THE EFFECTIVENESS OF PUBLIC RELATIONS PRACTICE IN THE OIL SECTOR (A CASE STUDY OF AFRICAN
African Petroleum Plc, a market of petroleum product and chemicals, know that public support and goodwill as well is good corporate image are very important for business success. Tends to be influence by their publics which include, its staff, shareholders, customers and of course members of the press. The company is usually very much interesting to know its public problem areas and opportunities with the aim of improving the organization overall performance to enable them know what the public thinks about African Petroleum public relations programme and quality of services of the organization to its public. . The objectives of the study are: i) To determine the extent of AP’s public relations message accessibility to their public ii) find out whether AP’s public relations practices influenced the opinion of their publics. Research questions i) does public relation message of African Petroleum accessible to her publics? The research is a descriptive design to examine the effect of public relation practice in African Petroleum Plc. The population of the study comprises of the members of African Petroleum Plc (2000) and the sample size is 200. Relevant data based on the scope of the study were collected through primary and secondary data with structural questionnaire is the main instrument administration to two hundred (200) respondents comprising Forty African Petroleum staffs, One hundred and Ten shareholders, Fifteen customers and Thirty Five members of the press. The questionnaire was highly structural and opened where necessary,150 questions were distributed but only 130 were returned the questions and the responses were very standard to facilitate comparison of responses and to secure good control of the questions, chi-square (x2)was used to analyze the hypothesis formulate. Among the findings were that the 1) African Petroleum public relations practices influences their public to fauvor her products through persuassive and convincing communication. The following recommendation were made, 1] African petroleum should always engage in a constant evaluation of their public relation practices and its effectiveness to identify any short coming
1.1 BACKGROUNDOF THE STUDY
This present dispension, a lot of companies for production and distribution of a particular type of product or services and its consequent week to week competition among companies, it has become necessary for such organization to establish at least good will and mutual understanding with their various public if actually they tend to succeed.
Though the success of Such companies does not depend on product or service quality neither does it hing on advertising done, nor on good salesmanship, responsible allocation of fund, but the success of any company depends most often on how well the company has created mutual understanding among her publics.
Cutlip, Contur and Broom in their conceptual definition states that public relation is the management function that identifies, establishes and maintain mutually beneficial relationship between a company and the various public on whom its success or failure depends.
Companies achieve this mutually, beneficial relationship by creating awareness, maintaining regular communication network, evaluating public attitude identifying their policies and programme with the public interest and executing a programme f action to earn public understanding and support.
Public relation really involves contracting the relevant targets public and convincing them of the benefits of a particular argument, to support specific issues and causes to accept companies proposal and public orientation, public relation complements marketing balance when introduced early in marketing plan can make a telling difference in product success.
Businesses are open systems, and most of what they do generate direct benefits and costs for their societies. Today society demands that business join in the urgent task of solving societal problems, corporations are more than economic institution and have a responsibility to develop some of their resources problems mainly of which co-operation helped to create.
History of force oil (African Petroleum)
Forte oil plc (formerly African Petroleum) was incorporated on December 11, 1964, after 14 years in operation, the company changed its status from a private limited liability company to a public liability company.
In compliance with the provisions of the Nigeria enterprise promotion decree of 1977, 40% of the company share were sold to Nigerian and a year later, 60% was acquired by the federal government of Nigeria in favour of the Nigerian National Petroleum co-operation (NNPC) from British Petroleum Plc. NNPC’s stake in African petroleum was reduced by 20% in march 1989 after the Federal Government sold the above percentage to Nigerians citizens, increasing their stake from 40% to 60%.in the year 2000,the Federal Government under its privatization programme diverse its remaining 4% to core investors and interested Nigerians. In may 2007, the shareholding structure took another dimension as incorporated trustees of NNPC’s pension fund divested its state to Zenon Petroleum and Gas Limited, owned by Femi Otedola making it the majority shareholder in the company.
As a result, Mr. Otedola and his afflicted entities became the core investors in the company. Under the management, African Petroleum embarked on a rebranding and restructuring programme which led to a name change to Forte oil plc in December 2010 and a rebranding of the retail outlets spread across its country.
In 2013, the company purchased a controlling stake in the 414 MW Power plant under a government level privatization programme in the power industry under the leadership of Goodluck Jonathan.
In 2015, they signed an $83 million contract with siemens upgrade the 414 MW Plant, the work is due to be completed 2016.