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Montreal-based Ultramar, which markets gasoline and diesel through a network of 1,045 service stations and convenience stores, acquired the main assets of Pétroles Georges Fortin Ltd., a Laval, Quebec heating oil distributor.

According to Ultramar, more than 2,500 new customers can now benefit from the complete range of products and services already offered by Ultramar to its current customers, such as the sale of equipment, protection plans, various attractive payment options, as well as the opportunity to adhere to the comfort price program.

"It fits perfectly with our sales strategies and allows us to strengthen our position as a major distributor of home heating oil in Eastern Canada," said Jean-Maurice Lauzon, general manager of heating for Ultramar. "Ultramar continues to seek opportunities that will ensure the growth of this market segment, both internally as well as by acquisitions or strategic exchanges in Eastern Canada."

In other news, Shell said it had no intention of selling its operation in Jamaica -- where it remains the largest gas retailer -- despite having sold several of its businesses elsewhere in the region.

"Shell sold its interest in the Eastern Caribbean, Guyana and Suriname but not in Jamaica," Shell Co. West Indies operations manager Winston Ormsby told the Jamaica Business Observer. Shell said the divestment will allow it to concentrate on its customer-focused businesses.

Shell has 56 service stations in Jamaica, the most of any marketing company, and has its main office and holding facility in Rockfort, East Kingston.

Under the restructuring plan, some 111 retail services stations will be divested, along with 30 distribution depots. Additionally, Shell's liquefied petroleum gas business in the Caribbean is being sold to the Sol Group of Companies.
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