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(NECN: Marnie MacLean, Portland, Maine) - The same week that Exxon Mobil reports a huge income jump for the fourth quarter. We learn that the company is making major changes in New England.
Now, Exxon Mobil has decided to stop supplying its gas to Massachusetts and Maine.
One by one, this crew is converting more than forty gas stations in Maine from Mobil, to Citgo.
The decision by gas supplier CN Brown to switch brands was based in part on Exxon Mobil's recent sale of more than 200 of its properties in new england as well as its choice to stop supplying gas to Massachusetts and Maine.
Exxon Mobil says the changes in the New England market were carefully thought out and quote "Recent unitary tax changes adopted by Massachusetts and Maine was a factor in the decision to supply
the stations through a BFA (brand Free Agreement)."
Exxon Mobil says Maine and Massachusetts wanted to tax the company's earnings made out of
state. Maine's office of revenue services says it's not an unusual tax and one adopted by many states. But Exxon Mobil felt it was enough of a burden to let its tanks in those two states run dry.
This doesn't mean that every Mobil gas station in Maine and Massachusetts is disappearing, some in Maine and many in Massachusetts will remain the Mobil brand. The difference is they will no longer sell Exxon Mobil gasoline, they can get gas from anywhere they want as long as it is "Exxon Mobil approved."
That's where the brand free agreement comes in dealers can pick any brand of gas...but the
fuel must get the additives that Exxon Mobil uses.
CN Brown says its decision to drop Mobil shouldn't impact prices at the pump....Maine consumers especially will just be seeing a lot more Citgo signs.