Bangkok Post

Esso rolls out upgrade plans

- YUTHANA PRAIWAN

Esso Thailand Plc, Thailand’s third-largest oil retailer, plans to set aside 550-850 million baht a year for capital expenditur­e over the next three years as it seeks to modernise and upgrade its petrol stations.

The project aims to revamp the look of petrol stations under the Synergy concept, a pilot project beginning with four stations in Bangkok this year before the full roll-out next year, said retail sales manager Yodpong Sutatham.

He said the Synergy project has been applied successful­ly in Hong Kong, New Zealand and Singapore and is due to reach Thailand as the company seeks to become the country’s second-biggest oil retailer after PTT Plc, the national oil and gas conglomera­te.

“Our petrol stations have looked the same for more than 20 years and it’s time to give them a modern look,” Mr Yodpong said.

The planned capital expenditur­e is on top of existing capex to open 35 more petrol stations and add dispensers of liquefied petroleum gas at 10 existing stations this year.

Mr Yodpong said Esso is looking to increase average monthly oil retail sales volume per station to more than 500,000 litres by 2020, up from the current 450,000 litres a month.

Esso has been investing in modernisin­g its 540 petrol stations nationwide over the past five years.

The company also plans to continue increasing its LPG sales at its petrol stations and is expected to announce a new partnershi­p to run the LPG business for the transporta­tion sector soon.

“There’s still business opportunit­ies in LPG in the retail market,” Mr Yodpong said.

Yesterday Esso launched Supreme Gasohol 95, a premium petrol initially available at 50 service stations, which will expand to more than 100 stations by year-end.

Supreme Gasohol 95 provides superior cleaning ability, improved fuel economy and better corrosion prevention through its additives.

As a result, premium-grade gasohol 95 could get a warm welcome from consumers, though the price is about three baht higher than common-grade gasohol 95.

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