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BP Will Purchase TravelCenters of America for $1.3 Billion

BP Will Purchase TravelCenters of America for $1.3 Billion

BP plc is once again moving toward a role as a more integrated company with the
announcement Thursday that it will buy TravelCenters of America for $1.3
billion in cash.

About 280 travel centers in 44 states are included in the deal, although
TravelCenters leases most sites from realty companies. The transaction comes
after 2022 delivered record margins for diesel marketers across North America.
OPIS detailed last week that 2022 rack-to-retail margins for diesel averaged
56.5cts/gal, far surpassing any previous years.

It's the second major purchase in the U.S. retail space. Previously, the
company purchased Midwestern retailer Thornton's and sources believe they are
looking at additional retail expansion that would leverage the Thornton's model.

BP said that it expects returns of over 15% on its investment with earnings
accretive to free cash flow in 2024. It will pay $86 per share for TA, which
represents an 84% premium to what shares in the company have fetched in the
30-day period ending Wednesday.

TA Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Pertchik praised the deal, citing it as the
"result of the successful implementation of our turnaround and strategic
plans." He disclosed that TA hired financial and legal advisors as part of a
formal process to consider a potential sale of the company with competitive
rounds of bidding that resulted in the BP transaction.

Shareholders include publicly traded Service Properties Trust, which owns 7.8%
of TA as well as the RMR Group, which owns 4.1% of TA shares. Both have
confirmed they are in favor of the sale.

A closing on the transaction is targeted for mid-year 2023.

Observers believe that the deal will give BP a huge leveraged "short" in the
volatile U.S. diesel market and help it compete with other huge chains such as
Love's Travel Stops & Country Stores and Pilot Flying J.

BP is still looking at other potential deals, sources tell OPIS, as it looks to
leverage its refining and trading prowess and grow its guaranteed network for
gasoline and diesel gallonage.

BP is not the only major looking to secure a home for its hydrocarbons. OPIS
expects that Shell plc will announce deals in coming months to purchase
gasoline retailers with due diligence ongoing on perhaps two or three

--Reporting by Tom Kloza,; Editing by Michael Kelly,

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