LAVAL, QC, Dec. 2, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. ("Couche‑Tard") (TSX: ATD.A ATD.B) announces today that it has signed, through one of its wholly‑owned indirect subsidiaries, an agreement to acquire Ireland's leading convenience and fuel retailer Topaz, through purchasing the majority share capital (more than 99.86%) of both Topaz Energy Group Limited ("TEGL") and Resource Property Investment Fund plc ("RPIF"), together with the entire share capital of Esso Ireland Limited. The minority shareholders of TEGL and RPIF will be invited to take part in the same opportunity. This acquisition would position Couche-Tard as the leading convenience and fuel retailer in Ireland.
The transaction is anticipated to close in the fourth quarter of Couche-Tard's fiscal year 2016 and is subject to the usual regulatory approvals and closing conditions. It would be financed using Couche-Tard's available cash and existing credit facilities. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price for this acquisition.
Topaz is the leading convenience and fuel retailer in the country, made up of 464 stations across the island of Ireland including its recently acquired Esso station network. Of these stations, 162 are owned by Topaz and 302 by dealers. The agreement also encompasses a commercial fuels operation, with over 30 depots and two owned terminals.
"In 2012 we declared that Statoil Fuel & Retail would be our platform for growth in Europe. This agreement to acquire Topaz's network and assets, our second announcement in Europe this year following the Danish Shell deal, would allow us to add yet another high quality network to our operations," says Brian Hannasch, President & CEO of Couche-Tard. "Ireland has been on an extraordinary journey over the past decade. We have been looking at this market for several years. With the addition of Topaz, we would expand our geographic footprint into what, today, is one of Europe's best performing economies."
"As part of the larger Couche-Tard merchant family, and with the strong, global Circle K brand in our portfolio, we are well-equipped to take on this significant market," says Jacob Schram, Couche-Tard's Group President Europe. "Topaz would be a great strategic fit for Couche-Tard and it would strengthen our position in Western Europe. It has an extensive and attractive convenience and fuel network, with good locations, quality forecourts and stores, an excellent food offering and very professional teams. We look forward to welcoming Topaz into our family."
Representatives of the Management Team will participate in a conference call restricted to analysts and media only. The conference call will start at 8:45 A.M (EST) / 1:45 P.M. GMT promptly and analysts and media representatives will need to contact CNW at one of the following numbers: 1-866-865-3087, 1-647-427-7450 or 514-807-9895, conference number # 95369970 and will need to identify themselves. Lines will be available 30 minutes in advance to allow them to register. Participants who wish to join the call after it started will not be able to join it.
INVITATION TO CONFERENCE CALL FOR ANALYSTS AND MEDIA
Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. invites the analysts and media representatives to a conference call to which representatives of the Management Team will participate. The conference call will start at 8:45 A.M. promptly (ET)/ 1:45 P.M. (GMT) and analysts and media representatives will need to contact CNW at one of the following numbers: 1-866-865-3087, 1-647-427-7450 or 514-807-9895, conference number # 95369970 and will need to identify themselves. Lines will be available 30 minutes in advance to allow them to register. Participants who wish to join the call after it started will not be able to join it.
About Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc.
Couche-Tard is the leader in the Canadian convenience store industry. In the United States, it is the largest independent convenience store operator in terms of number of company-operated stores. In Europe, Couche-Tard is a leader in convenience store and road transportation fuel retail in the Scandinavian and Baltic countries, with a significant presence in Poland.
As of October 11, 2015, Couche-Tard's network comprised 8,006 convenience stores throughout North America, including 6,579 stores offering road transportation fuel. Its North American network consists of 15 business units, including 11 in the United States covering 41 States and four in Canada covering all ten provinces. About 80,000 people are employed throughout its network and at its service offices in North America.
In Europe, Couche-Tard operates a broad retail network across Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden and Denmark), Poland, the Baltics (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania) and Russia. As at October 11, 2015, it comprised 2,217 stores, the majority of which offer road transportation fuel and convenience products while the others are unmanned automated service stations which offer road transportation fuel only. The Corporation also offers other products, including stationary energy, marine fuel and chemicals. Couche-Tard operates key fuel terminals and fuel depots in six European countries. Including employees at Statoil branded franchise stations, about 19,000 people work in its retail network, terminals and service offices across Europe.
In addition, about 4,700 stores are operated by independent operators under the Circle K banner in 14 other countries or regions worldwide (China, Costa Rica, Egypt, Guam, Honduras, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, Mexico, the Philippines, the United Arab Emirates and Vietnam) which brings to more than 14,900 the number of sites in Couche-Tard's network.
For more information about Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc., please visit: http://corpo.couche‑tard.com.
The statements set forth in this press release, which describe 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 "will", "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 nature, 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 projection. 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 documents filed by Couche-Tard with securities regulatory authorities in Canada. 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 press release is based on information available as of the date of the release.
SOURCE Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc.
For further information: Contacts: Media Relations: Karen Romer, Director, Global Communications, Tel: 514-603-4505 / +47 950 74 950, [email protected]; Investor Relations: Sylvain Aubry, Senior Director, Legal Affairs and Corporate Secretary, Tel: 450-662-6632, ext. 4619, [email protected]