Charles Guyart, edited by Yanis Darras
Successful operation for TotalEnergies. Since September 1, the oil company has offered an additional discount of 20 cents on its oil products. A success to the point that some stations find themselves dry. But among the competition, concern is growing as the pumps desperately wait for customers.
Endless car queues. Since September 1, there have been crowds in front of TotalEnergies gas stations. The French oil giant has decided to participate in the fuel discount adopted by the state. Thus, in addition to the 30 cents reduction per liter of the administration, Total adds another discount of 20 cents on its petroleum products. Enough to empty the stations of competition.
“There are stations that will close because they will no longer be profitable. We will put automatons there or we will raze them,” explains Anthony, who manages an independent petrol station in the center of Nantes. For the managers of stations competing with those of Total, it is impossible to match the prices of French stations. “We are going straight into the wall,” adds the independent, who notes that its prices are up to 30 cents more expensive than those of TotalEnergies.
Up to “70% fewer customers”
Same story with Fatima, which manages an Avia station. “We are surrounded by three Total Access stations”, she underlines. Since September 1, almost no customers stop at the pumps. “We are losing at least 70% of our clientele,” she says. The only consolation is that some Total stations around her home are out of stock, forcing motorists to come to her Avia station.
“All the stations were stormed and emptied,” said a young woman filling her tank. But “the customers who come there only spend 5 or 10 euros, the time that Total restocks. They do not fill up”, underlines Fatima. Big losers also, supermarkets or usually, gasoline is often cheaper there. But Total’s discount should be reduced in November before disappearing completely the following month.