Who is Refuel? Company that plans to buy Double Quick has been growing fast since 2019

By BRYAN DAVIS PUBLISHER,

The South Carolina company that plans to close this year on the Indianola-based Double Quick convenience store chain has been on a torrid growth trajectory since February of last year.

Double Quick Managing Partner Bill McPherson confirmed Thursday that he and Double Quick President Tom Gresham currently have the 48-location convenience store company under contract to be purchased by Refuel, a company that began a rapid expansion in 2019.

McPherson, due to non-disclosure agreements, could not reveal any details surrounding the transaction, but a quick look at Refuel shows a company that has its eyes set on growing its footprint.

Under the agreement, McPherson did reveal that Refuel plans to retain the Double Quick name.

This also appears to be the company’s first venture into Mississippi and Arkansas. 

Mark Jordan CEO of Refuel, said in a release this week, “Tom and Bill have built a wonderful company and we are extremely excited to welcome their employees to the Refuel family. Double Quick has a strong brand and an established footprint that provides density as we enter the Mississippi and Arkansas markets. Double Quick excels in food service and has a reputation for first-class customer service which we feel is highly complementary to the Refuel platform.  We are excited to see what 2020 brings.”

Gresham and McPherson said in the same release, “While it was a bittersweet decision to sell Double Quick, we believe that Mark, Travis Smith, and the greater Refuel team will be great long-term stewards of the Double Quick brand and legacy that we have instilled in the local communities throughout our markets.  Bill McPherson added, “Tom and I would like to especially thank our CFO, Barry Schuster, and Matrix Capital for their hard work and diligence in getting us to a signed purchase agreement, and we look forward to a successful closing of the transaction with Refuel.”

Refuel, which was founded in 2008 by convenience store veteran Mark Jordan, was acquired last year by Texas-based private equity firm First Reserve.

Since becoming a part of First Reserve, Refuel has grown from five locations in South Carolina markets to more than 30 stores after the acquisitions of West Oil Inc. and Bishopville-Petroleum, as well as the summer 2019 announcement of a $50 million investment that included 10 new stores planned in the Charleston and eastern South Carolina markets, according to the publication, Convenience Store News.

The release, which is on Refuel's website, said "The transaction represents the fifth acquisition for Refuel since establishing the partnership with First Reserve in May 2019 and brings the total company operated store count to 83 stores. Refuel’s fourth acquisition was finalized last month when it acquired the Turtle Market assets in Myrtle Beach, SC, which included two high volume convenience stores, 1 site currently under construction and 1 future development location that is set to begin construction in 2020."

Jordan and his business partner, Travis Smith, run the convenience store operation, according to Convenience Store News. 

In an October article, Refuel said it planned to grow to a 100-plus store chain. This week's release said the Double Quick acquisition should put them on track to reach that goal by the end of 2020. 

Jordan told Convenience Store News in the fall that the company has not only been aggressive about acquisitions, but they are putting an emphasis on upgrading the food service component of their current South Carolina locations.

Jordan said the company uses a data-driven approach to its food and beverage offerings, and the store’s chains have become known for making fresh boiled peanuts on site.

The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter of 2020, according to the release. 

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