Saudi Aramco has reached an agreement to fully acquire the Chilean fuel distribution company ESMAX, which is owned by the Southern Cross Group, according to a statement issued today, Friday, by the Saudi company.

ESMAX is one of the largest fuel and lubricant retail companies in Chile, and its business scope includes retail fuel stations, airport businesses, fuel distribution stations, and the production and distribution of lubricants.

ESMAX, owned by private equity firm Southern Cross, has a license to operate Petrobras-franchised terminals in Chile. Southern Cross put the ESMAX up for sale last year.

The deal represents Aramco’s first investment in retail and marketing business in South America, and strengthens the Saudi company’s strategy for the value chain in the refining, chemicals and marketing sector. Aramco said that the deal will contribute to opening new opportunities for marketing Valvoline lubricants after its acquisition of Valvoline International Products Company, a subsidiary of Valvoline. America in February 2023.

The President of Refining, Chemicals and Marketing at Saudi Aramco, Mohammed bin Yahya Al-Qahtani, said that this acquisition provides a platform to launch the Saudi Aramco brand, whether in Chile or on a larger scale in South America, which contributes to opening great potential to benefit from new markets for our products.

ESMAX wallet

According to 2022 financial data reported by the Chilean newspaper Diario Financiero, ESMAX is the third largest fuel distributor in the local market with a share of nearly 13%. Its asset portfolio includes 292 service stations and 148 convenience stores.

ESMAX also manages fuel reception and storage infrastructure assets, some airport catering facilities, as well as the production and distribution of lubricants.