Universal Express to purchase Jacksonville Oil for $15.8M

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Universal Express has announced the signing of an agreement to purchase Jacksonville Oil Co., a North Florida oil and gas retailer. The company is comprised of eight super stations that include both mini-marts and numerous co-branding agreements. The purchase price is $15.8 million, subject to the company obtaining an appropriate first mortgage on the properties.

In calendar year 2005, the company had in excess of $20 million in gross sales; the first two quarters of 2006 shows a substantial increase over the same time period of 2005. “The acquired company is one of the best-managed, cleanest high-tech operations we saw in viewing potential acquisitions in this industry,” says Richard A. Altomare, president and chief executive officer of Universal Express. “At current levels, we will see a benefit in excess of $1 million in EBITDA from this purchase.”

Universal Express has targeted the fuel distribution sector recently as a result of its decision to vertically integrate its luggage delivery, courier and aircraft operations. In May, the company signed a letter of intent to acquire a majority interest in Global Trucking Services, a Miami-based carrier that provides luggage delivery and other trucking services to most major airlines serving Miami International Airport and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

“We expect to affect a substantial increase in revenues from the Jacksonville properties and through the introduction of some of Universal’s existing services and products into the stations,” Altomare says. “Further, as our Florida presence grows, we want to introduce the same corporate and community responsibility here as we have in corporate central, as well as our other subsidiaries and partners.”