Loblaw wants to sell gas bar business

Company looking for prospective buyers of 212 filling stations

Loblaw Companies says it's taking steps to sell its network of 212 gasoline filling stations.

In a statement from its head office in Brampton, Ont., Loblaw's chief operating officer Grant Froese said the gas bars are deliver strong, stable cash flows.

But the company said it believes the right strategic partner would ``elevate'' the fuel business, leaving Loblaw to concentrate on its core grocery business.

The company says it will ``engage potential buyers,'' but didn't provide an estimated price tag for the business or other details of its plan.

Loblaw said about 20% of stores under its various banners, including No Frills, Your Independent Grocer and Real Canadian Superstore, have a gas bar adjacent to them.

They are located in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Yukon.

"Customers appreciate the convenience of onsite fuel and the benefits of a loyalty program that links gas bar and grocery purchases," Frose said. "We anticipate that these benefits will continue regardless of whether the business is sold."

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