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Mergers & Acquisitions

Couche-Tard Acquires 17 Holiday Stations From Franchisee

South Dakota, Minnesota locations join corporate network

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. (ACT) has acquired 17 franchised The Gas Stop stations operating under the Holiday brand from I-90 Fuel Services Inc. The locations are in Sioux Falls, S.D., and in nearby Minnesota.

Laval, Quebec-based ACT acquired Holiday Stationstores Inc. and its 522 convenience stores in mid-2017, keeping the brand rather than converting the stores to its Circle K flag. Bloomington, Minn.-based Holiday has a presence in 10 states: Minnesota, Wisconsin, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Michigan and Alaska.

“With this transaction, ACT obtains the business and the assets previously owned by Sioux Falls Holiday franchisee and Gas Stop owners Tom and Melissa Howes. The 17 stores will operate as corporate stores going forward, strengthening ACT’s foothold in the Northern Tier region,” the company said in a statement provided to CSP Daily News.

“Since acquiring Holiday in 2017, ACT has been very pleased with the sharing of best practices and key learnings that we continue to see, as we pursue Holiday’s integration in our broader network,” it said.

ACT has offered all of the employees the opportunity to keep their jobs, according to a report by Sioux Falls Business.

Holiday Stationstores forged a deal with I-90 Fuel Services in 2013 to convert 16 of The Gas Stop locations to Holiday Stationstores.

I-90 Fuel Services is a separate company from Howes Oil Co., which was founded in 1938 by Ivan Howes. His son, Mike Howes, opened the first Gas Stop in 1977. I-90 Fuel Services grew into a separately owned business that operated all of The Gas Stop Holiday stores, owned by Mike’s son, Tom Howes. Tom’s brother, Andy Howes, owns Howes Oil, which is a petroleum distributor that also owns the Local Zip c-store brand, which includes 36 independently owned stores in five states.

  • Alimentation Couche-Tard isNo. 2 in CSP's 2019 Top 202 ranking of U.S. c-store chains by number of company-owned retail outlets.

ACT’s network includes more than 9,800 c-stores in North America, covering 48 U.S. states, mostly under the Circle K and Holiday Stationstores banners, and all 10 provinces in Canada, under the Circle K and Couche-Tard banners. In Europe, ACT operates a retail network in Scandinavia, Ireland, Poland, the Baltics and Russia with more than 2,700 stores. Also, licensees operate about 2,280 stores under the Circle K banner in 16 other countries and territories (Cambodia, China, Costa Rica, Egypt, Guam, Honduras, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Jamaica, Macau, Mexico, Mongolia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Vietnam), which brings its worldwide total network to more than 14,800 stores.

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