Shell UK has accepted offers for the sale of 185 company-owned service stations from Motor Fuel Group and Euro Garages, following a confidential commercial process to find the right independent dealers to purchase up to 250 Shell sites, which began last Autumn.

Motor Fuel Group (MFG) has acquired 90 sites, while 68 sites have been sold to Euro Garages – which recently confirmed the acquisition of 104 sites from Esso’s network sale.

Shell has already exchanged contracts for 158 sites, with contracts for the remaining 27 service stations being exchanged in the coming weeks. Handover of sites to the new owners will be completed by the end of 2015.

David Moss, Shell’s retail general manager, North Europe, said: “I’m pleased these dealers have chosen to grow their businesses with Shell and are as committed as we are to delivering high-quality products and customer service. Our retail business is going from strength to strength, with record sales of our premium fuel, Shell V-Power Nitro+, the growth of our popular Deli2Go food and beverage range, and our new relationship with PayPal, which will offer mobile payment to more than four million customers a week.”

The 185 service stations are spread across Great Britain and will retain the Shell brand. Dealers will continue to sell Shell’s fuels for at least the first five years following the sale.

Moss added, “Our priority is to ensure that a consistently excellent customer offer is available across our network, whether the service station is owned by Shell or by an independent dealer. That’s why we selected these independent dealers to work with, as they will invest in the sites and aim to deliver the same high standards of safety and customer care that are synonymous with the Shell brand.”

MFG’s managing director, Jeremy Clarke said: “We are delighted to be bringing another major brand to the MFG network. This acquisition gives us 90 high-volume, quality stations that reinforce our commitment to become one of the most dynamic and profitable independent forecourt operators in the UK.

“We are looking forward to working with Shell to maximise the potential of these sites to the benefit of our customers.

“The stations will be transferring to MFG during summer and early autumn. Customers will, of course, continue to enjoy Shell’s high quality fuels and lubricants and going forward, have the added benefit of MFG’s excellent, local convenience retail offer.”

This acquisition brings the total number of petrol filling stations that will be owned by MFG to 373, making MFG one of the largest independent fuel station operators in the UK.

Zuber Issa, chief executive, Euro Garages, which now has 354 sites, said: "We look forward to working closely and extending our relationship with Shell. The site portfolio secured extends our UK presence and consolidates our existing forecourt estate. As a result, more customers will be able to enjoy our branded retail convenience offer, while still being able to access quality Shell fuels and lubricants."