Martin Lubricants grew out of a refining business started in Smackover, Arkansas, in 1923: Cross Oil Refining & Marketing, Inc. (Cross Oil). In the mid-1990s, Cross Oil decided to expand into the blending and packaging business as a way to consume some of its refinery’s base oil production. In 2000, to expand its blending and packaging business, Cross Oil acquired the assets of the Gard™ Corporation, a producer of industrial-grade lubricants. To complement the Gard industrial-grade lubricants, the Xtreme™ line of lubricants was developed to meet the needs of transport and off-road users.
In 2006, Cross Oil was acquired by Martin Resource Management Corporation (MRMC), who was a supplier of crude oil to Cross Oil for many years. In 2012, the blending and packaging business of Cross Oil was acquired by Martin Operating Partnership L.P. (MOP), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Martin Midstream Partners L.P. (NASDAQ: MMLP), who now operates the business under the name Martin Lubricants. In 2013, MOP acquired the assets of NL Grease, LLC, a Kansas City, Missouri, based grease manufacturer specializing in private-label packaging of commercial and industrial greases.
Today, Martin Lubricants operates two complete blending and packaging plants, one in Smackover, Arkansas, and one in the Kansas City area. The company supplies bulk lubricants and packaged goods for automotive, industrial and commercial-grade use via the following brands:
- Gard™ – Gard™ is our complete industrial line of lubricants.
- SynGard™ – SynGard™ is our 100% synthetic line of lubricants.
- Unimark™ – Unimark™ is our collection of conventional and synthetic blend lubricants for passenger cars.
- Xtreme™ – Xtreme™ is our line of agriculture, commercial, and off-highway lubricants.
Martin Lubricants also packages private label products for major oil companies, farm store chains, dollar stores, and auto parts wholesalers, and also exports finished lubricants worldwide.
Martin Lubricants produces its own bottles and pails in a dedicated 70,000 sq. ft. facility located in Smackover, Arkansas. Plastics production for lubricants began in 2012 with the installation of two Uniloy blow molding machines that produced quarts, 1 gallon, and 5 quart bottles. In 2013, Martin Operating Partnership added four Husky injection molding machines to produce 5 gallon pails and lids. Expansion of the plastics facility continued in 2015 with the production of the 2 gallon bottle and a 5 gallon pail with a built-in handle.