New Acquisition for Colonial Group, Inc.

(SAVANNAH, GA) Colonial Fuel & Lubricant Services, Inc. (“CFLS” for short), a wholly owned subsidiary of Colonial Group, Inc., has acquired Spartanburg-based Smoke Oil, Inc. as part of the continued expansion of its fuel and lubricant services offerings, which now spans Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.

CFLS is a service-based organization providing fuel and lubricant solutions to customers ranging from major retail convenience chains to small fleet operators.

Tom Nuckolls bought Smoke Oil, located in Spartanburg, SC, in February 2004. After two years, he acquired a small home heating operation in Asheville, NC, which has grown into a regional commercial and residential fuel delivery operation. In 2009, Nuckolls acquired another commercial fuel and lubricant operation from Gaffney, SC that also helped extend his reach.

Nuckolls said, “Through a collaboration of these companies, we are able to deliver fuel, lubricants and diesel exhaust fluid to residential and commercial customers in South Carolina and North Carolina with services geared to handle everything from complex port-related and industrial businesses to mom-and-pop service stations.”

When Colonial Group bought Smoke, the company had about 30 employees and sold about 16 million gallons of fuel annually.

Robert H. Demere, Jr., President of Colonial Group underscored the importance of Smoke Oil’s organizational culture and customer approach in making his decision to pursue the acquisition. “We trust and empower our people to be creative solution providers for our customers. Tom is laser-focused on developing a team that delivers for the customer, and we’re fortunate to have him on board.” Demere said. Nuckolls will assume overall leadership of CFLS as its Vice President and General Manager.

For his part, Nuckolls added that a commitment to sustained growth heavily factored in his decision to become part of the family organization, adding “We are very excited about the partnership with Colonial and look forward to growing our business through internal growth as well as through acquisitions.”

For additional information, please contact:

Tom Nuckolls
Colonial Fuel & Lubricant Services, Inc.
130 Old Airport Rd
Roebuck, SC 29376

J. Ryan Chandler
Colonial Group, Inc.
Vice President of Business Development
912.236.1331 (office)

A third generation family company founded in 1921, Colonial Group, Inc. (“Colonial Group”) is a diversified energy and port-related company, ranking #59 on Forbes List of America’s Largest Private companies with over 900 employees. Its history is rooted in the marketing, retailing, and distribution of petroleum products for the transportation, industrial, and marine applications. Over the years, its offerings have grown to include natural gas storage and marketing, liquid and dry bulk terminaling, retail fuel & ENMARK convenience stores, industrial chemical supply & distribution, and marine vessel safety and compliance consulting. For more information on Colonial Group, Inc., please call 912-236-1331 or visit


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