Case Study:

Matrix Announces the Successful Sale of The Hartley Company


  • The Hartley Company (“Hartley” or the “Company”) was founded in 1912, by H. Hartley when he built the country’s first service station located between Columbus, Ohio and the Pennsylvania state line. In 1925, Hartley became a distributor for Shell Oil Company and quickly grew from ten stations to one of the largest jobberships in Ohio. In the 1970s, The Hartley Company established the Starfire brand concept to distinguish itself from other independent operators.
  • The Starfire branding revitalized the Company, and in the 2000s, under the fifth generation of Hartley leadership, the Company opportunistically acquired three dozen stores from Hartley grew to directly operate 16 retail locations with approximately 150 store employees and supply 24 dealer or commission marketer operated sites. The Company’s President, Doug Hartley, and his family sought to exit the convenience store and petroleum marketing business to diversify their wealth and reinvest in other family companies. Matrix was engaged to perform a valuation of the Company and advise on the eventual sale process.


  • Matrix’s objective was to design, execute and complete a customized and confidential sale process that would allow the Company’s shareholders to realize maximum after-tax value upon the sale of Hartley.


  • Matrix provided merger and acquisition advisory services to Hartley, which included valuation advisory, marketing of the business through a confidential, structured sale process, and negotiation of the transaction. Multiple competitive offers were received, and Campbell Oil Company was ultimately selected as the acquirer. Matrix assisted in the negotiation of the purchase agreement and coordinated the due diligence and closing The transaction closed in October 2019.

About Matrix’s Downstream Energy & Convenience Retail Group:

Matrix’s Downstream Energy & Convenience Retail Group is recognized as the national leader in providing transactional advisory services to companies in the downstream energy and multi-site retail sectors including convenience retailing, petroleum marketing & distribution, propane distribution, heating oil distribution, lubricants distribution, petroleum transportation & logistics, terminals and bulk plants, car washes, food service and specialty retail. Team members are dedicated to these sectors and draw upon complementary experiences to provide advisory services to complete sophisticated merger and acquisition transactions, debt and equity capital raises, corporate restructurings, corporate valuations, and strategic planning engagements. Since its inception in 1997, this dedicated group has successfully completed over 225 engagements in these sectors with a total transaction value of more than $10 billion.

Spencer P. Cavalier, CFA, ASA

Co-Head of Downstream Energy & Convenience Retail Group, Managing Director & Principal


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