Company News

Quarles Quits Retail

Purchase brings 7-Eleven's Va. store count to 674; new locations will keep Shell brand

FREDERICKSBURG, Va. -- 7-Eleven Inc. said that it has closed on an agreement to purchase 14 gasoline locations in Virginia from Quarles Petroleum Inc. The stores will be re-branded as 7-Eleven operations, and these sites will continue to sell Shell gasoline. Financial details of the transaction will not be disclosed. The deal mark's Quarles exit from the convenience store game.

As reported in a Morgan Keegan/CSP Daily News Flash yesterday, the locations are part of a 20-store divestiture by Fredericksburg, Va.-based Quarles Petroleuma Mid-Atlantic fuel oil distributor, [image-nocss] propane supplier, motor fuels supplier, fleet fuel site provider and c-store chainthat included five other c-stores and one truckstop to unnamed independent dealers.

Richmond, Va.-based Matrix Capital Markets Group announced the successful closing on the sale of the retail assets of Quarles Petroleum yesterday.

Quarles transferred operation of locations in Amissville, Bealeton, Berryville, Bridgewater, Broadway, Culpeper, Front Royal, Harrisonburg (2), King George, Leesburg, Linden, Locust Hill and Montross to 7-Eleven. The company sold locations in Fredericksburg, Kilmarnock, Lancaster, Madison, White Stone and Opal (truckstop) to to independent dealers.

7-Eleven mergers and acquisitions vice president Sean Duffy said, "The addition of these 14 locations in Virginia complements our strategy of growing in areas where we currently operate and takes advantage of our daily delivery of fresh foods and other time-sensitive products."

Starting this month, the new 7-Eleven locations will be remodeled, yet remain open during the work. Each store will be equipped to sell 7-Eleven signature products, like fresh food and grill items, coffee, Slurpee and Big Gulp beverages. The locations will then be offered for franchise. Meanwhile, 7-Eleven provided employment to Quarles store personnel.

In addition to Shell gasoline, five stores sell diesel fuel that will be changed to the 7-Eleven brand. Quarles Fleet Cards will continue to be accepted at the former Quarles locations.

This brings the number of 7-Eleven stores operated and franchised in Virginia to 674.

Quarles began as a one-truck, family oil business in 1939, and now is a corporation that employs more than 500 people across seven states. Quarles distributes more than 150 million gallons of motor fuels, heating oil and propane each year. In addition to Quarles' core businesses in fuels distribution, the company was operating 20 retail convenience stores with fuel offerings.

Late in 2009, Quarles decided to engage Matrix to structure and manage a confidential sale process in order to achieve maximum value in divesting of the company's retail assets and redeploy that capital into its other businesses. The sale process designed and executed by Matrix resulted in a sale of 14 stores 7-Eleven. The remaining six stores were sold to various other buyers. The closings on 19 stores were completed Tuesday, with the remaining to occur in the next few weeks.

As part of these agreements, all stores purchased will continue to accept Quarles' fleet cards.

Williams Mullen served as legal advisor to Quarles on the transaction.

Matrix's Energy & Multi-Site Retail Group is a national leader in providing transactional advisory services to companies in the downstream energy and multi-site retail sectors including c-store chains, petroleum marketers, fuels distributors, retail propane distributors, heating oil distributors, lubes retailers and distributors, terminal operators, fuels transportation companies, hospitality companies and other specialty retail chains.

Matrix Capital Markets Group is a leading middle-market investment bank. Since 1988, Matrix has focused on providing merger and acquisition and financial advisory services for corporate and privately held companies, including sales and divestitures, Staged Liquidity Transactions, management buyouts and debt and equity placements.

7-Eleven, Dallas, operates, franchises or licenses approximately 8,200 7-Eleven stores in North America. Globally, it operates, franchises or licenses more than 38,000 stores in 16 countries. During 2009, 7-Eleven stores worldwide generated total sales of more than $58.9 billion.

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