Since the end of the Second World War Australian Petroleum Wholesalers have played a significant role in the development of Regional Australia.

As Agents, as they were originally called, by the major oil companies of the time, delivered 44 gallon drums of fuel to rural communities, farmers, burgeoning townships and industry.
They were, without probably knowing it themselves and certainly not recognised by the communities within which they lived, were key players in the opening up of rural areas as mechanisation leapt ahead in leaps and bounds.

Battling unsealed roads throughout rural Australia with mud and dust being part of their daily lives as they provided the fuel lifeblood that was necessary to permit communities to flourish.

The Agents were essentially the quintessential small business, made up of individual family units, who actively supported the communities in which they lived and serviced with their petroleum needs.

It was not until the 1960’s that bulk fuels progressively replaced the 44 gallon drum. Bulk deliveries throughout rural areas became commonplace as the major oil companies went to war with themselves to see who could flood country areas with small farm storage tanks. It enabled Agents to deliver their fuels more efficiently and economically in their new bulk cross lorry steel tanks.

In the cities, major oil battling to capture market share, built service stations on almost every busy corner, saturating the market with 24,000 of them During the sixties and seventies small drum agents merged into bulk distributors, with the nine major oil companies which existed at that time, consolidated their distributor networks, within a market that was rapidly maturing. Distributors, as they then became known, distributed the fuel from now less in number, but much larger and more profitable business units.

However, this shift in the dynamics of the wholesale sector of the oil industry required the major oil companies to employ larger numbers of bulk tanker drivers to deliver to their network of Distributors throughout regional Australia. These drivers became heavily unionised which developed in the seventies and eighties into excessive militancy, the unions progressively exercising their power over not only wages and conditions, but control over how, where, when and who should deliver fuel to oil company customers. The major oil companies, in their quest to maintain industrial peace, initially, largely acquiesced to the excessive demands of the unions until through the auspices of their newly formed association; The Australian Petroleum Agents & Distributors Association (APADA) the Distributors confronted the unions through court action. In their various confrontations APADA and its members, were the catalyst that broke the union’s excessive power and forced the major oil companies to cease acquiescing to excessive union demands.

Major oil also had over the seventies & eighties Distributor Agreements that were in a number of aspects commercially unconscionable and included in particular, that they did not recognise Goodwill within a Distributor business and with a requirement for Distributors and Retailers being obliged to absorb the highcost impositions of their (major oil) refitsal to ‘temperature correct’ fuels product pricing. It was through the negotiations of the APADA and its membership that these issues were resolved.

Distributors were also forced during the seventies to pay exorbitant insurance premiums for their truck fleets, which at that time had a generally favourable claims history compared to major oil.

It was through APADA that the international insurer OAMPS was conceived which not only provided favourable and more competitive premiums for Distributors, but provided the opportunity for them to invest in what was to become under its stewardship, a highly successful international corporate enterprise.

APADA has since changed its name to the Australian Convenience and Petroleum Marketers Association (ACAPMA) and continues to provide invaluable services to its membership of Distributors/Agents who, through their changing role within the petroleum industry are now more appropriately recognised as petroleum ‘wholesalers’ who occupy a significant and prominent role within the ‘downstream’ sector of the petroleum industry in Australia.

It is from this group of petroleum wholesalers, who have done so much in the development of Australia and the industry in which they operate, that this OOFERS Australia Award is dedicated.

OOFERS Australia is an informal body, with members from all over Australia, with its membership being open to all past and present petroleum wholesalers/distributors/agents, their wives, partners, staff and those closely associated with the sector.

2013 Presentations

Anderson, Ron


Geelong Vic
Badenoch, Gordon


Adelaide  Hills SA
Badenoch, Judy


Adelaide Hills SA
Bromson, Max


Adelaide SA
Chisholm, Graeme


Geelong Vic
Claringbold, Peter


Melbourne Vic
Cottrell, Roy


Port Macquarie NSW
Godson, Rob


Albury NSW
Grabau, Michael


Perth WA
Hillier, Tony


Gold Coast Qld
Jones, John


Central Coast NSW
Kilpatrick, Bruce


Bunbury WA
Kirk, Don


Canberra ACT
Lane, Terry


Melbourne Vic
McWhirter, Allan


Narrogin WA
O'Brien, Terry


Albury NSW
O'Connor, Brian


Yass NSW
Riordan, Rob


Geelong Vic
Russell, Bardie


Melbourne Vic
Taylor, Margaret


Melbourne Vic
Willmington, Wayne


Penrith NSW

2015 Presentations

Duff, Michael


Koo Wee Rup Vic
Fitzgerald, Denis


Nambour Qld
Fredericks, Bryson


Adelaide SA
Griffith, Jeff


Seaford Vic
Guzzardi, Ben


Traralgon Vic
Houlihan, Michael


Albury NSW
Hughes, Kevin


Central Coast NSW
Lake, Ross


Mildura Vic
Lindsay, Evans


Ballarat Vic
Trotter, Des


Ocean Grove Vic

2017 Presentations

Pamela Grabau


Coogee WA
Graham Kent


Devenport Tas
Gordon Simpson


Alexandra Vic
Michael Webb



Syd Worts



2019 Presentations

Nic Moulis


Sydney NSW