Valero Energy Partners LP SWOT Analysis / Matrix

Business Essays, Term Papers & Research Papers

SWOT analysis is a vital strategic planning tool that can be used by Valero Energy Partners LP managers to do a situational analysis of the firm . It is a useful technique to evalauate the present Strengths (S), Weakness (W), Opportunities (O) & Threats (T) Valero Energy Partners LP is facing in its current business environment.

The Valero Energy Partners LP is one of the leading companies in its industry. Valero Energy Partners LP maintains its dominant position in market by carefully analyzing and reviewing the SWOT analysis.  SWOT analysis a highly interactive process and requires effective coordination among various departments within the company such as – marketing, finance, operations, management information systems and strategic planning.


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The SWOT Analysis framework enables an organization to identify the internal strategic factors such as -strengths and weaknesses, & external strategic factors such as - opportunities and threats. It leads to a 2X2 matrix – also known as SWOT Matrix.

The Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) Analysis / Matrix enables the managers of the Valero Energy Partners LP to develop four types of strategies:

  • SO (strengths-opportunities) Strategies
  • WO (weaknesses-opportunities) Strategies
  • ST (strengths-threats) Strategies
  •  WT (weaknesses-threats) Strategies
Valero Energy Partners LP swot analysis / matrix

SWOT Matrix Strategies Objective

The central purpose of SWOT matrix is to identify the strategies that an organization can utilize to exploit external opportunities, counter threats, and build on & protect Valero Energy Partners LP strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.

Step by Step Guide to Valero Energy Partners LP SWOT Analysis

Strengths of Valero Energy Partners LP – Internal Strategic Factors


As one of the leading organizations in its industry, Valero Energy Partners LP has numerous strengths that enable it to thrive in the market place. These strengths not only help it to protect the market share in existing markets but also help in penetrating new markets. Based on Fern Fort University extensive research – some of the strengths of Valero Energy Partners LP are –


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  • Superb Performance in New Markets – Valero Energy Partners LP has built expertise at entering new markets and making success of them. The expansion has helped the organization to build new revenue stream and diversify the economic cycle risk in the markets it operates in.
  • Highly skilled workforce through successful training and learning programs. Valero Energy Partners LP is investing huge resources in training and development of its employees resulting in a workforce that is not only highly skilled but also motivated to achieve more.
  • Strong distribution network – Over the years Valero Energy Partners LP has built a reliable distribution network that can reach majority of its potential market.
  • Strong Brand Portfolio – Over the years Valero Energy Partners LP has invested in building a strong brand portfolio. The SWOT analysis of Valero Energy Partners LP just underlines this fact. This brand portfolio can be extremely useful if the organization wants to expand into new product categories.
  • Successful track record of developing new products – product innovation.
  • Successful track record of integrating complimentary firms through mergers & acquisition. It has successfully integrated number of technology companies in the past few years to streamline its operations and to build a reliable supply chain.
  • Strong dealer community – It has built a culture among distributor & dealers where the dealers not only promote company’s products but also invest in training the sales team to explain to the customer how he/she can extract the maximum benefits out of the products.
  • Strong Free Cash Flow – Valero Energy Partners LP has strong free cash flows that provide resources in the hand of the company to expand into new projects.


Weakness of Valero Energy Partners LP – Internal Strategic Factors


Weakness are the areas where Valero Energy Partners LP can improve upon. Strategy is about making choices and weakness are the areas where a company can improve using SWOT analysis and build on its competitive advantage and strategic positioning.


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  • Financial planning is not done properly and efficiently. The current asset ratio and liquid asset ratios suggest that the company can use the cash more efficiently than what it is doing at present.
  • The profitability ratio and Net Contribution % of Valero Energy Partners LP are below the industry average.
  • Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, Valero Energy Partners LP needs to put more money in technology to integrate the processes across the board. Right now the investment in technologies is not at par with the vision of the company.
  • The marketing of the products left a lot to be desired. Even though the product is a success in terms of sale but its positioning and unique selling proposition is not clearly defined which can lead to the attacks in this segment from the competitors.
  • Investment in Research and Development is below the fastest growing players in the industry. Even though Valero Energy Partners LP is spending above the industry average on Research and Development, it has not been able to compete with the leading players in the industry in terms of innovation. It has come across as a mature firm looking forward to bring out products based on tested features in the market.
  • Not highly successful at integrating firms with different work culture. As mentioned earlier even though Valero Energy Partners LP is successful at integrating small companies it has its share of failure to merge firms that have different work culture.
  • Not very good at product demand forecasting leading to higher rate of missed opportunities compare to its competitors. One of the reason why the days inventory is high compare to its competitors is that Valero Energy Partners LP is not very good at demand forecasting thus end up keeping higher inventory both in-house and in channel.

Opportunities for Valero Energy Partners LP – External Strategic Factors


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  • Lower inflation rate – The low inflation rate bring more stability in the market, enable credit at lower interest rate to the customers of Valero Energy Partners LP.
  • New customers from online channel – Over the past few years the company has invested vast sum of money into the online platform. This investment has opened new sales channel for Valero Energy Partners LP. In the next few years the company can leverage this opportunity by knowing its customer better and serving their needs using big data analytics.
  • The new taxation policy can significantly impact the way of doing business and can open new opportunity for established players such as Valero Energy Partners LP to increase its profitability.
  • The market development will lead to dilution of competitor’s advantage and enable Valero Energy Partners LP to increase its competitiveness compare to the other competitors.
  • Economic uptick and increase in customer spending, after years of recession and slow growth rate in the industry, is an opportunity for Valero Energy Partners LP to capture new customers and increase its market share.
  • Government green drive also opens an opportunity for procurement of Valero Energy Partners LP products by the state as well as federal government contractors.
  • Organization’s core competencies can be a success in similar other products field. A comparative example could be - GE healthcare research helped it in developing better Oil drilling machines.
  • Stable free cash flow provides opportunities to invest in adjacent product segments. With more cash in bank the company can invest in new technologies as well as in new products segments. This should open a window of opportunity for Valero Energy Partners LP in other product categories.

Threats Valero Energy Partners LP Facing - External Strategic Factors

  • Intense competition – Stable profitability has increased the number of players in the industry over last two years which has put downward pressure on not only profitability but also on overall sales.
  • Shortage of skilled workforce in certain global market represents a threat to steady growth of profits for Valero Energy Partners LP   in those markets.
  • Rising raw material can pose a threat to the Valero Energy Partners LP profitability.
  • No regular supply of innovative products – Over the years the company has developed numerous products but those are often response to the development by other players. Secondly the supply of new products is not regular thus leading to high and low swings in the sales number over period of time.
  • As the company is operating in numerous countries it is exposed to currency fluctuations especially given the volatile political climate in number of markets across the world.
  • Rising pay level especially movements such as $15 an hour and increasing prices in the China can lead to serious pressure on profitability of Valero Energy Partners LP
  • The demand of the highly profitable products is seasonal in nature and any unlikely event during the peak season may impact the profitability of the company in short to medium term.
  • Imitation of the counterfeit and low quality product is also a threat to Valero Energy Partners LP’s product especially in the emerging markets and low income markets.

Limitations of SWOT Analysis for Valero Energy Partners LP

Although the SWOT analysis is widely used as a strategic planning tool, the analysis does have its share of limitations.

  • Certain capabilities or factors of an organization can be both a strength and weakness at the same time. This is one of the major limitations of SWOT analysis . For example changing environmental regulations can be both a threat to company it can also be an opportunity in a sense that it will enable the company to be on a level playing field or at advantage to competitors if it able to develop the products faster than the competitors.
  • SWOT does not show how to achieve a competitive advantage, so it must not be an end in itself.
  • The matrix is only a starting point for a discussion on how proposed strategies could be implemented. It provided an evaluation window but not an implementation plan based on strategic competitiveness of Valero Energy Partners LP
  • SWOT is a static assessment - analysis of status quo with few prospective changes. As circumstances, capabilities, threats, and strategies change, the dynamics of a competitive environment may not be revealed in a single matrix.
  • SWOT analysis may lead the firm to overemphasize a single internal or external factor in formulating strategies. There are interrelationships among the key internal and external factors that SWOT does not reveal that may be important in devising strategies.

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Weighted SWOT Analysis of Valero Energy Partners LP

In light of the above mentioned limitations of the SWOT analysis / matrix, corporate managers decided to provide weightage to each internal strength and weakness of the firm. Organizations also assess the likelihood of events taking place in the coming future and how strong their impact could be on company's performance.

This method is called Weighted SWOT analysis. It is better than doing simplistic SWOT analysis because with Weighted SWOT Analysis Valero Energy Partners LP managers can focus on the most critical factors and discount the non-important one. It also solves the long list problem where organizations ends up making a long list but none of the factors deemed too critical.

Limitation of Weighted SWOT analysis of Valero Energy Partners LP

This approach also suffers from one major drawback - it focus on individual importance of factor rather than how they are collectively important and impact the business holistically.

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Example of Weighted SWOT Analysis

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SWOT Worksheet & Template

If you like to do your own SWOT analysis or want to make your own Weighted SWOT SWOT matrix then feel free to download Fern Fort University SWOT Analysis Template.


References / Citations & Bibliography

  • M. E. Porter, Competitive Strategy(New York: Free Press, 1980)
  • A. D. Chandler, Strategy and Structure (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1962)
  • O. E. Williamson, Markets and Hierarchies(New York: Free Press, 1975);
  • L. Wrigley, Divisional Autonomy and Diversification (PhD, Harvard Business School, 1970)
  • R. E. White, Generic Business Strategies, Organizational Context and Performance: An Empirical Investigation, Strategic Management Journal7 (1986)