Update ageing fuel station infrastructure and differentiate service and product offering from its competition
Wayne Helix™ 6000 Additive fuel dispensers from Dover Fueling Solutions
25% increase in business since installation of the Helix 6000 Additive system
Primary Choice Factors
Dover Fueling Solutions’ reputation for quality products and proven additive dosing system
"Despite travel restrictions in Spain, sales have gone up over 25% after changing over our pumps to the Helix 6000 Additive dispenser system. The difference is 50,000 litres per day."
Jose Payà, Business Manager, Family Energy
AT A GLANCE
Founded in 2013, Family Cash, S.L., is a privately held, entrepreneurial company headquartered in Valencia, Spain. It is known for its high-volume supermarkets, which it promotes under the Family Cash brand. The mission of the organization is to offer consumers a diverse set of high-quality brands at good prices.
In 2018, the company began the process of adding petrol stations to its supermarket properties, under the Family Energy brand. It also began updating its existing fuel stations. It now operates 18 refuelling stations with plans to add three more in 2021.
Family Energy was facing several challenges, in particular its ageing fuel infrastructure. Many of the fuel dispensers were 10 years old and were at the end of their lifecycles. It was becoming more and more costly to repair them, and parts were difficult to find. Moreover, many did not incorporate automated payment terminals, forcing customers to go inside the store to pay by cash or credit card. In addition, most of the stations only offered the standard petrol or diesel fuels, when the market was demanding more alternatives, like premium grades with detergents. Finally, Family Energy was seeking a way to differentiate its offering from its competitors to increase business.
The foundation of Family Energy’s fuel infrastructure solution was the Wayne Helix™ 6000 Additive fuel dispenser. Rather than continuing to repair all its ageing pumps, Family Energy decided to replace all its pumps on a rolling basis. The decision was based, in part, on functional reasons. According to Family Energy Business Manager, Jose Payà, “We wanted a pump that was reliable and featured high-quality construction. Yet, we also liked the Helix 6000 from a design and aesthetics viewpoint. It helps Family Energy enhance its brand through forecourt image continuity.”
Dover Energy Solutions (DFS) also accommodated Family Energy’s desire to integrate a local payment terminal. Since Spain does not have a homogeneous electronic payment infrastructure by which to channel credit card payments from fuel dispensers, owners and operators must rely on local companies to supply the terminals and tie them into local banks. Accordingly, DFS supplied a variation of the Wayne Helix dispenser to facilitate the wiring and installation of outdoor payment terminals.
The Helix 6000 Additive fuel dispenser also allowed Family Energy to differentiate itself from the competition through the supply of standard and premium grade petrol and diesel fuels. Family Energy took this difference even further by contracting with an oil company to supply its own special “blend” of fuel additives, including detergents to help engines run better. They market these special mixtures as the “Family” blends.
The Helix 6000 Additive dispenser works on a simple principle referred to as additive dosing, which is typically done on the terminal rack by the oil company. It is proven technology. In this case, the dosing is done at the point of sale by the Helix 6000 Additive system. Using standard petrol or diesel fuel as a base, additive can be inserted into the flow of regular fuel, from 500 to 3600 parts-per-million, to yield a range of fuel blend options — which Family Energy is leveraging. Dosing is controlled by the dispenser’s calculator to ensure the dosing matches the flow rate for the correct proportional blend of standard fuel to additive, allowing one or two additional grades per dispenser, up to a maximum of five fuel grades. To ensure accurate dispensing and compliance with trading standards, the additive is injected into the fuel before metering at the nozzle.
One of the main issues Family Energy wanted to address through the installation of new Helix 6000 dispensers was the need for its employees to collect payment in the store. The automated payment system frees up employees to provide extra services inside the store, as well as on the forecourt. One of these services is to pump the fuel for the customers or otherwise answer their questions about how to use the automated payment terminal. Management felt the right combination of fuel price and enhanced service could help them differentiate even more. It worked.
“Despite travel restrictions in Spain, sales have gone up over 25% after changing over our pumps to the Helix 6000 Additive dispenser system,” said Payà. “The difference is 50,000 litres per day.”
While Jose Payà notes it is a little too early to gauge the overall impact, given the pandemic, he expects sales to increase even more.