10-K 1 glp-20151231x10k.htm 10-K glp_Current folio_10K

0.

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549


FORM 10‑K


(Mark One)

 

ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2015

OR

TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the transition period from                                      to                                     

Commission file number 001‑32593

Global Partners LP

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

Delaware
(State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization)

 

74‑3140887
(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)

P.O. Box 9161

800 South Street

Waltham, Massachusetts 02454‑9161

(Address of principal executive offices, including zip code)

(781) 894‑8800

(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)

Securities registered pursuant to section 12(b) of the Act:

Title of each class

    

Name of each exchange on which registered

Common Units representing limited partner interests

 

New York Stock Exchange

Securities registered pursuant to section 12(g) of the Act:

None

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well‑known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes  No

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes No

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes No

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S‑T during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files. Yes No

Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S‑K is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10‑K or any amendment to this Form 10‑K.

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non‑accelerated filer or a smaller reporting company. See definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b‑2 of the Exchange Act.:

 

 

 

 

Large accelerated filer

Accelerated filer

Non‑accelerated filer

Smaller reporting company

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b‑2 of the Act). Yes No

The aggregate market value of common units held by non‑affiliates of the registrant (treating directors and executive officers of the registrant’s general partner and their affiliates, for this purpose, as if they were affiliates of the registrant) as of June 30, 2015 was approximately $834,777,904 based on a price per common unit of $32.44, the price at which the common units were last sold as reported on the New York Stock Exchange on such date.

As of February 25, 2016, 33,995,563 common units were outstanding.

 

 

 

 


 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

PART I 

    

    

    

 

Items 1. and 2. 

 

Business and Properties

 

Item 1A. 

 

Risk Factors

 

21 

Item 1B. 

 

Unresolved Staff Comments

 

48 

Item 3. 

 

Legal Proceedings

 

48 

Item 4. 

 

Mine Safety Disclosures

 

51 

PART II 

 

 

 

 

Item 5. 

 

Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

 

52 

Item 6. 

 

Selected Financial Data

 

53 

Item 7. 

 

Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

 

56 

Item 7A. 

 

Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

 

84 

Item 8. 

 

Financial Statements and Supplementary Data

 

86 

Item 9. 

 

Changes in and Disagreements With Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure

 

87 

Item 9A. 

 

Controls and Procedures

 

87 

Item 9B. 

 

Other Information

 

90 

PART III 

 

 

 

 

Item 10. 

 

Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance

 

91 

Item 11. 

 

Executive Compensation

 

95 

Item 12. 

 

Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters

 

116 

Item 13. 

 

Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence

 

117 

Item 14. 

 

Principal Accounting Fees and Services

 

121 

PART IV 

 

 

 

 

Item 15. 

 

Exhibits and Financial Statement Schedules

 

122 

 

 

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Forward‑Looking Statements

Certain statements and information in this Annual Report on Form 10‑K  may constitute “forwardlooking statements.” The words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “plan,” “intend,” “foresee,” “should,” “would,” “could” or other similar expressions are intended to identify forwardlooking statements, which are generally not historical in nature. These forwardlooking statements are based on our current expectations and beliefs concerning future developments and their potential effect on us. While management believes that these forwardlooking statements are reasonable as and when made, there can be no assurance that future developments affecting us will be those that we anticipate. All comments concerning our expectations for future revenues and operating results are based on our forecasts for our existing operations and do not include the potential impact of any future acquisitions. Our forwardlooking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties (some of which are beyond our control) and assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from our historical experience and our present expectations or projections. Known material factors that could cause our actual results to differ from those in the forward-looking statements are those described in Part I, Item 1A. “Risk Factors.” These risks and uncertainties include, among other things:

·

We may not have sufficient cash from operations to enable us to maintain distributions at current levels following establishment of cash reserves and payment of fees and expenses, including payments to our general partner.

·

A significant decrease in price or demand for the products we sell or a significant decrease in demand for our logistics activities could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

·

Our sales of home heating oil and residual oil continue to be reduced by conversions to natural gas.

·

We may not be able to fully implement or capitalize upon planned growth projects. Even if we consummate acquisitions that we believe will be accretive, they may in fact result in no increase or even a decrease in cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

·

Erosion of the value of major gasoline brands could adversely affect our gasoline sales and customer traffic.

·

Our gasoline sales could be significantly reduced by a reduction in demand due to higher prices and to new technologies and alternative fuel sources, such as electric, hybrid or battery powered motor vehicles.

·

Our crude oil sales and logistics activities could be adversely affected by, among other things, unanticipated changes in the crude oil market structure, grade differentials and volatility (or lack thereof), implementation of regulations that adversely impact the market for transporting crude oil or other products by rail, changes in refiner demand, severe weather conditions, significant changes in prices and interruptions in rail transportation services and other necessary services and equipment, such as railcars, trucks, loading equipment and qualified drivers.

·

We depend upon marine, pipeline, rail and truck transportation services for a substantial portion of our logistics business in transporting the products we sell. A disruption in these transportation services could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

·

We have contractual obligations for certain transportation assets such as railcars, barges and pipelines. A decline in demand for (i) the products we sell, including crude oil and ethanol, or (ii) our logistics activities, could result in a decrease in the utilization of these transportation assets, which could negatively impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. For example, during 2015, we experienced adverse market conditions in crude oil caused by an over-

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supplied crude oil market which resulted in tighter price differentials,  and we experienced a reduction in our railcar movements but remained obligated to pay the applicable fixed charges for railcar leases.    Non-utilization of certain of our assets and facilities.

·

Changes in government usage mandates and tax credits could adversely affect the availability and pricing of ethanol, which could negatively impact our sales.

·

Warmer weather conditions could adversely affect our home heating oil and residual oil sales.

·

Our risk management policies cannot eliminate all commodity risk, basis risk or the impact of unfavorable market conditions which can adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. In addition, noncompliance with our risk management policies could result in significant financial losses.

·

Our results of operations are affected by the overall forward market for the products we sell, and pricing volatility may adversely impact our results.

·

Our business could be affected by a range of issues, such as changes in commodity prices, energy conservation, competition, the global economic climate, movement of products between foreign locales and within the United States, changes in refiner demand, weekly and monthly refinery output levels, changes in local, domestic and worldwide inventory levels, changes in safety regulations, seasonality and supply, weather, logistics disruptions and other factors and uncertainties inherent in the transportation, storage, terminalling and marketing of crude oil and refined products.

·

Increases and/or decreases in the prices of the products we sell could adversely impact the amount of borrowing available for working capital under our credit agreement, which credit agreement has borrowing base limitations and advance rates.

·

We are exposed to trade credit risk and risk associated with our trade credit support in the ordinary course of our business.

·

The condition of credit markets may adversely affect us.

·

Our credit agreement and the indentures governing our senior notes contain operating and financial covenants, and our credit agreement contains borrowing base requirements. A failure to comply with the operating and financial covenants in our credit agreement, the indentures and any future financing agreements could impact our access to bank loans and other sources of financing as well as our ability to pursue our business activities.

·

A significant increase in interest rates could adversely affect our ability to service our indebtedness.

·

Our gasoline station and convenience store business could expose us to an increase in consumer litigation and result in an unfavorable outcome or settlement of one or more lawsuits where insurance proceeds are insufficient or otherwise unavailable.

·

Our business could expose us to litigation and result in an unfavorable outcome or settlement of one or more lawsuits where insurance proceeds are insufficient or otherwise unavailable.

·

Adverse developments in the areas where we conduct our business could have a material adverse effect on such businesses and can reduce our ability to make distributions to our unitholders.

·

A serious disruption to our information technology systems could significantly limit our ability to manage and operate our business efficiently.

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·

We are exposed to performance risk in our supply chain.

·

Our business is subject to both federal and state environmental and non-environmental regulations which could have a material adverse effect on such businesses.

·

Our general partner and its affiliates have conflicts of interest and limited fiduciary duties, which could permit them to favor their own interests to the detriment of our unitholders.

·

Unitholders have limited voting rights and are not entitled to elect our general partner or its directors or remove our general partner without the consent of the holders of at least 66 2/3% of the outstanding units (including units held by our general partner and its affiliates), which could lower the trading price of our common units.

·

Our tax treatment depends on our status as a partnership for federal income tax purposes.

·

Unitholders may be required to pay taxes on their share of our income even if they do not receive any cash distributions from us.

Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forwardlooking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof.  We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forwardlooking statements after the date they are made, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Available Information

We make available free of charge through our website, www.globalp.com, our Annual Reports on Form 10‑K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10‑Q, Current Reports on Form 8‑K and amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 as soon as reasonably practicable after we electronically file or furnish such material with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). These documents are also available at the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. Our website also includes our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics, our Governance Guidelines and the charters of our Audit Committee and Compensation Committee.

A copy of any of these documents will be provided without charge upon written request to the General Counsel, Global Partners LP, P.O. Box 9161, 800 South Street, Suite 500, Waltham, MA 02454; fax (781) 398‑4165.

 

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PART I

References in this Annual Report on Form 10‑K to “Global Partners LP,” “Partnership,” “we,” “our,” “us” or like terms refer to Global Partners LP and its subsidiaries. References to “our general partner” refer to Global GP LLC.

Items 1. and 2.Business and Properties.

Overview

We are a midstream logistics and marketing master limited partnership formed in March 2005 engaged in the purchasing, selling, storing and logistics of transporting petroleum and related products, including domestic and Canadian crude oil, gasoline and gasoline blendstocks (such as ethanol), distillates (such as home heating oil, diesel and kerosene), residual oil, renewable fuels, natural gas and propane. We also receive revenue from convenience store sales and gasoline station rental income. We own, control or have access to one of the largest terminal networks of refined petroleum products and renewable fuels in Massachusetts, Maine, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania (collectively, the “Northeast”). We own transload and storage terminals in North Dakota and Oregon that extend our origin‑to‑destination capabilities from the mid‑continent region of the United States and Canada to the East and West Coasts. We are one of the largest distributors of gasoline, distillates, residual oil and renewable fuels to wholesalers, retailers and commercial customers in the New England states and New York. As of December 31, 2015, we had a portfolio of 1,509 owned, leased and/or supplied gasoline stations, including 281 directly operated convenience stores, in the Northeast, Maryland and Virginia.

We purchase refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane primarily from domestic and foreign refiners and ethanol producers, crude oil producers, major and independent oil companies and trading companies. We operate our business under three segments: (i) Wholesale, (ii) Gasoline Distribution and Station Operations (“GDSO”) and (iii) Commercial.

Global GP LLC, our general partner, manages our operations and activities and employs our officers and substantially all of our personnel, except for most of our gasoline station and convenience store employees and certain union personnel who are employed by our wholly owned subsidiary, Global Montello Group Corp. (“GMG”).

Recent Developments and 2015 Transactions

Strategic Steps in the First Quarter of 2016

On January 28, 2016, we announced a reduction in the quarterly distribution for the fourth quarter of 2015 on all outstanding common units to $0.4625.  This distribution represented a decrease of 33.7% from the distribution of $0.6975 per unit paid in November 2015 and a decrease of 30.5% from the distribution of $0.6650 per unit paid in February 2015. The reduction in the distribution primarily reflected continuing weakness in the crude oil market. 

During this period of headwinds in the crude oil market, we intend to capitalize on the flexibility of our Oregon facility and take steps to utilize this location for ethanol transloading. This measure is substantially related to cleaning of tanks and associated infrastructure and is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2016.

As part of expense management initiatives, we reduced our workforce by approximately 70 people, which equates to approximately 8% of our headcount excluding employees at our convenience stores. This reduction included employees at our transloading facilities in Oregon and North Dakota and at our corporate offices.

Acquisitions

Warren Equities, Inc.—On January 7, 2015, we acquired, through GMG, 100% of the equity interests in Warren Equities, Inc. (“Warren”), one of the largest independent marketers of petroleum products in the Northeast, from The Warren Alpert Foundation. The acquisition included 147 company‑owned Xtra Mart convenience stores and related fuel

6


 

operations, 53 commission agent locations and fuel supply rights for approximately 330 dealers. The acquired properties are located in the Northeast, Maryland and Virginia. The purchase price, inclusive of post‑closing adjustments, was approximately $381.8 million, including working capital. This acquisition complements our existing retail presence in the Northeast and expanded our footprint into the adjacent Mid‑Atlantic region. As of the acquisition date, these assets added approximately 500 million gallons of fuel sold annually through our network and increased the number of our total gasoline stations that we own, lease or supply to more than 1,500. The acquisition was funded with borrowings under our credit facility and with proceeds from our public offering of 3,565,000 common units, which closed on December 10, 2014.

Revere Terminal—On January 14, 2015, we acquired the Revere terminal (the “Revere Terminal”) located in Boston Harbor in Revere, Massachusetts from Global Petroleum Corp. (“GPC”) for a purchase price of approximately $23.7 million. GPC is owned by the Estate of Alfred A. Slifka and Richard Slifka. The facility, which had been leased to us by GPC, has storage capacity of 2.1 million barrels of refined petroleum products, including heating oil, gasoline, distillates, diesel, kerosene and blendstocks. We financed the transaction with available capacity under our revolving credit facility. In connection with the Revere Terminal transaction, the terminal storage rental and throughput agreement between us and GPC terminated effective as of February 1, 2015.

Capitol Petroleum GroupOn June 1, 2015, we acquired 97 primarily Mobil and Exxon branded owned or leased retail gasoline stations and seven dealer supply contracts in New York City and Prince George’s County, Maryland, along with certain related supply and franchise agreements and third-party leases and other assets associated with the operations from Capitol Petroleum Group (“Capitol”). The purchase price was approximately $155.7 million which was financed with borrowings under our revolving credit facility.

Debt Offering

On June 1, 2015, we closed on an offering of $300.0 million aggregate principal amount of our 7.00% notes due 2023 (the “7.00% Notes”) in a private placement exempt from registration under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the Securities Act”). We used the net proceeds from the offering to repay a portion of the borrowings outstanding under our revolving credit facility. On June 4, 2015, we entered into a registration rights agreement with the initial purchasers of the 7.00% Notes, pursuant to which we agreed to file and use commercially reasonable efforts to cause to become effective a registration statement relating to an offer to exchange the 7.00% Notes for an issue of SEC-registered notes with terms identical to the 7.00% Notes. The exchange offer was completed on October 22, 2015, and 100% of the 7.00% Notes have been exchanged for SEC registered notes. Please read Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis and Results of Operations—Liquidity and Capital Resources” for additional information.

Equity Offering

On June 16, 2015, we completed a public offering of 3,000,000 common units at a price to the public of $38.12 per common unit. Net proceeds from the offering were approximately $109.3 million after deducting underwriting discounts and offering expenses. We used the net proceeds from the offering to reduce indebtedness outstanding under our revolving credit facility.

At-the-Market Offering Program

On May 19, 2015, we entered into an equity distribution agreement pursuant to which we may sell from time to time through our sales agents, our common units having an aggregate offering price of up to $50.0 million. Sales of the common units, if any, will be made by any method permitted by law deemed to be an “at-the-market” offering, including ordinary brokers’ transactions through the facilities of the New York Stock Exchange, to or through a market maker or directly on or through an electronic communication network, a “dark pool” or any similar market venue, at market prices, in block transactions, or as otherwise agreed upon by us and one or more of our sales agents. We may also sell common units to one or more of our sales agents as principal for our own account at a price to be agreed upon at the time of sale. Any sale of common units to a sales agent as principal would be pursuant to the terms of a separate agreement between us and such sales agent.

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We intend to use the net proceeds from any sales pursuant to the atthemarket offering program, after deducting the sales agents’ commissions and our offering expenses, for general partnership purposes, which may include, among other things, repayment of indebtedness, acquisitions and capital expenditures. As of December 31, 2015, no common units were sold by us pursuant to the at‑the‑market offering program.

Operating Segments

We purchase refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane primarily from domestic and foreign refiners and ethanol producers, crude oil producers, major and independent oil companies and trading companies. We operate our business under three segments: (i) Wholesale, (ii) GDSO and (iii) Commercial. In 2015, our Wholesale, GDSO and Commercial sales accounted for approximately 57%, 36% and 7% of our total sales, respectively.

Wholesale

In our Wholesale segment, we engage in the logistics of selling, gathering, storage and transportation of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane. We sell branded and unbranded gasoline and gasoline blendstocks and diesel to wholesale distributors. We transport these products by railcars, barges and/or pipelines pursuant to spot or long‑term contracts.  We aggregate crude oil by truck or pipeline in the mid‑continent region of the United States and Canada, transport it by train and ship it by barge to refiners on the East and West Coasts. We sell home heating oil, diesel, kerosene, residual oil and propane to home heating oil and propane retailers and wholesale distributors. Generally, customers use their own vehicles or contract carriers to take delivery of the gasoline and distillates at bulk terminals and inland storage facilities that we own or control or at which we have throughput or exchange arrangements. Ethanol is shipped primarily by rail and by barge.

Gasoline Distribution and Station Operations

In our GDSO segment, gasoline distribution includes sales of branded and unbranded gasoline to gasoline station operators and sub-jobbers. Station operations include (i) convenience stores, (ii) rental income from gasoline stations leased to dealers, from commissioned agents and from cobranding arrangements and (iii) sundries (such as car wash sales, lottery and ATM commissions). The results of Warren and Capitol are included in the GDSO segment.

As of December 31, 2015, our portfolio of owned, leased and/or supplied gasoline stations, primarily in the Northeast, consisted of the following:

 

 

 

 

 

Company operated

  

281

 

Commissioned agents

 

283

 

Lessee dealers

 

280

 

Contract dealers

 

665

 

Total

 

1,509

 

Commercial

In our Commercial segment, we include sales and deliveries to end user customers in the public sector and to large commercial and industrial end users of unbranded gasoline, home heating oil, diesel, kerosene, residual oil, bunker fuel and natural gas. In the case of public sector commercial and industrial end user customers, we sell products primarily either through a competitive bidding process or through contracts of various terms. We generally arrange for the delivery of the product to the customer’s designated location, and we respond to publicly issued requests for product proposals and quotes. Our Commercial segment also includes sales of custom blended fuels delivered by barges or from a terminal dock to ships through bunkering activity.

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Products

General

The following table presents our product sales and other revenues as a percentage of our consolidated sales for the years ended December 31:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

2015

    

2014

    

2013

 

Gasoline sales: gasoline and gasoline blendstocks (such as ethanol)

 

59

%  

60

%  

58

%  

Crude oil sales and crude oil logistics revenue

 

12

%  

14

%  

18

%  

Distillates (home heating oil, diesel and kerosene), residual oil, natural gas and propane sales

 

25

%  

25

%  

23

%  

Convenience store sales, rental income and sundry sales

 

4

%  

1

%  

1

%  

Total

 

100

%  

100

%  

100

%  

Gasoline.  We sell all grades of branded and unbranded gasoline, and we sell gasoline blendstocks, such as ethanol, that comply with seasonal and geographical requirements in the areas in which we market. In 2015, we sold unbranded gasoline and diesel, including our proprietary premium brand, Diesel One®.

Crude Oil.  We engage in the purchasing, selling, storing and logistics of transporting domestic and Canadian crude oil and other products via rail and barge, establishing a “virtual pipeline” from the mid‑continent region of the United States and Canada to the East and West Coasts for distribution to refiners and other customers.

Distillates.  Distillates are primarily divided into home heating oil, diesel and kerosene. In 2015, sales of home heating oil, diesel and kerosene accounted for approximately 54%, 44% and 2%, respectively, of our total volume of distillates sold. The distillates we sell are used primarily for fuel for trucks and off‑road construction equipment and for space heating of residential and commercial buildings.

We sell generic home heating oil and Heating Oil Plus™, our proprietary premium branded heating oil. Heating Oil Plus™ is electronically blended at the delivery facility. In 2015, approximately 10% of the volume of home heating oil we sold to wholesale distributors was Heating Oil Plus™. In addition, we sell the additive used to create Heating Oil Plus™ to some wholesale distributors, make injection systems available to them and provide technical support to assist them with blending. We also educate the sales force of our customers to better prepare them for marketing our products to their customers.

In 2015, we sold home heating oil, including Heating Oil Plus™, to approximately 830 wholesale distributors and retailers. We have a fixed price sales program that we market primarily to wholesale distributors and retailers which uses the New York Mercantile Exchange (“NYMEX”) heating oil contract as the pricing benchmark and as the vehicle to manage the commodity risk. Please read “—Commodity Risk Management.” In 2015, approximately 33% of our home heating oil volume was sold using forward fixed price contracts. A forward fixed price contract requires our customer to purchase a specific volume at a specific price during a specific period. The remaining home heating oil volume was sold on either a posted price or a price based on various indices which, in both instances, reflect current market conditions.

We sell generic diesel and Diesel One®, our proprietary premium diesel fuel product. We offer marketing and technical support for those customers who purchase Diesel One®.

Residual Oil.    We supply oil to industrial, commercial and marine customers. We specially blend product for users in accordance with their individual power specifications and for marine transport.

Natural Gas.  We supply natural gas to industrial and commercial customers.

Propane.  We sell propane to home heating oil and propane retailers and wholesale distributors primarily from our rail‑fed propane storage and distribution facility near our other terminal in Albany, New York.

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Convenience Store Items and Sundries.  We sell a broad selection of food, beverages, snacks, grocery and non‑food merchandise at our convenience store locations and generate sundry sales from car wash sales, lottery and ATM commissions at our convenience store locations.

Significant Customers

None of our customers accounted for greater than 10% of total sales for year ended December 31, 2015. We had one significant customer, ExxonMobil Corporation (“ExxonMobil”), that accounted for approximately 17% of our total sales for the year ended December 31, 2014 and two significant customers, ExxonMobil and Phillips 66 who accounted for approximately 15% and 12%, respectively, of our total sales for the year ended December 31, 2013.

Assets

Terminals

As of December 31, 2015, we owned, leased or maintained dedicated storage facilities at 25 bulk terminals, each with the capacity of more than 50,000 barrels, with a collective storage capacity of 12.2 million barrels. Twenty‑two of these bulk terminals are located throughout the Northeast. Some of our storage tankage is versatile, allowing us to switch tankage from one product to another.

In addition to refined products, we also own or operate four rail facilities in New York, Oregon and North Dakota capable of handling crude oil or ethanol and maintain dedicated storage at one other marine terminal in New York capable of handling crude oil. At select locations, we have capacity to store renewable fuels, and in Albany, New York, we also have an additional rail‑fed propane storage terminal.

The bulk terminals and inland storage facilities from which we distribute product are supplied by ship, barge, truck, pipeline and/or rail. The inland storage facilities, which we use primarily to store distillates, are supplied with product delivered by truck from bulk terminals. Our customers receive product from our network of bulk terminals and inland storage facilities via truck, barge, rail and/or pipeline. We support our rail activity with a fleet of approximately 2,700 leased railcars. The makeup of this fleet is split between general‑purpose cars, typically used for light crude oil, ethanol and refined products, and coiled, insulated cars typically used for heavy crude oil and residual oil. 

In connection with our business, we may lease or otherwise secure the right to use certain third-party assets (such as railcars, pipelines and barges).  We lease railcars through various lease arrangements with various expiration dates, and we lease barges through various time charter lease arrangement also with various expiration dates. We also have various pipeline connection agreements that extend from five to seven years beginning after the commissioning of the pipeline. Please read Note 13, “Commitments and Contingencies,” for additional information on our railcar leases, barge leases and pipeline commitments.  

Many of our bulk terminals operate 24 hours a day and consist of multiple storage tanks and automated truck loading equipment. These automated systems monitor terminal access, volumetric allocations, credit control and carrier certification through the remote identification of customers. In addition, some of the bulk terminals at which we market are equipped with truck loading racks capable of providing automated blending and additive packages which meet our customers’ specific requirements.

Throughput arrangements allow storage of product at terminals owned by others. Our customers can load product at these terminals, and we pay the owners of these terminals fees for services rendered in connection with the receipt, storage and handling of such product. Compensation to the terminal owners may be fixed or based upon the volume of our product that is delivered and sold at the terminal.

We have exchange agreements with customers and suppliers. An exchange is a contractual agreement where the parties exchange product at their respective terminals or facilities. For example, we (or our customers) receive product that is owned by our exchange partner from such party’s facility or terminal, and we deliver the same volume of our product to such party (or to such party’s customers) out of one of the terminals in our terminal network. Generally, both

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sides of an exchange transaction pay a handling fee (similar to a throughput fee), and often one party also pays a location differential that covers any excess transportation costs incurred by the other party in supplying product to the location at which the first party receives product. Other differentials that may occur in exchanges (and result in additional payments) include product value differentials and timing differentials.

Gasoline Stations

As of December 31, 2015, we had a portfolio of 1,509 owned, leased and/or supplied gasoline stations, including 281 convenience stores, primarily in the Northeast.

At our company‑operated stores, we operate the gasoline stations and convenience stores with our employees, and we set the retail price of gasoline at the station. At commission agent locations, we own the gasoline inventory, and we set the retail price of gasoline at the station and pay the commission agent a fee related to the gallons sold. We receive rental income from commission agent leased gasoline stations for the leasing of the convenience store premises, repair bays and other businesses that may be conducted by the commission agent. At dealer‑leased locations, the dealer purchases gasoline from us, and the dealer sets the retail price of gasoline at the dealer’s station. We also receive rental income from dealer‑leased gasoline stations and from cobranding arrangements. We also supply gasoline to independent contract dealers under agreements with the operators at these locations. Additionally, we have contractual relationships with distributors in certain New England states, pursuant to which we supply these distributors’ gasoline stations with ExxonMobil‑branded gasoline.

Supply

Our products come from some of the major energy companies in the world as well as North American crude oil producers. Products can be sourced from the United States, Canada, South America, Europe, Russia and occasionally from Asia. Most of our products are delivered by water, pipeline, rail or truck. During 2015, we purchased an average of approximately 368,000 barrels per day of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane. We enter into supply agreements with these suppliers on a term basis or a spot basis. With respect to trade terms, our supply purchases vary depending on the particular contract from prompt payment (usually three days) to net 30 days. Please read “—Commodity Risk Management.” We obtain our convenience store inventory from traditional suppliers.

Seasonality

Due to the nature of our business and our reliance, in part, on consumer travel and spending patterns, we may experience more demand for gasoline during the late spring and summer months than during the fall and winter. Travel and recreational activities are typically higher in these months in the geographic areas in which we operate, increasing the demand for gasoline that we distribute. Therefore, our volumes in gasoline are typically higher in the second and third quarters of the calendar year. As demand for some of our refined petroleum products, specifically home heating oil and residual oil for space heating purposes, is generally greater during the winter months, heating oil and residual oil volumes are generally higher during the first and fourth quarters of the calendar year. These factors may result in fluctuations in our quarterly operating results.

Commodity Risk Management

When we take title to the products that we sell, we are exposed to commodity risk. Commodity risk is the risk of unfavorable market fluctuations in the price of commodities such as refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane. We endeavor to minimize commodity risk in connection with our daily operations through hedging by selling exchange‑traded futures contracts on regulated exchanges or using other over‑the‑counter derivatives, and then lift hedges as we sell the product for physical delivery to third parties. Products are generally purchased and sold at spot market prices, fixed prices or indexed prices. While we use these transactions to seek to maintain a position that is substantially balanced within our commodity product purchase and sales activities, we may experience net unbalanced positions for short periods of time as a result of variances in daily purchases and sales and transportation and delivery schedules as well as logistical issues inherent in the business, such as weather conditions. In

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connection with managing these positions, we are aided by maintaining a constant presence in the marketplace. We also engage in a controlled trading program for up to an aggregate of 250,000 barrels of commodity products at any point in time. Our policy is generally to purchase only products for which we have a market and to structure our sales contracts so that price fluctuations do not materially affect our profit. While our policies are designed to minimize market risk, as well as inherent basis risk, exposure to fluctuations in market conditions remains.

In addition, because a portion of our crude oil business is conducted in Canadian dollars (“CAD”), we may use foreign currency derivatives to minimize the risks of unfavorable exchange rates. These instruments may include foreign currency exchange contracts and forwards. In conjunction with entering into the commodity derivative, we enter into a foreign currency derivative to hedge the resulting foreign currency risk. These foreign currency derivatives are generally short‑term in nature and not designated for hedge accounting.

Operating results are sensitive to a number of factors. Such factors include commodity location, grades of product, individual customer demand for grades or location of product, localized market price structures, availability of transportation facilities, daily delivery volumes that vary from expected quantities and timing and costs to deliver the commodity to the customer. Basis risk is the inherent market price risk created when a commodity of a certain grade or location is purchased, sold or exchanged as compared to a purchase, sale or exchange of commodity at a different time or place, including transportation costs and timing differentials. We attempt to reduce our exposure to basis risk by grouping our purchase and sale activities by geographical region and commodity quality in order to stay balanced within such designated region. However, basis risk cannot be entirely eliminated, and basis exposure, particularly in backward markets (when prices for future deliveries are lower than current prices) or other adverse market conditions, can adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

With respect to the pricing of commodities, we utilize exchange-traded futures contracts and other derivative instruments to minimize or hedge the impact of commodity price changes on our inventories and forward fixed price commitments. Any hedge ineffectiveness is reflected in our results of operations. We utilize regulated exchanges, including the NYMEX, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (“CME”) and the Intercontinental‑Exchange (“ICE”), which are exchanges for the respective commodities that each trades, thereby reducing potential delivery and supply risks. Generally, our practice is to close all exchange positions rather than to make or receive physical deliveries. We may also enter into derivative agreements which may not have a correlated exchange contract with counterparties that we believe have a strong credit profile in order to hedge market fluctuations and/or lock‑in margins relative to our commitments.

We monitor processes and procedures to prevent unauthorized trading by our personnel and to maintain substantial balance between purchases and sales or future delivery obligations. We can provide no assurance, however, that these steps will eliminate commodity risk or detect and prevent all violations of such trading processes and procedures, particularly if deception or other intentional misconduct is involved.

In our Wholesale segment, we obtain Renewable Identification Numbers (“RINs”) in connection with our purchase of ethanol which is used for our bulk supply requirements or for blending with gasoline through our terminal system. A RIN is a renewable identification number associated with government‑mandated renewable fuel standards. To evidence that the required volume of renewable fuel is blended with gasoline and diesel motor vehicle fuels, obligated parties must retire sufficient RINs to cover their Renewable Volume Obligation (“RVO”). Our U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) obligations relative to renewable fuel reporting are largely limited to the foreign gasoline that we may choose to import and a small amount of blending operations at certain facilities. As a wholesaler of transportation fuels through our terminals, we separate RINs from renewable fuel through blending with gasoline and can use those separated RINs to settle our RVO. While the annual compliance period for the RVO is a calendar year and the settlement of the RVO typically occurs by March 31 of the following year, the settlement of the RVO can occur, upon certain EPA deferral actions, more than one year after the close of the compliance period. Operating results are sensitive to the timing associated with our RIN position relative to our RVO at a point in time, and we may recognize a mark‑to‑market liability for a shortfall in RINs at the end of each reporting period. To the extent that we do not have a sufficient number of RINs to satisfy our RVO as of the balance sheet date, we charge cost of sales for such deficiency based on the market price of the RINs as of the balance sheet date and record a liability representing our obligation to purchase RINs.

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For more information about our policies and procedures to minimize our exposure to market risk, including commodity market risk, please read Item 7A, “Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk.”

Competition

In each of our operating segments, we encounter varying degrees of competition based on product and geographic locations and available logistics. Our competitors include terminal companies, major integrated oil companies and their marketing affiliates, wholesalers, producers and independent marketers of varying sizes, financial resources and experience. In our Northeast market, we compete in various product lines and for all customers. In the residual oil markets, however, where product is heated when stored and cannot be delivered long distances, we face less competition because of the strategic locations of our residual oil storage facilities. We supply oil to industrial, commercial and marine customers. We compete with other transloaders in our logistics activities including, in part, storage and transportation of crude oil, renewable fuels and gasoline and the movement of product by alternative means (e.g., pipelines). We also compete with natural gas suppliers and marketers in our home heating oil, residual oil and propane product lines. Bunkering requires facilities at ports to service vessels. In various other geographic markets, particularly with respect to unbranded gasoline and distillates markets, we compete with integrated refiners, merchant refiners and regional marketing companies. Our retail gasoline stations compete with unbranded and branded retail gas stations as well as supermarket and warehouse stores that sell gasoline.

Employees

To carry out our operations, our general partner and certain of our operating subsidiaries employed approximately 1,890 full‑time employees as of December 31, 2015, of which approximately 100 employees were represented by labor unions under collective bargaining agreements with various expiration dates. We may not be able to renegotiate the collective bargaining agreements when they expire on satisfactory terms or at all. A failure to do so may increase our costs. In addition, existing labor agreements may not prevent a future strike or work stoppage, and any work stoppage could negatively affect our results of operations and financial condition. We believe we have good relations with our employees.

We have a shared services agreement with GPC. The services provided among these entities by any employees shared pursuant to these agreements do not limit the ability of such employees to provide all services necessary to properly run our business. Please read Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence—Shared Services Agreements.”

Title to Properties, Permits and Licenses

We believe we have all of the assets needed, including leases, permits and licenses, to operate our business in all material respects. With respect to any consents, permits or authorizations that have not been obtained, we believe that the failure to obtain these consents, permits or authorizations will have no material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

We believe we have satisfactory title to all of our assets. Title to property, including certain sites within our GDSO segment, may be subject to encumbrances, including repurchase rights and use, operating and environmental covenants and restrictions. We believe that none of these encumbrances will materially detract from the value of our properties or from our interest in these properties, nor will they materially interfere with the use of these properties in the operation of our business.

The name GLOBAL, our logos and the name Global Petroleum Corp. are our trademarks. In addition, we have trademarks for our premium fuels and additives, Diesel One®, Heating Oil Plus™ and SubZero®. We also have the following trademarks for our convenience store business: ALLTOWN®, YOUR TOWN.MYTOWN.ALLTOWN!®, CENTRE ST. KITCHEN®, Buck Stop®, Fast Freddie’s® and Mr. Mike’s®, and the pending trademark, ALLTOWN MARKET™. In connection with the January 7, 2015 acquisition of Warren, we acquired the following trademarks owned by Drake Petroleum Company, Inc., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of ours: Deli Joe’s®, Deli Joe’s logo, Diamond Fuels®, Xtra®, XtraCafé logo, Xtra Mart® and the Xtramart logo.

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Facilities

We lease office space for our principal executive office in Waltham, Massachusetts. This lease expires on July 31, 2026 with extension options through July 31, 2036. In addition, we lease office space in Branford, Connecticut. This lease expires on July 31, 2024 with extension options through July 31, 2034.

Environmental

General

Our business of supplying refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane involves a number of activities that are subject to extensive and stringent environmental laws. As part of our business, we own and operate various petroleum storage and distribution facilities and gasoline stations and must comply with environmental laws at the federal, state and local levels, which increases the cost of operating terminals and gasoline stations and our business generally. In addition, these laws are frequently modified or revised to impose new obligations.

Our operations also utilize a number of petroleum storage facilities and distribution facilities, including rail transloading facilities and gasoline stations that we do not own or operate, but at which refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane are stored. We utilize these facilities through several different contractual arrangements, including leases and throughput and terminalling services agreements. If facilities with which we contract that are owned and operated by third parties fail to comply with environmental laws, they could be shut down, requiring us to incur costs to use alternative facilities.

Environmental laws and regulations can restrict or impact our business activities in many ways, such as:

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requiring remedial action to mitigate releases of hydrocarbons, hazardous substances or wastes caused by our operations or attributable to former operators;

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requiring capital expenditures to comply with environmental control requirements; and

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enjoining the operations of facilities deemed in noncompliance with environmental laws and regulations.

Failure to comply with environmental laws and regulations may trigger a variety of administrative, civil and criminal enforcement measures, including the assessment of monetary penalties, the imposition of remedial requirements and the issuance of orders enjoining future operations. Certain environmental statutes impose strict, joint and several liability for costs required to clean up and restore sites where hydrocarbons, hazardous substances or wastes have been released or disposed of. Moreover, neighboring landowners and other third parties may file claims for personal injury and property damage allegedly caused by the release of hydrocarbons, hazardous substances or other wastes into the environment.

Environmental operating permits are, or may be, required for our operations under applicable environmental laws and regulations. These operating permits are subject to modification, renewal and revocation. We regularly monitor and review our operations, procedures and policies for compliance with permits, laws and regulations. Despite these compliance efforts, risk of noncompliance or permit interpretation is inherent in the operation of our business, as it is with other companies engaged in similar businesses.

The trend in environmental regulation is to place more restrictions and limitations on activities that may affect the environment over time. As a result, there can be no assurance as to the amount or timing of future expenditures for environmental compliance or remediation, and actual future expenditures may be different from the amounts we currently anticipate. We try to anticipate future regulatory requirements that might be imposed and plan accordingly to remain in compliance with changing environmental laws and regulations and minimize the costs of such compliance.

We do not believe that compliance with federal, state or local environmental laws and regulations will have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our

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unitholders. We can provide no assurance, however, that future events, such as changes in existing laws (including changes in the interpretation of existing laws), the promulgation of new laws, or the development or discovery of new facts or conditions will not cause us to incur significant costs or will not have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

For additional information concerning certain environmental proceedings, please read Item 3. “Legal Proceedings.”

Hazardous Material Releases and Waste Handling

In most instances, the environmental laws and regulations affecting our business relate to the release of hazardous substances into the water or soils and include measures to control pollution of the environment. For instance, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, as amended, also known as CERCLA or the Superfund law, and comparable state laws impose liability, without regard to fault or the legality of the original conduct, on certain classes of persons who are considered to be responsible for the release of hazardous substances into the environment. These persons include the owner or operator of the site where the release occurred and companies that disposed or arranged for the disposal of the hazardous substances. Under the Superfund law, these persons may be subject to joint and several liability for the costs of cleaning up hazardous substances that have been released into the environment, for damages to natural resources and for the costs of certain health studies. The Superfund law also authorizes the EPA, and in some instances third parties, to act in response to threats to the public health or the environment and seek to recover from the responsible persons the costs they incur. It is possible for neighboring landowners and other third parties to file claims for personal injury and property damage allegedly caused by hazardous substances or other pollutants released into the environment. In the course of our ordinary operations, we may generate, store or otherwise handle materials and wastes that fall within the Superfund law’s definition of a hazardous substance and, as a result, we may be jointly and severally liable under the Superfund law for all or part of the costs required to clean up sites at which those hazardous substances have been released into the environment.

We currently own, lease or utilize storage or distribution facilities and gasoline stations where hydrocarbons are being or have been handled for many years. Although we have utilized operating and disposal practices that were standard in the industry at the time, hydrocarbons or other wastes may have been disposed of or released on, under or from the properties owned or leased by us or on or under other locations where we have contractual arrangements or where these wastes have been taken for disposal. In addition, many of these properties have been operated by third parties whose treatment and disposal or release of hydrocarbons or other wastes was not under our control. These properties and wastes disposed thereon may be subject to the Superfund law or other federal and state laws. Under these laws, we could be required to remove or remediate previously disposed wastes, including wastes disposed of or released by prior owners or operators, clean up contaminated property, including groundwater contaminated by prior owners or operators, or make capital improvements to prevent future contamination.

Our operations generate a variety of wastes, including some hazardous wastes that are subject to the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, as amended (“RCRA”) and comparable state laws. By way of summary, these regulations impose detailed requirements for the handling, storage, treatment and disposal of hazardous waste. Our operations also generate solid wastes which are regulated under state law or the less stringent solid waste requirements of the federal Solid Waste Disposal Act. We believe that we are in substantial compliance with the existing requirements of RCRA, the Solid Waste Disposal Act and similar state and local laws, and the cost involved in complying with these requirements is not material.

We incur ongoing costs for monitoring groundwater and/or remediation of contamination at several facilities that we operate. Assuming that we will be able to continue to use common remedial and monitoring methods or associated engineering or institutional controls to demonstrate compliance with applicable regulatory requirements, as we have in the past and regulations currently allow, we believe that these costs will not have a material impact on our financial condition, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

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Above Ground Storage Tanks

Above ground tanks that contain petroleum and other hazardous substances are subject to comprehensive regulation under environmental laws. Generally, these laws impose liability for releases and require secondary containment systems for tanks or that the operators take alternative precautions to ensure that no contamination results from tank leaks or spills. We believe we are in substantial compliance with environmental laws and regulations applicable to above ground storage tanks.

The Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (“OPA”) addresses three principal areas of oil pollution—prevention, containment and cleanup. In order to handle, store or transport various petroleum products and renewable fuels at our terminals, we are required to file spill response plans with either the U.S. Coast Guard (for marine facilities) and/or the EPA. Many of the states in which we operate have enacted laws similar to OPA. Under OPA and comparable state laws, responsible parties for a regulated facility from which oil products so regulated are discharged may be subject to strict, joint and several liability for removal costs and certain other consequences of an oil spill such as natural resource damages, where the spill is into navigable waters or along shorelines. We believe we are in substantial compliance with regulations pursuant to OPA and similar state laws. We follow the American Petroleum Institute’s inspection, maintenance and repair standard applicable to our above ground storage tanks.

Under the authority of the federal Clean Water Act, the EPA imposes specific requirements for Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure plans that are designed to prevent, and minimize the impacts of, releases of oil and other products from above ground storage tanks. We believe we are in substantial compliance with these requirements.

Underground Storage Tanks

We are required to make financial expenditures to comply with regulations governing underground storage tanks (“USTs”) which store gasoline or other regulated substances adopted by federal, state and local regulatory agencies. Pursuant to RCRA, the EPA has established a comprehensive regulatory program for the detection, prevention, investigation and cleanup of leaking USTs. State or local agencies are often delegated the responsibility for implementing the federal program or developing and implementing equivalent or stricter state or local regulations. We have a comprehensive program in place for performing routine tank testing and other compliance activities which are intended to promptly detect and investigate any potential releases. In addition, the Clean Air Act (the “CAA”) and similar state laws impose requirements on emissions to the air from motor fueling activities in certain areas of the country, including those that do not meet state or national ambient air quality standards. These laws may require the installation of vapor recovery systems to control emissions of volatile organic compounds to the air during the motor fueling process. We believe we are in substantial compliance with applicable environmental requirements, including those applicable to our USTs. Compliance with existing and future environmental laws regulating UST systems of the kind we use may require significant capital expenditures in the future. These expenditures may include upgrades, modifications, and the replacement of USTs and related piping to comply with current and future regulatory requirements designed to ensure the detection, prevention, investigation and remediation of leaks and spills.

Water Discharges

The federal Clean Water Act imposes restrictions regarding the discharge of pollutants, including oil and refined petroleum products, renewable fuels and crude oil, into navigable waters. This law and comparable state laws may require permits for discharging pollutants into state and federal waters and impose substantial liabilities and remedial obligations for noncompliance. The EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) released a rule to revise the definition of “waters of the United States” (“WOTUS”) for all Clean Water Act programs, which went into effect in August 2015. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has stayed the WOTUS rule nationwide pending further action of the court. In response to this decision, the EPA and the Corps resumed nationwide use of the agencies’ prior regulations defining the term “waters of the United States.” Those regulations will be implemented as they were prior to the effective date of the new WOTUS rule. The WOTUS rule could significantly expand federal control of land and water resources across the United States, triggering substantial additional permitting and regulatory requirements. If the WOTUS rule survives judicial review in its current form, it could restrict exploration and production efforts by producers

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whose crude oil and other materials we transport. That restriction of supply could adversely affect our financial position, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

EPA regulations also may require us to obtain permits to discharge certain storm water runoff. Storm water discharge permits also may be required by certain states in which we operate. We believe that we hold the required permits and operate in material compliance with those permits. While we have experienced permit discharge exceedences at some of our terminals, we do not expect any noncompliance with existing permits and foreseeable new permit requirements to have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Air Emissions

Under the federal CAA and comparable state and local laws, permits are typically required to emit regulated air pollutants into the atmosphere above certain thresholds. We believe that we currently hold or have applied for all necessary air permits and that we are in substantial compliance with applicable air laws and regulations. Although we can give no assurances, we are aware of no changes to air quality regulations that will have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Various federal, state and local agencies have the authority to prescribe product quality specifications for the petroleum products and renewable fuels that we sell, largely in an effort to reduce air pollution. Failure to comply with these regulations can result in substantial penalties. Although we can give no assurances, we believe we are currently in substantial compliance with these regulations.

Changes in product quality specifications could require us to incur additional handling costs or reduce our throughput volume. For instance, different product specifications for different markets could require the construction of additional storage. Also, states in which we operate have considered limiting the sulfur content of home heating oil. If such regulations are enacted, this could restrict the supply of available heating oil, which could increase our costs to purchase such oil or limit our ability to sell heating oil.

In November 2015, the EPA also revised the existing National Ambient Air Quality Standards (“NAAQS”) for ground‑level ozone, which made the standard more stringent. Nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds are recognized as pre‑cursors of ozone, and emissions of those materials are associated with mobile sources and the petroleum industry. The EPA has not yet designated which areas of the country are out of attainment with the new ground level ozone standard, and it will take the states several years to develop compliance plans for their nonattainment areas. Several states have filed legal challenges to the new standard. If these challenges are unsuccessful, certain areas of the country previously in compliance with the various NAAQS, including areas where we operate, may be reclassified as nonattainment. Such reclassification may make it more difficult to construct new or modified sources of air pollution in newly designated nonattainment areas, or subject our existing operations to additional permitting requirements. While we are not able to determine the extent to which this new standard will impact our business at this time, it does have the potential to have a material impact on our operations and cost‑structure.

Climate Change

Federal climate change legislation in the United States appears unlikely in the nearterm. As a result, domestic efforts to curb greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions continue be led by the EPA GHG regulations and the efforts of states. To the extent that our operations are subject to the EPA’s GHG regulations, we may face increased capital and operating costs associated with new or expanded facilities. Significant expansions of our existing facilities or construction of new facilities may be subject to the CAA Prevention of Significant Deterioration requirements under the EPA’s GHG “Tailoring Rule.” Some of our facilities are also subject to the EPA’s Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases rule, and any further regulation may increase our operational costs.

Under a consent decree with states and environmental groups, the EPA is due to propose new source performance standards for GHG emissions from refineries. These standards could significantly increase the costs of constructing or adding capacity to refineries and may ultimately increase the costs or decrease the supply of refined

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products. Either of these events could have an adverse effect on our business. Likewise, in September 2015, the EPA proposed New Source Performance Standards for methane and volatile organic compound emissions from certain activities in the oil and gas sector, as well as a new definition of oil and gas sources, and new draft control guidance for reducing volatile organic compound emissions from existing oil and gas sources in certain ozone nonattainment areas. If the rules are adopted as proposed, these rules could impose new compliance costs and permitting burdens on oil and gas operations, which could in turn affect the companies that produce the crude oil that we transport.  Currently, however, it is not possible to estimate the likely financial impact of potential future regulation on any of our sites.

Under Subpart MM of the Mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule (“MRR”), importers of petroleum products, including distillates, must report the GHG emissions that would result from the complete combustion of all imported products if such combustion would result in the emission of at least 25,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year. We currently report under Subpart MM because of the volume of petroleum products we typically import. Compliance with the MRR does not substantially impact our operations. However, any change in regulations based on GHG emissions reported in compliance with MRR may limit our ability to import petroleum products or increase our costs to import such products.

In August 2015, the EPA issued its final Clean Power Plan (“CPP”) rules that establish carbon pollution standards for power plants. Though the plan does not regulate hydraulic fracturing operations, it sets a national carbon pollution standard that is projected to cut emissions produced by U.S. power plants. The EPA expects each state to develop implementation plans for power plants in its state to meet the individual state targets established in the CPP, and has also proposed a federal compliance plan to implement the CPP in the event that approvable state plans are not submitted. Judicial challenges have been be filed, which seek a stay of the implementation of the rules. On February 9, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court granted a stay of the implementation of the CPP before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia (“Circuit Court”) even issued a decision. By its terms, this stay will remain in effect throughout the pendency of the appeals process including at the Circuit Court and the Supreme Court through any certiorari petition that may be granted. The stay suspends the rule, including the requirement that states submit their initial plans by September 2016. The Supreme Court’s stay applies only to EPA’s regulations for CO2 emissions from existing power plants and will not affect EPA’s standards for new power plants. It is not yet clear how the either the Circuit Court or the Supreme Court will rule on the legality of the CPP.

Overall, there has been a trend towards increased regulation of GHGs and initiatives, both domestically and internationally, to limit GHG emissions. Future efforts to limit emissions associated with transportation fuels and heating fuels could reduce the market for, or pricing of, our products, and thus adversely impact our business. In addition, it should be noted that some scientists have concluded that increasing concentrations of GHG in the earth’s atmosphere may produce climate changes that have significant physical effects, such as increased frequency and severity of storms, droughts, and floods and other climatic events. If any of those effects were to occur, they could have an adverse effect on our assets and operations.

Convenience Store Regulations

Our convenience store operations are subject to extensive governmental laws and regulations that include legal restrictions on the sale of alcohol, tobacco and lottery products, food safety and health requirements and public accessibility, as well as sanitation, safety and fire standards. State and local regulatory agencies have the authority to approve, revoke, suspend or deny applications for, and renewals of, permits and licenses. Our operations are also subject to federal and state laws governing matters such as wage rates, overtime, working conditions and citizenship requirements. At the federal level, there are proposals under consideration from time to time to increase minimum wage rates and to introduce a system of mandated health insurance, each of which could adversely affect our results of operations. In June 2009, Congress gave the Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) broad authority to regulate tobacco products through passage of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (“FSPTCA”). Under the FSPTCA, the FDA has passed regulations that, among other things, prohibit the sale of cigarettes or smokeless tobacco to anyone under the age of 18 years (state laws are permitted to set a higher minimum age); prohibit the sale of single cigarettes or packs with less than 20 cigarettes; and prohibit the sale or distribution of non‑tobacco items such as hats and t‑shirts with tobacco brands, names or logos. Governmental actions and regulations, such as these, could materially

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impact our retail price of cigarettes, cigarette unit volume and revenues, merchandise gross profit and overall customer traffic, which could in turn have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.

Ethanol Market

The market for ethanol is dependent on several economic incentives and regulatory mandates for blending ethanol into gasoline, including the availability of federal tax incentives, ethanol use mandates and oxygenate blending requirements. For instance, the Renewable Fuels Standard (“RFS”) requires that a certain amount of renewable fuels, such as ethanol, be utilized in transportation fuels, including gasoline, in the United States each year. Additionally, the EPA imposes oxygenate blending requirements for reformulated gasoline that are best met with ethanol blending. Gasoline marketers may also choose to discretionally blend ethanol into conventional gasoline for economic reasons. A change or waiver of the RFS mandate or the reformulated gasoline oxygenate blending requirements could adversely affect the availability and pricing of ethanol. Any change in the RFS mandate could also result in reduced discretionary blending of ethanol into conventional gasoline. Discretionary blending is when gasoline blenders use ethanol to reduce the cost of blended gasoline.

In October 2010 and January 2011, the EPA granted two partial waivers that taken together allow but do not require the introduction into commerce of gasoline that contains greater than 10 volume percent (“vol%”) ethanol and up to 15 vol% ethanol (“E15”) for use in model year 2001 and newer light‑duty motor vehicles, subject to certain conditions. E15 is not widely available in the United States and requires gasoline stations install “blender pumps” in order to sell E15 along with more conventional fuels such as E10 or E0. The USDA is providing financial assistance to help implement more “blender pumps” in the United States in order to increase the availability of E15 and to help offset the cost of introducing mid‑level ethanol blends into the U.S. retail gasoline market. However, blender pumps cost approximately $20,000 each, so it may take time before they become widely available in the retail gasoline market. Additionally, according to EPA estimates, E85 flex‑fuel vehicles make up only a small percentage of vehicles on the nation’s roads and, as of January 2016, there were approximately 2,990 E85 stations in the United States.

Environmental Insurance

We maintain insurance which may cover, in whole or in part, certain costs relating to the clean up of releases of the products we store, sell and/or ship. We maintain insurance policies with insurers in amounts and with coverage and deductibles as we believe are reasonable and prudent. These policies may not cover all environmental risks and costs and may not provide sufficient coverage in the event an environmental claim is made against us.

Security Regulation

Since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, the U.S. government has issued warnings that energy infrastructure assets may be future targets of terrorist organizations. These developments have subjected our operations to increased risks. Increased security measures taken by us as a precaution against possible terrorist attacks have resulted in increased costs to our business. Where required by federal or local laws, we have prepared security plans for the storage and distribution facilities we operate. Terrorist attacks aimed at our facilities and any global and domestic economic repercussions from terrorist activities could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. For instance, terrorist activity could lead to increased volatility in prices for home heating oil, gasoline and other products we sell.

Insurance carriers are currently required to offer coverage for terrorist activities as a result of the federal Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (“TRIA”). We purchased this coverage with respect to our property and casualty insurance programs, which resulted in additional insurance premiums. Pursuant to the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2015, TRIA has been extended through December 31, 2020. Although we cannot determine the future availability and cost of insurance coverage for terrorist acts, we do not expect the availability and cost of such insurance to have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

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Hazardous Materials Transportation

Our operations include the preparation and shipment of some hazardous materials by truck, rail and marine vessel. We are subject to regulations promulgated under the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act (and subsequent amendments) and administered by the U.S. Department of Transportation under the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Railroad Administration, the United States Coast Guard and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.

We conduct loading and unloading of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane to and from cargo transports, including tanker trucks, railcars and marine vessels. In large part, the cargo transports are owned and operated by third parties. However, we lease a fleet of railcars and charter barges associated with the shipment of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels and crude oil. We conduct ongoing training programs to help ensure that our operations are in compliance with applicable regulations.

The trend in hazardous material transportation is to increase oversight and regulation of these operations. Several derailments of freight trains, including the tragic events in July 2013 in Lac Mégantic and other events, have led federal and state regulators to examine whether the hazardous nature of crude oil from the Bakken Shale is being assessed properly prior to its shipment. In particular, there are concerns that the testing and ensuing designations of the crude oil on the shipping documentation do not in all cases accurately capture the flammability of the Bakken crude oil. On January 2, 2014, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (“PHMSA”) released a Safety Alert alerting regulators, emergency responders, transporters and shippers that crude oil from the Bakken Shale may have flammability characteristics that are different from other forms of crude oil and that it was vital that all shipments of crude oil be tested and properly characterized on all shipping documentation. The Safety Alert also notified the regulated community that PHMSA and the Federal Railroad Administration have launched “Operation Classification,” which is an ongoing enforcement initiative that involves unannounced inspections on crude oil shipments to test the contents of the shipments in order to ensure that they are properly characterized. In August 2014, the U.S. Department of Transportation released a report finding that, based on the results of Operation Classification from August 2013 to May 2014, Bakken crude oil tends to be more volatile and flammable than other crude oils, and thus poses an increased risk for a significant accident. In April 2015, PHMSA and the Federal Railroad Administration (“FRA”) issued a number of additional safety advisories related to the operation of trains containing hazardous materials and flammable liquid.

In addition, these events have also spurred efforts to improve the safety of tank cars that are used in transporting crude oil by rail. Since 2011, all new railroad tank cars that have been built to transport crude oil or other petroleum type fluids (e.g., ethanol) have been built to more stringent safety standards. In May 2015, PHMSA issued a final rule that includes, among other things, additional requirements to enhance tank car standards for certain trains carrying crude oil and ethanol, a classification and testing program for crude oil, and a requirement that older DOT‑111 tank cars be phased out by as early as October 1, 2017 if they are not retrofitted to comply with new tank car design standards. The rule also includes a new braking standard for certain trains, designates new operational protocols for trains transporting large volumes of flammable liquids, such as routing requirements, speed restrictions and information for local government agencies, and provides new sampling and testing requirements to improve classification of energy products placed into transport. In addition, the FRA issued a notice and comment request in April 2015 providing notice that the agency wishes to collect more specific information concerning railcars carrying petroleum crude oil in any train involved in a reportable accident. 

In addition to action taken or proposed by federal agencies, some members of Congress have called for additional legislation regarding railcars carrying crude oil. In 2015, Congress has introduced several bills to place new emergency response and safety requirements on crude oil by rail operations. To date, none of these bills has been enacted into law. Likewise, a number of states proposed or enacted laws in 2015 that encourage safer rail operations or urge the federal government to strengthen requirements for these operations. The new PHMSA rule, and other potential future statutes or regulatory initiatives, may drive up the cost of transport and lead to shortages in availability of tank cars. We cannot assure that costs incurred to comply with standards and regulations emerging from these rulemakings will not be material to our business, financial condition or results of operations. Any such requirements would apply to the industry as a whole.

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Efforts are likewise underway in Canada to assess and address risks from the transport of crude oil by rail. Shortly after the Lac Mégantic tragedy, Transport Canada issued a series of emergency directives aimed at certain practices that were identified immediately after the accident. Likewise, Transport Canada is assessing the compensation and liability scheme for shipments by rail so that sufficient funds are available to compensate victims and respond to the incident without making taxpayers fund any aspect of those efforts. In January 2014, the Canadian Transportation Safety Board made several recommendations to Transport Canada regarding tank car safety, routing of freight trains and the capabilities of emergency responders. In April 2014, Transport Canada issued a protective order prohibiting oil shippers from using 5,000 of the DOT‑111 tank cars and imposing a three‑year phase‑out period for approximately 65,000 tank cars that do not meet certain safety requirements. Transport Canada also imposed a 50 mile‑per‑hour speed limit on trains carrying hazardous materials and required all crude oil shipments in Canada to have an emergency response plan. At the same time that PHMSA released its new rule, Canada’s Minister of Transport announced Canada’s new tank car standards, which largely align with the requirements in the PHMSA rule.

We believe we are in substantial compliance with applicable hazardous materials transportation requirements related to our operations. We do not believe that compliance with federal, state or local hazardous materials transportation regulations will have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations or cash available for distribution to our unitholders. We can provide no assurance, however, that future events, such as changes in existing laws (including changes in the interpretation of existing laws), the promulgation of new laws and regulations, including any voluntary measures by the rail industry, that result in new requirements for the design, construction or operation of tank cars used to transport crude oil, or, or the development or discovery of new facts or conditions will not cause us to incur significant costs.

Employee Safety

We are subject to the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (“OSHA”) and comparable state statutes that regulate the protection of the health and safety of workers. In addition, OSHA’s hazard communication standards require that information be maintained about hazardous materials used or produced in operations and that this information be provided to employees, state and local government authorities and citizens. We believe that we are in substantial compliance with the applicable OSHA requirements.

Item 1A.Risk Factors.

Risks Related to Our Business

We may not have sufficient cash from operations to enable us to maintain distributions at current levels following establishment of cash reserves and payment of fees and expenses, including payments to our general partner.

We may not have sufficient available cash each quarter to maintain distributions at current levels. The amount of cash we can distribute on our units principally depends upon the amount of cash we generate from our operations, which will fluctuate from quarter to quarter based on, among other things:

·

competition from other companies that sell refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane;

·

demand for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane in the markets we serve;

·

absolute price levels, as well as the volatility of prices, of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, RINs, crude oil, natural gas and propane in both the spot and futures markets;

·

supply, extreme weather and logistics disruptions;

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·

seasonal variation in temperatures, which affects demand for home heating oil and residual oil to the extent that it is used for space heating;

·

the level of our operating costs, including payments to our general partner; and

·

prevailing economic conditions.

In addition, the actual amount of cash we have available for distribution will depend on other factors such as:

·

the level of capital expenditures we make;

·

the restrictions contained in our credit agreement and the indentures governing our senior notes, including financial covenants, borrowing base limitations and advance rates;

·

our debt service requirements;

·

the cost of acquisitions;

·

fluctuations in our working capital needs;

·

our ability to borrow under our credit agreement to make distributions to our unitholders; and

·

the amount of cash reserves established by our general partner.

On January 28, 2016, we announced a reduction in the quarterly distribution for the fourth quarter of 2015 on all outstanding common units to $0.4625.  This distribution represented a decrease of 33.7% from the distribution of $0.6975 per unit paid in November 2015 and a decrease of 30.5% from the distribution of $0.6650 per unit paid in February 2015. The reduction in the distribution primarily reflected continuing weakness in the crude oil market.

The amount of cash we have available for distribution to unitholders depends on our cash flow and not solely on profitability.

The amount of cash we have available for distribution depends primarily on our cash flow, including borrowings, and not solely on profitability, which will be affected by non‑cash items. As a result, we may make cash distributions during periods when we record losses and may not make cash distributions during periods when we record net income.

We may not be able to fully implement or capitalize upon planned growth projects.

We have a number of organic growth projects that require the expenditure of significant amounts of capital in the aggregate. Many of these projects involve numerous regulatory, environmental, commercial and legal uncertainties that will be beyond our control. As these projects are undertaken, required approvals, permits and licenses may not be obtained, may be delayed or may be obtained with conditions that materially alter the expected return associated with the underlying projects. Moreover, revenues associated with these organic growth projects will not increase immediately upon the expenditures of funds with respect to a particular project and these projects may be completed behind schedule or in excess of budgeted cost. We may pursue projects in anticipation of market demand that dissipates or market growth that never materializes. As a result of these uncertainties, the anticipated benefits associated with our capital projects may not be achieved.

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We commit substantial resources to pursuing acquisitions, although there is no certainty that we will successfully complete any acquisitions or receive the economic results we anticipate from completed acquisitions.

We are continuously engaged in discussions with potential sellers and lessors of existing (or suitable for development) terminalling, storage, logistics and/or marketing assets, including gasoline stations, and related businesses. Our growth largely depends on our ability to make accretive acquisitions and/or accretive development projects. We may be unable to execute such accretive transactions for a number of reasons, including the following: (1) we are unable to identify attractive transaction candidates or negotiate acceptable terms; (2) we are unable to obtain financing for such transactions on economically acceptable terms; or (3) we are outbid by competitors. In addition, we may consummate transactions that at the time of consummation we believe will be accretive but that ultimately may not be accretive. If any of these events were to occur, our future growth and ability to increase or maintain distributions could be limited. We can give no assurance that our transaction efforts will be successful or that any such efforts will be completed on terms that are favorable to us.

Even if we consummate acquisitions that we believe will be accretive, they may in fact result in no increase or even a decrease in cash available for distribution to our unitholders. Any acquisition involves potential risks, including:

·

performance from the acquired assets and businesses that is below the forecasts we used in evaluating the acquisition;

·

mistaken assumptions about price, demand, volumes, revenues and costs, including synergies;

·

a significant increase in our indebtedness and working capital requirements;

·

an inability to hire, train or retain qualified personnel to manage and operate our business and newly acquired assets;

·

the inability to timely and effectively integrate the operations of recently acquired businesses or assets, particularly those in new geographic areas or in new lines of business;

·

mistaken assumptions about the overall costs of equity or debt;

·

the assumption of substantial unknown or unforeseen environmental and other liabilities arising out of the acquired businesses or assets, including liabilities arising from the operation of the acquired businesses or assets prior to our acquisition, for which we are not indemnified or for which the indemnity is inadequate;

·

limitations on rights to indemnity from the seller;

·

customer or key employee loss from the acquired businesses;

·

unforeseen difficulties operating in new product areas or new geographic areas; and

·

diversion of our management’s and employees’ attention from other business concerns.

If any acquisitions we ultimately consummate do not generate expected increases in cash available for distribution to our unitholders, our ability to increase or maintain distributions may be reduced.

Our gasoline financial results are seasonal and can be lower in the first and fourth quarters of the calendar year.

Due to the nature of our business and our reliance, in part, on consumer travel and spending patterns, we may experience more demand for gasoline during the late spring and summer months than during the fall and winter. Travel and recreational activities are typically higher in these months in the geographic areas in which we operate, increasing

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the demand for gasoline that we distribute. Therefore, our results of operations in gasoline can be lower in the first and fourth quarters of the calendar year.

Our heating oil and residual oil financial results are seasonal and can be lower in the second and third quarters of the calendar year.

Demand for some refined petroleum products, specifically home heating oil and residual oil for space heating purposes, is generally higher during November through March than during April through October. We obtain a significant portion of these sales during the winter months. Therefore, our results of operations in heating oil and residual oil for the first and fourth calendar quarters can be better than for the second and third quarters.

Warmer weather conditions could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition.

Weather conditions generally have an impact on the demand for both home heating oil and residual oil. Because we supply distributors whose customers depend on home heating oil and residual oil for space heating purposes during the winter, warmer‑than‑normal temperatures during the first and fourth calendar quarters in the Northeast can decrease the total volume we sell and the gross profit realized on those sales.

A significant decrease in price or demand for the products we sell or a significant decrease in demand for our logistics activities could reduce our ability to make distributions to our unitholders.

A significant decrease in price or demand for the products we sell or a significant decrease in demand for our logistics activities could reduce our revenues and, therefore, reduce our ability to make or increase distributions to our unitholders. Factors that could lead to a decrease in market demand for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane include:

·

a recession or other adverse economic conditions or an increase in the market price or of an oversupply of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane or higher fuel taxes or other governmental or regulatory actions that increase, directly or indirectly, the cost of gasoline or other refined petroleum products, renewable fuels crude oil, natural gas and propane;

·

a shift by consumers to more fuel‑efficient or alternative fuel vehicles or an increase in fuel economy of vehicles, whether as a result of technological advances by manufacturers, governmental or regulatory actions or otherwise; and

·

conversion from consumption of home heating oil or residual oil to natural gas.

Certain of our operating costs and expenses are fixed and do not vary with the volumes we store and distribute. Should we experience a reduction in our volumes stored, distributed and sold and in our related logistics activities, such costs and expenses may not decrease ratably or at all. As a result, we may experience declines in our margin if our volumes decrease.

Our business is influenced by the overall forward market for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane and increases and/or decreases in the prices of these products may adversely impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders and the amount of borrowing available for working capital under our credit agreement.

Results from our purchasing, storing, terminalling, transporting and selling operations are influenced by prices for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane price volatility and the market for such products. Prices in the overall forward market for these products may affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. Our margins can be significantly impacted by the forward product pricing curve, often referred to as the futures market. We typically hedge our exposure to petroleum product and renewable fuel price moves with futures contracts and, to a lesser extent, swaps. In markets where future prices are higher than current prices, referred to as contango, we may use our storage capacity to improve our margins by

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storing products we have purchased at lower prices in the current market for delivery to customers at higher prices in the future. In markets where future prices are lower than current prices, referred to as backwardation, inventories can depreciate in value and hedging costs are more expensive. For this reason, in these backward markets, we attempt to reduce our inventories in order to minimize these effects.

When prices for the products we sell rise, some of our customers may have insufficient credit to purchase supply from us at their historical purchase volumes, and their customers, in turn, may adopt conservation measures which reduce consumption, thereby reducing demand for product. Furthermore, when prices increase rapidly and dramatically, we may be unable to promptly pass our additional costs on to our customers, resulting in lower margins which could adversely affect our results of operations. Higher prices for the products we sell may (1) diminish our access to trade credit support and/or cause it to become more expensive and (2) decrease the amount of borrowings available for working capital under our credit agreement as a result of total available commitments, borrowing base limitations and advance rates thereunder.

When prices for the products we sell decline, our exposure to risk of loss in the event of nonperformance by our customers of our forward contracts may be increased as they and/or their customers may breach their contracts and purchase the products we sell at the then lower market price from a competitor. A significant decrease in the price for crude oil could adversely affect the economics of the domestic crude oil production for the product which, in turn, could have an adverse effect on our crude oil logistics activities and sales. A significant decrease in differentials could also have an adverse effect on our crude oil logistics activities and sales.

We have contractual obligations for certain transportation assets such as railcars, barges and pipelines.

We have obligations to satisfy contractual commitments for our railcars, barges and pipelines. A decline in demand for (i) the products we sell, including crude oil and ethanol, or (ii) our logistics activities, could result in a decrease in the utilization of these transportation assets, which could negatively impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. For example, during 2015, we experienced adverse market conditions in crude oil caused by an over-supplied crude oil market which resulted in tighter price differentials, and we experienced a reduction in our railcar movements but remained obligated to pay the applicable fixed charges for railcar leases.

Our debt levels may limit our flexibility in obtaining additional financing and in pursuing other business opportunities.

As of December 31, 2015, our total debt, including amounts outstanding under our credit agreement and senior notes, was approximately $1.2 billion. On February 24, 2016, we and certain of our subsidiaries entered into the fifth amendment to our credit agreement. We have the ability to incur debt, including the capacity to borrow up to $1.475 billion under our credit agreement, subject to limitations in our credit agreement. Our level of indebtedness could have important consequences to us, including the following:

·

our ability to obtain additional financing, if necessary, for working capital, capital expenditures, acquisitions or other purposes may be impaired or such financing may not be available on favorable terms;

·

covenants contained in our existing and future credit and debt arrangements will require us to meet financial tests that may affect our flexibility in planning for and reacting to changes in our business, including possible acquisition opportunities;

·

we will need a substantial portion of our cash flow to make principal and interest payments on our indebtedness, reducing the funds that would otherwise be available for operations, future business opportunities and distributions to unitholders;

·

our debt level will make us more vulnerable than our competitors with less debt to competitive pressures or a downturn in our business or the economy generally; and

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·

our debt level may limit our flexibility in responding to changing business and economic conditions.

Our ability to service our indebtedness depends upon, among other things, our financial and operating performance, which will be affected by prevailing economic conditions and financial, business, regulatory and other factors, some of which are beyond our control. If our operating results are not sufficient to service our current or future indebtedness, we will be forced to take actions, such as reducing or eliminating distributions, reducing or delaying our business activities, acquisitions, investments and/or capital expenditures, selling assets, restructuring or refinancing our indebtedness, or seeking additional equity capital or bankruptcy protection. We may not be able to effect any of these remedies on satisfactory terms, or at all.

A significant increase in interest rates could adversely affect our ability to service our indebtedness.

The interest rates on our credit agreement are variable; therefore, we have exposure to movements in interest rates. A significant increase in interest rates could adversely affect our ability to service our indebtedness. The increased cost could make the financing of our business activities more expensive. These added expenses could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

We may not be able to obtain funding on acceptable terms or obtain additional requested funding in excess of total commitments under our credit agreement, which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Recently, global financial markets and economic conditions have been disrupted and volatile. The debt and equity capital markets have been exceedingly distressed. These issues, along with significant write‑offs in the financial services sector, the re‑pricing of credit risk and the economic conditions, along with any other potential future economic or market uncertainties, could make it difficult to obtain funding.

As a result, the cost of raising money in the debt and equity capital markets could increase while the availability of funds from those markets could diminish. The cost of obtaining money from the credit markets could increase as many lenders and institutional investors increase interest rates, enact tighter lending standards and reduce and, in some cases, cease to provide funding to borrowers.

In addition, we may be unable to obtain adequate funding under our credit agreement because (i) one or more of our lenders may be unable to meet its funding obligations or (ii) our borrowing base under our credit agreement, as redetermined from time to time, may decrease as a result of price fluctuations, counterparty risk, advance rates and borrowing base limitations and customer nonpayment or nonperformance. 

Due to these factors, we cannot be certain that funding will be available if needed and to the extent required or requested on acceptable terms. If funding is not available when needed, or is available only on unfavorable terms, we may be unable to maintain our business as currently conducted, enhance our existing business, complete acquisitions or otherwise take advantage of business opportunities or respond to competitive pressures, any of which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Operating and financial restrictions and covenants in our credit agreement and the indentures governing our senior notes and borrowing base requirements in our credit agreement may restrict our business and financing activities.

The operating and financial restrictions and covenants in our credit agreement and the indentures governing our senior notes and any future financing agreements could restrict our ability to finance future operations or capital needs or to engage, expand or pursue our business activities. For example, our credit agreement restricts our ability to:

·

grant liens;

·

make certain loans or investments;

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·

incur additional indebtedness or guarantee other indebtedness;

·

make any material change to the nature of our business or undergo a fundamental change;

·

make any material dispositions;

·

acquire another company;

·

enter into a merger, consolidation, sale leaseback transaction or purchase of assets;

·

make distributions if any potential default or event of default occurs; or

·

modify borrowing base components and advance rates.

In addition, the indentures governing our senior notes limit our ability to, among other things:

·

incur additional indebtedness;

·

make distributions to equity owners;

·

make certain investments;

·

restrict distributions by our subsidiaries;

·

create liens;

·

enter into sale‑leaseback transactions;

·

sell assets; or

·

merge with other entities.

Our ability to comply with the covenants and restrictions contained in our credit agreement and the indentures may be affected by events beyond our control, including prevailing economic, financial and industry conditions. If market or other economic conditions deteriorate, our ability to comply with these covenants may be impaired. If we violate any of the restrictions, covenants, ratios or tests in our credit agreement or the indentures, a significant portion of our indebtedness may become immediately due and payable, and our lenders’ commitment to make further loans to us may terminate. We might not have, or be able to obtain, sufficient funds to make these accelerated payments. In addition, our obligations under our credit agreement are secured by substantially all of our assets, and if we are unable to repay our indebtedness under our credit agreement, the lenders could seek to foreclose on such assets.

Restrictions in our credit agreement and the indentures limit our ability to pay distributions upon the occurrence of certain events.

Our credit agreement and the indentures limit our ability to pay distributions upon the occurrence of certain events. For example, each of our credit agreement and the indentures limits our ability to pay distributions upon the occurrence of the following events, among others:

·

failure to pay any principal, interest, fees or other amounts when due;

·

failure to perform or otherwise comply with the covenants in the credit agreement, the indentures or in other loan documents to which we are a borrower; and

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·

a bankruptcy or insolvency event involving us, our general partner or any of our subsidiaries.

Any subsequent refinancing of our current debt or any new debt could have similar restrictions. For more information regarding our credit agreement and the indentures, please read Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations—Liquidity and Capital Resources—Credit Agreement” and Note 8 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.

We can borrow money under our credit agreement to pay distributions, which would reduce the amount of credit available to operate our business.

Our partnership agreement allows us to borrow under our credit agreement to pay distributions. Accordingly, we can make distributions on our units even though cash generated by our operations may not be sufficient to pay such distributions. For more information, please read Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations—Liquidity and Capital Resources” and Note 8 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.

The enactment of derivatives legislation could have an adverse effect on our ability to use derivative instruments to reduce the effect of commodity price, interest rate and other risks associated with our business.

On July 21, 2010, new comprehensive financial reform legislation, known as the Dodd‑Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (the “Act”), was enacted that establishes federal oversight and regulation of the over‑the‑counter derivatives market and entities, such as us, that participate in that market. The Act requires the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”), the SEC and other regulators to promulgate rules and regulations implementing the new legislation. Although the CFTC has finalized certain regulations, others remain to be finalized or implemented and it is not possible at this time to predict when this will be accomplished.

In October 2010, pursuant to its rulemaking under the Act, the CFTC issued rules to set position limits for certain futures and option contracts in the major energy markets and for swaps that are their economic equivalents. The initial position limits rule was vacated by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in September of 2012. However, in November 2013, the CFTC proposed new rules that would place limits on positions in certain core futures and equivalent swaps contracts for, or linked to, certain physical commodities, subject to exceptions for certain bona fide hedging transactions. As these new position limit rules are not yet final, the impact of those provisions on us is uncertain at this time.

The CFTC has designated certain interest rate swaps and credit default swaps for mandatory clearing and exchange trading. To the extent we engage in such transactions or transactions that become subject to such rules in the future, we will be required to comply or take steps to qualify for an exemption to such requirements. Although we expect to qualify for the end‑user exception to the mandatory clearing requirements for swaps entered to hedge our commercial risks, the application of the mandatory clearing and trade execution requirements to other market participants, such as swap dealers, may change the cost and availability of the swaps that we use for hedging. If our swaps do not qualify for the commercial enduser exception, or the cost of entering into uncleared swaps becomes prohibitive, we may be required to clear such transactions. The ultimate effect of the rules and any additional regulations on our business is uncertain at this time.

In addition, the Act requires that regulators establish margin rules for uncleared swaps. Banking regulators and the CFTC have adopted final rules establishing minimum margin requirements for uncleared swaps. Although we expect to qualify for the enduser exception from such margin requirements for swaps entered into to hedge our commercial risks, the application of such requirements to other market participants, such as swap dealers, may change the cost and availability of the swaps that we use for hedging. If any of our swaps do not qualify for the commercial enduser exception, posting of initial or variation margin could impact our liquidity and reduce cash available for capital expenditures, therefore reducing our ability to execute hedges to reduce risk and protect cash flows.

The full impact of the Act and related regulatory requirements upon our business will not be known until the regulations are implemented and the market for derivative contracts has adjusted. The Act and any new regulations could significantly increase the cost of derivative contracts (including from swap recordkeeping and reporting requirements

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and through requirements to post collateral which could adversely affect our available liquidity), materially alter the terms of derivative contracts, reduce the availability of some derivatives to protect against risks we encounter and reduce our ability to monetize or restructure our existing derivative contracts. If we reduce our use of derivatives as a result of the Act and regulations, our results of operations may become more volatile and our cash flows may be less predictable, which could adversely affect our ability to plan for and fund capital expenditures. Any of these consequences could have material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distributions to our unitholders.

In addition, the European Union and other non‑U.S. jurisdictions are implementing regulations with respect to the derivatives market. To the extent we transact with counterparties in foreign jurisdictions, we may become subject to such regulations. At this time, the impact of such regulations is not clear.

Our risk management policies cannot eliminate all commodity risk, basis risk or the impact of unfavorable market conditions which can adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. In addition, any noncompliance with our risk management policies could result in significant financial losses.

While our hedging policies are designed to minimize commodity risk, some degree of exposure to unforeseen fluctuations in market conditions remains. For example, we change our hedged position daily in response to movements in our inventory. If we overestimate or underestimate our sales from inventory, we may be unhedged for the amount of the overestimate or underestimate. Also, significant increases in the costs of the products we sell can materially increase our costs to carry inventory. We use our credit facility as our primary source of financing to carry inventory and may be limited on the amounts we can borrow to carry inventory.

Basis risk is the inherent market price risk created when a commodity of certain grade or location is purchased, sold or exchanged as compared to a purchase, sale or exchange of a like commodity at a different time or place. Transportation costs and timing differentials are components of basis risk. For example, we use the NYMEX to hedge our commodity risk with respect to pricing of energy products traded on the NYMEX. Physical deliveries under NYMEX contracts are made in New York Harbor. To the extent we take deliveries in other ports, such as Boston Harbor, we may have basis risk. In a backward market (when prices for future deliveries are lower than current prices), basis risk is created with respect to timing. In these instances, physical inventory generally loses value as basis declines over time. Basis risk cannot be entirely eliminated, and basis exposure, particularly in backward or other adverse market conditions, can adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

We monitor processes and procedures to prevent unauthorized trading and to maintain substantial balance between purchases and sales or future delivery obligations. We can provide no assurance, however, that these steps will detect and/or prevent all violations of such risk management policies and procedures, particularly if deception or other intentional misconduct is involved.

We are exposed to trade credit risk and risk associated with our trade credit support in the ordinary course of our business activities.

We are exposed to risks of loss in the event of nonperformance by our customers, by counterparties of our forward and futures contracts, options and swap agreements and by our suppliers. Some of our customers, counterparties and suppliers may be highly leveraged and subject to their own operating and regulatory risks. The tightening of credit in the financial markets may make it more difficult for customers and counterparties to obtain financing and, depending on the degree to which it occurs, there may be a material increase in the nonpayment and nonperformance of our customers and counterparties. Even if our credit review and analysis mechanisms work properly, we may experience financial losses in our dealings with other parties. Any increase in the nonpayment or nonperformance by our customers and/or counterparties and the nonperformance by our suppliers could reduce our ability to make distributions to our unitholders.

Additionally, our access to trade credit support could diminish and/or become more expensive. Our ability to continue to receive sufficient trade credit on commercially acceptable terms could be adversely affected by fluctuations

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in petroleum product and renewable fuel prices or disruptions in the credit markets or for any other reason. Any of these events could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

We are exposed to performance risk in our supply chain.

We rely upon our suppliers to timely produce the volumes and types of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane for which they contract with us. In the event one or more of our suppliers does not perform in accordance with its contractual obligations, we may be required to purchase product on the open market to satisfy forward contracts we have entered into with our customers in reliance upon such supply arrangements. We may purchase refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane from a variety of suppliers under term contracts and on the spot market. In times of extreme market demand, we may be unable to satisfy our supply requirements. Furthermore, a portion of our supply comes from other countries, which could be disrupted by political events. In the event such supply becomes scarce, whether as a result of political events, natural disaster, logistical issues associated with delivery schedules or otherwise, we may not be able to satisfy our supply requirements. If any of these events were to occur, we may be required to pay more for product that we purchase on the open market, which could result in financial losses and adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Historical prices for certain products we sell have been volatile and significant changes in such prices in the future may adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Historical prices for certain products we sell have been volatile. General political conditions, acts of war, terrorism and instability in oil producing regions, particularly in the United States, Canada, Middle East, Russia, Africa and South America, could significantly impact crude oil supplies and crude oil and refined petroleum product costs. Significant increases and volatility in wholesale gasoline costs could result in significant increases in the retail price of motor fuel products and in lower margins per gallon. Increases in the retail price of motor fuel products could impact consumer demand for motor fuel. This volatility makes it extremely difficult to predict the impact future wholesale cost fluctuations will have on our operating results and financial condition. Dramatic increases in crude oil prices squeeze fuel margins because fuel costs typically increase faster than can pass along such increases to customers. Higher fuel prices trigger higher credit card expenses, because credit card fees are calculated as a percentage of the transaction amount, not as a percentage of gallons sold. A significant change in any of these factors could materially impact our customers’ needs, motor fuel gallon volumes, gross profit and overall customer traffic, which in turn could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Our gasoline sales could be significantly reduced by a reduction in demand due to higher prices and to new technologies and alternative fuel sources, such as electric, hybrid or battery powered motor vehicles.

Technological advances and alternative fuel sources, such as electric, hybrid or battery powered motor vehicles, may adversely affect the demand for gasoline. We could face additional competition from alternative energy sources as a result of future government‑mandated controls or regulations which promote the use of alternative fuel sources. A number of new legal incentives and regulatory requirements, and executive initiatives, including the CPP and various government subsidies including the extension of certain tax credits for renewable energy, have made these alternative forms of energy more competitive. A reduction in demand for our gasoline products could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distributions to our unitholders. In addition, higher prices could reduce the demand for gasoline and adversely impact our gasoline sales. A reduction in gasoline sales could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Energy efficiency, higher prices, new technology and alternative fuels could reduce demand for our products.

Increased conservation and technological advances have adversely affected the demand for home heating oil and residual oil. Consumption of residual oil has steadily declined over the last three decades. We could face additional

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competition from alternative energy sources as a result of future government‑mandated controls or regulation further promoting the use of cleaner fuels. End users who are dual‑fuel users have the ability to switch between residual oil and natural gas. Other end users may elect to convert to natural gas. During a period of increasing residual oil prices relative to the prices of natural gas, dual‑fuel customers may switch and other end users may convert to natural gas. During periods of increasing home heating oil prices relative to the price of natural gas, residential users of home heating oil may also convert to natural gas. Such switching or conversion could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. In addition, higher prices and new technologies and alternative fuel sources, such as electric, hybrid or battery powered motor vehicles, could reduce the demand for gasoline and adversely impact our gasoline sales. A reduction in gasoline sales could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Erosion of the value of major gasoline brands could adversely affect our gasoline sales and customer traffic.

As a significant number of our retail gasoline stations and convenience stores are branded Mobil or other major gasoline brands, they may be dependent, in part, upon the continuing favorable reputation of such brands. Erosion of the value of major gasoline brands could have a negative impact on our gasoline sales, which in turn may cause our acquisition to be less profitable.

We depend upon marine, pipeline, rail and truck transportation services for a substantial portion of our logistics business in transporting the products we sell. A disruption in these transportation services could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Hurricanes, flooding and other severe weather conditions could cause a disruption in the transportation services we depend upon which could affect the flow of service. If any of those effects were to occur, they could have an adverse effect on transportation services, and thus our operations. In addition, accidents, labor disputes between providers and their employees and labor renegotiations, including strikes, lockouts or a work stoppage, shortage of railcars, mechanical difficulties or bottlenecks and disruptions in transportation logistics could also disrupt our business. These events could result in service disruptions and increased cost which could also adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. Other disruptions, such as those due to an act of terrorism or war, could also adversely affect our business.

Changes in government usage mandates and tax credits could adversely affect the availability and pricing of ethanol, which could negatively impact our sales.

Future demand for ethanol will be largely dependent upon the economic incentives to blend based upon the relative value of gasoline and ethanol, taking into consideration the EPA’s regulations on the RFS program and oxygenate blending requirements. A reduction or waiver of the RFS mandate or oxygenate blending requirements could adversely affect the availability and pricing of ethanol, which in turn could adversely affect our future gasoline and ethanol sales. In addition, changes in blending requirements could affect the price of RINs which could impact the magnitude of the mark‑to‑market liability recorded for the deficiency, if any, in our RIN position relative to our RVO at a point in time.

We may not be able to obtain state fund or insurance reimbursement of our environmental remediation costs.

Where releases of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane have occurred, federal and state laws and regulations require that contamination caused by such releases be assessed and remediated to meet applicable standards. Our obligation to remediate this type of contamination varies, depending upon applicable laws and regulations and the extent of, and the facts relating to, the release. A portion of the remediation costs may be recoverable from the reimbursement fund of the applicable state (with respect to gasoline stations) and/or from third party insurance after any deductible has been met, but there are no assurances that such reimbursement funds or insurance proceeds will be available to us.

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Future consumer or other litigation could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.

Our retail gasoline and convenience store operations are characterized by a high volume of customer traffic and by transactions involving an array of products.

These operations carry a higher exposure to consumer litigation risk when compared to the operations of companies operating in many other industries. Consequently, we may become a party to individual personal injury or products liability and other legal actions in the ordinary course of our retail gasoline and convenience store business. Any such action could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. Additionally, we are occasionally exposed to industry‑wide or class action claims arising from the products we carry or industry‑specific business practices. Our defense costs and any resulting damage awards or settlement amounts may not be fully covered by our insurance policies. An unfavorable outcome or settlement of one or more of these lawsuits could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distributions.

We depend upon a small number of suppliers for a substantial portion of our convenience store merchandise inventory. A disruption in supply or an unexpected change in our relationships with our principal merchandise suppliers could have an adverse effect on our convenience store results of operations.

We purchase convenience store merchandise inventory from a small number of suppliers for our directly operated convenience stores. A change of merchandise suppliers, a disruption in supply or a significant change in our relationships with our principal merchandise suppliers could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

We face intense competition in our purchasing, terminalling, transporting, storage and logistics activities. Competition from other providers of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane that are able to supply our customers with those products and services at a lower price and have capital resources many times greater than ours could reduce our ability to make distributions to our unitholders.

We are subject to competition from distributors and suppliers of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane that may be able to supply our customers with the same or comparable products and terminalling, transporting and storage services and logistics on a more competitive basis. We compete with terminal companies, major integrated oil companies and their marketing affiliates, wholesalers, producers and independent marketers of varying sizes, financial resources and experience. In our Northeast market, we compete in various product lines and for all customers. In the residual oil markets, however, where product is heated when stored and cannot be delivered long distances, we face less competition because of the strategic locations of our residual oil storage facilities. We compete with other transloaders in our logistics activities including, in part, storage and transportation of crude oil, and the movement of product by alternative means (e.g., pipelines). We also compete with natural gas suppliers and marketers in our home heating oil, residual oil and propane product lines. Bunkering requires facilities at ports to service vessels. In various other geographic markets, particularly the unbranded gasoline and distillates markets, we compete with integrated refiners, merchant refiners and regional marketing companies. Our retail gasoline stations compete with unbranded and branded retail gas stations as well as supermarket and warehouse stores that sell gasoline.

Some of our competitors are substantially larger than us, have greater financial resources and control greater supplies of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane than we do. If we are unable to compete effectively, we may lose existing customers or fail to acquire new customers, which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. For example, if a competitor attempts to increase market share by reducing prices, our operating results and cash available for distribution to our unitholders could be adversely affected. We may not be able to compete successfully with these companies, and our ability to compete could be harmed by factors including price competition and the availability of alternative and less expensive fuels.

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We may not be able to renew our leases or our agreements for dedicated storage when they expire.

The bulk terminals we own or lease or at which we maintain dedicated storage facilities play a key role in moving product to our customers. As of December 31, 2015, we leased the entirety of two bulk terminals that we operated exclusively for our business and operated and maintained dedicated storage facilities at another 18 bulk terminals. The lease agreements governing these arrangements are subject to expiration at various dates through 2019. These arrangements may not be renewed when they expire or, if renewed, may not be renewed at rates and on terms at least as favorable. If these agreements are not renewed or we are unable to renew these agreements at rates and on terms at least as favorable, it could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

We may not be able to lease sites we own or sub‑lease sites we lease with respect to the sale of gasoline on favorable terms and any such failure could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

If we are unable to obtain tenants on favorable terms for sites we own or lease, the lease payments we receive may not be adequate to cover our rent expense for leased sites and may not be adequate to ensure that we meet our debt service requirements. We may lease certain sites where the rent expense we pay is more than the lease payments we collect.  We cannot provide any assurance that our gross margin from the sale of transportation fuels and related convenience store items at sites will be adequate to offset unfavorable lease terms. The occurrence of these events could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Some of our sales are generated under contracts that must be renegotiated or replaced periodically. If we are unable to successfully renegotiate or replace these contracts, our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders could be adversely affected.

Most of our arrangements with our customers are renegotiated or replaced periodically. As these contracts expire, they must be renegotiated or replaced. We may be unable to renegotiate or replace these contracts when they expire, and the terms of any renegotiated contracts may not be as favorable as the contracts they replace. Whether these contracts are successfully renegotiated or replaced is often subject to factors beyond our control. Such factors include fluctuations in refined petroleum product, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane prices, counterparty ability to pay for or accept the contracted volumes and a competitive marketplace for the services offered by us. If we cannot successfully renegotiate or replace our contracts or renegotiate or replace them on less favorable terms, sales from these arrangements could decline, and our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders could be adversely affected.

Due to our lack of asset and geographic diversification, adverse developments in the terminals we use or in our operating areas would reduce our ability to make distributions to our unitholders.

We rely primarily on sales generated from products distributed from the terminals we own or control or to which we have access. Furthermore, the majority of our assets and operations are located in the Northeast. Due to our lack of diversification in asset type and location, an adverse development in these businesses or areas, including adverse developments due to catastrophic events or weather and decreases in demand for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane, could have a significantly greater impact on our results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders than if we maintained more diverse assets and locations.

Our operations are subject to operational hazards and unforeseen interruptions for which we may not be adequately insured.

We are not fully insured against all risks incident to our business. Our operations are subject to operational hazards and unforeseen interruptions such as natural disasters, adverse weather, accidents, fires, explosions, hazardous materials releases, mechanical failures, disruptions in supply infrastructure or logistics and other events beyond our control. If any of these events were to occur, we could incur substantial losses because of personal injury or loss of life,

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severe damage to and destruction of property and equipment, and pollution or other environmental damage resulting in curtailment or suspension of our related operations.

We store gasoline, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane in underground and above ground storage tanks. Our operations are also subject to significant hazards and risks inherent in storing gasoline. These hazards and risks include fires, explosions, spills, discharges and other releases, any of which could result in distribution difficulties and disruptions, environmental pollution, governmentally‑imposed fines or clean‑up obligations, personal injury or wrongful death claims and other damage to our properties and the properties of others.

Furthermore, we may be unable to maintain or obtain insurance of the type and amount we desire at reasonable rates. As a result of market conditions, premiums and deductibles for certain of our insurance policies have increased and could escalate further. In some instances, certain insurance could become unavailable or available only for reduced amounts of coverage. If we were to incur a significant liability for which we are not fully insured, it could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to unitholders.

New, stricter environmental laws and regulations could significantly impact our operations and/or increase our costs, which could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition.

Our operations are subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations regulating product quality specifications and other environmental matters. The trend in environmental regulation is towards more restrictions and limitations on activities that may affect the environment over time. Our business may be adversely affected by increased costs and liabilities resulting from such stricter laws and regulations. We try to anticipate future regulatory requirements that might be imposed and plan accordingly to remain in compliance with changing environmental laws and regulations and to minimize the costs of such compliance. The federal government recently finalized a rule including new design and construction requirements for railroad tank cars that are used to transport crude oil and ethanol. The establishment of more stringent design or construction requirements for railroad tank cars that are used to transport crude oil and ethanol with too short of a timeframe for compliance may lead to shortages of compliant railcars available to transport crude oil and ethanol, which could adversely affect our business. Likewise, some environmental interest groups have commenced efforts to seek to use state and local laws to restrict the types of railroad tanks cars that can be used to deliver crude oil to petroleum bulk storage terminals. Were such state and local laws to come into effect and were they to survive appeals and judicial review, they would potentially expose our operations to duplicative and possibly inconsistent regulation.

There can be no assurances as to the timing and type of such changes in existing laws or the promulgation of new laws or the amount of any required expenditures associated therewith.

Our terminalling operations are subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations relating to environmental protection and operational safety that could require us to incur substantial costs.

The risk of substantial environmental costs and liabilities is inherent in terminal operations, and we may incur substantial environmental costs and liabilities. Our terminalling operations involving the receipt, storage and redelivery of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane are subject to stringent federal, state and local laws and regulations governing the discharge of materials into the environment, or otherwise relating to the protection of the environment, operational safety and related matters. Compliance with these laws and regulations increases our overall cost of business, including our capital costs to maintain and upgrade equipment and facilities. We utilize a number of terminals that are owned and operated by third parties who are also subject to these stringent federal, state and local environmental laws in their operations. Their compliance with these requirements could increase the cost of doing business with these facilities.

In addition, our operations could be adversely affected if shippers of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane incur additional costs or liabilities associated with environmental regulations. These shippers could increase their charges to us or discontinue service altogether. Similarly, many of our suppliers face a trend of increasing environmental regulations, which could likewise restrict their ability to produce crude oil or fuels, or increase their costs of production, and thus impact the price of, and/or their ability to deliver, these products.

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Various governmental authorities, including the EPA, have the power to enforce compliance with these regulations and the permits issued under them, and violators are subject to administrative, civil and criminal penalties, including fines, injunctions or both. Joint and several liability may be incurred, without regard to fault or the legality of the original conduct, under federal and state environmental laws for the remediation of contaminated areas at our facilities and those where we do business. Private parties, including the owners of properties located near our terminal facilities and those with whom we do business, also may have the right to pursue legal actions against us to enforce compliance with environmental laws, as well as seek damages for personal injury or property damage. We may also be held liable for damages to natural resources.

The possibility exists that new, stricter laws, regulations or enforcement policies could significantly increase our compliance costs and the cost of any remediation that may become necessary, some of which may be material. Our insurance may not cover all environmental risks and costs or may not provide sufficient coverage in the event an environmental claim is made against us. We may incur increased costs because of stricter pollution control requirements or liabilities resulting from noncompliance with required operating or other regulatory permits. New environmental regulations, such as those related to the emissions of GHGs, might adversely affect our products and activities, including the storage of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane, as well as our waste management practices and our control of air emissions. Enactment of laws and passage of regulations regarding GHG emissions, or other actions to limit GHG emissions may reduce demand for fossil fuels and impact our business. Federal and state agencies also could impose additional safety regulations to which we would be subject. Because the laws and regulations applicable to our operations are subject to change, we cannot provide any assurance that compliance with future laws and regulations will not have a material effect on our results of operations.

Additionally, the construction of new terminals or the expansion of an existing terminal involves numerous regulatory, environmental, political and legal uncertainties, most of which are not in our control. Delays, litigation, local concerns and difficulty in obtaining approvals for projects requiring federal, state or local permits could impact our ability to build, expand and operate strategic facilities and infrastructure, which could adversely impact growth and operational efficiency.

Increased regulation of GHG emissions could result in increased operating costs and reduced demand for refined petroleum products as a fuel source, which could reduce demand for our products, decrease our revenues and reduce our profitability.

Combustion of fossil fuels, such as the refined petroleum products we sell, results in the emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. On December 15, 2009, the EPA published its findings that emissions of carbon dioxide and other GHGs present an endangerment to public health and the environment because emissions of such gases are, according to the EPA, contributing to warming of the earth’s atmosphere and other climatic changes, and the EPA has begun to regulate GHG emissions pursuant to the CAA. In addition, it is possible federal legislation could be adopted in the future to restrict GHG, as President Obama has expressed support for a mandatory cap and trade program to restrict or regulate emissions of GHGs, and Congress considered various proposals to reduce GHG emissions. Many states and regions have adopted GHG initiatives. Please read “Items 1. and 2. Business and Properties—Environmental—Air Emissions.”

There are many regulatory approaches currently in effect or being considered to address GHGs, including possible future U.S. treaty commitments, new federal or state legislation that may impose a carbon emissions tax or establish a cap‑and‑trade program and regulation by the EPA. For example, the EPA recently released the CPP to reduce CO2 emissions from power plants, which is currently subject to a judicial stay. In addition, at the 2015 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris, the United States and nearly 200 other nations entered into an international climate agreement. Although this agreement does not create any binding obligations for nations to limit their GHG emissions, it does include pledges to voluntarily limit or reduce future emissions. Future international, federal and state initiatives, or an unfavorable outcome in the CPP judicial challenge, to control carbon dioxide emissions could result in increased costs associated with refined petroleum products consumption, such as costs to install additional controls to reduce carbon dioxide emissions or costs to purchase emissions reduction credits to comply with future emissions trading programs. Such increased costs could result in reduced demand for refined petroleum products and

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some customers switching to alternative sources of fuel which could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distributions to our unitholders.

Our business involves the buying, selling and shipping by rail of crude oils including from the Bakken Shale, which involves risks of derailment, accidents and liabilities associated with cleanup and damages, as well as potential regulatory changes that may adversely impact our business, financial condition or results of operations.

Our operations involve the buying and selling of crude oil including from the Bakken Shale and shipping it by rail to various markets including on railcars that we lease. Recent derailments in North America of trains transporting crude oil have caused various regulatory agencies and industry organizations, as well as federal, state and municipal governments, to focus attention on transportation by rail of flammable materials. Transportation safety regulators in the United States and Canada are concerned that crude oil from the Bakken Shale may be more flammable than crude oil from other producing regions and are investigating that issue and are also considering changes to existing regulations to address those possible risks. A final rule promulgated by PHMSA in May 2015 requires, among other things, enhanced tank car standards, a classification and testing program for crude oil, and a phase‑out date by as early as October 2017 for older DOT‑111 tank cars that are not retrofitted. The rule also includes a new braking standard for certain trains, designates new operational protocols for trains transporting large volumes of flammable liquids, such as routing requirements, speed restrictions, and information for local government agencies, and provides new sampling and testing requirements to improve classification of energy products placed into transport. At the same time that PHMSA released its new rule, Canadas Minister of Transport announced Canada’s new tank car standards, which largely align with the requirements in the PHMSA rule. In addition, Transport Canada has also issued emergency directives and ministerial orders relating to train speed restrictions, route risk analyses, and a phase out of non‑compliant DOT 111 tank cars.

Any changes to the existing laws and regulations, or promulgation of new laws and regulations, including any voluntary measures by the rail industry, that result in new requirements for the design, construction or operation of tank cars used to transport crude oil may require us to make expenditures to comply with new standards that are material to our operations, and, to the extent that new regulations require design changes or other modifications of tank cars, we may incur significant constraints on transportation capacity during the period while tank cars are being retrofitted or newly constructed to comply with the new regulations. We cannot assure that the totality of costs incurred to comply with any new standards and regulations and any impacts on our operations will not be material to our business, financial condition or results of operations. In addition, any derailment of crude oil from the Bakken Shale involving crude oil that we have purchased or are shipping may result in claims being brought against us that may involve significant liabilities. Although we believe that we are adequately insured against such events, we cannot assure you that our policies will cover the entirety of any damages that may arise from such an event.

We are subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations that govern the product quality specifications of the refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane we purchase, store, transport and sell.

Various federal, state and local government agencies have the authority to prescribe specific product quality specifications to the sale of commodities. Our business includes such commodities. Changes in product quality specifications, such as reduced sulfur content in refined petroleum products, or other more stringent requirements for fuels, could reduce our ability to procure product and our sales volume, require us to incur additional handling costs and/or require the expenditure of capital. For instance, different product specifications for different markets could require additional storage. If we are unable to procure product or recover these costs through increased sales, we may not be able to meet our financial obligations. Failure to comply with these regulations could result in substantial penalties.

We are subject to federal and state environmental regulations which could have a material adverse effect on our retail operations business.

Our retail operations are subject to extensive federal and state laws and regulations, including those relating to the protection of the environment, waste management, discharge of hazardous materials, pollution prevention, as well as laws and regulations relating to public safety and health. Certain of these laws and regulations may require assessment or remediation efforts. Retail operations with USTs are subject to federal and state regulations and legislation. Compliance

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with existing and future environmental laws regulating USTs may require significant capital expenditures and increased operating and maintenance costs. The operation of USTs also poses certain other risks, including damages associated with soil and groundwater contamination. Leaks from USTs which may occur at one or more of our gas stations may impact soil or groundwater and could result in fines or civil liability for us. We may be required to make material expenditures to modify operations, perform site cleanups or curtail operations.

We are subject to federal and state non‑environmental regulations which could have an adverse effect on our convenience store business and results of operations.

Our convenience store business is subject to extensive governmental laws and regulations that include legal restrictions on the sale of alcohol, tobacco and lottery products, food safety and health requirements and public accessibility. Furthermore, state and local regulatory agencies have the power to approve, revoke, suspend, or deny applications for and renewals of permits and licenses relating to the sale of alcohol, tobacco and lottery products or to seek other remedies. A violation of or change in such laws and/or regulations could have an adverse effect on our convenience store business and results of operations.

Any terrorist attacks aimed at our facilities and any global and domestic economic repercussions from terrorist activities and the government’s response could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, the U.S. government has issued warnings that energy assets may be future targets of terrorist organizations. In addition to the threat of terrorist attacks, we face various other security threats, including cyber security threats to gain unauthorized access to sensitive information or systems or to render data or systems unusable; threats to the safety of our employees; threats to the security of our facilities, such as terminals and pipelines, and infrastructure or third‑party facilities and infrastructure. These developments have subjected our operations to increased risks.

Although we utilize various procedures and controls to monitor these threats and mitigate our exposure to security threats, there can be no assurance that these procedures and controls will be sufficient in preventing security threats from materializing. If any of these events were to materialize, they could lead to losses of sensitive information, critical infrastructure, personnel or capabilities, essential to our operations and could have a material adverse effect on our reputation, financial position, results of operations, or cash flows. Cyber security attacks in particular are evolving and include malicious software, attempts to gain unauthorized access to, or otherwise disrupt, our pipeline control systems, attempts to gain unauthorized access to data, and other electronic security breaches that could lead to disruptions in critical systems, including our pipeline control systems, unauthorized release of confidential or otherwise protected information and corruption of data. These events could damage our reputation and lead to financial losses from remedial actions, loss of business or potential liability.

We incur costs for providing facility security and may incur additional costs in the future with respect to the receipt, storage and distribution of our products. Additional security measures could also restrict our ability to distribute refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane. Any future terrorist attack on our facilities, or those of our customers, could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Terrorist activity could lead to increased volatility in prices for home heating oil, gasoline and other products we sell, which could decrease our customers’ demand for these products. Insurance carriers are required to offer coverage for terrorist activities as a result of federal legislation. We purchase this coverage with respect to our property and casualty insurance programs. This additional coverage resulted in additional insurance premiums which could increase further in the future.

We depend on key personnel for the success of our business.

We depend on the services of our senior management team and other key personnel. The loss of the services of any member of senior management or key employee could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of

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operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. We may not be able to locate or employ on acceptable terms qualified replacements for senior management or other key employees if their services were no longer available.

Certain executive officers of our general partner perform services for certain of our affiliates pursuant to shared services agreements. Please read Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence—Relationship of Management with Global Petroleum Corp. and AE Holdings Corp.”

We depend on unionized labor for the operation of certain of our terminals. Any work stoppages or labor disturbances at these terminals could disrupt our business.

Any work stoppages or labor disturbances by our unionized labor force at our facilities could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. In addition, employees who are not currently represented by labor unions may seek representation in the future, and any renegotiation of collective bargaining agreements may result in terms that are less favorable to us.

We rely on our information technology systems to manage numerous aspects of our business, and a disruption of these systems could adversely affect our business.

We depend on our information technology (“IT”) systems to manage numerous aspects of our business and to provide analytical information to management. Our IT systems are an essential component of our business and growth strategies, and a serious disruption to our IT systems could significantly limit our ability to manage and operate our business effectively. These systems are vulnerable to, among other things, damage and interruption from power loss or natural disasters, computer system and network failures, loss of telecommunication services, physical and electronic loss of data, security breaches and computer viruses. We have a disaster recovery plan in place, but this plan may not entirely prevent delays or other complications that could arise from an IT systems failure. Any failure or interruption in our IT systems could have a negative impact on our operating results, cause our business and competitive position to suffer and damage our reputation.

If we fail to maintain an effective system of internal controls, then we may not be able to accurately report our financial results or prevent fraud. As a result, current and potential unitholders could lose confidence in our financial reporting, which would harm our business and the trading price of our common units.

Effective internal controls are necessary for us to provide reliable financial reports, prevent fraud and operate successfully as a public company. If our efforts to maintain internal controls are not successful or if we are unable to maintain adequate controls over our financial processes and reporting in the future or if we are unable to comply with our obligations under Section 404 of the Sarbanes‑Oxley Act of 2002, our operating results could be harmed or we may fail to meet our reporting obligations. Ineffective internal controls also could cause investors to lose confidence in our reported financial information, which would likely have a negative effect on the trading price of our common units.

Risks Related to our Structure

Our general partner and its affiliates have conflicts of interest and limited fiduciary duties, which could permit them to favor their own interests to the detriment of our unitholders.

As of February 25, 2016, affiliates of our general partner, including directors and executive officers and their affiliates, owned 21.9% of our common units and the entire general partner interest. Although our general partner has a fiduciary duty to manage us in a manner beneficial to us and our unitholders, the directors and officers of our general partner have a fiduciary duty to manage our general partner in a manner beneficial to its owners. Furthermore, certain directors and officers of our general partner are directors or officers of affiliates of our general partner. Conflicts of interest may arise between our general partner and its affiliates, on the one hand, and us and our unitholders, on the other hand. As a result of these conflicts, our general partner may favor its own interests and the interests of its affiliates over the interests of our unitholders. Please read “—Our partnership agreement limits our general partner’s fiduciary duties to

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unitholders and restricts the remedies available to unitholders for actions taken by our general partner that might otherwise constitute breaches of fiduciary duty.” These conflicts include, among others, the following situations:

·

Our general partner is allowed to take into account the interests of parties other than us, such as affiliates of its members, in resolving conflicts of interest, which has the effect of limiting its fiduciary duty to our unitholders.

·

Affiliates of our general partner may engage in competition with us under certain circumstances. Please read “—Certain members of the Slifka family and their affiliates may engage in activities that compete directly with us.”

·

Neither our partnership agreement nor any other agreement requires owners of our general partner to pursue a business strategy that favors us. Directors and officers of our general partner’s owners have a fiduciary duty to make these decisions in the best interest of such owners which may be contrary to our interests.

·

Some officers of our general partner who provide services to us devote time to affiliates of our general partner.

·

Our general partner has limited its liability and reduced its fiduciary duties under the partnership agreement, while also restricting the remedies available to our unitholders for actions that, without these limitations, might constitute breaches of fiduciary duty. As a result of purchasing common units, unitholders consent to some actions and conflicts of interest that might otherwise constitute a breach of fiduciary or other duties under applicable state law.

·

Our general partner determines the amount and timing of asset purchases and sales, borrowings, issuances of additional partnership securities and reserves, each of which can affect the amount of cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

·

Our general partner determines the amount and timing of any capital expenditures and whether a capital expenditure is a maintenance capital expenditure, which reduces distributable cash flow, or a capital expenditure for acquisitions or capital improvements, which does not, and determination can affect the amount of cash distributed to our unitholders.

·

In some instances, our general partner may cause us to borrow funds in order to permit the payment of cash distributions, even if the purpose or effect of the borrowing is to make incentive distributions.

·

Our general partner determines which costs incurred by it and its affiliates are reimbursable by us.

·

Our partnership agreement does not restrict our general partner from causing us to pay it or its affiliates for any services rendered on terms that are fair and reasonable to us or entering into additional contractual arrangements with any of these entities on our behalf.

·

Our general partner intends to limit its liability regarding our contractual and other obligations.

·

Our general partner may exercise its limited right to call and purchase common units if it and its affiliates own more than 80% of the common units.

·

Our general partner controls the enforcement of obligations owed to us by it and its affiliates.

·

Our general partner decides whether to retain separate counsel, accountants or others to perform services for us.

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Please read Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence—Omnibus Agreement and Business Opportunity Agreement.”

Our partnership agreement limits our general partner’s fiduciary duties to unitholders and restricts the remedies available to unitholders for actions taken by our general partner that might otherwise constitute breaches of fiduciary duty.

Our partnership agreement contains provisions that reduce the standards to which our general partner would otherwise be held by state fiduciary duty law. For example, our partnership agreement:

·

permits our general partner to make a number of decisions in its individual capacity, as opposed to in its capacity as our general partner. This entitles our general partner to consider only the interests and factors that it desires, and it has no duty or obligation to give any consideration to any interest of, or factors affecting, us, our affiliates or any limited partner. Examples include the exercise of its limited call right, its voting rights with respect to the units it owns, its registration rights and its determination whether or not to consent to any merger or consolidation of us;

·

provides that our general partner shall not have any liability to us or our unitholders for decisions made in its capacity as general partner so long as it acted in good faith, meaning it believed that the decision was in our best interests;

·

generally provides that affiliated transactions and resolutions of conflicts of interest not approved by the conflicts committee of the board of directors of our general partner and not involving a vote of unitholders must be on terms no less favorable to us than those generally being provided to or available from unrelated third parties or be “fair and reasonable” to us and that, in determining whether a transaction or resolution is “fair and reasonable,” our general partner may consider the totality of the relationships between the parties involved, including other transactions that may be particularly advantageous or beneficial to us; and

·

provides that our general partner and its officers and directors will not be liable for monetary damages to us, our limited partners or assignees for any acts or omissions unless there has been a final and non‑appealable judgment entered by a court of competent jurisdiction determining that the general partner or those other persons acted in bad faith or engaged in fraud or willful misconduct.

By purchasing a common unit, a common unitholder will become bound by the provisions of the partnership agreement, including the provisions described above.

Unitholders have limited voting rights and are not entitled to elect our general partner or its directors or remove our general partner without the consent of the holders of at least 66 2/3% of the outstanding units (including units held by our general partner and its affiliates), which could lower the trading price of our common units.

Unlike the holders of common stock in a corporation, unitholders have only limited voting rights on matters affecting our business and, therefore, limited ability to influence management’s decisions regarding our business. Unitholders have no right to elect our general partner or its board of directors on an annual or other continuing basis. The board of directors of our general partner is chosen entirely by its members and not by the unitholders. Furthermore, if the unitholders are dissatisfied with the performance of our general partner, they have limited ability to remove our general partner. The vote of the holders of at least 66 2/3% of all outstanding common units (including units held by our general partner and its affiliates) is required to remove our general partner. As a result of these limitations, the price at which the common units trade could diminish because of the absence or reduction of a takeover premium in the trading price.

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We may issue additional units without unitholder approval, which would dilute unitholders’ ownership interests.

At any time, we may issue an unlimited number of limited partner interests of any type without the approval of our unitholders. The issuance by us of additional common units or other equity securities of equal or senior rank will have the following effects:

·

our unitholders’ proportionate ownership interest in us will decrease;

·

the amount of cash available for distribution on each unit may decrease;

·

the relative voting strength of each previously outstanding unit may be diminished; and

·

the market price of the common units may decline.

The market price of our common units could be adversely affected by sales of substantial amounts of our common units, including sales by our existing unitholders.

A substantial number of our securities may be sold in the future either pursuant to Rule 144 under the Securities Act or pursuant to a registration statement filed with the SEC. Rule 144 under the Securities Act provides that after a holding period of six months, non‑ affiliates may resell restricted securities of reporting companies, provided that current public information for the reporting company is available. After a holding period of one year, non‑affiliates may resell without restriction, and affiliates may resell in compliance with the volume, current public information and manner of sale requirements of Rule 144. Pursuant to our partnership agreement, members of the Slifka family have registration rights with respect to the common units owned by them.

Sales by any of our existing unitholders of a substantial number of our common units, or the perception that such sales might occur, could have a material adverse effect on the price of our common units or could impair our ability to obtain capital through an offering of equity securities.

The securities market has recently experienced extreme price and volume fluctuations. This volatility has had a significant effect on the market price of securities issued by many companies for reasons unrelated to the operating performance of these companies. Future market fluctuations may result in a lower price of our common units.

An increase in interest rates may cause the market price of our common units to decline.

Like all equity investments, an investment in our common units is subject to certain risks. In exchange for accepting these risks, investors may expect to receive a higher rate of return than would otherwise be obtainable from lower‑risk investments. Accordingly, as interest rates rise, the ability of investors to obtain higher risk‑adjusted rates of return by purchasing government‑backed debt securities may cause a corresponding decline in demand for riskier investments generally, including yield‑based equity investments such as publicly‑traded limited partnership interests. Reduced demand for our common units resulting from investors seeking other more favorable investment opportunities may cause the trading price of our common units to decline.

Our general partner has a limited call right that may require unitholders to sell their common units at an undesirable time or price.

If at any time our general partner and its affiliates own more than 80% of the common units, our general partner will have the right, but not the obligation, which it may assign to any of its affiliates or to us, to acquire all, but not less than all, of the common units held by unaffiliated persons at a price not less than their then‑current market price. As a result, unitholders may be required to sell their common units at an undesirable time or price and may not receive any return on their investment. Unitholders may also incur a tax liability upon a sale of their units. Our general partner is not obligated to obtain a fairness opinion regarding the value of the common units to be repurchased by it upon exercise of the limited call right. There is no restriction in our partnership agreement that prevents our general partner from issuing additional common units and exercising its call right. If our general partner exercises its limited call right, the effect

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would be to take us private and, if the units were subsequently deregistered, we would no longer be subject to the reporting requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

Our partnership agreement restricts the voting rights of unitholders owning 20% or more of our common units.

Our partnership agreement restricts unitholders’ voting rights by providing that any units held by a person that owns 20% or more of any class of units then outstanding, other than our general partner, its affiliates, their transferees and persons who acquired such units with the prior approval of the board of directors of our general partner, cannot vote on any matter. Our partnership agreement also contains provisions limiting the ability of unitholders to call meetings or acquire information about our operations, as well as other provisions limiting the unitholders’ ability to influence the manner or direction of management.

Cost reimbursements due to our general partner and its affiliates will reduce cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

Prior to making any distribution on the common units, we reimburse our general partner and its affiliates for all expenses they incur on our behalf, which is determined by our general partner in its sole discretion. These expenses include all costs incurred by the general partner and its affiliates in managing and operating us, including costs for rendering corporate staff and support services to us. We are managed and operated by directors and executive officers of our general partner. In addition, the majority of our operating personnel are employees of our general partner. Please read Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence.” The reimbursement of expenses and payment of fees, if any, to our general partner and its affiliates could adversely affect our ability to pay cash distributions to our unitholders.

Unitholders may not have limited liability if a court finds that unitholder action constitutes control of our business.

A general partner of a partnership generally has unlimited liability for the obligations of the partnership, except for those contractual obligations of the partnership that are expressly made without recourse to the general partner. Our partnership is organized under Delaware law, and we conduct business in a number of other states. The limitations on the liability of holders of limited partner interests for the obligations of a limited partnership have not been clearly established in some of the other states in which we do business. A unitholder could be liable for our obligations as if he were a general partner if:

·

a court or government agency determined that we were conducting business in a state but had not complied with that particular state’s partnership statute; or

·

a unitholder’s right to act with other unitholders to remove or replace the general partner, approve some amendments to our partnership agreement or take other actions under our partnership agreement constitute “control” of our business.

Unitholders may have liability to repay distributions.

Under certain circumstances, unitholders may have to repay amounts wrongfully returned or distributed to them. Under Delaware law, we may not make a distribution to unitholders if the distribution would cause our liabilities to exceed the fair value of our assets. Delaware law provides that for a period of three years from the date of the impermissible distribution, limited partners who received the distribution and who knew at the time of the distribution that it violated Delaware law will be liable to the limited partnership for the distribution amount. Purchasers of units who become limited partners are liable for the obligations of the transferring limited partner to make contributions to us that are known to the purchaser of units at the time it became a limited partner and for unknown obligations if the liabilities could be determined from the partnership agreement. Liabilities to partners on account of their partnership interests and liabilities that are non‑recourse to us are not counted for purposes of determining whether a distribution is permitted.

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The control of our general partner may be transferred to a third party without unitholder consent.

Our general partner may transfer its general partner interest to a third party in a merger or in a sale of all or substantially all of its assets without the consent of the unitholders. Furthermore, there is no restriction in the partnership agreement on the ability of the members of our general partner from transferring their respective membership interests in our general partner to a third party. The new members of our general partner would then be in a position to replace the board of directors and officers of our general partner with their own choices and control the decisions taken by the board of directors and officers of our general partner.

Certain members of the Slifka family and their affiliates may engage in activities that compete directly with us.

Mr. Richard Slifka and his affiliates (other than us) are subject to noncompetition provisions in the omnibus agreement and business opportunity agreement. In addition Mr. Eric Slifka’s and Mr. Andrew Slifka’s employment agreements contain noncompetition provisions. These agreements do not prohibit Messrs. Richard Slifka,  Eric Slifka and Andrew Slifka and certain affiliates of our general partner from owning certain assets or engaging in certain businesses that compete directly or indirectly with us. Please read Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence—Omnibus Agreement and Business Opportunity Agreement.”

Tax Risks

Our tax treatment depends on our status as a partnership for federal income tax purposes. If the Internal Revenue Service, or IRS, were to treat us as a corporation for federal income tax purposes, which would subject us to entity level taxation, then our cash available for distribution to our unitholders would be substantially reduced.

The anticipated after‑tax economic benefit of an investment in the common units depends largely on our being treated as a partnership for federal income tax purposes. We have not requested a ruling from the IRS on this or any other tax matter affecting us.

Despite the fact that we are a limited partnership under Delaware law, it is possible in certain circumstances for a partnership such as ours to be treated as a corporation for federal income tax purposes. Although we do not believe based upon our current operations that we are or will be so treated, a change in our business or a change in current law could cause us to be treated as a corporation for federal income tax purposes or otherwise subject us to taxation as an entity.

If we were treated as a corporation for federal income tax purposes, we would pay federal income tax on our taxable income at the corporate tax rate, which is currently a maximum of 35%, and would likely pay state and local income tax at varying rates. Distributions would generally be taxed again as corporate distributions, and no income, gains, losses, deductions or credits would flow through to you. Because a tax would be imposed upon us as a corporation, our cash available for distribution to our unitholders would be substantially reduced. Therefore, if we were treated as a corporation for federal income tax purposes, there would be a material reduction in the anticipated cash flow and after‑tax return to our unitholders, likely causing a substantial reduction in the value of our common units.

If we were subjected to a material amount of additional entity level taxation by individual states, it would reduce our cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

At the state level, several states have been evaluating ways to independently subject partnerships to entity level taxation through the imposition of state income, franchise and other forms of taxation. Imposition of any such taxes by individual states or an increase in the existing tax rates would reduce the cash available for distribution to our unitholders. Our partnership agreement provides that, if a law is enacted or existing law is modified or interpreted in a manner that subjects us to additional amounts of entity level taxation, the minimum quarterly distribution amount and the target distribution amounts may be adjusted to reflect the impact of that law on us.

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The tax treatment of publicly traded partnerships or an investment in our common units could be subject to potential legislative, judicial or administrative changes or differing interpretations, possibly applied on a retroactive basis.

The present U.S. federal income tax treatment of publicly traded partnerships, including us, or an investment in our common units may be modified by administrative, legislative or judicial changes or differing interpretations at any time. For example, the Obama administration’s budget proposal for fiscal year 2017 recommends that certain publicly traded partnerships earning income from activities related to fossil fuels be taxed as corporations beginning in 2022. From time to time, members of Congress propose and consider such substantive changes to the existing federal income tax laws that affect publicly traded partnerships.  If successful, the Obama administration’s proposal or other similar proposals could eliminate the qualifying income exception to the treatment of all publicly traded partnerships as corporations, upon which we rely for our treatment as a partnership for U.S. federal income tax purposes.

In addition, on May 5, 2015, the IRS issued proposed regulations concerning which activities give rise to qualifying income within the meaning of Section 7704 of the Internal Revenue Code. We do not believe the proposed regulations affect our ability to qualify as a publicly traded partnership. However, finalized regulations could modify the amount of our gross income that we are able to treat as qualifying income for the purposes of the qualifying income requirement.

Any modification to the U.S. federal income tax laws may be applied retroactively and could make it more difficult or impossible for us to meet the exception for certain publicly traded partnerships to be treated as partnerships for U.S. federal income tax purposes. We are unable to predict whether any of these changes or other proposals will ultimately be enacted. Any such changes could negatively impact the value of an investment in our common units.

Our partnership agreement provides that if a law is enacted or existing law is modified or interpreted in a manner that subjects us to taxation as a corporation or otherwise subjects us to entity‑level taxation for federal income tax purposes, the minimum quarterly distribution and the target distribution amounts may be adjusted to reflect the impact of that law on us.

We have subsidiaries that are treated as corporations for federal income tax purposes and subject to corporate‑level income taxes.

As of December 31, 2015, we conducted substantially all of our operations of our end‑user business through six subsidiaries that are treated as corporations for federal income tax purposes. These corporations engage in the retail sale of gasoline and/or operates convenience stores and collect rents on personal property leased to dealers and commissioned agents at other stations. Five of these corporations include Warren and its subsidiaries which we acquired in January 2015. We may elect to conduct additional operations through these corporate subsidiaries in the future. These corporate subsidiaries are subject to corporate‑level taxes, which reduce the cash available for distribution to us and, in turn, to unitholders. If the IRS were to successfully assert that these corporations have more tax liability than we anticipate or legislation were enacted that increased the corporate tax rate, our cash available for distribution to unitholders would be further reduced.

If the IRS contests the federal income tax positions we take, the market for our common units may be adversely impacted, and the costs of any IRS contest will reduce our cash available for distribution to unitholders. Recently enacted legislation alters the procedures for assessing and collecting taxes due for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2016, in a manner that could substantially reduce cash available for distribution to you.

We have not requested a ruling from the IRS with respect to our treatment as a partnership for federal income tax purposes. The IRS may adopt positions that differ from the tax positions we take. It may be necessary to resort to administrative or court proceedings to sustain some or all of the positions we take. A court may not agree with the positions we take. Any contest with the IRS may materially and adversely impact the market for our common units and the price at which they trade. In addition, because the costs will be borne indirectly by our unitholders and our general partner, the costs of any contest with the IRS will result in a reduction in cash available for distribution.

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Recently enacted legislation, applicable to us for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2017, alters the procedures for auditing large partnerships and also alters the procedures for assessing and collecting taxes due (including applicable penalties and interest) as a result of an audit. Under the new rules, unless we are eligible to, and do, elect to issue revised Schedules K-1 to our partners with respect to an audited and adjusted return, the IRS may assess and collect taxes (including any applicable penalties and interest) directly from us in the year in which the audit is completed. If we are required to pay taxes, penalties and interest as the result of audit adjustments, cash available for distribution to our unitholders may be substantially reduced. In addition, because payment would be due for the taxable year in which the audit is completed, unitholders during that taxable year would bear the expense of the adjustment even if they were not unitholders during the audited taxable year.

Even if our unitholders do not receive any cash distributions from us, they will be required to pay taxes on their share of our taxable income.

Because unitholders are treated as partners to whom we allocate taxable income, which could be different in amount than the cash we distribute, unitholders may be required to pay any federal income taxes and, in some cases, state and local income taxes on their share of our taxable income even if they do not receive any cash distributions from us. For example, if we sell assets and use the proceeds to repay existing debt or fund capital expenditures, you may be allocated taxable income and gain resulting from the sale and our cash available for distribution would not increase. Similarly, taking advantage of opportunities to reduce our existing debt, such as debt exchanges, debt repurchases, or modifications of our existing debt could result in “cancellation of indebtedness income” being allocated to our unitholders as taxable income without any increase in our cash available for distribution. Our unitholders may not receive cash distributions from us equal to their share of our taxable income or even equal to the tax liability that results from that income.

Tax gain or loss on the disposition of our common units could be more or less than expected.

If a unitholder sells his common units, he will recognize a gain or loss equal to the difference between the amount realized and his tax basis in those common units. Because distributions to a unitholder in excess of the unitholder’s allocable share of our net taxable income decreases the unitholder’s tax basis in his common units, the amount, if any, of such prior excess distributions with respect to the units sold will, in effect, become taxable income to him if the common units are sold at a price greater than his tax basis in the common units, even if the price he receives is less than his original cost. In addition, because the amount realized includes a unitholder’s share of our non‑recourse liabilities, if a unitholder sells his units, he may incur a tax liability in excess of the amount of cash he receives from the sale.

A substantial portion of the amount realized from the sale of units by an investor, whether or not representing gain, may be taxed as ordinary income to the holder due to potential recapture items, including depreciation recapture. Thus, a unitholder may recognize both ordinary income and capital loss from the sale of his units if the amount realized on a sale of such units is less than such unitholder’s adjusted basis in the units. Net capital loss may only offset capital gains and, in the case of individuals, up to $3,000 of ordinary income per year. In the taxable period in which a unitholder sells his units, the unitholder may recognize ordinary income from our allocations of income and gain to him prior to the sale and from recapture items that generally cannot be offset by any capital loss recognized upon the sale of units.

Tax‑exempt entities and non‑U.S. persons face unique tax issues from owning our common units that may result in adverse tax consequences to them.

Investment in common units by tax‑exempt entities, such as employee benefit plans, individual retirement accounts (known as IRAs), and non‑U.S. persons raises issues unique to them. For example, virtually all of our income allocated to organizations exempt from federal income tax, including IRAs and other retirement plans, will be unrelated business taxable income and will be taxable to them. Allocations and/or distributions to non‑U.S. persons will be subject to withholding taxes imposed at the highest effective tax rate applicable to such non‑U.S. persons, and each non‑U.S. person will be required to file U.S. federal tax returns and pay tax on their share of our taxable income. If you are a tax exempt entity or a non‑U.S. person, you should consult your tax advisor before investing in our common units.

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We treat each purchaser of our common units as having the same tax benefits without regard to the actual common units purchased. The IRS may challenge this treatment, which could adversely affect the value of the common units.

To maintain the uniformity of the economic and tax characteristics of our common units, we have adopted certain depreciation and amortization positions that may not conform to all aspects of existing Treasury Regulations. A successful IRS challenge to those positions could adversely affect the amount of taxable income or loss allocated to our unitholders. It also could affect the gain from a unitholder’s sale of common units or result in audit adjustments to our unitholders’ tax returns without the benefit of additional deductions. Consequently, a successful IRS challenge could have a negative impact on the value of our common units.

We prorate our items of income, gain, loss and deduction between transferors and transferees of our common units each month based upon the ownership of our common units on the first day of each month, instead of on the basis of the date a particular common unit is transferred. The IRS may challenge this treatment, which could change the allocation of items of income, gain, loss and deduction among our unitholders.

We generally prorate our items of income, gain, loss and deduction between transferors and transferees of our common units each month based upon the ownership of our common units on the first day of each month, instead of on the basis of the date a particular common unit is transferred. The U.S. Department of the Treasury recently adopted final Treasury Regulations allowing a similar monthly simplifying convention for taxable years beginning on or after August 3, 2015. However, such regulations do not specifically authorize the use of the proration method we have adopted and may not specifically authorize all aspects of our proration method thereafter. If the IRS were to challenge our proration method, we may be required to change the allocation of items of income, gain, loss and deduction among our unitholders.

A unitholder whose common units are the subject of a securities loan (e.g., a loan to a “short seller” to cover a short sale of common units may be considered as having disposed of those common units. If so, the unitholder would no longer be treated for tax purposes as a partner with respect to those common units during the period of the loan and may recognize gain or loss from the disposition.

Because there are no specific rules governing the federal income tax consequences of loaning a partnership interest, a unitholder whose common units are the subject of a securities loan may be considered to have disposed of the loaned units. In that case, the unitholder may no longer be treated for tax purposes as a partner with respect to those common units during the period of the loan, and the unitholder may recognize gain or loss from such disposition. Moreover, during the period of the loan, any of our income, gain, loss or deduction with respect to those common units may not be reportable by the unitholder and any cash distributions received by the unitholder as to those common units could be fully taxable as ordinary income. Unitholders desiring to assure their status as partners and avoid the risk of gain recognition from a loan of their common units should modify any applicable brokerage account agreements to prohibit their brokers from borrowing their common units.

We have adopted certain valuation methodologies for U.S. federal income tax purposes that may result in a shift of income, gain, loss and deduction between our general partner and the unitholders. The IRS may challenge this treatment, which could adversely affect the value of the common units.

When we issue additional units or engage in certain other transactions, we determine the fair market value of our assets and allocate any unrealized gain or loss attributable to our assets to the capital accounts of our unitholders and our general partner. Although we may from time to time consult with professional appraisers regarding valuation matters, including the valuation of our assets, we make many of the fair market value estimates of our assets ourselves using a methodology based on the market value of our common units as a means to measure the fair market value of our assets. Our methodology may be viewed as understating the value of our assets. In that case, there may be a shift of income, gain, loss and deduction between certain unitholders and our general partner, which may be unfavorable to such unitholders. The IRS may challenge our valuation methods and allocations of income, gain, loss and deduction between our general partner and certain of our unitholders.

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A successful IRS challenge to these methods or allocations could adversely affect the amount of taxable income or loss being allocated to our unitholders. It also could affect the amount of taxable gain from our unitholders’ sale of common units and could have a negative impact on the value of the common units or result in audit adjustments to our unitholders’ tax returns without the benefit of additional deductions.

The sale or exchange of 50% or more of our capital and profits interests during any twelve‑month period will result in the constructive termination of our partnership for federal income tax purposes.

We will be considered to have terminated as a partnership for federal income tax purposes if there is a sale or exchange of 50% or more of the total interests in our capital and profits within a twelve‑month period. For purposes of determining whether the 50% threshold has been met, multiple sales of the same interest will be counted only once. Our termination would, among other things, result in the closing of our taxable year for all unitholders, which would result in us filing two tax returns for one calendar year and could result in a significant deferral of depreciation deductions allowable in computing our taxable income. In the case of a unitholder reporting on a taxable year other than a calendar year, the closing of our taxable year may also result in more than twelve months of our taxable income or loss being includable in his taxable income for the year of termination. Our termination would not affect our classification as a partnership for federal income tax purposes but instead, we would be treated as a new partnership for federal income tax purposes. If we were treated as a new partnership, we would be required to make new tax elections and could be subject to penalties if we were unable to determine that a termination occurred. The IRS has announced a relief procedure whereby if a publicly traded partnership that has technically terminated requests and the IRS grants special relief, among other things, the partnership may be permitted to provide only a single Schedule K-1 to unitholders for the two short tax periods included in the year in which the termination occurs.

Unitholders may be subject to state and local taxes and return filing requirements in jurisdictions where they do not live as a result of investing in our common units.

In addition to federal income taxes, unitholders will likely be subject to other taxes, including state, local and non‑U.S. taxes, unincorporated business taxes and estate, inheritance or intangible taxes that are imposed by the various jurisdictions in which we conduct business or own property now or in the future, even if they do not live in any of those jurisdictions. Unitholders will likely be required to file state and local income tax returns and pay state and local income taxes in some or all of these various jurisdictions. Further, unitholders may be subject to penalties for failure to comply with those requirements. As of December 31, 2015, we conducted business in 36 states, some of which impose a personal income tax as well as an income tax on corporations and other entities. We may own property or conduct business in other states or non‑U.S. countries in the future. It is the unitholder’s responsibility to file all U.S. federal, state, local and non‑U.S. tax returns.

Item 1B.Unresolved Staff Comments.

On May 16, 2014, we received a subpoena from the SEC requesting information for relevant time periods primarily relating to our accounting for Renewable Identification Numbers and the restatement of our consolidated financial statements as of and for the quarters ended March 31, 2013, June 30, 2013 and September 30, 2013. We have produced responsive materials to the SEC and intend to continue to cooperate fully with the SEC.

Item 3.Legal Proceedings.

General

Although we may, from time to time, be involved in litigation and claims arising out of our operations in the normal course of business, we do not believe that we are a party to any litigation that will have a material adverse impact on our financial condition or results of operations. Except as described below, we are not aware of any significant legal or governmental proceedings against us, or contemplated to be brought against us. We maintain insurance policies with insurers in amounts and with coverage and deductibles as our general partner believes are reasonable and prudent. However, we can provide no assurance that this insurance will be adequate to protect us from all material expenses

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related to potential future claims or that these levels of insurance will be available in the future at economically acceptable prices.

Environmental

In connection with the June 2015 acquisition of retail gasoline stations from Capitol, we assumed certain environmental liabilities, including future remediation activities required by applicable federal, state or local law or regulation at certain of the retail gasoline stations owned by Capitol. Certain environmental remediation obligations at most of the acquired retail gasoline station assets from Capitol are being funded by third parties who assumed certain liabilities in connection with Capitol’s acquisition of these assets from ExxonMobil in 2009 and 2010 and, therefore, cost estimates for such obligations at these stations are not included in this estimate. As a result, we recorded, on an undiscounted basis, a total environmental liability of approximately $0.3 million for those locations not covered by third parties.

In connection with the January 2015 acquisition of the Revere Terminal, we assumed certain environmental liabilities, including certain ongoing environmental remediation efforts. As a result, we recorded, on an undiscounted basis, a total environmental liability of approximately $3.1 million.

In connection with the January 2015 acquisition of Warren, we assumed certain environmental liabilities, including certain ongoing environmental remediation efforts at certain of the retail gasoline stations owned by Warren and future remediation activities required by applicable federal, state or local law or regulation. As a result, we recorded, on an undiscounted basis, a total environmental liability of approximately $36.5 million.

In connection with the December 2012 acquisition of six New England retail gasoline stations from Mutual Oil Company, we assumed certain environmental liabilities, including certain ongoing remediation efforts. As a result, we initially recorded, on an undiscounted basis, a total environmental liability of approximately $0.6 million.

In connection with the March 2012 acquisition of Alliance Energy LLC (“Alliance”), we assumed Alliance’s environmental liabilities, including ongoing environmental remediation at certain of the retail gasoline stations owned by Alliance and future remediation activities required by applicable federal, state or local law or regulation. Remedial action plans are in place, as may be applicable with the state agencies regulating such ongoing remediation. Based on reports from environmental engineers, our estimated cost of the ongoing environmental remediation for which Alliance was responsible and future remediation activities required by applicable federal, state or local law or regulation is estimated to be approximately $16.1 million to be expended over an extended period of time. Certain environmental remediation obligations at the retail stations acquired by Alliance from ExxonMobil in 2011 are being funded by a third‑party who assumed the liability in connection with the Alliance/ExxonMobil transaction in 2011 and, therefore, cost estimates for such obligations at these stations are not included in this estimate. As a result, we initially recorded, on an undiscounted basis, total environmental liabilities of approximately $16.1 million. 

In connection with the September 2010 acquisition of retail gasoline stations from ExxonMobil, we assumed certain environmental liabilities, including ongoing environmental remediation at and monitoring activities at certain of the acquired sites and future remediation activities required by applicable federal, state or local law or regulation. Remedial action plans are in place with the applicable state regulatory agencies for the majority of these locations, including plans for soil and groundwater treatment systems at certain sites. Based on consultations with environmental engineers, our estimated cost of the remediation is expected to be approximately $30.0 million to be expended over an extended period of time. As a result, we initially recorded, on an undiscounted basis, total environmental liabilities of approximately $30.0 million.

In addition to the above-mentioned environmental liabilities related to our retail gasoline stations, we retain environmental obligations associated with certain gasoline stations that we have sold.

In connection with the June 2010 acquisition of three refined petroleum products terminals in Newburgh, New York, we assumed certain environmental liabilities, including certain ongoing remediation efforts that are coordinated

48


 

with and approved by the state environmental agency. As a result, we initially recorded, on an undiscounted basis, a total environmental liability of approximately $1.5 million. 

For additional information regarding our environmental liabilities, see Note 9 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements included elsewhere in this report.

Other

In February 2016, we received a request for information from the EPA seeking certain information regarding the Albany Terminal in order to assess its compliance with the CAA. The information requested generally relates to crude oil received by, stored at and shipped from our petroleum product transloading facility in Albany, New York (the “Albany Terminal”), including its composition, control devices for emissions and various permitting-related considerations. The Albany Terminal is a 63-acre licensed, permitted and operational stationary bulk petroleum storage and transfer terminal that currently consists of petroleum product storage tanks, along with truck, rail and marine loading facilities, for the storage, blending and distribution of various petroleum and related products, including, but not limited to, gasoline, ethanol, distillates, heating and crude oils. We intend to cooperate fully with the agency and believe the responsive information will demonstrate that our operations at the Albany Terminal are in compliance with all pertinent requirements.

By letter dated October 5, 2015, we received a notice of intent to sue (“October NOI”), which supersedes and replaces a prior notice of intent to sue that we received on September 1, 2015 (the “September NOI”) from Earthjustice, an environmental advocacy organization on behalf of the County of Albany, New York, a public housing development owned and operated by the Albany Housing Authority and certain environmental organizations, related to alleged violations of the CAA at our Albany Terminal, particularly with respect to crude oil operations at the Albany Terminal. The October NOI revises the superseded and replaced September NOI to add two additional environmental advocacy organizations and to revise the relief sought and the description of the alleged CAA violations.

On February 3, 2016, Earthjustice and the other entities identified in the October NOI filed suit against us in federal court in Albany under the citizen suit provisions of the CAA. In summary, this lawsuit alleges that our operations at the Albany Terminal are in violation of the CAA. The plaintiffs seek, among other things, relief that would compel us both to apply for what they contend is the applicable permit under the CAA, and to install additional pollution controls. In addition, the plaintiffs seek to prohibit the Albany Terminal from receiving, storing, handling, and marine loading certain types of Bakken crude oil and to require payment of a civil penalty of $37,500 for each day we operated the Albany Terminal in violation of the CAA. We believe that we have meritorious defenses against all allegations and will vigorously contest this lawsuit.

On May 29, 2015 and in connection with a commercial dispute with Tethys Trading Company LLC (“Tethys”), we received a notice from Tethys alleging a default under, and purporting to terminate, our contract with Tethys for crude oil services at our Oregon facility. However, we do not believe Tethys had the right to terminate the contract, and we will take appropriate action to enforce our rights under the agreement. We had expected to receive fees from this contract of approximately $13.2 million for the period July 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015 and approximately $105.2 million in the aggregate for the remaining four years of the contract.

On March 26, 2015, we received a Notice of Non-Compliance (“NON”) from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (“DEP”) with respect to the Revere Terminal, alleging certain violations of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit (“NPDES Permit”) related to storm water discharges. The NON requires us to submit a plan to remedy the reported violations of the NPDES Permit. We have responded to the NON with a plan and are implementing modifications to the storm water management system at the Revere Terminal. We have determined that compliance with the NON and implementation of the plan will have no material impact on our operations.

We have a dispute with Lansing Ethanol Services, LLC (“Lansing”) for damages in excess of $12.0 million. The dispute involves Lansing’s failure to transfer Renewable Fuel Identification Numbers to us in connection with certain agreements for the purchase and sale of ethanol. The parties have agreed to arbitrate under the rules of the American Arbitration Association. We filed for arbitration on March 24, 2015 and anticipate arbitration to commence

49


 

during the first quarter ending March 31, 2016. We believe we have meritorious positions and intend to vigorously pursue a favorable result in connection with this dispute.

On July 2, 2014, a lawsuit was filed by the Northwest Environmental Defense Center and other environmental non‑government organizations (the “Plaintiffs”) against us and Cascade Kelly Holdings LLC (“Cascade Kelly”) alleging violations of the CAA. The suit, filed in the United States District Court for the district of Oregon, alleged that Cascade Kelly was operating without the proper permit under the applicable rules. The lawsuit sought penalties, injunctive relief and reimbursement of attorneys’ fees. A trial was held during the fourth quarter of 2015. On December 30, 2015, the Court issued a judgment in our favor and dismissed the case with prejudice. The time for requesting an appeal has passed and the Plaintiffs did not appeal. Accordingly, the case is closed.

On May 16, 2014, we received a subpoena from the SEC requesting information for relevant time periods primarily relating to our accounting for Renewable Identification Numbers and the restatement of our consolidated financial statements as of and for the quarters ended March 31, 2013, June 30, 2013 and September 30, 2013. We intend to continue to cooperate fully with, and have produced responsive materials to, the SEC.

We received letters from the EPA dated November 2, 2011 and March 29, 2012, containing requirements and testing orders (collectively, the “Requests for Information”) for information under the CAA. The Requests for Information were part of an EPA investigation to determine whether we have violated sections of the CAA at certain of our terminal locations in New England with respect to residual oil and asphalt. On June 6, 2014, a Notice of Violation (the “NOV”) was received from the EPA, alleging certain violations of its Air Emissions License issued by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, based upon the test results at the South Portland, Maine terminal. We met with and provided additional information to the EPA with respect to the alleged violations. On April 7, 2015, the EPA issued a Supplemental Notice of Violation (the “Supplemental NOV”) modifying the allegations of violations of the terminal’s Air Emissions License. We have responded to the Supplemental NOV and engaged in further negotiations with the EPA. A tolling agreement was executed with the United States on December 1, 2015, and negotiations are continuing in the first quarter of 2016. While we do not believe that a material violation has occurred, and we contest the allegations presented in the NOV and Supplemental NOV, we do not believe any adverse determination in connection with the NOV would have a material impact on our operations.

Item 4.Mine Safety Disclosures

Not applicable.

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PART II

Item 5.Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities.

Our common units trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “GLP.” The closing sale price per common unit on February 25, 2016 was $13.26. At the close of business on February 25, 2016, based upon information received from our transfer agent and brokers and nominees, we had 11,904 common unitholders, including beneficial owners of common units held in street name. The following table sets forth the range of the daily high and low sales prices per common unit as quoted on the New York Stock Exchange and the cash distributions per common unit for the periods indicated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Price Range

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cash Distribution

 

 

 

High

 

Low

 

Per Common Unit (a)

 

2015

    

 

    

    

 

    

    

 

    

 

Fourth Quarter

 

$

35.00

 

$

14.80

 

$

0.4625

 

Third Quarter

 

 

35.67

 

 

26.55

 

 

0.6975

 

Second Quarter

 

 

42.74

 

 

32.01

 

 

0.6925

 

First Quarter

 

 

40.37

 

 

32.68

 

 

0.6800

 

2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fourth Quarter

 

$

45.75

 

$

30.45

 

$

0.6650

 

Third Quarter

 

 

45.00

 

 

37.43

 

 

0.6525

 

Second Quarter

 

 

43.41

 

 

36.58

 

 

0.6375

 

First Quarter

 

 

40.50

 

 

33.54

 

 

0.6250

 


(a)

Represents cash distributions attributable to the quarter. Cash distributions declared in respect of a calendar quarter are paid in the following calendar quarter.

We intend to make cash distributions to unitholders on a quarterly basis, although there is no assurance as to the future cash distributions since they are dependent upon future earnings, capital requirements, financial condition and other factors. Our credit agreement prohibits us from making cash distributions if any potential default or event of default, as defined in the credit agreement, occurs or would result from the cash distribution. The indentures governing our outstanding senior notes also limit our ability to make distributions to our unitholders in certain circumstances.

Within 45 days after the end of each quarter, we will distribute all of our Available Cash (as defined in our partnership agreement) to unitholders of record on the applicable record date. The amount of Available Cash is all cash on hand on the date of determination of Available Cash for the quarter less; the amount of cash reserves established by our general partner to provide for the proper conduct of our business, to comply with applicable law, any of our debt instruments or other agreements, or to provide funds for distributions to unitholders and our general partner for any one or more of the next four quarters.

We will make distributions of Available Cash from distributable cash flow for any quarter in the following manner: 99.33% to the common unitholders, pro rata, and 0.67% to the general partner, until we distribute for each outstanding common unit an amount equal to the minimum quarterly distribution for that quarter; and thereafter, cash in excess of the minimum quarterly distribution is distributed to the unitholders and the general partner based on the percentages as provided below.

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As holder of the incentive distribution rights, the general partner is entitled to incentive distributions if the amount we distribute with respect to any quarter exceeds specified target levels shown below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marginal Percentage

 

 

 

Total Quarterly Distribution

 

Interest in Distributions

 

 

 

Target Amount

 

Unitholders

 

General Partner

 

First Target Distribution

    

up to $0.4625

    

99.33

%  

0.67

%  

Second Target Distribution

 

above $0.4625 up to $0.5375

 

86.33

%  

13.67

%  

Third Target Distribution

 

above $0.5375 up to $0.6625

 

76.33

%  

23.67

%  

Thereafter

 

above $0.6625

 

51.33

%  

48.67

%  

The equity compensation plan information required by Item 201(d) of Regulation S‑K in response to this item is incorporated by reference from Item 12, “Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters—Equity Compensation Plan Table.”

Recent Sales of Unregistered Securities

None.

Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

We did not repurchase any of our common units during the quarter ended December 31, 2015.

Item 6.Selected Financial Data.

The following table presents selected historical financial and operating data of Global Partners LP for the years and as of the dates indicated. The selected historical financial data is derived from the historical consolidated financial statements of Global Partners LP.

This table should be read in conjunction with Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the historical consolidated financial statements of Global Partners LP and the notes thereto included elsewhere in this report. In addition, this table presents non‑GAAP financial measures which we use in our business. These measures are not calculated or presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States (“GAAP”). We explain these measures and present reconciliations to their most directly

52


 

comparable financial measures calculated in accordance with GAAP in Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations—Results of Operations—Key Performance Indicators.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Year Ended December 31, 

 

 

 

2015

 

2014

 

2013

 

2012

 

2011

 

 

 

(dollars in millions except per unit amounts)

 

Statement of Income Data:

    

 

    

    

 

    

    

 

    

    

 

    

    

 

    

 

Sales

 

$

10,314.9

 

$

17,269.9

 

$

19,589.6

 

$

17,626.0

 

$

14,835.7

 

Cost of sales

 

 

9,717.2

 

 

16,725.1

 

 

19,185.1

 

 

17,291.9

 

 

14,625.9

 

Gross profit

 

 

597.7

 

 

544.8

 

 

404.5

 

 

334.1

 

 

209.8

 

Selling, general and administrative expenses

 

 

177.0

 

 

154.0

 

 

115.5

 

 

95.7

 

 

73.9

 

Operating expenses

 

 

290.3

 

 

204.1

 

 

185.7

 

 

140.4

 

 

73.5

 

Restructuring charges

 

 

 —

 

 

 —

 

 

 —

 

 

 —

 

 

2

 

Amortization expense

 

 

13.5

 

 

18.9

 

 

19.2

 

 

7.0

 

 

4.8

 

Loss (gain) on sale and disposition of assets

 

 

2.1

 

 

2.2

 

 

(1.3)

 

 

0.6

 

 

0.2

 

Total operating costs and expenses

 

 

482.9

 

 

379.2

 

 

319.1

 

 

243.7

 

 

154.4

 

Operating income

 

 

114.7

 

 

165.6

 

 

85.4

 

 

90.3

 

 

55.4

 

Interest expense

 

 

(73.3)

 

 

(47.7)

 

 

(43.5)

 

 

(42.0)

 

 

(35.9)

 

Income before income tax expense

 

 

41.4

 

 

117.9

 

 

41.9

 

 

48.3

 

 

19.4

 

Income tax benefit (expense)

 

 

1.9

 

 

(0.9)

 

 

(0.9)

 

 

(1.6)

 

 

 —

 

Net income

 

 

43.3

 

 

117.0

 

 

41.0

 

 

46.7

 

 

19.4

 

Net loss (income) attributable to noncontrolling interest (1)

 

 

0.3

 

 

(2.3)

 

 

1.6

 

 

 —

 

 

 —

 

Net income attributable to Global Partners LP

 

 

43.6

 

 

114.7

 

 

42.6

 

 

46.7

 

 

19.4

 

Less: General partners’ interest in net income

 

 

7.7

 

 

6.0

 

 

3.5

 

 

1.2

 

 

0.7

 

Limited partners’ interest in net income

 

$

35.9

 

$

108.7

 

$

39.1

 

$

45.5

 

$

18.7

 

Per Unit Data

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Basic net income per limited partner unit (2)

 

$

1.12

 

$

3.97

 

$

1.43

 

$

1.73

 

$

0.88

 

Diluted net income per limited partner unit (2)

 

$

1.11

 

$

3.95

 

$

1.42

 

$

1.71

 

$

0.87

 

Cash distributions per limited partner unit (3)

 

$

2.74

 

$

2.53

 

$

2.34

 

$

2.06

 

$

2.00

 

Cash Flow Data:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net cash provided by (used in)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Operating activities

 

$

62.5

 

$

344.9

 

$

255.1

 

$

232.4

 

$

(17.4)

 

Investment activities

 

$

(649.7)

 

$

(91.1)

 

$

(243.2)

 

$

(226.5)

 

$

(13.4)

 

Financing activities

 

$

583.1

 

$

(257.8)

 

$

(8.7)

 

$

(4.3)

 

$

32.7

 

Other Financial Data:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EBITDA (4)

 

$

225.7

 

$

242.3

 

$

157.4

 

$

135.8

 

$

85.7

 

Distributable cash flow (5)

 

$

126.9

 

$

161.2

 

$

105.2

 

$

80.8

 

$

46.7

 

Capital expenditures—acquisitions (6)

 

$

561.2

 

$

 —

 

$

185.3

 

$

188.7

 

$

 —

 

Capital expenditures—maintenance and expansion (6)

 

$

92.9

 

$

95.1

 

$

67.1

 

$

44.9

 

$

16

 

Operating Data:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Normal heating degree days (7)

 

 

5,630

 

 

5,630

 

 

5,630

 

 

5,661

 

 

5,630

 

Actual heating degree days

 

 

5,651

 

 

5,664

 

 

5,521

 

 

4,754

 

 

5,137

 

Variance from normal heating degree days

 

 

0.37

%  

 

1

%

 

(2)

%

 

(16)

%

 

(9)

%

Variance from prior year actual degree days

 

 

(0.23)

%  

 

3

%  

 

16

%

 

(7)

%  

 

2

%

Total gallons sold (in millions)

 

 

5,648

 

 

6,356

 

 

6,956

 

 

6,100

 

 

5,217

 

Variance in volume sold from prior year

 

 

(11)

%

 

(9)

%  

 

14

%  

 

17

%  

 

43

%  

Balance Sheet Data (at period end):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total assets

 

$

2,663.7

 

$

2,030.8

 

$

2,425.9

 

$

2,329.8

 

$

1,876.6

 

Long—term debt (8)

 

$

1,075.6

 

$

593.9

 

$

910.0

 

$

762.8

 

$

731.1

 

Total debt

 

$

1,173.7

 

$

594.6

 

$

913.7

 

$

846.5

 

$

793.9

 

Total liabilities

 

$

1,969.7

 

$

1,394.7

 

$

1,962.7

 

$

1,893.3

 

$

1,561.3

 

Partners’ equity

 

$

694.0

 

$

636.1

 

$

463.2

 

$

436.5

 

$

315.3

 


The above table reflects certain rounding conventions.

 

(1)

On February 1, 2013, we acquired a 60% membership interest in Basin Transload, LLC (“Basin Transload”). The net income (loss) in the table above is attributable to the noncontrolling interest which represents Basin Transload’s 40% interest.

(2)

See Note 2 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements included elsewhere in this report for net income per limited partner unit calculation.

53


 

(3)

Cash distributions declared in one calendar quarter are paid in the following calendar quarter. This amount is based on cash distributions paid during each respective year. See Note 14 of Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements included elsewhere in this report.

(4)

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (“EBITDA”) is a non‑GAAP financial measure which is discussed under “Results of Operations—Evaluating Our Results of Operations” and reconciled to its most directly comparable GAAP financial measures under “Results of Operations—Key Performance Indicators” in Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”

(5)

Distributable cash flow is a non‑GAAP financial measure which is discussed under “Results of Operations—Evaluating Our Results of Operations” and reconciled to its most directly comparable GAAP financial measures under “Results of Operations—Key Performance Indicators” in Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”

(6)

Capital expenditures are discussed under “Liquidity and Capital Resources” in Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”

(7)

Degree days is an industry measurement of temperature designed to evaluate energy demand and consumption which is further discussed under “Results of Operations—Evaluating Our Results of Operations” in Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.”

(8)

As of December 31, 2015, we adopted the updated accounting guidance that requires debt issuance costs to be presented as a direct deduction from the associated debt obligation. As a result, we reclassified unamortized debt issuance costs from prepaid expenses and other current assets and other assets to a reduction of long-term debt as of December 31, 2014 and 2013. This standard is not applicable for the other periods presented.

54


 

Item 7.Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.

The following discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations of Global Partners LP should be read in conjunction with the historical consolidated financial statements of Global Partners LP and the notes thereto included elsewhere in this report.

Overview

General

We are a midstream logistics and marketing company engaged in the purchasing, selling, storing and logistics of transporting petroleum and related products, including domestic and Canadian crude oil, gasoline and gasoline blendstocks (such as ethanol), distillates (such as home heating oil, diesel and kerosene), residual oil, renewable fuels, natural gas and propane. We also receive revenue from convenience store sales and gasoline station rental income. We own, control or have access to one of the largest terminal networks of refined petroleum products and renewable fuels in the Northeast. We own transload and storage terminals in North Dakota and Oregon that extend our origin‑to‑destination capabilities from the mid‑continent region of the United States and Canada to the East and West Coasts. We are one of the largest distributors of gasoline, distillates, residual oil and renewable fuels to wholesalers, retailers and commercial customers in the New England states and New York. As of December 31, 2015, we had a portfolio of 1,509 owned, leased and/or supplied gasoline stations, including 281 directly operated convenience stores, in the Northeast, Maryland and Virginia.

Collectively, we sold approximately $9.9 billion of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane for the year ended December 31, 2015. In addition, we had other revenues of approximately $0.4 billion, primarily from convenience store sales at our directly operated stores and rental income from dealer leased or commission agent leased gasoline stations and from cobranding arrangements.

We base our pricing on spot prices, fixed prices or indexed prices and routinely use the NYMEX, CME, ICE or other counterparties to hedge the risk inherent in buying and selling commodities. Through the use of regulated exchanges or derivatives, we seek to maintain a position that is substantially balanced between purchased volumes and sales volumes or future delivery obligations.

Operating Segments

We purchase refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane primarily from domestic and foreign refiners and ethanol producers, crude oil producers, major and independent oil companies and trading companies. We operate our business under three segments: (i) Wholesale, (ii) Gasoline Distribution and Station Operations (“GDSO”) and (iii) Commercial. In 2015, our Wholesale, GDSO and Commercial sales accounted for approximately 57%, 36% and  7% of our total sales, respectively.

Wholesale

In our Wholesale segment, we engage in the logistics of selling, gathering, storage and transportation of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil and propane. We sell branded and unbranded gasoline and gasoline blendstocks and diesel to wholesale distributors. We transport these products by railcars, barges and/or pipelines pursuant to spot or long-term contracts. We aggregate crude oil by truck or pipeline in the mid-continent region of the United States and Canada, transport it by train and ship it by barge to refiners on the East and West Coasts. We sell home heating oil, diesel, kerosene, residual oil and propane to home heating oil and propane retailers and wholesale distributors. Generally, customers use their own vehicles or contract carriers to take delivery of the gasoline and distillates at bulk terminals and inland storage facilities that we own or control or at which we have throughput or exchange arrangements. Ethanol is shipped primarily by rail and by barge.

In our Wholesale segment, we obtain Renewable Identification Numbers (“RINs”) in connection with our purchase of ethanol which is used for bulk trading purposes or for blending with gasoline through our terminal system. A

55


 

RIN is a renewable identification number associated with government‑mandated renewable fuel standards. To evidence that the required volume of renewable fuel is blended with gasoline, obligated parties must retire sufficient RINs to cover their Renewable Volume Obligation (“RVO”). Our EPA obligations relative to renewable fuel reporting are largely limited to the foreign gasoline that we may choose to import.

Gasoline Distribution and Station Operations

In our GDSO segment, gasoline distribution includes sales of branded and unbranded gasoline to gasoline station operators and sub-jobbers. Station operations include (i) convenience stores, (ii) rental income from gasoline stations leased to dealers, from commissioned agents and from cobranding arrangements,  and (iii) sundries (such as car wash sales, lottery and ATM commissions). The results of Warren and Capitol are included in the GDSO segment.

As of December 31, 2015, we had a portfolio of owned, leased and/or supplied gasoline stations, primarily in the Northeast, that consisted of the following:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Company operated

  

281

 

Commissioned agents

 

283

 

Lessee dealers

 

280

 

Contract dealers

 

665

 

Total

 

1,509

 

At our company‑operated stores, we operate the gasoline stations and convenience stores with our employees, and we set the retail price of gasoline at the station. At commission agent locations, we own the gasoline inventory, and we set the retail price of gasoline at the station and pay the commission agent a fee related to the gallons sold. We receive rental income from commission agent leased gasoline stations for the leasing of the convenience store premises, repair bays and other businesses that may be conducted by the commission agent. At dealer‑leased locations, the dealer purchases gasoline from us, and the dealer sets the retail price of gasoline at the dealer’s station. We also receive rental income from dealer‑leased gasoline stations and from cobranding arrangements. We also supply gasoline to independent contract dealers under agreements with the operators at these locations. Additionally, we have contractual relationships with distributors in certain New England states, pursuant to which we supply these distributors’ gasoline stations with ExxonMobil‑branded gasoline.

Commercial

In our Commercial segment, we include sales and deliveries to end user customers in the public sector and to large commercial and industrial end users of unbranded gasoline, home heating oil, diesel, kerosene, residual oil, bunker fuel and natural gas. In the case of public sector commercial and industrial end user customers, we sell products primarily either through a competitive bidding process or through contracts of various terms. We generally arrange for the delivery of the product to the customer’s designated location, and we respond to publicly‑issued requests for product proposals and quotes. Our Commercial segment also includes sales of custom blended fuels delivered by barges or from a terminal dock to ships through bunkering activity.

For the years ended December 31, 2015, 2014 and 2013, our Commercial segment did not meet the quantitative metrics for disclosure as a reportable segment on a stand‑alone basis. However, we have elected to present segment disclosures for our Commercial segment as we believe such disclosures are meaningful to users of our financial information.

Seasonality

Due to the nature of our business and our reliance, in part, on consumer travel and spending patterns, we may experience more demand for gasoline during the late spring and summer months than during the fall and winter. Travel and recreational activities are typically higher in these months in the geographic areas in which we operate, increasing the demand for gasoline that we distribute. Therefore, our volumes in gasoline are typically higher in the second and third quarters of the calendar year. As demand for some of our refined petroleum products, specifically home heating oil

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and residual oil for space heating purposes, is generally greater during the winter months, heating oil and residual oil volumes are generally higher during the first and fourth quarters of the calendar year. These factors may result in fluctuations in our quarterly operating results. 

Outlook

This section identifies certain risks and certain economic or industry‑wide factors that may affect our financial performance and results of operations in the future, both in the short‑term and in the long‑term. Our results of operations and financial condition depend, in part, upon the following:

·

Our business is influenced by the overall forward market for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane and increases and/or decreases in the prices of these products may adversely impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders and the amount of borrowing available for working capital under our credit agreementResults from our purchasing, storing, terminalling, transporting and selling operations are influenced by prices for refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane,  price volatility and the market for such products. Prices in the overall forward market for these products may affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. Our margins can be significantly impacted by the forward product pricing curve, often referred to as the futures market. We typically hedge our exposure to petroleum product and renewable fuel price moves with futures contracts and, to a lesser extent, swaps. In markets where future prices are higher than current prices, referred to as contango, we may use our storage capacity to improve our margins by storing products we have purchased at lower prices in the current market for delivery to customers at higher prices in the future. In markets where future prices are lower than current prices, referred to as backwardation, inventories can depreciate in value and hedging costs are more expensive. For this reason, in these backward markets, we attempt to reduce our inventories in order to minimize these effects. When prices for the products we sell rise, some of our customers may have insufficient credit to purchase supply from us at their historical purchase volumes, and their customers, in turn, may adopt conservation measures which reduce consumption, thereby reducing demand for product. Furthermore, when prices increase rapidly and dramatically, we may be unable to promptly pass our additional costs on to our customers, resulting in lower margins which could adversely affect our results of operations. Higher prices for the products we sell may (1) diminish our access to trade credit support and/or cause it to become more expensive and (2) decrease the amount of borrowings available for working capital under our credit agreement as a result of total available commitments, borrowing base limitations and advance rates thereunder. When prices for the products we sell decline, our exposure to risk of loss in the event of nonperformance by our customers of our forward contracts may be increased as they and/or their customers may breach their contracts and purchase the products we sell at the then lower market price from a competitor. A significant decrease in the price for crude oil could adversely affect the economics of domestic crude oil production which, in turn, could have an adverse effect on our crude oil logistics activities and sales. A significant decrease in differentials could also have an adverse effect on our crude oil logistics activities and sales. In addition, any prolonged decline in crude oil prices and differentials may become an indicator of the potential impairment of our long-lived assets used at our crude oil transloading terminals in North Dakota and/or goodwill within our crude oil business in our Wholesale reporting unit. 

·

On January 28, 2016, we announced a reduction in the quarterly distribution for the fourth quarter of 2015 on all outstanding common units to $0.4625.  This distribution represented a decrease of 33.7% from the distribution of $0.6975 per unit paid in November 2015 and a decrease of 30.5% from the distribution of $0.6650 per unit paid in February 2015. The reduction in the distribution primarily reflected continuing weakness in the crude oil market. The significant decline in the price of crude oil and tight crude oil differentials negatively impacted our fiscal 2015 results.

·

We commit substantial resources to pursuing acquisitions, although there is no certainty that we will successfully complete any acquisitions or receive the economic results we anticipate from completed acquisitions.We are continuously engaged in discussions with potential sellers and lessors of existing (or

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suitable for development) terminalling, storage, logistics and/or marketing assets, including gasoline stations, and related businesses. Our growth largely depends on our ability to make accretive acquisitions and/or accretive development projects. We may be unable to execute such accretive transactions for a number of reasons, including, but not limited to, the following: (1) we are unable to identify attractive transaction candidates or negotiate acceptable terms; (2) we are unable to obtain financing for such transactions on economically acceptable terms; or (3) we are outbid by competitors. In addition, we may consummate transactions that at the time of consummation we believe will be accretive but that ultimately may not be accretive. If any of these events were to occur, our future growth and ability to increase or maintain distributions could be limited. We can give no assurance that our transaction efforts will be successful or that any such efforts will be completed on terms that are favorable to us.

·

The condition of credit markets may adversely affect our liquidity.In the past, world financial markets experienced a severe reduction in the availability of credit. Possible negative impacts in the future could include a decrease in the availability of borrowings under our credit agreement, increased counterparty credit risk on our derivatives contracts and our contractual counterparties requiring us to provide collateral. In addition, we could experience a tightening of trade credit from our suppliers.

·

We depend upon marine, pipeline, rail and truck transportation services for a substantial portion of our logistics business in transporting the products we sell. A disruption in these transportation services could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.Hurricanes, flooding and other severe weather conditions could cause a disruption in the transportation services we depend upon which could affect the flow of service. In addition, accidents, labor disputes between the railroads and their employees and labor renegotiations, including strikes, lockouts or a work stoppage, shortage of railcars, mechanical difficulties or bottlenecks and disruptions in railroad logistics could also disrupt rail service. These events could result in service disruptions and increased cost which could also adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. Other disruptions, such as those due to an act of terrorism or war, could also adversely affect our business.

·

We have contractual obligations for certain transportation assets such as railcars, barges and pipelines.A decline in demand for (i) the products we sell, including crude oil and ethanol, or (ii) our logistics activities, could result in a decrease in the utilization of these transportation assets, which could negatively impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. For example, during 2015, we experienced adverse market conditions in crude oil caused by an over-supplied crude oil market which resulted in tighter price differentials, and we experienced a reduction in our railcar movements but remained obligated to pay the applicable fixed charges for railcar leases.    

·

Our gasoline financial results are seasonal and can be lower in the first and fourth quarters of the calendar year.Due to the nature of our business and our reliance, in part, on consumer travel and spending patterns, we may experience more demand for gasoline during the late spring and summer months than during the fall and winter. Travel and recreational activities are typically higher in these months in the geographic areas in which we operate, increasing the demand for gasoline that we distribute. Therefore, our results of operations in gasoline can be lower in the first and fourth quarters of the calendar year.

·

Our heating oil and residual oil financial results are seasonal and can be lower in the second and third quarters of the calendar year.Demand for some refined petroleum products, specifically home heating oil and residual oil for space heating purposes, is generally higher during November through March than during April through October. We obtain a significant portion of these sales during the winter months. Therefore, our results of operations in heating oil and residual oil for the first and fourth calendar quarters can be better than for the second and third quarters.

·

Warmer weather conditions could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition.Weather conditions generally have an impact on the demand for both home heating oil and residual oil. Because we supply distributors whose customers depend on home heating oil and residual oil for space

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heating purposes during the winter, warmer‑than‑normal temperatures during the first and fourth calendar quarters in the Northeast can decrease the total volume we sell and the gross profit realized on those sales.

·

Energy efficiency, higher prices, new technology and alternative fuels could reduce demand for our products.Increased conservation and technological advances have adversely affected the demand for home heating oil and residual oil. Consumption of residual oil has steadily declined over the last three decades. We could face additional competition from alternative energy sources as a result of future government‑mandated controls or regulation further promoting the use of cleaner fuels. End users who are dual‑fuel users have the ability to switch between residual oil and natural gas. Other end users may elect to convert to natural gas. During a period of increasing residual oil prices relative to the prices of natural gas, dual‑fuel customers may switch and other end users may convert to natural gas. During periods of increasing home heating oil prices relative to the price of natural gas, residential users of home heating oil may also convert to natural gas. Such switching or conversion could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders. In addition, higher prices and new technologies and alternative fuel sources, such as electric, hybrid or battery powered motor vehicles, could reduce the demand for gasoline and adversely impact our gasoline sales. A reduction in gasoline sales could have an adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash available for distribution to our unitholders.

·

Changes in government usage mandates and tax credits could adversely affect the availability and pricing of ethanol, which could negatively impact our sales.Future demand for ethanol will be largely dependent upon the economic incentives to blend based upon the relative value of gasoline and ethanol, taking into consideration the EPA’s regulations on the RFS program and oxygenate blending requirements. A reduction or waiver of the RFS mandate or oxygenate blending requirements could adversely affect the availability and pricing of ethanol, which in turn could adversely affect our future gasoline and ethanol sales. In addition, changes in blending requirements could affect the price of RINs which could impact the magnitude of the mark‑ to‑market liability recorded for the deficiency, if any, in our RIN position relative to our RVO at a point in time.

·

New, stricter environmental laws and regulations could significantly impact our operations and/or increase our costs, which could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition.Our operations are subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations regulating product quality specifications and other environmental matters. The trend in environmental regulation is towards more restrictions and limitations on activities that may affect the environment over time. Our business may be adversely affected by increased costs and liabilities resulting from such stricter laws and regulations. We try to anticipate future regulatory requirements that might be imposed and plan accordingly to remain in compliance with changing environmental laws and regulations and to minimize the costs of such compliance. The federal government recently finalized a rule including new design and construction requirements for railroad tank cars that are used to transport crude oil and ethanol. The establishment of more stringent design or construction requirements for railroad tank cars that are used to transport crude oil and ethanol with too short of a timeframe for compliance may lead to shortages of compliant railcars available to transport crude oil and ethanol, which could adversely affect our business. Likewise, some environmental interest groups have commenced efforts to seek to use state and local laws to restrict the types of railroad tanks cars that can be used to deliver crude oil to petroleum bulk storage terminals. Were such state and local laws to come into effect and were they to survive appeals and judicial review, they would potentially expose our operations to duplicative and possibly inconsistent regulation. There can be no assurances as to the timing and type of such changes in existing laws or the promulgation of new laws or the amount of any required expenditures associated therewith.

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Results of Operations

Evaluating Our Results of Operations

Our management uses a variety of financial and operational measurements to analyze our performance. These measurements include: (1) product margin, (2) gross profit, (3) EBITDA, (4) distributable cash flow, (5) selling, general and administrative expenses (“SG&A”), (6) operating expenses and (7) degree day.

Product Margin

We view product margin as an important performance measure of the core profitability of our operations. We review product margin monthly for consistency and trend analysis. We define product margin as our product sales minus product costs. Product sales primarily include sales of unbranded and branded gasoline, distillates, residual oil, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane, as well as convenience store sales, gasoline station rental income and revenue generated from our logistics activities when we engage in the storage, transloading and shipment of products owned by others. Product costs include the cost of acquiring the refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane and all associated costs including shipping and handling costs to bring such products to the point of sale as well as product costs related to convenience store items and costs associated with our logistics activities. We also look at product margin on a per unit basis (product margin divided by volume). Product margin is a non‑GAAP financial measure used by management and external users of our consolidated financial statements to assess our business. Product margin should not be considered an alternative to net income, operating income, cash flow from operations, or any other measure of financial performance presented in accordance with GAAP. In addition, our product margin may not be comparable to product margin or a similarly titled measure of other companies.

Gross Profit

We define gross profit as our product margin minus terminal and gasoline station related depreciation expense allocated to cost of sales.

EBITDA

EBITDA is a non‑GAAP financial measure used as a supplemental financial measure by management and may be used by external users of our consolidated financial statements, such as investors, commercial banks and research analysts, to assess:

·

our compliance with certain financial covenants included in our debt agreements;

·

our financial performance without regard to financing methods, capital structure, income taxes or historical cost basis;

·

our ability to generate cash sufficient to pay interest on our indebtedness and to make distributions to our partners;

·

our operating performance and return on invested capital as compared to those of other companies in the wholesale, marketing, storing and distribution of refined petroleum products, renewable fuels, crude oil, natural gas and propane, without regard to financing methods and capital structure; and

·

the viability of acquisitions and capital expenditure projects and the overall rates of return of alternative investment opportunities.

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EBITDA should not be considered as an alternative to net income, operating income, cash flow from operating activities or any other measure of financial performance or liquidity presented in accordance with GAAP. EBITDA excludes some, but not all, items that affect net income, and this measure may vary among other companies. Therefore, EBITDA may not be comparable to similarly titled measures of other companies.

Distributable Cash Flow

Distributable cash flow is an important non‑GAAP financial measure for our limited partners since it serves as an indicator of our success in providing a cash return on their investment. Distributable cash flow means our net income plus depreciation and amortization minus maintenance capital expenditures, as well as adjustments to eliminate items approved by the audit committee of the board of directors of our general partner that are extraordinary or non‑ recurring in nature and that would otherwise increase distributable cash flow.

Specifically, this financial measure indicates to investors whether or not we have generated sufficient earnings on a current or historic level that can sustain or support an increase in our quarterly cash distribution. Distributable cash flow is a quantitative standard used by the investment community with respect to publicly traded partnerships. Distributable cash flow should not be considered as an alternative to net income, operating income, cash flow from operations, or any other measure of financial performance presented in accordance with GAAP. In addition, our distributable cash flow may not be comparable to distributable cash flow or similarly titled measures of other companies.

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

Our SG&A expenses include, among other things, marketing costs, corporate overhead, employee salaries and benefits, pension and 401(k) plan expenses, discretionary bonuses, non‑interest financing costs, professional fees and information technology expenses. Employee‑related expenses including employee salaries, discretionary bonuses and related payroll taxes, benefits, and pension and 401(k) plan expenses are paid by our general partner which, in turn, is reimbursed for these expenses by us.

Operating Expenses

Operating expenses are costs associated with the operation of the terminals, transload facilities and gasoline stations used in our business. Lease payments and storage expenses, maintenance and repair, utilities, taxes, labor and labor‑ related expenses comprise the most significant portion of our operating expenses. These expenses remain relatively stable independent of the volumes through our system but fluctuate slightly depending on the activities performed during a specific period.

Degree Day

A “degree day” is an industry measurement of temperature designed to evaluate energy demand and consumption. Degree days are based on how far the average temperature departs from a human comfort level of 65°F. Each degree of temperature above 65°F is counted as one cooling degree day, and each degree of temperature below 65°F is counted as one heating degree day. Degree days are accumulated each day over the course of a year and can be compared to a monthly or a long‑term (multi‑year) average, or normal, to see if a month or a year was warmer or cooler than usual. Degree days are officially observed by the National Weather Service and officially archived by the National Climatic Data Center. For purposes of evaluating our results of operations, we use the normal heating degree day amount as reported by the National Weather Service at its Logan International Airport station in Boston, Massachusetts.

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Key Performance Indicators

The following table provides a summary of some of the key performance indicators that may be used to assess our results of operations. These comparisons are not necessarily indicative of future results (gallons and dollars in thousands, except per unit data):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Year Ended December 31, 

 

 

 

2015

    

2014

    

2013

 

Net income attributable to Global Partners LP

 

$

43,563

 

$

114,709

 

$

42,615

 

EBITDA (1)

 

$

225,689

 

$

242,279

 

$

157,394

 

Distributable cash flow (2)

 

$

126,855

 

$

161,224

 

$

105,254

 

Wholesale Segment: