Company News

Mega Co-op Terminates Holiday Stationstores Franchise Relationship

Decision part of convenience-store retailer’s post-bankruptcy business plan
Photograph courtesy of Holiday Stationstores

In a move that the company expects will enhance its long-term financial stability, Wisconsin convenience-store retailer Mega Co-op has decided to terminate its Holiday Stationstores franchise relationship, in place since 2009. With the move, the cooperative “aims to provide better products, services and pricing for co-op members and customers,” the board of directors shared in a statement to members and the communities it serves.

Eau Claire, Wisconsin-based Mega Co-op operates approximately 30 Holiday, Mega Consumers Co-Op and Mega Co-Op Travel Stop c-stores.

Mega Co-op ceased operating the following locations in western Wisconsin and returned them to Holiday Stationstores on May 20:

  • 6126 Texaco Drive, Eau Claire
  • 2806 Golf Road, Eau Claire
  • 501 N. Bridge St., Chippewa Falls
  • 2230 Birch St., Eau Claire
  • 2940 N. Clairemont Ave., Eau Claire

“We’re thankful for the loyalty of our cooperative members,” said CEO Mike Buck. “Our stores thrive through community support, and we are eager to return to our local cooperative roots, introducing new products and services.”

The company will rebrand the remaining 13 locations to Mega Co-op throughout June and July, offering bp-branded fuel. Members will continue to receive the 5-cents-per-gallon rewards on fuel purchases, along with new discounts, products and improved services, the retailer said.

Each rebranded location will feature enhanced in-store experiences, said Mega Co-op, and community spirit programs such as the “Pride at the Pump” initiative will continue to support local schools by donating proceeds from designated fuel pumps.

“Mega Co-op has proudly served our communities since 1935. We are committed to finding new ways to give back, supporting our schools and fostering the future of our communities,” said Board President Gregg Webert.

Mega Co-op also said it expects to confirm its post-bankruptcy business plan, “marking the successful conclusion of this challenging chapter.” Since filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September 2023, the cooperative “has diligently addressed business concerns, negotiated supply agreements and defined a sustainable business model propelling it into the future.”

Holiday owner Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. declined to comment on Mega Co-op’s decision to end the franchise relationship other than to say it is “unrelated” to an ongoing initiative to rebrand Holiday locations as Circle K stores.

Alimentation Couche-Tard acquired Holiday Stationstores Inc., including 522 company-operated and franchised convenience stores, a food commissary and a fuel terminal, from Holiday Cos. in December 2017. At that time, Holiday operated 374 stores and franchisees operated 148 stores. It has a presence in 10 states—Minnesota, Wisconsin, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Michigan and Alaska.

In 2016, Alimentation Couche-Tard said it would consolidate its several brands under a global Circle K flag. At that time, the company decided to keep the Holiday brand, but has slowly begin that rebranding process, as well.

“We have been converting Holiday stores in certain areas to the global Circle K brand, taking a deliberate market-by-market approach,” said Chris Barnes, a spokesperson for Alimentation Couche-Tard. “We’ve completed these conversions in several other states over the past two years, and work is now underway in Rochester, Minnesota. I don’t yet have any further details to share on completion timelines or next steps or markets in this process.”

  • Alimentation Couche-Tard is No. 2 on CSP’s 2024 Top 40 Updateto the 2023 Top 202ranking of U.S. c-store chains by store count. Mega Co-op is No. 201 on the 2023 Top 202 ranking. Watch for the full 2024 Top 202 ranking in the June issue of CSP magazine and in CSP Daily News.

Laval, Quebec-based Alimentation Couche-Tard operates in 29 countries and territories, with more than 16,700 convenience stores. Its network includes more than 7,100 c-stores in the United States, primarily under the Circle K banner.

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