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    The Pantry's HQ Moving to Cary

    As the chain expands, the company looks to accommodate growth in new city.

    SANFORD, N.C. -- The Pantry, operator of more than 1,400 convenience stores in the Southeast United States, is looking to move its headquarters to Cary, N.C. to accommodate future growth, the News & Observer reported.

    According to president and CEO Peter Sodini, the current headquarters in Sanford will be reconfigured and retain 300 employees to handle processing and accounting functions.

    The new office will accommodate 100 employees -- most of them being executive offices. It will also allow for room to expand as the company grows, but Sodini told the News & Observer that the added space would not be for more executives.

    "We got everybody here in this office and put their home addresses on a big map, and if you look at that, Cary makes a lot of sense," he told the newspaper.

    The Pantry is looking for an office between 30,000 and 55,000 square feet, according to the report. It has already looked at one building at 2000 Regency Parkway, but still estimates that it is 18 months away from signing a lease. The company doesn't plan to ask the city for any tax breaks or incentives.

    "We're looking out to 2010 and beyond. We've projected growth, and we think in the next two years it would probably be a prudent time [to move]," Sodini said.

    The Pantry has acquired 108 stores since September 2005, and there could be an additional 80 or 90 stores that could be considered, said Tim Allen, research analyst for Jefferies & Co. "They're growing by 75 to 100 net new stores a year. They'll open 100 to 125 and close about 30 or so," he told the News & Observer.

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