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Station of the Month

Theofano Tsouvalidou, Asopos, Laconia 

Mrs. Tsouvalidou’s service station is located in southern Laconia on the Sparta-Neapolis road, a few kilometers outside the town of Molai. We talked with Mr. Dimitris Vlachakis, Mrs. Tsouvalidou’s husband.

Asopos is a municipality in the prefecture of Laconia in the southern tip of the Peloponnese. The settlement of Papadianika, where Mrs. Tsouvalidou’s service station is located, is the seat of the municipality. Besides Papadianika, other popular areas in Asopos include Karavostasion, Plytra, Glyfa (or Glyfada), Deamonia, Archangelos, Paralia, Finiki, and Krissa.

Please tell us a few words about your service station. How long have you been in the fuel business Mr. Vlachakis? 

This service station has always been a family business. It has been in operation since 1975. At first my father managed the business for a number of years. I took over 15 years ago and last year the business was passed on to my wife.

Talk to us about your customers and your day-to-day activities.

We sell fuel and lubricants and we also operate a car wash. Our area is primarily rural, so most of our customers are farmers. Nevertheless, during the summer we also get a number of tourists on their way to the many popular beaches of the area and Elafonissos. Also, the Castle of Monemvasia is nearby and that attracts many visitors as well.

How did you choose Aegean?

We were very fond of the company brand and we wanted more competitive prices. We had grown tired of our old supplier—for various reasons—and I decided to switch suppliers. So, I examined my options and, after I had spoken with the Peloponnese Aegean supervisor, I concluded that Aegean was the best choice for us. I am confident that I made the right decision. 

How many years has Aegean been your supplier? How is your cooperation with Aegean today?

We have been working with Aegean for six years. A year ago we renewed our contract for another five years. We came to an agreement almost instantly. In general, I am very satisfied with the company. We also have a great relationship with our inspector. 

How did your loyal customers react when you switched suppliers? 

There was a large increase in consumption and customers directly after we switched suppliers. At the time customers had started to be more aware of prices and shop around for the best deal and that made a big difference. Today there is an expected drop, but as a professional I have to examine whether this drop is due to the overall crisis or other factors, such as the competition. I firmly believe that a good businessman can look at this crisis as an opportunity and really excel.