Hawaii’s Local Gas Company

By Jim Yates
Wednesday - October 14, 2009
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Jim Yates
President & CEO of Mid Pac Petroleum

“It is truly a blessing to be able to work and live in a place that reinforces and rewards a value-based life and business. It’s a definition of ‘paradise’ that most visitors and newcomers don’t associate with Hawaii, but one that I think may be the most important reason to call Hawaii home.”

I wrote that for this column four years ago, and find it to be truer now. The past two years especially, as I have had the opportunity to be connected with a small, value-based, locally owned and operated company, Mid Pac Petroleum.

Many think being the “little guy” in an industry where national and international giants are the norm may hinder success. From my experience at Mid Pac Petroleum - the exclusive provider of 76 gasoline in Hawaii - I think the opposite is true. I believe the combination of the nationally known 76 brand and our 100 percent local ownership contributes to our success.


The 76 brand has existed in Hawaii for 90 years, but it was just two years ago Mid Pac Petroleum became locally owned. We are small, and a family-like relationship exists, creating open lines of communication between our employees, management and owners that bring a sense of pride to produce the best results. It allows us to respond to opportunities and situations quickly, often letting us to make decisions in minutes that larger corporations may take months to address.

Our constituents (customers, employees, community and owners) are our families, friends and neighbors. Therefore, it’s important to us to take care of our customers, create partnerships with other Hawaii businesses, provide a quality product, support our communities and safeguard our environment.

Tom Huber, Russell Whang, Deidre Kamana-Marzan, Bob Kern, Keith Yoshida, Sayle Hirashima and Jim Yates

For example, we launched the Kama’aina Rewards program in late 2008 to help loyal customers in this economically challenging time by rewarding them with points for purchases of gasoline, diesel fuel and convenience store items.

Accumulated points provide savings on future 76 purchases. More than 90,000 consumers have joined. We will grow the program with the involvement of other Hawaii businesses.

Even though it’s not mandated, we are replacing our single-wall Under-ground Storage Tanks (UST) with double-wall, fiberglass USTs that have monitored fuel sensors to lessen the chances of a release into surrounding soil.

It’s an expensive commitment, but it’s the right thing to do. We also are the only Hawaii gas retailer offering 100 percent biodiesel and the highest number of biodiesel sites. We continually evaluate additional investments in renewable fuel.

We entered into a long-term agreement recently with 7-Eleven Hawaii Inc. to convert sixteen 7-Eleven Oahu locations to the 76 brand of fuel. We now have more locations than any other brand in Hawaii with 68 sites.

Finally, we are committed to giving back to our community. Our people generously give of their time, talents and money supporting Aloha United Way, the YMCA, Red Cross, Lokahi Project and others.

The response we have from this values-based business approach is humbling, and we continue to earn our communities’ support by staying true to those values.

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