Pilot Flying J Beefs Up Logistics

Travel-center chain targets upstream services with joint venture and acquisition

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Pilot Flying J is focusing on growing its services to the oil and gas industry’s upstream with a new joint venture and acquisition.

The travel-center operator, which is said to own the fourth-largest tanker fleet in the United States, made two key moves in recent months to bolster its logistics business:

  • In June, Pilot Flying J formed a new joint venture with Produced Water Transfer LLC and Complete Vacuum and Rental LLC that will offer salt-water transportation and disposal services to oil and gas producers in Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. The joint venture, PDPS LLC, will operate under the name PWT LLC, and use the partners’ combined fleet of tanker trucks and salt-water gathering pipelines and disposal facilities. Pilot Flying J will have a majority stake in PWT LLC, which will be overseen by Produced Water Transfer's President and CEO Steve Kent.  
  • In July, through the PWT joint venture, Pilot Flying J acquired the salt-water disposal and transport company Bridger Environmental LLC from Ferrellgas Partners LP.
  • Also in July, Pilot Flying J bought Ferrellgas Partners' crude transportation business, which operates under the Bridger Transportation subsidiary. Through the acquisition, Pilot Flying J and PWT will grow their tanker fleet and buy 10 salt-water disposal wells and two crude-oil pipeline injection terminals in Wyoming. The acquisition would give Pilot Flying J one of the largest third-party crude hauling fleets in the United States, according to the company, with more than 500 trucks.

"With Pilot Flying J's fleet size, safety record, balance sheet and geographic reach across all major oil and gas basins, we're uniquely positioned to serve this industry," said Ken Parent, president of Pilot Flying J. "These partnerships are a key driver of our growth strategy and demonstrate the company's ongoing commitment to diversifying our business."  

Knoxville, Tenn.-based Pilot Flying J, which ranks No. 12 in CSP’s 2018 Top 202 list of the largest c-store chains, has more than 750 retail locations in 44 states. The combined network of Pilot and Flying J Travel Centers serve more than 1.6 million customers daily. It also offers roadside assistance available at more than 145 locations nationwide as part of its Truck Care program, 44 Goodyear Commercial Tire and Service Centers and 34 Boss Shops.



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