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Towns Eye Split of ConocoPhillips Operations (Jul 14, 2011)

BARTLESVILLE, Okla. (AP) — Officials in Bartlesville and Ponca City say they're anxious to hear what the split of energy giant ConocoPhillips will mean for the company's employees in the two northern Oklahoma towns.

Houston-based ConocoPhillips said Thursday it plans to split into two companies — one that produces oil and another that refines it into gasoline and other fuels.

The Conoco half of the company originated in Ponca City while the Phillips half started in Bartlesville. The company now has about 3,500 employees in Bartlesville and about 840 in Ponca City.

ConocoPhillips spokesman John Roper says he anticipates "most people will keep their jobs" through the split.

Bartlesville Regional Chamber of Commerce President Sherri Wilt says ConocoPhillips has been committed to Bartlesville in the past and she's optimistic that commitment will continue.

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