Total S.A. is a multinational oil and gas company established in 1942 as Compagnie française des pétroles in France. The chief areas of its business include oil and gas chain, crude oil exploration, natural gas exploration and production, transportation, petroleum product marketing and refining.
After the First World War, the then French Prime Minister Raymond Poincare decided to establish a French Oil Company. With the help of ninety bank and companies, Compagnie Française Des Pétroles (CFP) was formed on 28 March 1924. During the initial phase in 1930s, the company was concerned with exploration and production of crude oil in Middle East. After the First World War, oil exploration was expanded to Canada, Venezuela and Africa. In 1954, Total brand of gasoline was introduced by CFP as its product.
As the brand Total gained popularity, the company renamed itself as Total CFP. The name was changed in 1991 to Total. The French Government, who had more than thirty percent of the company's total stock gradually, reduced its participation from the firm. By 1996, the French Government had only one percent stake in the firm. The foreign ownership significantly rose from 1990 to 1994. Total was acquired by Petrofina in 1999 and renamed as Total Fina. After Petrofina acquired Elf Aquitaine, the company was again renamed to TotalFinaElf in 2000. The name Total was restored in 2003 and has been retained ever since. The new logo of the company was also revealed on the same day.