OIL: Belgian Invasion

Across nine states, from Texas to Iowa, some 1,300 gas stations in the next few weeks will break out in a bright new color scheme—the shiny blue-and-white gas pumps of a bustling Belgian-born newcomer, American Petrofina. The first major foreign investor in U.S. oil since Shell, Petrofina has grown from only a plan on paper to $100 million in assets in less than two years, now feels strong enough to put its own "Fina" brand name on the gas stations it has picked up.

This week it closed the third major deal of its move into U.S. oil with the...

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