ATD.A, ATD.B / TSX
LAVAL, QC, Nov. 11 /CNW Telbec/ - Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. expects to enter into an agreement through one of its wholly-owned subsidiaries, to create a joint venture with Shell Oil Products US ("Shell") to operate approximately 100 convenience stores in the greater Chicago metropolitan area. The transaction is subject to final management approvals of both companies, standard regulatory approvals and closing conditions and is expected to close by the end of 2009. An agreement between the parties does not allow the details of the Joint Venture to be disclosed at this time.
Of the 100 convenience stores within the scope of the proposed venture, 89 stores are currently operated by third party operators under an operator agreement with Shell, including 32 operated under the Circle K banner by Couche-Tard's Midwest Division. The remaining 11 locations currently operate as Shell retail marketers under a retail lease agreement. The majority of the 100 stores would be operated by Couche-Tard's Midwest Division under the Circle K banner. Shell motor fuel and branded products would continue to be marketed at all 100 locations. All 100 stores held by Shell would be transferred over to the Joint Venture through a combination of purchased and contributed fee and lease sites.
"These stores are located in the third largest city in the US. Strategically, this acquisition would be a complement to our expansion and growth plans for the Midwest Division. In addition to being an excellent fit within our current operating framework, it would also provide a much larger presence and would allow us to more easily target our growth in the greater Chicago metropolitan area", said Darrell Davis, Vice-President Operations, Circle K Midwest Division.
Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. is the leader in the Canadian convenience store industry. In North America, Couche-Tard is the second largest independent convenience store operator (whether integrated or not with a petroleum company) in terms of number of stores. Couche-Tard currently operates a network of 5,906 convenience stores which include 4,122 motor fuel dispensing, located in eleven large geographic markets, including eight in the United States covering 43 states and three in Canada covering all ten provinces. Some 52,000 people are employed throughout Couche-Tard's retail convenience network and executive offices.
The statements set forth in this press release, which describes Couche-Tard's objectives, projections, estimates, expectations or forecasts, may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of securities legislation. Positive or negative verbs such as "plan", "evaluate", "estimate", "believe", "expect" and other related expressions are used to identify such statements. Couche-Tard would like to point out that, by their very natures, forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties such that its results, or the measures it adopts, could differ materially from those indicated or underlying these statements, or could have an impact on the degree of realization of a particular projections. Major factors that may lead to a material difference between Couche-Tard's actual results and the projections or expectations set forth in the forward-looking statements include the effects of the integration of acquired businesses and the ability to achieve projected synergies, fluctuations in margins on motor fuel sales, competition in the convenience store and retail motor fuel industries, exchange rate variations, and such other risks as described in detail from time to time in the reports filed by Couche-Tard with securities authorities in Canada and the United States. Unless otherwise required by applicable securities laws, Couche-Tard disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. The forward-looking information in this release is based on information available as of the date of the release.
SOURCE Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc.
For further information: For further information: Raymond Pare, Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer, (450) 662-3272; Darrell Davis, Vice-President Operations, Midwest Division, (812) 379-9227; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.couche-tard.com