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Penny Petroleum Group buys Darlington service station

Top 50 Indie, Penny Petroleum Group has acquired Carmel Road Service Station in Darlington, County Durham, via Christie & Co.

The petrol filling station was amongst a portfolio of forecourts operated by Marla and Gus Saggu, across the North East of England.

The Saggu’s have become renowned in the industry for their market leading business practices, not least in respect of managing their staff who were key to the successful operation of the business. They openly shared their COVID contingency plan during a webinar, which arguably formed the basis for many others across the industry.

Marla Saggu commented, “Having owned Carmel Road, we learnt that small sites can be very profitable. We are sure that Penny Petroleum will find it a lucrative addition to their portfolio. We would like to thank Christie and Co for all their assistance and expertise in ensuring this deal went through to completion successfully.”

Operating for more than 26 years, the new owner, Penny Petroleum was founded by David and Louise Penny in 1994 and is now regarded as the sixth largest independent petrol forecourt operator in the country, with a portfolio comprising of 70 sites nation-wide.

A spokesperson for Penny Petroleum said, “We are delighted to have been able to purchase the site at Carmel Road Darlington, as it will be a great addition to our portfolio.

'The team here at Penny Petroleum believe the site to have a lot of potential and we will be looking to maximise that over the coming months. There is a dedicated team in place at the store already and we are looking forward to working with them and welcoming them as part of the wider Penny Team.”

Andy Birnie, Director in Christie & Co’s North Retail team, said, “Carmel Road was an interesting site, being small with only a kiosk sized shop but with high fuel volumes due to its location.

'Forecourt buyers are increasingly looking for ‘bigger is best’ sites and those which can be developed into a strong convenience store with multiple income streams yet, with a low-cost base, this site proved very profitable for the Saggu’s.

“Through selling numerous sites to Penny Petroleum, I knew they would find a place for it in their group and they jumped at the chance to purchase it. I am very pleased that we have successfully completed on the sale and I wish David and Penny Petroleum the best of luck.”