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    Louisville Swifty Stores Swiftly Close Their Doors

    The chain's business model relies on sales of fuel and cigarettes.

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. – At least five Swifty gas stations here closed without warning this week, according to a WHAS11 report. Signage was removed or painted over and fueling equipment was removed even as drivers pulled in expecting to fill their tanks.

    "I was getting gas and cigarettes and noticed there was no price on gas and kind of sat there for a second waiting to see if they were closed," customer Nikki McGowan told the news outlet.

    Corporate officials from the company's Seymour, Ind., headquarters did not comment on the closings, but local workers reported that they were informed Swifty was closing a number of area locations that were unable to compete with other gas stations that offered one-stop shopping. Unlike most stations in the region, Swifty pumps gas for its customers instead of being self-serve.

    Swifty's business model, which relies on sales of fuel and cigarettes, may make it vulnerable to the current state of the economy, tight profit margins on gas and fewer smokers, according to industry expert John A. Zikias.

    "People that have just one thing such as fuel, they're really not fitting the consumer demand for what people need in convenience to keep themselves going throughout the day," Zikias said. "They're looking for places where they can stop and they can get something to eat, something to drink, something they might need at home. And do all that at one time vs. having to stop at one place to get fuel and one place to get something to drink and one place to get something to eat."

    Other Swifty gas stations near Louisville and elsewhere remained open.

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