New Gulf station in Puebla. New Gulf station in Puebla.

Gulf gas stations open in Puebla, Monterrey

They are the first of 2,000 planned to be in operation by 2021

Gulf México opened its first two gas stations in Mexico this week, with motorists in Puebla and Monterrey filling up at the company’s pumps for the first time on Wednesday.

The company intends to invest around 5.5 billion pesos (US $290 million) to open 2,000 gas stations under its brand by 2021, Gulf México president Sergio de la Vega said.

It also plans to enter the fuel storage and distribution market and will build six supply terminals at an estimated cost of between US $350 million and $420 million. De la Vega said the locations for the terminals had already been determined but didn’t reveal where they would be built.

The Puebla outlet is a franchise and was converted from an existing gas station at a cost of 2.5 million pesos whereas the site in the Nuevo León capital was built by and belongs to the company, requiring an investment of more than 25 million pesos.

De la Vega said the company’s expectation was that 70% of its gas stations would be franchises while the remaining 30% would be built and operated by Gulf México. Stations in Guadalajara and Mexico City are set to be the next to open.

He said the biggest difference in Gulf fuel over others is a nanotechnology liquid called green plus, yielding performance that is 8% better than competitors’ fuels.

De la Vega said that the company plans to open its own chain of convenience stores next year. Once it reaches its goal of 2,000 gas stations across the country, it expects to employ up to 20,000 people.

Gulf joins several other petroleum companies that have opened their first gas stations in Mexico recently including Royal Dutch Shell in Tlalnepantla, México state, last month and BP in Naucalpan, México statem in March.

The retail gas market was previously closed to all but state oil company Pemex but energy reforms introduced by the current federal government opened the sector to privately-owned companies.

Source: El Economista (sp), Milenio (sp)

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