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Venezuela Is Pawning Pieces of Iconic American Brand Citgo to Survive

  • Citgo-backed swap deadline extended after disappointing tally
  • Using the refiner as collateral is controversial in Caracas
BOSTON, MA - JULY 22: Fans sit on the Green Monster in front of the Citgo sign during the first inning of the game between the Boston Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park on July 22, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts.
Photographer: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images
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The red triangle is just about everywhere, from the massive sign looming over Fenway Park’s Green Monster to the filling stations on seemingly every other corner in the eastern half of the U.S. to the heating oil donated to the poor in the winter.

Few foreign companies have the kind of footprint or brand recognition that Citgo Holding Inc. does in much of America, and yet most people know little about it or the drama surrounding it back home in Caracas. The company is owned by Venezuela’s socialist government, and is being offered up as a lifeline to stave off a default by Petroleos de Venezuela SA.