Join Date: Jul 2005
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I think most stations (including the big names) are run as franchises, with the site owner choosing the brand to go with.
Certainly our local Shell moved over to BP (and went from being one of the cheapest stations, always in the petrolprices.com newsletter, to one of the most expensive in the area.) It still had the same manager and staff after the change.
I think the owners get to set their own prices, with each having their own ideas on what price will maximise profit. Obviously they don't want to sell loads of fuel but make no profit on it, but similarly a healthy mark-up per litre won't do much for them if their fuel is too pricey and everyone buys elsewhere.
Currently in Horatio's garage:
2010 Laguna III Initiale.