A California company has purchased the Crown Central Petroleum refinery in Pasadena, a 117,000 barrel-per-day capability plant.
Pasadena Refining System, a brand new subsidiary of Astra Holding USA, introduced the deal’s closing Tuesday with seller Crown Central Petroleum Corp. of Baltimore.
Astra Holding is a part of Astra Oil, a privately held California buying and selling company supplying crude to the Pasadena plant. Phrases of the deal weren’t disclosed.
Producing low-sulfur gas
“We have huge plans,” mentioned Chuck Dunlap, the new president and chief govt officer of Pasadena Refining.
One in all the primary goals of the new owners is to place $40 million, over the following two years, into meeting the new low-sulfur rules for gasoline.
The refinery is geared to making gasoline from gentle, sweet crude. It has an EPA waiver on the sulfur rules, especially for small refineries, that runs via 2006.
“The corporate management will focus appreciable amounts of capital to improve the operating effectivity of the refinery and to supply high-quality products that meet federal and state regulations,” mentioned Chairman Robert Lavinia in a ready statement.
There are no plans to increase the crude-dealing with capability, Dunlap stated. The refinery has 270 staff.
Lavinia most lately was president of marketing for Tosco, which was acquired by ConocoPhillips.
Dunlap, who started out more than 30 years ago with Clark Oil and Refining, has worked for Atlantic Richfield, was president of an unbiased refinery in Hawaii, and in 1991 went to Crown Central as president.
Crown Central Petroleum hired a consulting agency in 2001 to help promote the refinery due to the big investments wanted to meet state and federal laws in a business where revenue was unsure.
Crown still owns a smaller refinery in Tyler.
Sale took some time
The sale took a very long time, said refinery analyst Jacques Rousseau of Friedman, Billings, Ramsey & Co.
“It’s one thing all people took a look at and didn’t get too excited about. It’s not as giant or complicated as different Gulf Coast refineries. That was a giant difficulty,” he stated.
Different refineries alongside the Gulf Coast have day by day crude capacities two or three times as large.
Crown Central’s Pasadena refinery has a controversial past. It was the site of a bitter labor dispute that included a lockout that lasted for years and had the dubious distinction in 1998 of agreeing to pay the best high quality ever imposed in Texas for air quality violations $1.05 million.
Chronicle reporter Lynn J. Cook contributed to this story.