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FORT WORTH, Texas -- FFP Marketing Co. Inc., which last month announced a plan to sell 166 convenience stores to improve its financial strength, has filed an application to voluntarily delist its common shares from trading on the American Stock Exchange and asked the exchange to suspend trading of the shares effective Oct. 4. The delisting is expected to become effective after a 21-day comment period, at which time the company will take steps to deregister its common stock.
In approving this action, the company's board of directors determined that it would be in the best interests of shareholders for FFP Marketing to become a private company.
In making that decision the board considered several factors, including the following: the small number of stockholders results in a disproportionately high cost associated with being publicly traded; the nature and limited extent of trading of the shares result in the shares not providing a practical source of capital; significant costs associated with maintaining its status as a public company reduce profitability; and management will be able to devote additional time and resources to profitable activities if the shares are not publicly traded.
"The costs associated with maintaining our listed status as a public company outweigh the benefits of remaining listed," said John Harvison, chairman and chief executive of FFP Marketing. "With such a small number of shareholders, our small market cap, and our low market price, our ability to access the public markets has not been a viable benefit for us. Our ongoing efforts to cut all costs that do not provide an acceptable benefit have pointed us in this direction."
FFP's stock has hardly been one of the big movers on Wall Street, Harvison said. "Trading of the shares has been very thin and erratic -- averaging approximately four trades per day with average trading volume of only 4,400 shares per day. We believe we will be more profitable as a private company and that will increase the value of the company for the shareholders. We hope to develop a plan in the future that would enable our shareholders to realize a fair value for their shares."
FFP Marketing owns approximately 426 convenience stores and truck stops under brands such as Kwik Pantry in Texas and throughout the southwest.