Krause on ‘Kum & Go’ (Video)

What’s in a name? Merchandise sales, for one thing

CEO Kyle Krause

CEO Kyle Krause

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa -- Documentary filmmaker Patrick W. Gavin (@pwgavin) posted the following tweet:

The response is “Kum & Go: A Mini-Mart Documentary by Patrick Gavin.”

“Their name is funny. And they're aware,” said Gavin.

Kum & Go president and CEO Kyle Krause explains the fairly mundane origins of the name--the founders’ initials combined with a descriptive pun on the “quick in-and-out” nature of the convenience-store business, but also a way to save money on signage.

A store manager explains how the company capitalizes on out-of-state travelers wanting to buy merchandise bearing the chain’s name. Another employee points to the name’s pop-culture cache.

Krause also points to the Iowa Caucuses that bring out-of-state people for the political season. Many wind up at Kum & Go at some point during their time in the Hawkeye State.

“We probably sell more Kum & Go lighters, Kum & Go t-shirts, Kum & Go mugs than another convenience-store chain would sell with a different name,” he said.

And in terms of politics, he cites Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina’s campaign stop this week as an example of how politics and convenience-stores intersect.

“It’s not by any stretch an endorsement by [Kum & Go],” he said, “but I recently made a [personal] decision to support Senator Rubio.”

Watch the video below or click here.

Gavin is a film director and producer and the CEO of production company PWG Media Group. His most recent film is “Nerd Prom: Inside Washington’s Wildest Week,” a 2015 documentary that exposed the biggest annual event in Washington, D.C.: The White House Correspondents’ Dinner.

Gavin has covered Washington politics for a decade, beginning with his work as a writer at the Brookings Institution, then as a columnist at the Washington Examiner, then a reporter at’s FishbowlDC website and, most recently, at Politico, where he focused on the nexus between Hollywood and Washington.

Gavin is also an adjunct faculty member at American University.

West Des Moines, Iowa-based Kum & Go LC has more than 430 convenience stores in 11 states (Iowa, Arkansas, Colorado, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wyoming).