KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — After the reimaging of his VNK Market convenience store and gas station to the VP Racing Fuels banner this May, owner Sean Patel found that his fuel volume increased 500 percent and in-store sales rose from an average of $800 per day to $1400-$1500 per day.
"As soon as the VP logo sign went up on the canopy, people started stopping to ask, 'Is this for real…Are you going to have race fuel here?' People came in daily to ask about VP products or Instagram photos to friends in Knoxville to tell them VP's come to town," Patel said. "I'd say 80 percent of the people coming down this street are race fans and I've discovered there are dirt oval tracks, dragstrips, motocross tracks, ATV off-roading...even an air field with R/C airplanes, and VP has a specialty fuel for every one of them."
As a result, Patel has since installed two "VP Fuel Cubes" at his Knoxville location, each of which stores 18 five-gallon pails of race fuel. He plans to order a third Fuel Cube soon.
Patel attributes the growth to an overall increase in consumer traffic due to brand appeal, as well as sales of race fuels and VP-branded products and apparel.
"VP's branding program is making our station a destination," he said. "You can see it on Facebook, where we had 30 followers before reimaging, but now we're over 400, even though this area is very slow in terms of social media."
Patel is currently looking at building a new ground-up gas station and plans to brand it as VP Racing Fuels, according to a news release.