NEW DELHI: IndianOil, the country’s largest fuel retailer, is giving its outlets a multi-crore-rupees facelift to attract gen-next consumers and make room for new-age alternatives such as charging or battery swap for EVs (electric vehicle) and natural gas, company executives said.
The move is part of company chairman SM Vaidya’s vision of retaining the company’s market leadership through the energy transition by turning traditional petrol pumps into energy plazas with an assortment of cleaner, greener and affordable alternative fuels.
“The revamp creates a distinct and attractive identity for consumers, while freeing up space – wherever it is possible – for other offerings. The idea is that each pump will offer more than one (petrol/diesel) mobility solution,” Shyam Bohra, executive director heading the Delhi state office, told TOI.
The redesigned pumps are snazzy, with emphasis on orange, signifying life and zest. The in-and-out dispenser layout makes them look spacious. Out of the company’s 27,000-plus outlets in the country, those in divisional headquarters will be the first to get the facelift. Four in Delhi – at Jungpura, Nehru Place, Dwarka and Chankyapuri — have got the new look.
Other executives said there’s more to the revamp, costing about Rs 1.5-2 crore each, than looks. “The new VRI captures the essence of best customer experience, new offerings and readiness to provide emerging solutions as the consumer base gets younger and aspirational,” another executive said. It goes with IndianOil’s recent offerings like 100-octane petrol for performance cars and bikes.
In cities with CNG (compressed natural gas) many IndianOil pumps also have CNG filling points. This will expand to new cities where gas networks are being set up. Simultaneously the company is looking at hydrogen as the ‘fuel of the future’. It is buying 100 buses running on hydrogen for field trials in Delhi and Gurugram in Haryana. The revamp and freed up space at pumps will allow future flexibility to make these offerings.
Development of Hydrogen fuel cells for electric mobility is a significant initiative that promises one of the cleanest and most reliable energy options in place of imported Lithium-ion batteries. Hydrogen-spiked CNG for city buses looks at improving the ambient air quality.