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    Titan Global Acquires Crescent Fuels

    Appalachian Oil Co. parent gains 24 retail locations and triples its supply network, but the key component is Crescent's leadership in petroleum distribution.

    By Mehgan Belanger

    RICHARDSON, Texas -- In a move that will expand its network and provide synergies in current operations, Titan Global Holdings Inc., the parent company of Blountville, Tenn.-based Appalachian Oil Co. (Appco), purchased petroleum distributor and convenience store operator Crescent Fuels Inc.

    "Titan Global’s focus is to create a nationwide petroleum distribution network and to operate related retail stores," Bryan Chance, president and CEO of Titan Global Holdings, told CSNews Online. "We acquired leadership [with Crescent] that is unsurpassed in the petroleum distribution market. They have more than 25 years experience growing distribution operations. We felt first and foremost that we were buying tremendous talent."

    Privately held Crescent Fuels, headquartered in Independence, Kan., operates 24 Jump Start c-store locations in Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri and Louisiana through its subsidiary Crescent Stores Corp. Through its Crescent Oil division, the company also distributes petroleum products to more than 340 stores in those states, as well as Illinois. This adds to the distribution network of 170 retail locations in Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia supplied through Appco, which also operates 58 c-store locations in those states.

    The acquisition will bring positive changes for consumers to both Appco’s and Crescent’s stores, Chance said. "We will take the best from our [existing] markets and roll out new things in both markets. We’ll take the successes from both and offer consumers a more expansive offering."

    Phil Near, president of Crescent Fuels, added: "We do plan to expand the Jump Start brand throughout the mid-continent."

    In line with its strategy, Titan Global will leverage Crescent’s network to bring next-generation sources of energy to market, according to Chance, who explained while Crescent does not have significant investment in renewable fuels currently, it will begin to distribute renewable fuels in the future. Terms of the purchase were not disclosed.

    Crescent distributed 282 million gallons of petroleum with revenues of $687 million in 2007, and has distributed 215 million gallons of petroleum and generated revenues of $693 million for the nine months ended Sept. 30, 2008, according to the company.

    As for the future, Titan Global will continue to grow, despite challenges from the weakened economy.

    "We are operating in unprecedented times. In an economic perspective, it creates both opportunities and challenges. There are significant acquisition opportunities in the marketplace, and we are evaluating and prioritizing, and executing on the best opportunities," said Chance, adding the credit markets haven proven challenging and due to this, the company is financing purchases internally or through secure third parties.

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