Propel launches fleet rebate program

By Erin Voegele | June 23, 2011

Redwood City, Calif.-based Propel Fuels has launched a new rebate program to benefit small- and medium-sized fleet customers. The company’s Volume Rebate Program offers enrolled fleets a tiered rebate for monthly purchases of 500 gallons or more of its biodiesel and E85 products. To offer the program, Propel has partnered with Wright Express, a provider of fleet management and transaction processing.

The program offers a rebate of 5 cents per gallon for monthly purchases of 1,000 gallons or more, and 3 cents per gallon for monthly purchases of 500 to 999 gallons. According to Propel, the rebate will be automatically calculated by Wright Express and applied to customers’ billing statements at the end of each monthly billing cycle. Enrolled fleets are not committed to purchasing a minimum amount of fuel from Propel and the purchases of both biodiesel and ethanol will be applied to monthly volumes.

Propel Vice President Jim Iacoponi said that the launch of this program will mean fleet customers no longer have to choose between renewable fuels and fleet card benefits. “It is common with conventional fuels for companies to offer different kinds of fleet reward programs, and we’re building on the experiences our customers may have had elsewhere and giving them access to those same benefits in the world of renewable fuels,” Iacoponi said.

The program is aimed at small- and medium-sized fleets that depend on a network of retail locations to fuel their vehicles rather than larger fleets that may use in-yard fueling. According to Lacoponi, the fleets Propel is targeting for the program include those with just a couple of vehicles, up to those that contain approximately 15.

One clear benefit of Propel’s program is a lower threshold to qualify for rebates. Many traditional fleet programs require the purchase of approximately 2,500 gallons of fuel per month to qualify for rebates. Propel’s 500-gallon threshold means small businesses are more likely to qualify. Iacoponi also noted that customers enrolled in the program are not limited to using Propel’s fueling location. The Wright Express (WEX) card they are issued can be used anywhere WEX cards are accepted.

To build interest in the program, Lacoponi said that Propel will be conducting email outreach and targeted mail campaigns to potential fleet customers that locate near the company’s fueling locations in both California and Washington. “We want to then make ourselves available for telephone and face-to-face follow-up to help get their questions answered and make them a part of our family,” he continued.

Propel also offers fleets their free, proprietary CleanDrive system, which is an integrated carbon emission reduction tracking platform. It displays the carbon emission reduction that customers achieve due to their use of Propel’s renewable fuels. It also graphically displays related data, including the barrels of oil that are displaced and the reduction in foreign crude that is achieved.

“Our rebate program provides fleets with all the benefits of using renewable fuels, without sacrificing perks they may have only seen from petroleum-based fuel retailers in the past,” said Propel CEO Matt Horton. “Many other fuel rebate programs have such high monthly volume requirements that small- to mid-sized fleets can’t take advantage of the savings. We designed this program to benefit a wide range of fleet sizes, reward our current consumers, and incentivize new fleets to help free us from foreign oil by choosing renewable fuels.”


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