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    Kwik Sak, Speedway Owner Files for Bankruptcy

    Purvi Petroleum III may sell some stores to pay debt.

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The owner of 32 Kwik Sak and Speedway convenience stores and gas stations across Tennessee has filed for protection from its creditors in local bankruptcy court and may sell some of its stores to pay its debt, reported the Nashville Business Journal.

    Purvi Petroleum III, which bought the stores from Speedway SuperAmerica in early 2002, listed assets of less than $50,000 and liabilities of $16.5 million in its initial Nov. 30 court filing. That debt figure includes $3.3 million in unsecured liabilities to Speedway SuperAmerica, the wholly owned retail subsidiary of Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC, and $561,000 to Presto Food Stores Inc.

    A Chapter 11 filing protects Purvi from its creditors, giving the La Vergne, Tenn.-based unit of Florida's Purvi Petroleum time to reorganize.

    Purvi disclosed in a motion to use cash collateral that Speedway and Presto Food Stores were holding about $200,000 in credit card sale monies. Purvi also said it had been placed on a cash basis with its suppliers and without that $200,000, it would have difficulty reorganizing.

    Purvi "has no alternative borrowing source and to remain in business must utilize the proceeds from accounts receivables to pay normal and necessary operating expenses to operate the business," Steven Lefkovitz, an attorney at Lefkovitz & Lefkovitz representing Purvi, disclosed in a court filing.

    The stores were originally owned by Marathon Ashland Petroleum, a Findlay, Ohio-based joint venture of Marathon Oil and Ashland Inc. The venture had announced it would sell off 284 unprofitable stations in the Southeast and Midwest.

    Purvi bought the stores in 2002 with financing from Miami's Bayview Financial Trading Group. Its related entities also operate a dozen stores in Florida and South Carolina, giving parent Purvi Petroleum an estimated 44 stores overall.

    A meeting of creditors in the case is scheduled for Jan. 7 at U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

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