corporate objectives and expansion plans, as a global, full service bunker supplier." He explained that the global business and sales strategy will be devolved from a central function, and delivered and managed across the five key regions where the group has a significant presence: Asia, Northern Europe, Central Europe, the Mediterranean and the Middle East, and South America. He added: " Ultimately, success in this market is being able to anticipate and appreciate the changes that have occurred over the past two years, particularly in relation to the economic downturn. Independents in expansion mode As David Hughes reports, the global economy may be going through a downturn but some of the larger independents are in optimistic mood