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    The Pantry to Acquire Eight C-Stores in Florida

    One week after acquiring 24 stores, The Pantry signs on eight more.

    SANFORD, N.C. -- It would appear that The Pantry is going on a buying spree to close out 2006, as just one week after signing agreements to purchase 24 SunStop convenience stores, it signed a definitive agreement to acquire eight c-stores from Rousseau Enterprises, Inc., located in Gainesville and Ocala, Fla. The stores, under various banners including LeStore, generated revenues of approximately $21 million in 2005.

    "This acquisition adds to our market presence in Florida where we have over 440 existing stores and brings the number of stores we have acquired or agreed to acquire so far in fiscal 2007 to 65," said chairman and CEO Peter J. Sodini. As of its fiscal 2006 year-end in September, the company operated 1,493 convenience stores in the Southeastern U.S.

    With this acquisition, it appears that the company is filling in its presence in Florida. A call to the company for comment was note returned by press time. However, when The Pantry signed agreements to acquire 24 SunStop convenience stores in Florida and Georgia, Sodini said "These stores will help fill in the gap between our large eastern Florida store base and our recent acquisitions in Florida's Panhandle."

    This is only the beginning for The Pantry. At the company's fiscal 2006 conference call, Sodini told investors "The pipeline of potential acquisitions for fiscal 2007 appears very promising, and we would expect to acquire at least as many stores this year as in fiscal 2006." In the company's fiscal 2006, it acquired 113 convenience stores. With this acquisition, the stores acquired in fiscal 2007 increased to 65.

    The acquisition is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, and is expected to close in the company's second fiscal quarter. The Pantry plans to finance the transaction with a combination of cash on hand and lease financing. Terms were not disclosed.

    Rousseau Enterprises declined to comment on the deal.

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