Certas Energy has bought forecourt sites in England for the first time in a deal that will see 13mlpa of retail volume moving to Gulf from Texaco, starting in the next two months.

It has struck a deal with Preston-based Petromex Forecourt Services to acquire two sites, Millbrook Way in Preston (above) and Canal Head in Ulverston, with a third, Harwood Bar, also in Preston, secured on a long-term dealer supply agreement.

Certas said the acquisition signals a step change as the existing portfolio of 26 sites run by Certas forecourt staff are all located in Scotland.

“Year on year we have been growing our business across the UK and this presented a perfect opportunity to create three flagship Gulf forecourts in the north of England,” said Ramsay MacDonald, retail director, Certas Energy. “We plan to implement changes in the next few months to enhance all three sites in what will be largest single investment in COCO to date for Certas Energy and its parent, DCC.”

MacDonald added: “These are high quality forecourts and exciting strategic locations that will enable us to showcase the Gulf brand in the North West.

“We believe that under the Gulf brand we can increase volume by at least another 3mlpa as well as develop and enhance the shop and valeting businesses on site. The sites will look fantastic in Gulf colours and support our growth plans for the region.

“It is fantastic to be working with Gavin and Peter Valentine, two very experienced petrol retailers, who are long-term fans of Gulf, as they look to expand and grow their Petromex business with us.”

Certas Energy currently supplies over 700 locations across the UK, including around 500 Gulf-branded forecourts.

MacDonald said: “We hope that any dealer looking to move from their current supplier to future-proof their business will see this investment as further evidence of our commitment to the sector and provide the confidence for them to trust us with their business.

“Dealers can be assured that development of our dealer offering and the Gulf brand proposition is ongoing to drive new business to Gulf sites and boost retailer margins. We are also interested in acquiring further sites across the country and our team are ready to progress any interest from independents and groups keen to sell or lease their forecourts.”