In this speech for the 2002 Oxford Energy Seminar, Paul Skinner, Group Managing Director of Royal Dutch Shell, explains how an integrated downstream oil company is shaped to become the most competitive solution for fulfilling oil products customers’ needs. He paints a picture of the historical and current landscape in the downstream oil business and makes the case for the integrated oil company vs the specialised supply chain niche players, the integrated oil company having the key advantage of direct interaction with what’s important: customers.