In 1929, Bert Boes became an agent for a company called "Standard Oil of Indiana" located in Holland, Michigan. Bert continued working as an agent for 30 years. Bert's son, Merle, worked as a truck driver during nine of those years and in 1959, Merle took over as agent. During Merle's time as agent, Standard Oil Co. became Amoco Oil Company.
Merle made a switch from agent to jobber in 1975, which resulted in Merle Boes, Inc. The corporate offices were built on East Lakewood Boulevard in Holland, with a large warehouse across the street capable of housing up to one-half million gallons of lube storage. The company was made up of six employees, including Merle, and covered the Holland, Zeeland, Fennville and Pulman areas, supplying approximately four million gallons of fuel in that year. Merle bought his first transport in 1976 and two years later, an Amoco gas service station was built adjacent to the corporate office building at our Lakewood location.
Merle's son, Mike, began working for his father in 1978 at the Amoco gas station. Shortly after working at the gas station, Mike transferred to the warehouse, and after working at the warehouse for some time, he began focusing on sales management at the corporate office. Mike and his father, Merle, worked to expand the business. They added two additional service stations and purchased Neidlinger Oil Co. in Grand Haven. Due to this purchase in Grand Haven, the lube operations expanded. The purchase also enabled them to add the North Muskegon service station as well as a bulk plant.
In 1989, Mike took over the company responsibilities for his dad and in 1990, Merle Boes retired and Mike became head of the family business. Susan Becksvoort, Mike's sister, was the company officer and her husband, Bill, worked in company operations.
In 1998, BP and Amoco merged. The Chevron brand was also added and Merle Boes covered lubricant sales in the lower Peninsula, from West Michigan to Detroit. In 1999, Merle Boes, Inc. purchased the lubricant division of American Gas & Oil in Sparta.
Mike and his family have contributed to the growth of Merle Boes, Inc. and have made a positive impact with the surrounding communities. By the family’s commitment and dedication to great years of service, the company has expanded to include 22 gas stations with convenience stores, 3 Junction Pizza & Subs restaurants, a Subway® franchise, and delivers high quality Marathon, Shell, and BP products to over 40 Michigan dealers.