Shell has announced plans to sell up to 250 of its company owned sites to independent dealers.

Retailers have been told that while the UK market is important to Shell and that it willl continue to grow its business in the UK to ensure it remains a leading retailer this growth requires further investment.

The company has therefore decided to focus on fewer company owned sites and as a consequence, it plans to sell part of its company owned network – up to 250 sites – to independent dealers who will retain the Shell brand and offer the same  products and service to customers, and who can make the investments needed on those sites to ensure they remain competitive.

Shell has begun a confidential commercial process to pursue sale of the sites and aims to conclude this in 2015. 

In Forecourt Trader’s Fuel Market Review 2014 published in June Shell reported that it had 789 company owned sites and 231 dealers, giving a total of 1,020 supplied sites.

The company’s estate experienced a substantial boost in numbers in June 2011 when it acquired 253 sites from Rontec as the forecourt operator took over Total’s retail business in the UK.