World Getting Bigger

World Fuel to integrate Texor Petroleum's wholesale distribution business

MIAMI -- In a deal that has been in the works since early January, World Fuel Services Corp. said Friday—as reported in a CSP Daily News Flash—that its wholly owned subsidiary World Fuel Services Inc. has signed a definitive agreement to acquire wholesale distribution assets of Texor Petroleum Co., an independent distributor of branded gasoline and diesel fuel in the Chicago area. The sale is not expected to affect Texor's owned-and-operated Minuteman retail facilities.

The $104 million deal, principally funded through Miami-based World Fuel's $475 million bank credit facility, [image-nocss] involves Riverside, Ill.-based Texor's wholesale motor fuel distribution business. Under the arrangement, Texor will become an operating unit within the land fuels division of World Fuel Services.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and expected to be completed before June 1.

Additionally, the Texor brand name is expected to remain fully intact and there are not expected to be any personnel cuts. Texor has 125 employees.

Texor is the largest independent motor fuel marketer in Illinois and an authorized branded distributor for CITGO, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Marathon, Shell and Valero. It distributes gasoline and diesel fuel to more than 250 retail petroleum operators in northern Illinois and northwest Indiana, and supplies to industrial, commercial and government accounts. The company distributes about 340 million gallon per year.

The deal could enable Texor Petroleum to more readily grow its wholesale business with the capital World Fuels provides. Wholesale distributors have faced challenges and have been left vulnerable in several respects—most notably by heightened exposure to credit challenges affecting their retail customers.

World Fuel Services provides fuel and related services at more than 2,500 airports, seaports and tanker truck loading terminals worldwide.

While executives from either side could not be reached as of presstime, Thomas E. Gleitsman, chairman and CEO for Texor, said in a statement: "We are delighted about becoming part of an organization with the global size and strength of World Fuel. This transaction will provide us with a much stronger platform to take advantage of the tremendous growth opportunities in the retail branded petroleum market."

Added Paul H. Stebbins, chairman and CEO of World Fuel Services Corp.: "The acquisition enables us to immediately enhance our position in the 180 billion gallon ground based fuel market."

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