RICHMOND, VA / BALTIMORE, MD – January 26, 2023 – Matrix Capital Markets Group, Inc. (“Matrix”), a leading, independent investment bank, announces that it has advised Alpena Oil Company, Inc. (“Alpena Oil” or the “Company”) on its sale to Blarney Castle Oil Co.  Alpena is a leading, northern Michigan grocery and convenience retailer known for offering the best selection of high quality, fresh products at a fair value to its customers.  The Company’s retail chain is comprised of six Louie’s Fresh Market full-service grocery stores and 14 traditional convenience stores and a cardlock.

Alpena Oil dates back to 1849, when Jeremiah Douville, the great-grandfather of the Company’s current ownership, opened a single bakery in Alpena, Michigan.  The second generation of the Douville family expanded into grocery wholesaling, which remained the primary business until the family acquired its first gas station portfolio in 1996.  Jere Johnston, the Company’s President, focused on growing the chain through larger format stores and shortly thereafter opened the first Louie’s Fresh Market in Alanson, Michigan.  The original Louie’s Fresh Market was a success and the catalyst for the five additional large format grocery stores that followed.

Matrix provided merger and acquisition advisory services to Alpena Oil, which included valuation advisory, marketing the business through a confidential, structured sale process, and negotiation of the sale. The transaction was managed by Spencer Cavalier, CFA, Co-Head of Matrix’s Downstream Energy & Convenience Retail Investment Banking Group; Andrew LoPresti, CPA, CFA, Vice President; Nathan Wah, CPA, Associate; and Jared de Perio, Analyst.

Mr. Johnston stated, “The Matrix team was extremely professional and competent, and worked tirelessly to generate a result that exceeded our expectations. I would like to thank Spencer, Andrew, and Nate for all of their effort and guidance.  Job well done!”

Mr. Cavalier commented, “Jere and Sharon built and operated a very successful retail chain that offered customers high value products in a clean and friendly environment.  Their creation of the Louie’s Fresh Market brand showcases how they adapted their retail offerings to meet the needs of consumers across different markets.  We thank Jere and Sharon for trusting Matrix to advise them on the sale of their company in which they invested so much time and energy to create, build and grow.”

Tammera Diehm, Noreen Sedgeman, and Beth Harper of Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A. served as legal counsel for Alpena Oil.