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Navigation aidSECA

Brief History

The company was founded in 1960 by Mr. Bernard Stenuit (and 4 others) in Brussels as Société Européenne de Carburants. Their first service-station opened that year in Berchem (Antwerp). As a result of their unique approach of selling a 'special' petrol grade which lay between 'normal' and 'super', together with their discount policy, the company expanded quickly. In 1962 Conoco took over the operation but didn't change the company policy. In 1978 the number of service-stations passed the 300-mark. Seca has never had more than 15 % of the Belgian Market and in recent years has lost some of that share. In the early 1990s, Conoco started opening filling stations in Northern France under the Seca brand, capitalising on its regional strength. In 1999 they abandoned their familiar red and yellow colours for the blue and yellow livery used on Conoco's Jet stations elsewhere in Europe and in 2002 completed the image transition to use the JET name. Seca/Jet now supply around 265 stations, including 3 in Luxembourg.


Despite being a discounter, Seca has been responsible for a number of map issues.

1973 Seca map of Belgium

1976 Seca map of Belgium

1978 Seca map of Belgium

1986 Seca map of Belgium

The first image (shown above, cover opened out) is of a 1973 map that was sold at Seca stations for 35Fr. The map was a regular Girault-Gilbert issue at 1:300,000 with a glossy hard cover pasted to it. Also pasted inside was a town index and a list of the 293 Seca service stations (including 6 in Luxembourg). Two more issues are known from the 1970s: a 1976 issue which was identical in format, and a 1978 version that dropped the lists of towns and Seca stations, and which was top rather than side folded. In this period the price rose first to 40Fr then 65Fr.
The only known 1980s map comes from 1986. This was a 'Synteape' map which claimed to be untearable and waterproof. Seca also published a Brussels city plan with a tough plastic cover in 1986 (shown below left).

1986 Seca map of Brussels

1995-6 Seca map of Belgium

1995-6 Seca map - rear

1999 Seca map of Belgium

2001 Seca map of Begium/Luxembourg

Seca restarted selling maps in the 1990s. First came a 1995-6 Michelin edition, with the front cover looking very similar to a normal Michelin map, except for the Seca logo overprinted. The rear carried a more colourful Seca advertising panel (unlike normal Michelin maps which tend to repeat the front cover). By 1999 it had moved to one produced by de rouck cartographie based on a Geocart design at 1:300,000 which again listed all Seca stations with facilities available. This was revised in 2001 to include the new style of logo (similar to that used by Conoco's other European subsidiary Jet). By 2001 the retail price was 199Fr, although the maps were often sold from "under the counter" with slightly more expensive commercial issues being sold from a map rack in Seca's yelloh! shop. Both the de rouck issues were printed on good quality paper, unlike many recent Belgian issues which have been on cheap glossy paper.

Finally, in 2002, at the time of the switch between the Seca and Jet brands, Conoco issued a very small format map folding down to around 10cm x 8cm (although when unfolded it measured 71cm x 30cm).

2002 Seca/Jet map of Belgium

Area around Bruges from 2002 Seca/Jet map of Belgium

By using both sides of the paper, de rouck were able to provide a respectable map at 1:400,000, although unusually with green, orange, and yellow roads. The map located all Jet stations, as well as including some background history to the company in Belgium. This map was produced in two versions - French and Flemish (shown left).

Thanks to Michel Breugelmans with his help in both the history of Seca and for sourcing most of the images.

Top of PageIn 2007 ConocoPhillips sold its Belgian Jet stations, along with those in most of Eastern Europe, to the Russian company Lukoil in which it has a minority stake. There are no known Lukoil maps of Belgium. For other Conoco group maps, please follow this link to the Jet page.

Text and layout © Ian Byrne, 2000-9

All original copyrights in logos and map extracts and images are acknowledged and images are included on this site for identification purposes only.