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Dover and OPW acquire Innovative Control Systems (ICS)

OPW Vehicle Wash Solutions grows technology portfolio with ICS addition

ICS-Logo-2Dover, and its OPW business unit, have announced that it has acquired Innovative Control Systems, Inc. (ICS), a technology solutions provider for the car wash industry. ICS will now become part of OPW’s Vehicle Wash Solutions platform of brands. The platform includes PDQ and Belanger.

Vehicle Wash Solutions (VWS) and ICS have previously partnered to develop a retrofit kit for PDQ’s installed base of Access payment terminals at in-bay automatic sites to ensure those customers have access to EMV payment solutions and ongoing Payment Card Industry compliance. This joint product will be ready to launch in early 2021.

According to Kevin Detrick, founder and president of ICS, the acquisition by OPW will allow ICS to continue to expand its customer base and partner with the Vehicle Wash Solutions brands to bring innovative new products to market. “Those ICS customers who do not use VWS equipment will continue to see our same focus on innovation and dedicated customer support. This is a great development for our business,” he said.

ICS is an industry-leading provider of technology solutions for the car wash industry. Now alongside Vehicle Wash Solutions, ICS will continue to offer state-of-the-art payment terminals and point-of-sale management solutions, wash site management software and other wash equipment technologies as part of a complete vehicle wash solutions package.

OPW is an innovations-based company with products designed to enhance safety, reliability, efficiency and business performance for the retail fueling, fluid-handling and car-wash industries. With manufacturing operations in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific, OPW manufactures above-ground and below-ground products for both conventional, vapour-recovery and clean energy applications in the retail and commercial markets.

OPW’s Vehicle Wash Solutions was formed in January 2019 and consists of PDQ Manufacturing, Inc. and Belanger, Inc., two companies working to create a single source for all vehicle wash needs.


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Cenovus closes Husky transaction

Deal creates oil and gas leviathan

Screen Shot 2020-10-26 at 12.57.24 PMCenovus Energy Inc. has announced that its strategic combination with Husky Energy Inc. has now closed. The transaction was completed through a definitive arrangement agreement announced on October 25, 2020, under which Cenovus and Husky agreed to combine in an all-stock transaction.

With the close of the transaction, Husky has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cenovus. The combined company will continue to be headquartered in Calgary.

“This is an exciting day for Cenovus as we become a leaner, stronger, more fully integrated oil and natural gas company that is exceptionally well-positioned to weather the current environment and be an energy leader in the years ahead,” said Alex Pourbaix, Cenovus president & CEO. “With the closing of this transaction, we will focus on safely and efficiently integrating the assets and teams of these two great companies while working to realize the $1.2 billion in synergies we’ve identified. These cost and capital efficiencies, combined with our strong portfolio of well-matched upstream production, midstream and downstream assets as well as improved financial strength, are expected to generate strong value for our shareholders.”

The combination creates Canada’s third-largest crude oil and natural gas producer, based on total company production, with about 750,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (BOE/d) of low-cost oil and natural gas production. Cenovus is also now the second-largest Canadian-based refiner and upgrader, with total North American upgrading and refining capacity of approximately 660,000 barrels per day (bbls/d). The company also has access to about 265,000 bbls/d of current takeaway capacity from Alberta on existing major pipelines, 305,000 bbls/d of committed capacity on planned pipelines and 16 million barrels of crude oil storage capacity as well as strategic crude-by-rail assets that provide takeaway optionality.


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Parkland ramps up growth the latest U.S. acquisition

Screen Shot 2020-11-16 at 1.10.47 PMParkland Corporation has announced it will acquire the assets of Richfield, Utah-based Sevier Valley Oil Company (SVO).

Based in Richfield, Utah, SVO is a well-established retail and commercial fuel business with annual fuel and petroleum product volume of approximately 350 million litres. SVO’s primary operations are in Southwestern Utah, along with a presence in Northern Utah and Colorado. The acquisition of SVO adds seven retail locations and over 20 retail dealers in addition to robust diesel and lubricant distribution capabilities.

“We continue to expand our US footprint and execute on our growth strategy,” says Doug Haugh, president of Parkland USA. “This acquisition meaningfully expands our retail presence in rapidly growing Southern Utah and presents a fantastic opportunity to leverage our North American On the Run convenience store brand, enhance our customer proposition and drive incremental value.”

“The acquisition strongly complements our existing Rockies Regional Operating Center and positions us for further organic and acquisition growth in neighbouring Nevada and Arizona,” added Haugh. “We are delighted to welcome Garrett Ekker and the SVO team to Parkland and look forward to the continued growth of our USA business.”

This acquisition is consistent in value with Parkland’s previous U.S. transactions. Funding for the deal will come from existing credit facility capacity. The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2020. 


Christian Flach, CEO Greenergy

Greenergy acquires Amber Petroleum

Fuel distributor Greenergy has acquired 100% of Amber Petroleum, an independent fuel distributor and retailer based in the Republic of Ireland. The deal offers Greenergy access to Amber’s 35 sites around the country. Amber sites are both company-owned and dealer-owned operations and offer vehicle fuel products as well as home heating petroleum.

Christian Flach, CEO Greenergy

Christian Flach, CEO Greenergy

“One of our key strategic objectives is to integrate our existing supply footprint with our expanding retail presence,” said Christian Flach, Greenergy CEO. “The acquisition of Amber follows our recent retail investment in 230 retail sites in Canada, and will enhance our capabilities in Ireland by building on our existing infrastructure, supply and retail operations.”

Liam Fitzgerald, owner and managing director of Amber Petroleum concurs, adding that Amber has served a loyal customer base for more than 40 years. “Amber’s success has been based on strong relationships with customers, suppliers and staff and we know that Greenergy shares these same values.”

Greenergy entered the Canadian market in 2013. This year they merged with Markham, Ontario’s BG Fuels, a gas retail operator with a significant presence in central Canada. Behind Greenergy’s success are extensive investments in marine and rail-fed storage terminals as well as in road haulage capability that allows them to import and distribute their blended fuel products to independent retailers.

In the United Kingdom where Greenergy is based, the company supplies more than 25% of the road-fuels market.


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Couche Tard on hunt for acquisitions but CEO doesn’t get rival’s Speedway deal

couche-tard2-780x520=Alimentation Couche-Tard continues to be on the hunt for acquisitions even as it claims convenience store rival 7-Eleven’s blockbuster US$21-billion acquisition of the Speedway network in the U.S. doesn’t make sense.

Chief executive Brian Hannasch told investors September 2 that the deal announced last month for the 3,900-store network owned by Marathon Petroleum “traded at value, quite honestly, I can’t understand.”

He said potential acquisition deals have been relatively quiet in the quarter but that activity should pick up as the focus on the COVID-19 pandemic lessens.

“Now that COVID has become a bit of the new normal, we are starting to see a little more deal flow … And if the value is there, we’ll certainly take advantage of those opportunities.”

The fragmented U.S. market remains a prime target as are significant opportunities in Western Canada.

Asia-Pacific, including Australia, remains “a strong area of focus due to long-term growth potential.”

“We are exploring several opportunities actively there,” Hannasch said, adding that the pandemic has created uncertainty Down Under.

He said Ampol (formerly called Caltex), which Couche-Tard had previously targeted, has been weaker than expected. Peter Sklar of BMO Capital Markets said he doesn’t believe Couche-Tard will pursue a deal in the near-term because of its weak financial performance.

While there are markets in Europe that are interesting, the region isn’t a priority, Hannasch noted.

Acquisitions are part of Couche-Tard’s strategy to double its size within five years.

Hannasch said its five-year plan remains on track after two years despite the coronavirus.

“I’m pleased that we continue to make good progress on most of our initiatives. While the pandemic has had an impact short-term on traffic patterns and behaviours, there’s a lot of pushes and pulls.”

Couche-Tard’s shares surged 7.5% Sept. 2, after it reported strong first-quarter results after markets closed on Tuesday.

The company said its net profit surged 44% despite a big drop in fuel sales at its convenience stores because of COVID-19.

The Quebec-based retailer that operates the Circle K brand says it earned US$771.1 million or 70 cents per diluted share in its first quarter, up from US$538.8 million or 48 cents per share a year earlier.

Adjusted earnings attributable to shareholders came in at 71 cent per share, up from 40 cents per share forecast by analysts, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

“We had an exceptional quarter, I think, both financially and operationally, as we’ve seen an increase in shopping occasions and solid execution by our teams to take advantage of changing consumer behaviours during this COVID period,” Hannasch told analysts.

Revenues for the three months ended July 19 decreased 31.4% to US$9.71 billion, compared with US$14.2 billion a year earlier and below forecasts of US$10.55 billion.

The retailer said its in-store sales benefited from shoppers buying more, while fuel sales were hurt by lower demand and prices, partially offset by strong fuel margins.

Tobacco sales were strong, especially in Canada.

Same-store fuel volume decreased 21.2% in the U.S., 25.6% in Canada, and 12.4% in Europe.


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Mondelez buys majority stake in Canadian maker of two bite brownies Give & Go

Screen Shot 2020-02-25 at 10.16.36 AMMondelez International says it has signed a deal to buy a significant majority interest in Toronto-based Give & Go Prepared Foods Corp., maker of baked goods such as two-bite brownies.

Illinois-based Mondelez – maker of Oreo, Triscuit and Chips Ahoy! brands – is acquiring the stake in the privately held Give & Go from funds affiliated with Thomas H. Lee Partners, LP.

Financial terms of the deal were not immediately available.

Founded in 1989, Give & Go’s management team will maintain a minority interest in the company.

In addition to its two-bite brownies, Give & Go’s brands include Create-A-Treat, Mason St. Bakehouse and the Worthy Crumb Pastry Co.

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“Give & Go’s leading position in the large and fast-growing in-store bakery channel gives us a unique opportunity to expand into new, on-trend consumer spaces,” Glen Walter, executive vice-president and president, North America, for Mondelez International, said in a statement.

“Similar to our recent acquisitions of Perfect Snacks and Tate’s Bake Shop, this is yet another great example of our bolt-on acquisition strategy to establish foundations in faster growing snacking adjacencies.”