Patron exits petrol station business for £500m

The London-based real estate private equity firm sold the Motor Fuel Group to New York-based buyout shop Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.

Patron Capital Partners, the London-based real estate private equity firm, has exited UK forecourt business, Motor Fuel Group (MFG), for approximately £500 million (€684 million; $762 million) to New York-based private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.

Patron originally acquired MFG back in December 2011 in a joint venture with oil industry veteran Alasdair Locke and members of a new management team. Patron made the investment on behalf of Patron Capital IV, a vehicle which attracted €780 million of commitments from limited partners as well as €320 million of co-investment capital. The transaction is expected to close in July, subject to customary regulatory approvals.

Through a series of strategic acquisitions, Patron and MFG’s management have grown the company from 48 sites in 2011 to a current total of 373 sites, in addition to operating a dealer network of more than 200 sites. Patron and MFG acquired 90 petrol filling stations from oil giant Shell for an undisclosed price back in April.

“The success of MFG – one of our largest investments to date and a highly profitable one – highlights the strength of our strategy of investing opportunistically in property-backed investments across Western Europe,” commented Stephen Green, senior partner at Patron.

Patron was advised by law firm Travers Smith and MFG was advised by law firm Pinsent Masons. Clayton, Dubilier & Rice was advised by law firms Clifford Chance and Debevoise & Plimpton and consultancies Ernst & Young and OC&C.