Knapp Energy, A Division of Crystal Flash

Crystal Flash Expands With Purchase Of Knapp Energy, Inc.

Crystal Flash has acquired Knapp Energy, Inc. to expand its footprint and capabilities in southwest Michigan.

The purchase will give the employee-owned energy distribution company more than 900 new gasoline, diesel fuel, home heating and lubricant customers as it adds the Kalamazoo-based Knapp. All current employees of Knapp Energy will remain.

The transaction was finalized this week. Terms of the deal are not being disclosed. Charter Capital Partners served as financial advisors to Crystal Flash.

“We are excited to welcome the customers and team of Knapp Energy into our Crystal Flash family,” said President Tom Olive. “As we continue to expand our footprint, joining companies closely align to our purpose and values is very important. Our shared backgrounds as independent fuel distributors committed to exceptional service makes the Knapp acquisition a natural fit.”

This is the eleventh acquisition in the past five years for Crystal Flash, which is already one of the largest independent distributors of gasoline, diesel fuel and home heating propane in Michigan. Since its founding in 1932, Crystal Flash has grown to more than 250 employees and 16 locations across the state focused on bringing comfort to its residential customers and helping fleet, farm and business customers power their success with reliable deliveries of quality fuels and services.

Steve Nederhoed founded Knapp Energy in 1954 as Nederhoed Oil Company before his son-in-law, Bob Knapp, purchased the company in 1984 and changed the name to Knapp Oil Co. Knapp’s son, Dave, has run the company since his father’s retirement in 1999.

With support from Charter Capital Partners, Crystal Flash has made 10 other acquisitions since 2011 to expand its reach across Michigan’s Lower Peninsula and into Northern Indiana:

  • Richardson Oil in Lawrence
  • Brenner Oil’s home heat division in Grand Rapids
  • Drakes Fuel Service in Schoolcraft
  • Elliott Gas & Oil in Gladwin
  • Leelanau Propane in Northport
  • Heartland Propane in Heart
  • CA Murphy in Sturgis
  • C. Barron & Sons, Inc. in Monroe
  • Ownes Petroleum, Inc. and Ownes Propane Service in Albion
  • Lenawee Farm Bureau Oil Cooperative, Inc. in Adrian

About Crystal Flash

Crystal Flash is an employee-owned energy distribution company focused on commercial and residential customers throughout the Lower Peninsula of Michigan. Established in 1932, Crystal Flash has grown as the demand for energy has evolved, and today concentrates on the sale and distribution of propane, diesel and other fuels. Today, the company is one of the largest independently owned energy suppliers in the state with more than 250 employees in 15 locations. Learn more.

About Charter Capital Partners

Established in 1989, Charter Captial Partners is recognized as a premier investment banking firm, with multiple offices in the Midwest. The firm supports middle market companies with a broad range of advisory services, including buy-side / sell-side advisory, business valuation, exit planning, and capital raise for start-ups, acquisition and growth capital. To learn more, visit