BCG Advises Fuel Retailers to Modernise Service Stations
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
If fuel retailers intend to survive and remain in business in the future, they must begin to make plans to modernise their service stations to support electric vehicles, supply biofuel as well as capitalize on their real estate, and zero in on sustainable practices.
In a new report by Boston Consulting Group (BCG), a leading global management consulting firm, it was disclosed that only those who heed this suggestion may continue to operate in the fast-emerging landscape.
The fuel industry has long been facing disruptive forces, and these have only accelerated since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic: electric vehicles (EVs) and alternative fuels have gained significant traction, mobility usage and attitudes have evolved, and customer behaviour has changed dramatically.
In the report titled A New Era for Fuel Retailers, 33 executives from 20 leading global retailers and operators with robust retail businesses were questioned and it was found that in-store sales and online offers during the pandemic offset sharp declines in gasoline and diesel sales volumes.
More recently, as geopolitical uncertainty and volatility have placed upward pressure on oil prices, many operators have realized that retail is a matter of business resiliency. As such, some 70 per cent of leading retailers are planning to expand their network in the coming years.
“The latest innovations in mobility and renewable power technology are encouraging stakeholders in Nigeria’s energy and automotive industries to develop and deploy solar-powered electric charging ports and expand gas stations in response to the growing fleet of electric and gas-powered vehicles.
“These initiatives, which are part of the pilot project of the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), will open more opportunities for investors to boost profitability and decarbonise the environment; encourage retail stations to expand their offerings and automobile technicians to upgrade their skills, when deployed at scale,” a Partner and Associate Director at BCG Nigeria, Ms Oluseun Solanke, was quoted as saying in the report made available to Business Post.
A Managing Director and Senior Partner at BCG, Mirko Rubeis, while commenting on the outcome of the survey, stated that, “Beyond extracting the most value from their traditional core business, fuel retailers’ survival depends on investing beyond the pump.
“They need to make ambitious moves into new digital businesses while also adapting the service station to support EV and other alternatives fuels, capitalize on their existing real estate, and zero in on sustainable mobility.”