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NATIONAL REPORT – The convenience store industry landscape is constantly changing as chains open and close stores each week. On a regular basis, Convenience Store News highlights these comings and goings in this special roundup.
Here are the latest company spotlights:
Alon USA Energy Inc.
Dallas-based Alon USA closed its convenience store at China Spring and Flat Rock roads in Waco, Texas, and the company is not pleased about losing its presence in the growing China Spring area, a spokesman told WacoTribe.com.
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) reportedly acquired much of the Alon site to accommodate widening the roadway and reconfiguring the intersection. “Given the location of Waco Regional Airport on the other side of the highway, the only available land for the widening project was ours, so we lost a significant part of our property by eminent domain,” Alon USA spokesman Blake Lewis told the news outlet. “Ultimately, this includes loss of our canopy and about a third of our retail building.”
Alon lobbied to continue operating the store as long as possible before TxDOT began construction, but could extend business only through the first week of January, according to Lewis. Once TxDOT completes its improvements, he said “we will assess what remains of our property and make a decision regarding the future of the location.”
CEFCO Convenience Stores
Temple, Texas-based CEFCO remodeled and reopened its existing location at 1705 Highway 82 W in Greenville, Miss. This marks the company’s 11th prototype store reflecting its latest design for the next generation and incorporating a number of innovative enhancements made possible by an open, fresh design with modern treatments and upgraded finishes.
CEFCO also added four high-flow diesel lanes offering trucker payments at the pump, as well as diesel exhaust fluid (DEF).
“We invite the public to visit this new CEFCO location and be treated to an exciting shopping experience unmatched by any other local convenience retailer,” said Brett Giesick, CEFCO’s chief retail officer. “We believe that the enhancements built into this site reflect our core values of providing the best customer experience for every customer, every day.”
Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores
Oklahoma City-based Love’s, operating more than 300 locations, opened a new travel stop in Moody, Ala., at exit 147 off Interstate 20. It’s the first of the company’s anticipated 30 new store openings in 2014, coinciding with Love’s 50th anniversary.
“As part of our promise to our customers, we will continue to examine needs in new parts of the country,” said Greg Love, co-CEO of Love’s. “The new location expands the company’s presence along I-20 in Alabama to include locations on either side of Birmingham and it allows us to offer the ‘Clean Places, Friendly Faces’ Love’s is known for to more drivers in Alabama.”
The new Love’s travel stop is open 24 hours a day and features 85 truck parking spaces, Subway and McDonald’s restaurants, gourmet coffee, name-brand snacks, fresh fruit, gift merchandise and various other items and services for professional drivers. A Love’s Truck Tire Care center will open later this month.
Bulk DEF will be available at the pump at all diesel lanes, along with RFID cardless fueling technology, CAT scales, seven showers and other amenities to serve professional drivers. For a limited time, professional truck drivers can earn up to five points with their “My Love Rewards” loyalty card during the Level Up! promotion at all Love’s locations.
Stripes Convenience Stores
Two new Stripes stores opened recently in Texas – one at 514 Sun Valley Blvd. in Hewitt, and the second at 2500 Franklin Ave. in Waco. Grand-opening ceremonies were held, at which Stripes representatives presented $1,000 donations to Midway High School and Axtell-Bruceville-Eddy Learning Center, KWTX News reported.
Stripes also opened a new store in Lampasas, Texas, at 801 N. Key Ave. It is 7,000 square feet and expected to provide at least 40 jobs for the area, and more than $400,000 in tax revenue, the Killeen Daily Herald reported. Stripes donated $1,000 to the Lampasas County Higher Education Center at the store’s grand opening. The money will help fund the center’s first-ever scholarship.
According to Stripes President and CEO Steve DeSutter, a Stripes location in its first year is expected to generate somewhere between $5 million to $7 million in sales. Once a Stripes store reaches maturity, it will staff 50 to 70 people.
Tedeschi Food Shops Inc.
Based in Rockland, Mass., Tedeschi opened its newest store in Waltham, Mass. The store is highlighted by a modern “open-ceiling” concept and illuminated with pendant and track lighting, providing a spacious and welcoming feel, the retailer reported.
Customers can enjoy an assortment of fresh foods, including Tedeschi’s award-winning “400 Calories or Less” menu selections and a “good for you” island offering healthy snacks. The store also contains a 19-foot hot and cold dispensed beverage section.