Teaching Cases

NorPetrol Venezuela's social investment
Date Published: 2014
Published By: CLADEA-BALAS
Authors:Josefina Bruni Celli y Rosa Amelia González
Product #: IE0005


Abstract

Francisca Ríos, coordinadora de Inversión Social y Relaciones con la Comunidad de Norpetrol Venezuela, debía preparar una propuesta de qué hacer con la Asociación de Pesca Artesanal (Asopescar), organización cuyo desarrollo y fortalecimiento Norpetrol apoyaba desde el año 2000. Ella no tenía claro cómo proceder, pues se había enterado de algunos hechos que la obligaban a revisar la estrategia de inversión social en esa organización. Se preguntaba si Norpetrol debía dejar de apoyarlos o, por el contrario, hallar la manera de hacer funcionar la iniciativa. La decisión no es fácil, puesto que Asopescar ha demostrado su fortaleza como organización gremial capaz de movilizar acciones de protesta que podían afectar negativamente las operaciones de Norpetrol. Por otro lado, si decidían seguir adelante ¿en qué términos hacerlo para evitar los riesgos derivados de una mala administración de la asociación?

Para adquirir este caso en español ingresa a: https://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cbmp/product/IE0005-PDF-SPA

Para adquirir este caso en inglés ingresa a: https://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cbmp/product/IE0007-PDF-ENG

Abstract


In 1996, NorPetrol arrived in Venezuela, where it started upstream oil operations. The company engaged in corporate social responsibility initiatives to support its operations, choosing its programs after consulting with local stakeholders. Upon arriving in the Paria Gulf area, Francisca Rios, head of the company's Social Investment and Community Relations Coordinating Unit, met with politicians, community leaders, public officials, and grassroots organizations' representatives to learn about their expectations and issues, and to communicate the company's investment plans and projects with a potential impact on their communities. A stakeholder identified by the company was Asopescar, an association of traditional fishermen. Tensions between fishermen and oil companies were commonplace. The former blamed NorPetrol for the degradation of a mangrove swamp and a significant decrease in production during the fishing season. Francisca Rios did not want to build a relationship with the fishermen based on donations and assistance. Intending empower them, she decided to channel a portion of her social investment budget to turn Asopescar fishermen into entrepreneurs. In 2006, Francisca Rios considered that Asopescar had made great progress as a productive, self-sustaining company. However, a number of problems had arisen in the organization, forcing her to rethink upcoming investments of NorPetrol in the association. Problems included rising unpaid debts of Asopecar members with their own organization, member drop-out, administrative chaos and informality in money handling, and high operating costs.The case raises the challenges facing an oil company to achieve a social license to operate, as well as its attempts to secure sustainable community development processes in its areas of influence. It takes place in April 2006, at which time Francisca Rios, wondered what to do with her initiative to support modernization of the productive model of a group of small-scale fishermen.

To acquire this case in English go to this address: https://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cbmp/product/IE0007-PDF-ENG

To acquire this case in Spanish go to this address: https://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cbmp/product/IE0005-PDF-SPA



Keywords: Social responsibility of business; Social enterprise; Business strategy; Petroleum industry and trade; Fishery industry; Gulf of Paria (Venezuela)
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