South Portland-based WEX has landed the contract to handle fleet fuel card services for state vehicles for the next three years.

Last year the state spent $8.9 million on fuel for fleet vehicles. The Tennessee-based company that previously held the contract gave Maine a rebate of .5 percent of sales, or about $45,000, under their agreement. 

WEX will pay a 1.5 percent rebate to the state. The company makes its money on the deal by taking a fee off each fuel purchase of about 2.5 percent, which works out to about $128,000 under last year’s figures. When additional benchmarks and bonuses are factored in, the rebate amount to the state is expected to be about $150,000 a year. 

“(This) will save the state money and support Maine jobs,” Gov. Paul LePage said in a statement. 

The contract covers fleet vehicles for 46 state agencies, and 5,655 fuel cards. It does not cover any personal vehicles and does not cover the judicial and legislative branches. A handful of towns and sheriffs’ departments opted to be part of the contract. 

WEX, formerly known as Wright Express, now handles fleet fuel card services for 23 states and the federal government.

WEX has 1,300 employees worldwide and 630 at its South Portland headquarters. The company has grown through a series of acquisitions, including a recent $369 million deal to buy fuel-card company Fleet One from private-equity firms.

The previous contract holder was Tennessee-based Comdata.