BP to Sell 114 Sites

LA PALMA, Calif. -- BP PLC put 114 gasoline stations and convenience store properties located in 22 states up for sale, Dow Jones Newswires reported. The majority of the properties are being marketed as redevelopment sites, while some are being offered as part of potential franchise deals, according to BP's broker, Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.

The decision to sell the properties came before the April explosion of BP's oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico, Guy Ponticiello, a Jones Lang managing director, said in the report, noting BP announced plans to exit from direct retail ownership a few years ago.

Eric Anton, an executive managing director at Eastern Consolidated, said buyers may have an advantage, since the negative publicity of the Gulf spill "may create more buzz" for the properties partly because buyers may assume they may have an advantage on pricing terms.

"From a buyer's point of view, psychologically, they know BP has to raise cash. So, [buyers] want to get in there while the getting is good," Anton said in the Dow Jones report.

Jones Lang declined to comment in the report on any reputational risk BP has in marketing the properties.

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