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Published: Friday, 11/16/2007

BP plans to sell 700 convenience stores


NAPERVILLE, Ill. - BP America Inc. said yesterday it will sell all of its more than 700 company-owned-and-operated U.S. convenience stores over the next two years, eliminating nearly 10,000 jobs.

The company said most of the sites will be sold to franchise owners, and some will be sold to dealers and large distributors.

No Toledo-area stores are affected; all are already owned by franchisees. About 95 percent of BP's 13,000 U.S. retail sites are independently operated.

The sale of the 700-plus stores will eliminate 9,500 positions and 350 business support staff. About 100 employees from BP's pipelines and logistics unit will also be affected, the company said.

The U.S. Convenience Retail office in Naperville, 25 miles west of Chicago, also will close.

BP America said the action is linked to the reorganization announced by London-based parent BP PLC last month in which the oil company said it would streamline its structure, shrink the number of business units and trim management in an effort to end a slump.

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