AmeriGas still largest

February 1, 2004 By    

Another year is in the books and AmeriGas has comfortably retained its top spot in our annual LP Gas Top 50 retailer rankings.

The Valley Forge, Pa.-based giant sold 176 million gallons more than runner-up Ferrellgas in fiscal year 2003, and those numbers don’t count the 30 million-plus gallons picked up in its acquisition of the former Level Propane last October.

Suburban leaped over Cenex for third place, and Heritage and Cornerstone remain at spots five and six. Inergy and Star Gas swapped positions at seven and eight, while MFA Oil and Southern States Cooperative round out this year’s top 10.

Three companies on last year’s list (#9 Agway Energy Products of Syracuse, N.Y., #24 United Propane of Millersville, Md., and #32 Aeropres Propane of Bossier City, La.) are gone via acquisition.

We’re delighted to welcome 17 new entrants to this year’s listing. Most used the new, on-line sign-up on our website that we added to simplify registration.

Overall, 2003 appears to have been a solid growth year for the group. Coming off a troubled 2002, the top 14 retailers all reported increases in gallons sold over the previous year. Out of the top 50 companies, 68 percent said sales were up, while just 18 percent reported a drop. The remaining 14 percent did not report last year’s numbers for us to compare.

Similarly, 44 percent of the 50 largest retailers say they added customers, 14 percent lost customers and 14 percent reported no change.

Thirty percent reported an increase in the number of workers they employed since 2002. Thirty-six percent employed fewer staff, while 10 percent reported no change.

This is the 14th consecutive year we have offered this popular directory as an invaluable source of information about the largest retail companies and the people who lead and manage them. Be sure to visit our website at for a detailed listing of all retailers who responded to this year’s survey.

While we strive to make these rankings as comprehensive as possible, our information is only as reliable as the folks who take the time to provide the data each year. If you or someone you know should be on the list, please let me know or go to our website so we can include you in our 2005 listing.

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