TEMPE, Ariz. — Northern Tier Energy LP saw a positive start to 2015 due to favorable fuel margins and new SuperAmerica convenience store openings, according to the company's 2015 first-quarter earnings call Tuesday.
"Results for the first quarter [of] 2015 were strong," stated President and CEO Dave Lamp, who noted that supportive crude oil margins and retail fuel margins contributed to the quarter's positive results. "Our growth initiatives continue to evolve into 2015."
The company has opened six new SuperAmerica franchise stores so far this year, bringing its total to 95 franchise locations. Additional franchise growth is targeted for later in the year, along with the opening of three new company-operated stores. Northern Tier owns and operates approximately 165 c-stores.
SuperAmerica stores earned retail operating income of $2.4 million during the first quarter, up from the $1.7 million earned in Q1 2014.
Fuel margins were 21 cents per gallon compared to 19 cents per gallon during the same period one year ago. Fuel gallons sold at both company-operated stores and franchise stores increased by 9.2 percent to 71.9 million gallons during Q1 2015 compared to one year ago as a result of opening the new franchise stores.
Merchandise sales also increased to $82.6 million from $78.5 million last year at company-operated stores.
Companywide, Northern Tier posted net income of $111.2 million during Q1 2015 compared to $71.5 million for the first quarter of 2014.