Casey's Widens Pizza Delivery Test

Adds five more towns to pilot program; could expand further by year's end

ANKENY, Iowa -- Casey's General Stores Inc. has expanded its pizza delivery service to include convenience stores in Waverly, Adel, Carroll, Eldridge and Nevada, Iowa, reported The Des Moines Register. The chain began testing pizza delivery at its store in Grimes in April.

The expanded [image-nocss] service began operating Tuesday and will be available daily from 4:30 to 10:00 p.m., the company said on Twitter.

"We're choosing locations where we have no, or very limited, overlap with other Casey's stores that sell pizza," William Walljasper, the company's chief financial officer, told the newspaper. "Secondly, we look at the competition that actually delivers pizza [in specific markets]. For example, I don't think there's any pizza delivery in Adel."

He added, "Hopefully, these stores will do well and we'll expand it even further by the end of the year."

Casey's was the first convenience store chain in the nation to introduce pizza in 1984, according to the report. It sold well in the company's stores, which are mostly in small communities where there were few or no restaurants that sold pizza. In more recent years, prepared foods, including pizza, donuts and sandwiches, have become popular fare at a growing number of c- store chains because they provide a much higher profit margin, the report said.

Casey's margins on prepared foods are about 60%, compared with sales of other in-store items, where the markup is around 30% and profits margins on gasoline sales are typically in the low single digits, the Register added.Ankeny, Iowa-based Casey's has approximately 1,620 convenience stores in 11 Midwestern and Great Plains states including: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Arkansas.