Gulf Oil Corporation will seek to cover at least 25% of the market of petrol stations in Mexico and will operate up to 2,000 service stations by 2019. This month (March) will offer the first franchise opportunities and Gulf Oil expects to close 2016 with at least 100 units.
The United States-based company is the first major foreign oil corporation to enter into the Mexican gasoline market after historic reforms that opened Mexico’s energy sector to private investors after more than seven decades of a state-owned monopoly.
The CEO of Gulf Oil in Mexico, Sergio de la Vega, said that March will bring the first franchise opportunities and in June or July of 2016 the company hopes to open its first four stations in Mexico, with plans to end 2016 with about 100 units.
De la Vega also said his expectation is to obtain and operate at least 2,000 stations over the next three years. At this time, Mexicans and visitors can only buy fuel at stations branded by state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos, known as Pemex and all of these gas stations operate under a franchise scheme.
"We are proud to be the first to start operations with a new brand in the newly opened Mexican market," the Director said at a press conference.
De la Vega stressed that Gulf Oil is more than just a company in the energy sector. Instead, Gulf plans to combine innovative strategies to modernize Mexico’s existing service station infrastructure. Gulf Oil plans to open one station this year in Mexico City, with another location in Monterrey, while the remaining two are still under analysis.
De la Vega also revealed that the market research showed Gulf Oil experts that Mexicans prefer that the service stations continue to operate the same as before, with dispatchers serving the fuel, but it also showed that some gas stations will incorporate the U.S. service model.
Gulf Oil reportedly plans to stock up both in the Mexico domestic market, with Pemex refineries, and abroad. In principle, the company is expected to import at least 50% of its gasoline from different places, depending on the offer and conditions, including the United States and Europe.
Regarding the origin of the fuel, De la Vega said they will bring gasoline from California and Texas, but will also seek opportunities in the European market,as well as more partnerships with Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex).
Finally, he added that Gulf Oil also operate an association comprised of essential elements of successful franchises,such as regionalization, to provide better customer care.