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    Circle K Begins Conversion of Sun Mart Stores

    Twenty-seven eastern Washington sites in the process of changing signage, fuel brand.

    KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Three months after agreeing to purchase 27 eastern Washington State Sun Mart locations from Sun Pacific Energy, Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. subsidiary Circle K Stores Inc. has begun converting the acquired stores, according to a KNDO.com report.

    Circle K's Tim Tourek, vice president of operations, U.S. West Coast Division, is overseeing the stores' conversion. Eighteen of the 27 stores are located in the "Tri-Cities" area of Pasco, Kennewick and Richland.

    "This is a great opportunity for the West Coast Division to make an entry into a new market with very high-quality assets from an outstanding and highly respected operator. I am very confident the assets, market and team would make an immediate positive contribution to the corporation. This transaction would bring the company-operated store count for the division to 252," Tourek stated at the time of the acquisition.

    Following the conversion, all 26 of the sites that offer gasoline will be ExxonMobil branded, according to Tourek. Previously, 19 of the locations offered Shell-branded fuel.   Most of the stores' staff will remain the same, the news report noted.

    Changes at all of the Tri-Cities stores should be complete by the end of this year, Tourek told KNDO.com.

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