Total rebrands in pivot away from oil

Total is rebranding.

The French oil major henceforth wants to be known as TotalEnergies, subject to approval by shareholders.

Its new name is meant to signify a move away from dependence on crude.

The firm wants to grow its presence in renewables and electricity generation instead.

News of the rebrand came as Total announced a huge loss.

In 2020 it plunged to a deficit of 7.2 billion dollars.

Like rivals, it's been hit by a slump demand for oil.

Over the course of the year that forced it to take impairments of around 10 billion dollars.

Strip out one-off items, however, and Total actually beat forecasts in the latest quarter.

One analyst called it a 'rock steady' showing in a tough period.

Rivals including Shell have fared worse.

Now Total Chief Executive Patrick Pouyanne says the firm is expanding in renewables as fast as it can.

The company has already spent more than 2 billion dollars on acquisitions in the sector this year.

He expects to have another 60 billion dollars to finance over the next decade.

Total shares were down around one percent on Tuesday (February 9) afternoon.