Needing no introduction, Pakistan State Oil Company Limited has been fuelling the nation for decades. However, what’s surprising is that the biggest oil company in Pakistan boasts one of the largest convenience store chains across Pakistan. PSO is also earning a big chunk of its profits from the convenience shops at its petrol stations across the country.
Pakistan State Oil (PSO), already owns the largest chain of convenience shops but is still working on rapidly expanding the chain every year.
Recently, a report was published by an English newspaper in which it was reported that it is becoming the country’s fastest-growing retail company with three million consumers said to be visiting its retail outlets.
With the induction of global brands and outlets, Pakistan’s retail sector is witnessing impressive growth. Local retailers are expanding their boundaries to compete with their larger foreign competitors.
With an estimated size of the retail market at around $50 billion, the country’s retail sector is growing faster than its economy.
PSO, the largest fuel importer that fuels half of the country’s road traffic, 80 percent of air traffic, a fifth of power generation and the entire railway traffic, derives a significantly big chunk of its profits from 1.2 billion non-oil retail transactions at its store network at its petrol stations.
It has the largest distribution network in the country comprising of 3,754 outlets, out of which 3,565 outlets serve the retail sector and 189 outlets serve its bulk customers.
PSO also operates 26 company-owned and company-operated (Co-Co) sites serving the retail sector; and fuels more than 2,000 industrial units, business houses, power plants and airlines.
“We already operate around 3,500 stores nationwide and are adding over 70 new shops each year to the retail network,” said Sheikh Imran ul Haque, the managing director of the country’s largest oil company, at the seventh international Retail Leaders Conference in Lahore at the end of last month.
Pakistan’s retail landscape has undergone major uplift over time as, according to a study by the State Bank of Pakistan, the retail sector grew 38.5%, from $96bn to $133bn between 2011 and 2015.
“Globally Oil companies are earning 30-40pc of their revenues from their non-fuel retail operations,” he said.
By the end of June this year, the company plans to launch branded coffee shops, restaurants, and more for tourists at 50 stores. Another 100 stores are also in the pipeline.
Customers may get their caffeine fix at the store’s Espresso, a leading coffee house in Pakistan, or grab a glass of juice from Bar-Asinga, an emerging juice brand.