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Dry cleaning, fresh food to fuel Caltex

caltex1Caltex Australia will trial parcel collection, dry cleaning and fresh food at some of its service stations over the next 12 to 18 months.

CEO Julian Segal said Caltex will test new convenience concepts at pilot sites after his company suffered a drop in profit for the first half of 2016.

“We are looking at bringing together some components of convenience that have never been brought together,” Segal said.

As the fuel giant strives to reinvent itself, it has looked to North America, Europe and Japan and picked up some trends, including an emphasis on freshly prepared food, that Segal said should succeed in Australia

“We will be looking at quick service restaurants and additional convenience services such as collection of parcels and collection and delivery of dry cleaning,” he said.

“I don’t believe they have been brought together in the fashion we intend to.”

Caltex’s profit fell 15.2 per cent to $318 million in the six months to June 30, while underlying profit – removing the impact of lower oil prices – was up one per cent to $254 million.

A sharp decline in refining margins hurt the company’s bottom line, with the average refining margin slipping to $US10.10 per barrel during the first half, down from $US16 a barrel in the same period a year ago.

The company said ongoing growth in sales of premium grade 95 and 98 octane fuel partially offset the long-term decline in demand for unleaded petrol, including E10.

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