Mergers & Acquisitions

Petro Travel Plaza Changes Hands

TA franchisees sell Rochelle, Ill., location; buyer will continue to operate under the brand
Photograph courtesy of NRC Realty & Capital Advisors

ROCHELLE, Ill. — TravelCenters of America LLC franchisees Malcolm Anderberg and Clyde Gelderloos have completed the sale of a Petro Travel Plaza in Rochelle, Ill., and the buyer, Mike Boparai, a truck operator, investor and quick-service restaurant (QSR) owner from Stockton, Calif., will continue to operate under the franchise.

On Interstate 39, exit 99, about 30 miles south of Rockford, Ill., the 28-acre site is a full-service travel center with a trucker’s store, Iron Skillet restaurant, three-bay truck wash, truck scales, five-bay truck service and repair facility, movie theatre, 10 gaming terminals, a Hub City Deli and parking for 390 trucks, 130 cars, 10 RVs and four buses.

Besides the travel plaza, the sale includes a contiguous 29 acres suitable for a budget hotel or expansion of the existing facility. The main building is 28,000 square feet and was built in 1992.

The travel center employs 140 people at the site.

Anderberg and Gelderloos opened the truckstop in 1992. They have operated the facility for the last 30 years. They approached NRC Realty & Capital Advisors LLC (NRC) to coordinate the sale last year. Now in the late 80s, they took advantage of the robust market for high-volume, well-located truckstops to accomplish their exit from the market, they said.

“Truckstops and c-stores in California are trading for very high multiples,” said Boparai. “I expect the Rochelle property with its multiple income streams to generate good cash flows and am looking for similar sites in the Midwest to acquire.”

He has moved to Rockford to take over day-to-day operation of the Rochelle property.

The sellers “had a very attractive asset and business to sell, and I had dozens of conversations with prospects from all over,” said Patrick Downey, a vice president with Chicago-based NRC. “The NRC bid process was a good platform to pit bidder against bidder to determine not only the highest price, but the most qualified bidder, who was awarded the deal.”

NRC provides real estate and financial advisory services to the convenience-store and petroleum industries, including mergers-and-acquisition (M&A) advisory services, portfolio evaluation and analysis, sealed bid sales and single-site sales nationwide.

  • TravelCenters of America is No. 28 on CSP’s 2022 Top 202 ranking of U.S. convenience-store chains by company-owned store count.

Westlake, Ohio-based TravelCenters of America, a publicly traded, full-service travel center network, has 280 company-operated and franchised locations in 44 states and Canada, principally under the TA, Petro Stopping Centers and TA Express brands. Offerings include diesel and gasoline fuel, truck maintenance and repair, full-service and quick-service restaurants (QSR), travel stores, car and truck parking and other services. The company operates more than 600 full-service and quick-service restaurants and nine proprietary brands, including Iron Skillet and Country Pride.

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