Energy Distribution Partners Acquires Kent Oil & Propane In Michigan

(August 10, 2019) — Energy Distribution Partners (“EDP”), based in Chicago, Illinois, has announced its recent acquisition of Kent Oil & Propane, which serves propane and petroleum light oils customers in and around Nashville, Michigan.
 Energy Distribution Partners makes 25th acquisition of Kent Oil & Propane  in Nashville, Mich. reports Butane-Propane News (BPN) the propane industry's leading source for news and information since 1939.Kent Oil & Propane was a third generation business launched in 1936 by Walter and Mildred Kent as a gasoline and distillate agent for Standard Oil. The business was taken over in the late 1960’s by their son Jerry and his wife, Anne. In 1981, their son John joined the company followed by their son-law, Jeff Hynes, in 1988. In 1992 the company expanded into propane. Mr. Hynes has led Kent Oil & Propane since 1995 with assistance from his partner John Kent. Following Mr. Kent’s untimely death in 2010, Mr. Hynes has been sole owner.
 
The operation serves more than 3,500 propane and petroleum light oils customers in four central Michigan counties.  Kent Oil & Propane also owns a Pacific Pride operation that sells both diesel and gasoline through on onsite cardlock system. Known for its exceptional service to customers, Kent Oil & Propane has deep roots in the local community.   
 
According to Jeff Hynes, “As I looked ahead to my retirement, I wanted to be sure the new company would take great care of both my long-time customers and my valued employees. I chose EDP because they are known throughout the industry for providing exceptional service to customers, for treating employees right, and for remaining active supporters of the local community.  I couldn’t be more pleased with EDP’s plans to support and grow this business.”

“We are excited to have the Kent Oil & Propane team join EDP,” said Tom Knauff, Energy Distribution Partner’s CEO. “Kent Oil & Propane has an outstanding reputation across central Michigan and we are committed to ensuring that stellar reputation continues. We look forward to welcoming their employees to EDP and to continuing to provide exceptional service to customers across their service area.”

About Energy Distribution Partners
Energy Distribution Partners is a rapidly-growing company in America's fast-changing energy landscape – with deep experience in retail and commercial propane sales, operations and finance. The company provides safe, reliable propane service to residential and commercial customers in California, Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, South Carolina, Pennsylvania and New York. Energy Distribution Partners pursues a long-term strategy of purchasing successful operations in propane and other fuels and in the midstream energy sector, retaining the brand name, preserving local management and delegating to leaders in local communities.
 
This is EDP’s 25th transaction. The company is actively seeking partners for growth. For more information, please visit www.edplp.net.

Agricultural Producers Urged To Fill Propane Tanks Early

(August 9, 2019) — The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) is encouraging agricultural producers to consider filling their propane tanks early to prepare for higher demand this fall from later harvests and increased grain drying needs. Noted is that record-breaking flooding in the Midwest and saturated soil in many states delayed planting of most crops, which will delay harvests as well.
Agricultural Producers Urged To Fill Propane Tanks Early In Light of Late Grain Drying Season GSI LPG Grain Dryer reports BPN magazine 08-2019
Later harvests and an increase in crop drying—the majority of which is fueled by propane—will cause propane demand to be higher in the late fall, when it is already higher due to rising residential and agricultural heating needs. PERC recommends farmers contact their propane supplier to inquire about fuel contract opportunities to lock in lower prices, and fill propane tanks early.

“We typically see an increase in propane demand due to harvest and then months later due to winter needs for ag and home heating,” said Mike Newland, director of agriculture business development at PERC. “This year we expect these events to be closer together than usual, creating higher propane demand at one time. Producers can ensure they have the propane they need to power their farms throughout fall and winter by planning ahead and taking advantage of savings by filling tanks early.” The council comments that propane supply is expected to be abundant, but like other energy sources the price of propane is market driven and fluctuates as demand changes.

To learn more about the use of propane on the farm and the Propane Education & Research Council, visit www.propane.com.

ANOVA Welcomes Industry Veteran William Kroll As First Advisor

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ (August 8, 2019)Anova announced this week that it has appointed industry veteran, William (Bill) Kroll, as its first advisor to support the company through a period of immense expansion. In April of this year, Anova became the new name for DataOnline, WESROC, Wikon and iTank, and most recently joined forces with Portugal-based Intelligent Sensing Anywhere (ISA).

Bill Kroll Anova acquires Wesroc propane industry announcesWith over 40 years of experience, Bill brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise spanning nearly every facet of business. Having spent more than half of his career with Matheson, most recently as Chairman and CEO, Bill is the epitome of a dynamic leader. During his years with Matheson, he focused on the strategic direction and growth of the company, particularly the development of its activities in the electronics market sector, including compound and silicon semiconductors. In recent years, Bill focused primarily on the growth of Matheson — implementing corporate culture changes that drove organic expansion and paved the way for several strategic acquisitions, dramatically increasing revenue for the company.

As a key advisor to Anova's executive leadership team, Bill will add a highly valuable perspective that will enable the company to meet current and future market demands. "This is a unique opportunity to marry decades of global business experience with industry insights to help shape the company that Anova is positioning itself to become the greatest IIOT company in the world," said Bill Kroll. "I have the ability to provide the extra bandwidth to distinguish Anova from today's norm for the constantly evolving customer experience and I am anxious to get started!"

Bill’s global business leadership experience includes Board responsibilities for Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation,
where his vision for growth and investment in people, assets and infrastructure has had a direct impact across key regions like Southeast Asia, Europe, North Africa, and the UAE. "As Anova continues along a route of rapid global expansion, we will look to Bill's success in guiding organizations through monumental transitions to help steer us," said Chet Reshamwala, CEO of Anova. "We feel immense pride in welcoming Bill to the family, his presence will be felt immediately."

With offices in North America., South America, Europe and Asia — and a growing network of cellular, satellite, and LPWAN devices in 65+ countries — Anova manages nearly 375,000 devices, connecting the industrial world — for better.

About ANOVA
Anova is a leading global provider of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) solutions to remotely monitor and manage industrial assets. Drawing on more than 30 years of experience, the company provides wireless hardware and cloud-based analytics to reduce operational costs, prevent stock-outs, and improve end-customer service and engagement. Anova incorporates the DataOnline, Wikon, WESROC, iTank and ISA brands, and has offices in the U.S., Europe, and Asia, plus a global network of representatives. With a growing network of cellular, satellite, and LPWAN devices in 65+ countries around the globe, Anova is connecting the industrial world - for better. Additional information can be found at www.anova.com.

Additional Tariffs Would Hurt USA Oil and Gas Industry

From CPA To President of Oil & Propane Company

Running Michael Oil and Propane, the company her grandparents started in 1948 in Big Rapids, Mich., was not Gail Bailey’s original career path. “The goal was to go into accounting and get my license as a CPA. The closer I got to the end of the program, I realized that wasn’t the direction I wanted to go,” Bailey said.

Butane Propane News' Women In Propane profiles Gail Bailey CEO of Michael Oil and Propane in Michigan But, she decided to go ahead and finish her degree in accounting from Ferris State University and took a job in public accounting. On her way home from the accounting office, she would stop by Michael Oil and Propane and pick up some of the daily work.

As a working mother of three, she was juggling. “I was putting in a lot of hours, but it was a family business so you don’t think about it. You just need to do what needs to be done,” she said. “I always told my dad if he ever needed me to work for him full-time, to let me know. One day he let me know. I gave my notice and never looked back.”

Originally, the company started as a Sunoco gas station with her grandfather also delivering fueloil and gasoline from his station wagon. As the business grew, the company bought fuel delivery trucks. In the mid ’70s, Bailey’s father, Harry Michael, took over the business and expanded the operations into propane.

“We started out with one propane truck and would drive it 30 miles one way to fill with gas. We would deliver that and go back to refill the truck. We soon bought our first bulk tank, and then it wasn’t long before we got another bulk tank. We now have 48,000 gallons in storage,” she said.

In 2005, Bailey took over management of the operation. “Over the years I just took on more and more of the things my dad did,” she said. “Everything interested me, so I just jumped right in. My dad is a pretty good mentor and teacher. His management style is different than mine, but at the end of the day, he’s very supportive. I can honestly say he’s one of my best friends.”

Today, Michael Oil and Propane has 3500 customers both residential and commercial located in five counties, and eight employees including Bailey’s sister and father who, at 84 years old, still comes into the office several days a week. The company offers a wide selection of petroleum products and related parts, lubricants, HVAC parts and supplies, whole-home generators, and a service department. “We have a lot of hats to wear,” Bailey said.

Although it has underground storage for gasoline, diesel, and kerosene, roughly 65% of the company’s business is propane. “It took several years for the propane side to pass the liquid-fuel side of the business. Even I was surprised when we pulled numbers,” she said referring to the growth in propane. The growth has continued to be steady. “We’re just about bursting at the seams. It’s time to plan our next steps.”

In addition to running the oil and propane company, Bailey, now a grandmother of 11, also has a real estate broker’s license. Her husband, Gary, owns a real estate brokerage where both of their sons—also real estate brokers—work, and she does all the accounting for the brokerage. “All I talk about when I’m home is real estate,” she said jokingly.

The couple and some friends recently bought a flip house that they are rehabbing themselves. ”We’re right down in the nitty-gritty. I have no idea why we did it. It’s one of those things you do and then cross it off your bucket list.

“You never know what’s going to happen, and that’s half the fun of looking forward. You never know what opportunities you’ll wake up to in the morning.” While she doesn’t have a lot of downtime, Bailey said her personal hobby is reading. “I love to read, and I read a lot of different things. That’s how I relax.” — Karen Massman VanAsdale

(Reprint: Butane-Propane News, May 2019)