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    Additech Pushing 2003 Expansion

    Company aggressively markets fuel additives technology in face of sluggish economy.

    BROOKFIELD, Conn. -- After two years of pilot launches, Additech Inc., a provider of fuel additive technology at the pump, is targeting next year to penetrate the petroleum market en masse.

    The company, which retrofits existing gas dispensers to sell STP fuel additive products, continues to grow at a modest pace as a number of highly publicized, deep-pocketed pump media companies have crumbled in recent years.

    "We've gone through the development. The stuff in the ground is doing well and our business model is working for us," Rod Carnes, Additech's vice president of marketing, told CSNews Online. "We see 2003 as the scale-up for us, going from pilot to rollout."

    To date, Additech has installed its technology at 20 locations, including several Tesoro Petroleum's Mirastar sites, Sam's Club and Cowboy Food Marts in the South.

    Underpinning the company's mission is that automotive products do not sell particularly well in convenience stores and mass-merchandise locations. By placing fuel injector options at the pump and thus creating impulse opportunities, Carnes said his device has boosted sales of fuel additives at participating c-stores by more than 10 times the dollar amount sold inside.

    Nonetheless, a lagging economy crimps overall growth for Additech, as well as other upstart companies eyeing increased investment backing. "We have something that we know makes money," Carnes said. "Even though there's a good payback, a lot of guys don't want to invest in what is not core business so it's a tough environment right now. We're trying to tell them that the investment is well worth it."

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