BP gas stations return?

cjd
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BP gas stations return?

Post by cjd » May 23rd, 2020, 7:16 pm

Today I went out for a drive and to make a few stops. I went to the town south of me which I hadn't been to in about two months. I noticed that apparently quite recently, the station that was originally one of those dumpy old Shell Farm Store locations, and then changed to a Chevron station about 10 years ago, has now changed to BP!! I have not seen a BP station since about 2012. After that time they all changed to Marathon. Really surprised to see the name back again, I knew they still had stations in Europe but had not heard about the name returning to the US.

I wonder what this location is like inside now or if they remodeled it? In my experience even older BP stations were always very clean, and well run convenience stores. They built quite a few new ones here as well around the late 2000s/early 2010s prior to the oil spill, and these were always nice as well.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by Alpha8472 » May 23rd, 2020, 7:32 pm

BP appeared in Northern California in the late 90s for several years. Mobil gas stations converted to BP. The Mobil name in Northern California disappeared from around 1995 until about 2015. BP runs the ARCO gas stations in Northern California, Oregon, and Washington.

From what I can see, BP run ARCO stations are mediocre.

I have not seen a true BP in years, so I have no idea how they run their BP stores.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by Brian Lutz » May 23rd, 2020, 9:02 pm

I believe BP stations are still relatively common in Florida, but haven't seen one outside of that area in a while. There used to be a number of them in the Pacific Northwest as well, but some time in the late Nineties they all became 76 stations at right around the same time.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by storewanderer » May 23rd, 2020, 11:35 pm

BP is still quite common east of the Rockies. They are in IL, OH, MN, WI, etc. I think they are in the South like AL and GA too.

For a brief time there was a BP in Los Angeles in the past decade. It was an odd rebuild of a Thrifty station. It had no store just a pay kiosk. It was called the BP Helios House. It had various "green" features. I think it even stayed BP after BP sold Arco to Tesoro but at some point it finally got rebranded to Arco.

https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/bp-heli ... os-angeles

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helios_House

BP licenses the Arco name from Tesoro (Marathon now) in NorCal, OR, and WA. I am not sure how long that license agreement is for, maybe it is forever. But many of those Arcos now accept credit cards specifically in OR and WA. I am not really sure what the point of the Arco brand is, other than to run gas stations that don't accept credit cards under, and would think the stations could get better profits as BP with a more premium branding/marketing similar to Chevron. BP is generally a respected fuel brand known for quality. Arco is not.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by cjd » May 24th, 2020, 9:53 am

I haven't seen any here in Florida the last several years, but that's not to say they don't exist.

Not sure why the change with this station. My guess is they just did a rebranding and nothing more. When this same station was branded Shell, there was a huge article on it having gas with so much water concentration in it, that cars broke down immediately upon driving off. I used to joke that they must've been topping off the tanks with the water hose and eventually it backfired on them! After that the Shell sign was covered up and then changed to Chevron so I wonder if there wasn't something else going on.

All of those old Farm Stores here were dirty, smelly dumps, even in the 1990s. The rest have either been demolished and replaced with new stations or have been completely remodeled into other brands, like the one near me that is a Mobil now and very nice.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by storewanderer » May 24th, 2020, 11:37 am

There is still one of those Shell Farm Buildings in my area (as Shell) but as of a few years ago the rest all left the brand (one went to Valero, one went unbranded, one went to 76 then unbranded then Sinclair, many had previously flat out closed).

I guess gas stations can get incentives for switching brands. This station that has seen all these different brands (Shell, Chevron, now BP) must be a well located station and the brands are eager to give them incentives to switch over.

In my area the Shell brand is all but dead (Jacksons has a few locations and there is one dealer left as Shell and that is about it- they have switched dealer stations that were Shell to Chevron and even closed one of their Shells and kept a Chevron across the street); Chevron seems to be the favored brand in this market for branded fuel and it has been this way over the years under multiple suppliers/jobbers. 76 has a few locations again after previously pulling out of the market (not great ones), and Sinclair has been branding some of the unbranded stations around town as well lately; we will see how that goes. All of these recent 76/Sinclair brandings impose a credit card surcharge of .06 to .10 per gallon so I avoid them.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by rwsandiego » May 24th, 2020, 12:04 pm

storewanderer wrote:
May 23rd, 2020, 11:35 pm
BP is still quite common east of the Rockies. They are in IL, OH, MN, WI, etc. I think they are in the South like AL and GA too. ...
That's because BP acquired SOHIO in the 1980's, rebranding them in the 1990s and then acquired Amoco in 1999/2000.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by veteran+ » May 25th, 2020, 5:47 am

I have seen a few Sinclair stations in Los Angeles.

It was a surprise and they all seemed very nicely kept (low price and good customer service).

Seeing them warmed my heart as my Dad owned a small chain of them in NYC back in the late 50s through 1967. I helped him out as a kid pumping gas and cleaning windows for my allowance plus tips....LOL.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by buckguy » May 25th, 2020, 7:01 am

rwsandiego wrote:
May 24th, 2020, 12:04 pm
storewanderer wrote:
May 23rd, 2020, 11:35 pm
BP is still quite common east of the Rockies. They are in IL, OH, MN, WI, etc. I think they are in the South like AL and GA too. ...
That's because BP acquired SOHIO in the 1980's, rebranding them in the 1990s and then acquired Amoco in 1999/2000.
They also bought stations from Gulf in the east, shortly after buying their initial interest in Standard of Ohio in the 70s. They rebranded the Gulfs when they made the acquisition. Rebranding SOHIO and Boron came later.

They've been reviving AMOCO as a brand in Midwestern markets, starting in Chicago. It hasn't replaced BP, just given them a second banner in areas where they have a lot of stations already, so that existing stations don't compete as much with each other.

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Re: BP gas stations return?

Post by cjd » May 25th, 2020, 8:30 am

I see a few Amoco locations here in FL on a map. All these gas brands fascinate me, I'm not old enough to remember the heyday of it all but I remember seeing a lot of these brands as a kid, compared to now. Also the old (historic?) gas stations that are still sometimes seen around I find interesting as well. There are a few in my area now used for other businesses.

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