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Hess unloads retail gas stations to Speedway

Sale for $2.6 billion part of shift toward exploration and production, Hess says.

By Daniel J. Graeber
Hess unloads retail gasoline filling stations to Speedway. UPI/John Angelillo | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/788eca9016cb44e2e35c9519f34f7898/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Hess unloads retail gasoline filling stations to Speedway. UPI/John Angelillo | License Photo

NEW YORK, May 22 (UPI) -- Hess Corp. Chief Executive Officer John Hess said Thursday the $2.6 billion sale of its retail business to Marathon is in line with a shift to upstream energy.

Hess Corp. sold its entire retail sector of gasoline stations and convenience stores to Marathon Petroleum Corp. Hess said its East Coast retail chain of 1,342 location is the largest in the region.

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"The sale of our retail business marks the culmination of our strategic transformation into a pure-play exploration and production company," CEO Hess said in a statement Thursday.

Hess Corp. last year said it was working to transform into an exploration and production company after it left the refining business by closing a facility in New Jersey.

Marathon, which will operate the acquisition through its Speedway retail business, adds to its base of 1,480 stores in nine states. Speedway is the nation's fourth-largest chain of its kind, based on number of company-owned and -operated stores.

"Our strategy is focused on growing higher-valued, stable cash flow businesses, and this transaction fully supports that objective," Marathon Petroleum Corp. CEO Gary Heminger said in a separate statement.

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