F.L. Roberts Sells Gas Stations, Stores and Jiffy Lube Locations, Whately Diner

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Longtime local business F.L. Roberts & Co. has sold both its retail gas station and car wash business and its Jiffy Lube franchises to separate owners while retaining its wholesale business as Roberts Energy.

As reported earlier, Roberts is selling its nine Jiffy Lubes to Atlantic Coast Enterprises, a Jiffy Lube franchisee with headquarters in Connecticut and locations in the southeastern U.S.

Roberts is selling its retail and car wash business to Nouria Energy Corp.

Frank Roberts, the great-grandson of the founder, has created Roberts Energy to run the remainder of the company's business as a supplier of motor fuels, heating fuels and lubricants to commercial end users, wholesale customers and branded retailers, according to a news release.

Roberts Energy will retain 40 company employees. The company services its customers with its own fleet of trucks, a fuel terminal in Springfield and additional supply locations across the northeast.

Roberts Energy will have its headquarters on Albany Street, the city's longtime Gasoline Alley known for its fuel depots. "We remain a Springfield company," he said.

Steven Roberts, current president and CEO of F.L. Roberts, is retiring, the company announced Tuesday.

Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

The company said the F.L. Roberts brand, its RewardsPLUS customer rewards program and the Golden Nozzle Car Wash Unlimited Wash Pass ("fast pass") will remain. Current F.L. Roberts convenience store and car wash employees will be offered employment from Nouria.

All F.L. Roberts' Jiffy Lube employees were offered employment from Atlantic Coast Enterprises, F.L. Roberts said.

According to its website, F.L. Roberts & Co. is a fourth-generation generation family-owned business founded in 1920 with an automotive and tire store at the corner of Main and Adams streets in Springfield. The Roberts family added Texaco gas and oil soon thereafter.

Today, the company has a network of 27 gas station and convenience stores, 21 car washes, two truck refueling centers and the Whately Diner. 

Its headquarters is on Hall of Fame Avenue in Springfield's South End. The company had 500 employees in Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Tony El-Nemr founded Nouria Energy in 1989 and it remains family owned. The company, based in Worcester, owns and operates 116 convenience stores and 49 car washes in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Connecticut.

Nouria operates a transport logistics business and supplies its company operated locations and wholesale customers with Shell, Irving, Gulf, Sunoco and Valero branded fuels, as well as private and unbranded gasoline.

Before buying F.L. Roberts, most of the company's Massachusetts locations were Shell stations in Worcester County.

F.L. Roberts sells unbranded gas as well as Sunoco and, at one location in Greenfield, Valero.

Nouria's purchase includes the Whatley Diner.

Nouria and Atlantic Coast have expressed interest in continuing to work together on promotions such as the free car wash a customer gets with Jiffy Lube service and the Roberts points program.

El-Nemr said in a news release:

"The nearly century-old Roberts family business has established tremendous convenience store and car wash brands and created a family culture with generations of loyal employees. At this time, I want to welcome them to the Nouria organization.
"The acquisition of F.L. Roberts comes at a time when Nouria is solidly positioned for substantial growth. The acquisition enhances our business profile with added revenue diversification and profit streams backed by strong c-store operations and an industry-best car wash network."
This article originally appeared on masslive.com

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