Archives for 2008

Chevron Unveils New Refining Technology

Chevron Corp. said it plans to build a pre-commercial plant at its refinery in Pascagoula, Miss., to test the technical and economic viability of a breakthrough heavy-oil upgrading technology. This proprietary technology, called Vacuum Resid Slurry Hydrocracking (VRSH), has the potential to significantly increase yields of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel from heavy and ultra-heavy

Congress Warns Credit Card Companies to ’Play Fair’

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Rep. Chris Cannon (R-Utah) yesterday introduced the "Credit Card Fair Fee Act", legislation that for the first time deals with the biggest credit card fee of all–the interchange fee, which grew to $36 billion in 2006. "We welcome this effort to stop the price-fixing practices of the

Two New Stores for Kum & Go

Kum & Go L.C., operator of 430 convenience stores in 12 states, has added two new-to-industry stores to its portfolio. Both units, in Greeley, Colo. and Elk Point, S.D., measure 3,400 square feet and are open for business. The Colorado unit features 16 fueling stations and includes diesel and E85 fuels. In addition to the

Health Groups Urge Higher Cigarette Taxes in N.Y.

Health-care advocates in New York called upon the legislature to increase the double the state tax on cigarettes to $3 a pack to encourage smokers to quit and increase state revenue. "The price increase will encourage 168,000 adult smokers to quit and prevent 291,000 teens from ever smoking," Russell Sciandra, director of the Center for

Shell Reaches Deal with PacWest Energy

Shell Oil Products US, closed on a deal to transition ownership of 84 branded sites to PacWest Energy LLC, a joint venture formed between Shell and Jacksons Food Stores Inc., a Meridian, Idaho-based Shell-branded wholesaler. The sites will continue to sell Shell-branded gasoline, although PacWest will rebrand the stores at 62 of these locations to

BP to Hold Guitar Hero Tournament

BP’s ampm convenience store brand plans to make its mark in Atlanta. To spotlight the arrival of ampm in the Greater Atlanta area, stores will host a month of Guitar Hero play-off events Throughout March, all would-be rock stars, young and old, will have the chance to unleash their inner guitar hero and battle it

Chevron Unveils Employee Giving and Volunteer Program

Chevron Corp. announced a new employee giving and volunteer program that will provide up to $20 million annually for U.S. nonprofit organizations. The new program, Chevron Humankind, includes company matching for employee financial contributions, grants to nonprofits for volunteer time and company-sponsored volunteer opportunities. Chevron Humankind, open to U.S.-based employees and retirees, allows employees to

Philip Morris Stays on the Offensive

Just a week after filing suit against a New York company to stop importation of counterfeit cigarettes, Philip Morris USA has filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC) to stop illegally imported gray market cigarettes bearing PM USA’s trademarks, including the Marlboro mark, from entering the U.S. “Our brands are among our company’s

Sheetz Aims to Improve Field Service Activities

Sheetz Inc., the Altoona, Pa.-based operator of 344 stores in six states, has partnered with ViryaNet Ltd.’s Service Hub for Retail to automate its field service operations, including the activities associated with workforce management, facilities maintenance and store equipment repair. Sheetz prides itself on the adoption of the most current technology and continually is seeking

What’s in a Name?

Nestlé Foodservices North America is now the newly-created Nestlé Professional. More than just a change in name, the foodservice-dedicated organization has been restructured to allow for a closer partnership with its customers in delivering creative profitable solutions. As a globally-managed business in the Nestlé group, Nestlé Professional will utilize its global reach and depth of

Village Pantry Adds Nine Stores

Village Pantry Inc. said it has acquired nine convenience stores in central Ohio from Petro Acquisitions, Inc. The stores, formerly operated by AmeriStop Market, will be rebranded under the Village Pantry banner. Each store averages 2,700 square feet and like most traditional convenience stores offers quick snack items, lottery tickets, money orders, pre-paid cellular and

Gas Stations Slapped With Huge Fine

Two Georgia travel plazas in St. Marys are back open after being fined $500,000 by the Department of Agriculture. Tests by the agency showed gas at the Cisco Plazas in St. Marys and Kingsland was being shorted, some by about a pint per gallon. The pumps were locked for almost two weeks but have been

BP Selling Ohio, Pa. Stores

BP’s U.S. Convenience Retail unit said that 146 retail sites are for sale throughout the Columbus, Ohio, Cleveland and Pittsburgh metropolitan areas. Of the 146 sites, 121 are available for franchise, one as a de-branded gasoline site, 24 as BP dealer sites with fuel agreements, and 12 with multiple offerings including commercial use. As part

Road Ranger Acquires 11 AmeriStops

Road Ranger Convenience Stores, which made headlines last month for its multimillion dollar lawsuit against CITGO Petroleum, reached a deal to acquire 11 AmeriStop convenience stores in Kentucky and Ohio. Road Ranger, based in Rockford, Ill., now operates 74 stores across the Midwest. Petro Acquisitions Inc., the Cold Spring, Ohio-based parent company of the AmeriStop

Wright Express Completes Pacific Pride Deal

Wright Express Corp. has completed its $32-million acquisition of privately held Pacific Pride Services Inc. The deal was financed through the company’s existing credit facility. Pacific Pride’s franchise network encompasses more than 330 independent fuel franchisees who issue their own Pacific Pride commercial fueling cards to fleet customers. These cards provide access to fuel at

Another Satisfied Customer

On a recent tour of convenience stores in the Northeast, I came across an outstanding Mobil store in northern Maine. What caught my attention at this particular store was the clerk who immediately greeted me and told me about the store’s foodservice special that day, a homemade Boston chowder. That I was greeted was not

Orange Energy

Living Essentials, whose 5-Hour Energy berry and lemon-lime flavored energy shots have been the top two selling nutritional supplements in convenience stores for 18 straight months, has answered popular demand and added orange to its hugely successful lineup. The 5-Hour Energy drink is a two-ounce energy shot-sized beverage that provides hours of energy, alertness and

Whipping Up a Retail Destination

Big box operators and supermarkets seem to dominate the Texas retail landscape. But while most of those stores focus on getting bigger, some convenience operators are finding that connecting with the consumers on a personal level is better. Consider Whip In, a dynamic marketer based in Austin, Texas. It doesn’t have the size and real

Powerful Potatoes

Diversify your menu and offer customers the variety they seek with Lamb Weston Spud Petals and Spud Halves. These unique shapes and sizes have a creamy baked potato flavor inside and a crispy, zesty kick outside. Curved and perfect for dipping with a variety of signature sauces and toppings, Spud Petals are the ideal fun

Breakfast Stacks

Lettieri’s, a division of Hot Stuff Foods, announced the launch of the company’s new Breakfast Stackers, a grab-n-go breakfast item enrobed in a flaky golden brown pastry dough and "stacked" with customers’ favorite breakfast foods. The Breakfast Stackers are pastry shop quality and are being offered in two combinations: Ham, Egg and Cheese and Sausage,

Road Ranger Takes on CITGO

Road Ranger, the Rockford, Ill.-based operator of approximately 75 convenience stores and travel centers in five Midwestern states, filed claims against Venezuelan-owned CITGO Petroleum Corp. for breach of contract and violations of the Petroleum Marketing Practices Act caused by CITGO’s "unnecessary failure to supply gasoline to Road Ranger gas stations, for damaging the CITGO brand

Individual Desserts

Rich Products Corp.’s innovative new line of decadent single-serve desserts enables 12 individual treats to be baked-off with "one touch," saving operators time and money like never before. The One Touch line is available in four delectable flavors: Lava Cake, Brownie, and Apple and Cherry Crisp. Rich’s One Touch single served baking technology takes 96%

Tasty Treats

Tasty Baking Co. is delivering smart options to consumers with the introduction of its brand new low-fat product line. The launch of Low-Fat Raspberry-Filled Koffee Kake Cupcakes and Low-Fat Chocolate Iced Vanilla Cupcakes represents Tastykake’s continued commitment to product expansion, notably in the area of wellness. Additional low-fat cake, cookie and snack bar varieties are

Aristo Wellness Bars

Aristo Wellness Bars are the first commercially available nutrition bars that contain encapsulated, tasteless fish oils, so consumers can get the benefits of a diet fortified with Omega-3s without the fishy taste. Each Aristo bar is an excellent source of the purest ocean Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA. Aristo Wellness Bars are only 140

Village Pantry Adds Nine Stores

Village Pantry Inc. has acquired nine convenience stores in central Ohio from Petro Acquisitions, Inc. The stores, formerly operated by AmeriStop Market, will be rebranded under the Village Pantry banner. Each store averages 2,700 square feet and, like most traditional convenience stores, offers quick snack items, lottery tickets, money orders, prepaid cellular and gift cards