Alimentation Couche-Tard, based in Laval, Quebec, is the second largest c-store operator in the United States. Along with major retail networks in Canada and Europe, Couche-Tard’s U.S. retail network includes about 7,800 c-stores in 15 business units covering 48 states and the District of Columbia. Through its Allentown, Pa.-based unit CrossAmerica Partners, it also supplies fuel under various brands to more than 1,200 U.S. locations.
In a deal that closed in December 2017, Couche-Tard acquired 522 c-stores from Holiday Cos., Bloomington, Minn. In June 2017, Couche-Tard closed on its acquisitions of CST Brands Inc., San Antonio, with about 1,400 Corner Stores in the United States. In 2014, Couche-Tard acquired Cary, N.C.-based The Pantry and its approximately 1,500 Kangaroo Express c-stores and gasoline brand.
The company said in 2015 that it is rebranding all but a few of its legacy c-stores in Canada to its new global Circle K brand. For the CST sites, “there’s an opportunity to draw more distinction between the fuel brand and the store brand at these sites as we rebrand the network to Circle K,” President and CEO Brian Hannasch said.
Couche-Tard is also testing electric-vehicle charging in Norway, using that country “as a laboratory to understand how … we continue to drive traffic to our sites,” Hannasch said in 2017. “We do believe there will be a flattening of fuel demand in the next five years, and that’s consistent with what we hear from our fuel suppliers.”