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    Skinny's Getting Fat

    Texas chain acquires 10 Jack's c-stores for $4 million.

    ABILENE, Texas -- Skinny's Inc. yesterday completed its $4-million acquisition of 10 Waco, Texas, Jack's Market stores.

    The convenience stores, all branded with Fina fuel, are in the process of being converted to Skinny's retail design, Joe Davis, owner and CEO of Skinny's, told CSNews Online. All of Jack's employees have been retained.

    The deal increases to 102 Skinny's convenience store count in Texas and bolsters its store count in Waco to 16. "It's tough to find expansion opportunities in the convenience store market these days," Davis said. "Like every one else, we are looking for a niche and the right strategy to stay profitable. Acquisitions and increasing our economies of scale seems like the best way to grow."

    The deal with Jack's came together earlier this year after company owner Jack Burgess was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. He reportedly listed $5.7 million in assets and $12.3 million in liabilities. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Frank Monroe rejected Burgess's reorganization plan and accepted Skinny's bid to buy out the Jack's Market locations in Waco.

    Burgess called the decision "very disappointing," saying he had owned some of the stores for 33 years. He will sell gasoline to several independently owned convenience stores in Waco.

    In Skinny's, the former Jack's Market stores have found an owner who also has a long retailing history in Waco. Skinny's, founded in 1974, has remained close to its Texas roots. "We are a close, family-run business with strong ties to the communities we operate in,? Davis said. "We look forward to increasing our services for the people of Waco."

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