Irish-owned fuel retailer Amber has opened its first unmanned filling station as part of a €3m investment in its network in West Cork.
The Amber facility, at the Bandon Co-Op in Enniskeane, allows motorists to pay for their fuel at the pumps using debit, credit, or fuel cards.
It is aimed at diesel-powered vehicles and while it does not sell petrol, it does offer white diesel, MGO, kerosene/home heating oil, AdBlue — a diesel additive used in the treatment of exhaust fumes — as well as air and water pumps.
The 1,900 sq m site has been designed to cater for large buses, trucks and agricultural vehicles, and has ‘fast-fill’ pumps specifically for buses and heavy goods vehicles. It will be operational from 7am to 10pm, seven days a week.
It is the latest development in Amber’s ambitious expansion strategy.
Amber Petroleum was established in Fermoy in 1980 by the Fitzgerald family who spotted a gap in the market for a fuel discounter. The business now supplies fuel to 45 sites across nine counties. It has ploughed almost €8m into expanding the business over the last three years.
Company chairman Liam Fitzgerald said West Cork has played a key role in the company’s growth strategy, with €3m spent developing service stations on the Bandon Road on the outskirts of Bishopstown, in Kilbrittain, Crossbarry, and Enniskeane in recent years. He said this investment alone supported up to 60 full and part-time jobs across the four sites.
Mr Fitzgerald said he was particularly pleased to develop the company’s first unmanned fuel station on a site being leased by Bandon Co-Op.
“While this type of fuelling may be relatively new to Ireland, it has been common on the continent for many years, particularly in rural locations,” he said. “I truly feel this will be an asset to a village like Enniskeane, with motorists benefitting from competitive prices in a convenient location.”
Michael O’Driscoll, the retail division manager at Bandon Co-op said, said they were delighted to work with Amber on the development of the site.
“Amber is a well-recognised, trusted Irish brand and it is exciting to be involved in bringing new automated technology to this rural area,” he said.
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