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    Fisher Oil Stations Changing to Shell

    Move prompted by Chevron's withdrawal from North Carolina and other Eastern markets.

    NEW BERN, N.C. -- Fisher Oil Co. will sell Shell Oil Co. fuel at its four former Chevron gas stations in the area, following Chevron Corp.'s decision to discontinue Chevron and Texaco motor fuel sales in several Southeastern, Middle Atlantic and Midwestern states, according to a report by the Sun Journal.

    Chevron announced in December that it will end the sale of Chevron and Texaco branded fuel in North Carolina, Delaware, Indiana, Kentucky, New Jersey, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, parts of Tennessee and in Washington, D.C., at the end of the third quarter of this year

    Chevron spokesperson Gus Santoyo said of the 1,100 independently owned retail stations affected by the change, there are 36 Chevron and 161 Texaco stations in North Carolina. The company has a program in place to help the stations transition to other brands, he said, and the hope to get most of the stations transitioned by the end of June.

    The decision to discontinue fuel sales in these areas was made in order to optimize the company's operations, Santoyo said. Sales in the locations made up 8 percent of Chevron's total retail fuel sales in the U.S. last year, according to a company filing.

    Chad Minton, of Fisher Oil, said the company could have opted to de-brand the stores or shop for another brand. "We've chosen, because we have four current Shell stores, that Shell is a better avenue for us," Minton told the newspaper. "We believe they provide a better product and we get a little better service or quality."

    Minton said the company owns five unbranded stations in the area, in addition to the four Shell and four Chevron stations. Shell is the dominant brand among its stations.

    He declined to comment on the price of fuel at the stations after the brand change.

    "Chevron just didn't do much in this area, in terms of trying to get the consumer to notice their product. That in turn hurt their business," Minton said. "They do well on the West Coast, they do well in the Northeast, [and] they do well in Florida."

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