About

Our predecessor was founded in 1870 as the Charles H. Sprague Company. Today, Sprague Operating Resources LLC ("Sprague") is one of the largest independent suppliers of energy and materials handling services in the Northeast with products including home heating oil, diesel fuels, residual fuels, gasoline and natural gas. Over the years, Sprague has aggressively expanded its offerings to meet the ever-changing energy and logistics markets.  Coupled with its strong physical assets, Sprague provides differentiated products and services including value-added customer support and online tools that are unmatched.

  • Key Facts
  • History
  • Leadership
  • Citizenship
  • Safety and the Environment
  • Careers

Key Facts

  • Founded in 1870
  • Corporate headquarters: Portsmouth, New Hampshire
    • Additional office in White Plains, New York
  • Full-time employees: 400
  • Owns and/or operates 15 refined products and materials handling terminals
    • Throughputs or exchanges at 50 additional third-party facilities

History

Sprague's predecessor was founded in 1870 by Charles H. Sprague, who initially focused the company on meeting the explosive demand for coal, which was being fueled by the industrial age.

During World War I, the privately held company became the major supplier of coal to America's European allies. To facilitate the transportation of millions of tons of coal across the Atlantic, the Sprague Steamship Company was founded. By World War II, the company was operating eleven terminals and a fleet of 27 vessels transporting coal and other products throughout the world. Its role as a worldwide coal supplier was solidified in 1942, when the US Government selected Sprague to manage the wartime coal shipment program.

Following the war, Sprague enjoyed an era of rapid growth as residual fuel oil became a major fuel source and component of the energy business. Sprague seized this growth opportunity by entering the oil business and building its first industrial oil terminal adjacent to its Portsmouth coal facility. The Sprague family entered the industrial oil business with a major commitment; building terminals, acquiring tankers, contracting with suppliers, handling the product, and entering new markets. In 1959, the company expanded its oil marketing activities by entering the distillate oil market.

By the late 1960s, the company separated into two operations: coal and oil. This division was quickly followed by the sale of its entire coal operation to Westmoreland Coal Company. Having consolidated its focus on the oil business, the Sprague family sold its interest in the company to Royal Dutch Shell's Asiatic Petroleum subsidiary in 1970. Two years later, Shell sold Sprague to Axel Johnson Inc., a member of the Axel Johnson Group of Stockholm, Sweden. That move proved fortuitous because it provided the resources for Sprague to prosper during the energy crises of the 1970s.

Spurred by recent oil supply crises, the company came full circle in 1982 when Sprague joined forces once again with Westmoreland Coal Company. Through an exclusive marketing arrangement with Westmoreland, coal again became a major energy component of Sprague's total energy business, and reinforced its position as a major industrial fuel supplier.

Supported by a growing network of terminals, Sprague launched a full-time materials handling marketing effort in 1986. The following year marked a shift in the company's business from being primarily an industrial fuel distributor to focus on commercial and wholesale fuels as well. To aggressively support this new, broader direction, the company made a number of significant acquisitions.

The 1990s saw further expansion into the natural gas marketplace, gasoline wholesaling and terminal business, as well as entry into the aviation fuel market. In 1999, Sprague moved its corporate offices to a state-of-the-art facility located at Two International Drive, Suite 200, Pease International Tradeport in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Sprague began 2001 by acquiring RAD Energy, a leading fuel distributor servicing metro New York and New Jersey. RAD not only expanded Sprague’s footprint, but it also brought to Sprague several innovative, field-tested fuel management programs that could be utilized across the Sprague footprint.

In 2005, Sprague expanded its footprint in Maine with the acquisition of Merrill Marine Terminal Services, Inc. in Portland, Maine. This provided Sprague with another sizeable operation in New England - adding approximately 600,000 tons of annual materials handling capacity.

Large ship docks at Sprague terminal

Sprague also continues to expand its Materials Handling business. Built initially around coal handling in the turn of the century, Sprague is now focused on supporting customers’ evolving requirements, such as offloading large wind turbine blades and components.

Traditionally, Sprague's Natural Gas business has served large commercial and industrial market segments. The acquisition of Houston Energy Services (HESCO) in 2006 expanded Sprague's natural gas offerings geographically and positioned the company to grow its small commercial market segment. 

In 2007, Sprague acquired 50% of Kildair Service Ltd, a Canadian-based terminal and export cargo business. In 2012, Sprague successfully completed the acquisition of the remaining 50% and is actively expanding the Materials Handling aspects of the Montreal-located facility.

David C. Glendon
President and Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Glendon has held this position since January 2008. Mr. Glendon has been with Sprague since 2003 and was previously the Senior Vice President, Oil and Materials Handling, focusing on driving the execution of a customer-centric approach across all elements of the business. Prior to joining Sprague, Mr. Glendon was a partner and global account manager at Monitor Group. He was also a founder and managing director of Monitor Equity Advisors, which worked with leading private capital providers in evaluating transactions and enhancing the strategic positions of their portfolio investments.  Mr. Glendon received a Bachelor’s degree, cum laude, in Psychology from Williams College and a Master in Business Administration from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Gary A. Rinaldi
SVP, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Rinaldi has held this position since January 2008. Mr. Rinaldi has responsibility for all terminals, materials handling and trucking operations, in addition to his duties as Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Rinaldi has been with Sprague since 2003, originally serving as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to joining Sprague, Mr. Rinaldi was Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer for the SUN Group. Prior to that, Mr. Rinaldi held several senior financial and operational management positions at Phibro Energy, a division of Salomon Inc., including Vice President and Chief Financial Officer and Director of Phibro Energy Production Inc. Mr. Rinaldi received his Bachelor’s degree in Economics with a concentration in Accounting from The Wharton School, The University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Rinaldi is also a Certified Public Accountant.

Paul A. Scoff
VP, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer and Secretary
Mr. Scoff has held this role since June 2011 and has been with Sprague since 1999. Mr. Scoff joined Sprague in 1999. Prior to Sprague, Mr. Scoff was the VP and General Counsel of Genesis Energy L.P., a publicly traded master limited partnership. Prior to Genesis, Mr. Scoff served as Senior Counsel with Basis Petroleum (formerly known as Phibro Energy U.S.A. Inc., a division of Salomon Inc.). He also served as Senior Counsel with The Coastal Corporation prior to joining Basis Petroleum. He received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Houston Law Center in 1984 and his Bachelor’s degree, cum laude, in Political Science and English from Washington and Jefferson College in 1981.

Citizenship

Sprague strives to be a good corporate citizen with a particular focus on those markets where we operate. We recognize that it is important to give back to our communities – it is something that we have done throughout our 140+ years of existence.

  • Sprague, both as a company and through its employees, dedicates significant resources to improving communities in which we operate.  We concentrate our support efforts for causes that benefit children. Sprague consistently provides generous direct support of these efforts, including the below major recipients.

  • Sprague is a founding member of the Children’s Museum and New Hampshire located in Dover.  With nearly 100,000 visitors a year, the Children’s Museum is New Hampshire’s première museum providing learning opportunities to children of all ages while supporting and enriching the services of local schools.

  • Sprague is a significant donor to the Muscular Dystrophy Association. For more than 20 years, Sprague has hosted an annual customer appreciation charity golf event - surpassing the $1,000,000 mark in 2013, a year when it raised over $100,000 for this organization which works with children and adults affected by neuromuscular diseases.

  • With both financial and personal resources, Sprague supports the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the Greater Seacoast organization which pairs at-risk youth with adults interested in helping them realize their potential and build their futures.

  • Through financial contributions and the donation of its tanks as the canvas, Sprague has supported the Main Center for Creativity and its dedication of linking the arts and the industrial economy.  The result has been what has recently become the largest public arts display in the world in South Portland Maine.

  • Sprague employees participate in the annual Plunge for Special Olympics which is typically held on a (very) cold January day. The Sprague group, affectionately named “Buck’s Duck,” plunges into the Atlantic Ocean to raise funds for the Special Olympics of New Hampshire.

  • Additionally, Sprague Employees volunteer thousands of hours, working with dozens of nonprofit organizations across New England.  The company actively supports our employees’ volunteerism. One example is our regular support of the United Way Day of Caring where dozens of employees participate in community service activities.

Safety and the Environment

Safety

Sprague is committed to the health, safety and well-being of its employees.  Employees are expected to maintain a safe working environment, and Sprague is committed to sound work practices.  The goal of a perfect safety record, supported by individual attention and responsibility, helps shape Sprague’s safety culture.  A safety culture exists when management and employees share a commitment to workplace safety.  In a strong safety culture, every employee knows that the “Safe Way is the Correct Way” and that behavior is exhibited by every employee.  The Safe Way in the work place is a learned behavior and a shared value, top down and bottom up.  This is something that we at Sprague believe in and practice every day.

Safety is both a company and an individual responsibility – it’s a condition of employment. Sprague provides a safe and healthy work environment for all employees.  This is achieved through methods and procedures, proper safeguards, and by providing essential training to perform jobs safely. We believe that superior safety performance is achieved when employees maintain a high level of motivation and willingness to succeed and have the ability and opportunity to effect safe practices.

To reinforce the importance of safety at Sprague, employees participate in safety meetings and training to refresh and renew each individual’s expertise. Sprague employs a number of best practices related to safety such as tool box meetings, job safety analyses and incident reviews to share lessons learned throughout the system and review our actions in a thoughtful manner. An injury-free work place is no accident, and we work to achieve that goal through providing the right tools and training each and every day.

Environment

With over nine million barrels of petroleum product storage in marine terminals, Sprague complies with numerous federal, state and local regulations dealing with the environment.  The company’s attention to the environment includes satisfying regulatory requirements and involves our leadership and involvement in working with local area regulatory, enforcement and public safety representatives on their plans and programs.  These efforts include regional emergency response plans and drills that Sprague actively promotes and participates.

Sprague is on the forefront of clean energy products. For over a decade, Sprague has been actively promoting alternative and low-emission energy products. We continually look for ways to introduce and promote these products to our customers.

  • Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD)
    • Sprague built out the required infrastructure and began marketing ULSD six years ahead of the EPA mandate
    • Sprague now supplies over 100 million gallons of USLD annually to nearly every major transit authority in the Northeast. The Cities of New York and Boston have chosen Sprague to provide an environmentally-friendly option for their fleets
    • In 2005, Sprague was a recipient of the inaugural EPA Children's Environmental Health Award, recognizing Sprague’s commitment to protecting children from environmental health risks
  • Biodiesel and Bioheat® fuel
    • Biofuel is a renewable, non-toxic, biodegradable fuel grown here in the United States; biofuels help customers and operators reduce their overall emissions
    • Sprague was the first BQ-9000 certified terminal operator and marketer in the U.S. providing biodiesel blending capabilities in the Northeast
    • We are a governing board member of the industry’s leading trade group, National Biodiesel Board, which seeks to promote the use of biodiesel as a viable component of our nation’s fuel usage

Careers

The energy business is an exceptionally dynamic industry.  In addition to typical competitive challenges, we are constantly wrestling with geopolitical factors, the weather and a vibrant trading environment; thus we place a premium on deep market knowledge and expertise.  We recognize that developing our people is critical to our long term success.  We embrace both formal and informal development as a way to better serve customers and improve our capabilities.

Sprague has retained the feeling of a family business from when our predecessor was founded by Charles H. Sprague in 1870, which continues today with our membership in the Axel Johnson Group of companies.

Sprague is an Equal Employment Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer that welcomes diverse outside perspectives, experiences and great talent that can help us to build upon our current capabilities.

If you are interested in joining a dynamic company, please go here for a list of our current job openings or to submit an application.

View and apply for jobs at Sprague.