Exxon Open to Bids in the East

Leading oil company takes next step toward transitioning out of direct-served retail

Published in CSP Daily News

By
Linda Abu-Shalback Zid, Senior Editor

HOUSTON -- ExxonMobil Corp. has confirmed that it has begun the bidding process to sell its remaining company-owned East Coast gas stations, a CSP Daily News Flash reported yesterday. Earlier this year, the company had announced its intent to transition out of the direct-served retail business in U.S. markets. "This move will include the conversion of a majority of markets to branded distributors to build on the strength of its current distributor network," said Prem Nair, a spokesperson for the company.

"Consistent with our June 2008 announcement, we have begun [image-nocss] the initial bid process for the sale of the majority of our company operated and dealer sites from Virginia north through New Hampshire," Nair said, adding that the move would occur over a "multi-year period."

"As the highly competitive fuels marketing business in the U.S. continues to evolve, we believe this transition is the best way for ExxonMobil to compete and grow in the future," Ben Soraci, U.S. director of retail sales for the company, said in June. "Quality, dependable Exxon- and Mobil-branded fuels will continue to be part of the branded distributor offer."

Nair said that the current bid sale covers approximately 1,200 locations, 11 markets and nine states: New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia. Maine is not one of the states included in the bidding process, as previously reported.

Nair said that Exxon- and Mobil-branded fuels will continue to be a part of the branded distributor service stations. "We believe this transition is the best way for ExxonMobil fuels marketing to compete and grow in the future," she added.

Houston-based ExxonMobil Corp. posted its biggest third-quarter profit ever this year, a record $13.38 billion, up 42% from the third quarter of 2007. "ExxonMobil's strong results in the third quarter of 2008 demonstrate the continued success of our disciplined business approach," chairman Rex W. Tillerson said at the time.

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