Casey's General Stores Plans To Add Hundreds Of Stores Amid M&A Tear
Casey’s General Stores, the nation’s third-largest convenience retailer and fifth-largest pizza chain, is looking to expand by 350 stores as part of its newly announced three-year strategic plan.
Casey’s operates 2,542 stores across 16 states in the South and Midwest. M&A has been a main focus for the retailer over the last few years, having added more than 350 stores since 2020 largely by purchasing competitors.
Fiscal year 2022 was the company’s most acquisitive year ever, Casey’s General Stores Inc. President and CEO Darren Rebelez said in an April 2022 earnings call, when the company closed out its 2022 fiscal year.
Casey’s opened 228 stores that year, 207 via acquisition and 21 new builds, offset by closing 20 stores. That largely hinged on three major M&A deals that closed in the latter half of 2021, adding 182 stores to its footprint and bolstering the firm’s Midwest presence, as reported by C-Store Dive. Casey’s acquired some stores from Circle-K owner Alimentation Couche-Tard and some stores from Pilot Corp., and it outright acquired Buchanan Energy, the owner of Bucky’s Convenience Stores.
It continued that momentum in in fiscal year 2023, including purchasing two dozen mini marts in the Kansas City, Missouri, area last month. The company’s larger goal is to add 350 more through acquisition and organic growth by the end of fiscal year 2026, Seeking Alpha reports.
M&A has been a popular strategy in the convenience store industry as factors like labor shortages and high inflation rates have put a strain on operators. Last month, BP and TravelCenters of America finalized a $1.3B merger, Maverik acquired Kum & Go convenience stores in April, and Love’s Travel Stops acquired EZ Go stores.
Convenience store brands all over the country have been on the expansion trail for a few years now. A refined focus on high-quality food and the customer experience has led many convenience stores to go more upscale, and Casey’s said it will work to “elevate convenient food” and expand its private label options as it grows.