7-Eleven to buy Stripes

wnetmacman
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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by wnetmacman » July 10th, 2017, 12:01 pm

storewanderer wrote:The problem with Circle K is they can only be as good as what they bought. Their Kangaroo Express locations are a mix of bad and worse. The ones in the Wichita, KS market mostly operating as "PRESTO" (Kangaroo never even bothered to rebrand them) were absolutely terrible. I will be surprised if Circle K keeps those.


I have noticed this with the Kangaroo stores that have yet to be rebranded here in Louisiana. They have invested little, if anything into them.

pseudo3d wrote:The Stripes stores, due to the Laredo Taco Company program, tend to be much larger than typical 7-Eleven stores. Since 7-Eleven is buying LTC as well, I'm not sure if they'll adapt and be better suited to take on the larger stores or stunt growth and build smaller 7-Eleven stores. Under Sunoco, Stripes continued to grow its prototype, with new-builds about 6,800 square feet instead of the typical 2,500 square feet 7-Eleven format.


The three Louisiana stores Stripes built follow this setup. I hope 7 Eleven makes massive improvements. They were really nice at first, but as the months (not years; they opened late December last year) go on, the service continues to go down. Pricing is never correct, and the quality of LTC has gone down as well.

pseudo3d wrote:The components for making 7-Eleven into a viable and major chain in most of Texas are there, it's up to them to act on it.


If they miss, and they might, it wouldn't be the first time they've failed in Texas. They did exist statewide until the mid-80's. They sold the stores outside Dallas off piecemeal to several companies, including Shop-n-Go, Circle K (in Louisiana) and EZ Mart. A good deal of them survive today as those stores, with minimal investment.

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by pseudo3d » July 10th, 2017, 12:26 pm

wnetmacman wrote:The three Louisiana stores Stripes built follow this setup. I hope 7 Eleven makes massive improvements. They were really nice at first, but as the months (not years; they opened late December last year) go on, the service continues to go down. Pricing is never correct, and the quality of LTC has gone down as well.

Interestingly, I've heard the criticism of Stripes tending to let maintenance deteriorate in stores as they get older. I've also had a problem at Stripes in getting receipts from gas pumps (the Stripes that opened had that problem day one), and I noticed that the POS system (even though the mechanism hadn't physically changed) at the Rattlers across the street got clunkier and harder to use after Stripes bought them out.


If they miss, and they might, it wouldn't be the first time they've failed in Texas. They did exist statewide until the mid-80's. They sold the stores outside Dallas off piecemeal to several companies, including Shop-n-Go, Circle K (in Louisiana) and EZ Mart. A good deal of them survive today as those stores, with minimal investment.

I should mention that there are only three TETCO stores in Houston (and those are all the suburbs), so Stripes is definitely going to be pushing growth in Houston along. Still, along with the massive Corner Store base (which were largely built on 7-Eleven and Circle K, as Stop N Go had acquired those stores), Circle K has been making good on its promise to expand into Houston. The stores in Houston were sold in the late 1980s to Stop N Go (which acquired Circle K's stores in the early 1990s, though under Diamond Shamrock the stand-alone stores disappeared or changed names), the College Station stores were sold to E-Z Mart in 1993 (which I believe pulled out officially around 2003-2004, a few of the stores use the old E-Z Mart logo with things like "E-Z Corner Mart" or "E-Z For You", and most of the stores still survive as some off-brand convenience store or another). The E-Z Mart stores even had the Slurpee machines until they all broke. The Waco stores were sold to Circle K around 1990-ish (can't remember the exact year), those all became Skinny's (they all looked pretty yucky on the outside), the few that exist now are all generic Alon food marts. Many of them have totally closed. 7-Eleven in San Antonio also sold out to Stop-N-Go (so whatever remain of those are now Corner Store and will become Circle K), but the TETCO base had enough stores that they converted them (rather than the three in the entire Houston area).

7-Eleven lost most of Texas and others because the company was going bankrupt due to the debt incurred when they went private. Circle K had also filed for bankruptcy around the same time, and also lost most of their Texas markets around the same time (though more toward the 1990s), so it wasn't strictly what went wrong at 7-11.

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by storewanderer » July 11th, 2017, 10:50 pm

7-Eleven had a store here in Reno for a while on Longley Lane which was considered their biggest store in the world. I think some Asian location has since claimed that distinction. Anyway it is a large store still. Easily triple the size of a normal 7-Eleven. It was bought from someone called "Express SuperMart" who tried a concept of gas station convenience with grocery store prices and an expanded selection. They did well with this location (the first one) but their next two locations struggled and they ended up selling to 7-Eleven.

7-Eleven reconfigured the place and installed its own fixtures/layout so now the place is a standard 7-Eleven but it has more aisles, so perhaps a few more dry items. The fixtures and equipment all look very old, mostly beige or silver colored counters and fixtures, probably brought in used from other locations. The areas for soda, coffee, hot food, etc. are the standard old 7-Eleven mix, looks the same as they looked 25 years ago.

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by pseudo3d » July 11th, 2017, 11:26 pm

storewanderer wrote:7-Eleven had a store here in Reno for a while on Longley Lane which was considered their biggest store in the world. I think some Asian location has since claimed that distinction. Anyway it is a large store still. Easily triple the size of a normal 7-Eleven. It was bought from someone called "Express SuperMart" who tried a concept of gas station convenience with grocery store prices and an expanded selection. They did well with this location (the first one) but their next two locations struggled and they ended up selling to 7-Eleven.

7-Eleven reconfigured the place and installed its own fixtures/layout so now the place is a standard 7-Eleven but it has more aisles, so perhaps a few more dry items. The fixtures and equipment all look very old, mostly beige or silver colored counters and fixtures, probably brought in used from other locations. The areas for soda, coffee, hot food, etc. are the standard old 7-Eleven mix, looks the same as they looked 25 years ago.

Yeah, and the giant Stripes I alluded to was a bit different, it was styled after Buc-ee's, a Texas chain of convenience stores located near highways and reaching 60,000 square feet (with a huge restroom area, a big deli area that makes sandwiches, a large gift shop area, etc.), and was called Chicks. It wasn't long after they opened that they were hit with a trade dress infringement from Buc-ee's, because despite the local media pretending it was little more than the logo, they had too many similarities (including the merchandise mix, both chains had their own self-branded line of gourmet foods, and Chicks had a knockoff of the "Beaver Nuggets"...a bit hard to describe, imagine Cheetos but with a caramel coating instead, and that's the general idea). They also had a hamburger stand inside too (Buc-ee's makes sandwiches, generally). When Stripes bought them, the Chicks-branded product mix went away and was replaced with the typical Stripes mix. They replaced a frozen yogurt area with LTC, but kept the hamburgers. I can't imagine 7-Eleven keeping this store, especially since new-build Stripes are already pretty roomy compared to your typical 7-Eleven (7,000 square feet vs. 2,500 square feet)

Edit: It looks like the Reno 7-Eleven has an adjacent Wendy's and an Asian food place, were these part of the original development, or were they sub-leased later?

Edit 2: I'm still not entirely sure why this deal happened. Circle K was in expansion mode and Alimentation was looking for a rival to take over and expand their reach (CST Brands was the candidate), but for Sunoco and 7-Eleven it's a little different. 7-Eleven hasn't been as ambitious in expanding recently, is it just a reaction to Circle K and a desperate look around to try to expand in the same area that Circle K is going to hit hard and fast in, or was it on the part of Sunoco, and that the Stripes division was actually doing poorly? It's just a bit strange how short Sunoco was in control of Stripes. Valero fostered Corner Store for years (though it started with Diamond Shamrock) from a generic food mart for Diamond Shamrock stores to a convenience store brand with its own identity.

I'm also a bit skeptical of how many Stripes stores they'll keep, a lot of the more rural TETCO stores acquired (like Crockett) were never converted. One of Stripes' more recent acquisitions was Sac-N-Pac, a Central Texas chain that had the vast majority of its stores in small towns (suburbs or more rural areas, like "out on the highway out of town" or "small cluster of houses around a blinking light"). I just can't imagine 7-Eleven wanting to keep those, and trying to franchise those at 7-Eleven stores could be a hard sell. However, if that is the case, then assuming this is a numbers game (and 7-Eleven doesn't want ratty stores that were former Circle K stores) that's a sizeable portion of stores to lay waste to.

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by pseudo3d » July 13th, 2017, 11:40 am

There's an interesting article about a week ago regarding Laredo Taco Company and 7-Eleven's future of the brand. I agree with the former White Hen Pantry guy...foodservice and regionalization for 7-Eleven is not native to the company at all, and Laredo Taco Company's future is doubtful. My own guess is that 7-Eleven will spin off LTC as a separate concept entirely (possibly even building stand-alone stores). I've never been to a White Hen, but what it looks like (possibly due to Jewel's influence, though Jewel hasn't owned it since the 1980s) it actually had a full deli (sliced cold cuts, sandwiches, prepared food plates) with even what appeared to be a small produce department (the most I've seen out of normal convenience stores is apples and bananas meant for healthier options, and they're never close to what you would find it at a store). Those things have been removed from the converted White Hens, haven't they?

http://www.cspdailynews.com/category-ne ... do-taco-co

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by storewanderer » July 15th, 2017, 12:35 am

Yes, the large 7-Eleven on Longley in Reno was originally built with the Wendys and Blimpie (now Asian fast food) as separate tenant spaces. You walk into the building and there is a long common hallway between the tenants, with mall like gates to close off the Wendys and Asian Fast Food.

The fast foods were owned separately from the gas station, it was never all one operator. Restrooms were initially common and there was shared janitorial between the tenants but at some point the restroom responsibility got shifted to Wendys (or in the case of the other two large locations, Carl's Jr. who is the food tenant at those two locations), so in the case of this one with Wendys the restrooms are only open when Wendys is open, after which time they are locked. This is due to vandalism.

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by pseudo3d » July 15th, 2017, 11:05 am

storewanderer wrote:Yes, the large 7-Eleven on Longley in Reno was originally built with the Wendys and Blimpie (now Asian fast food) as separate tenant spaces. You walk into the building and there is a long common hallway between the tenants, with mall like gates to close off the Wendys and Asian Fast Food.

The fast foods were owned separately from the gas station, it was never all one operator. Restrooms were initially common and there was shared janitorial between the tenants but at some point the restroom responsibility got shifted to Wendys (or in the case of the other two large locations, Carl's Jr. who is the food tenant at those two locations), so in the case of this one with Wendys the restrooms are only open when Wendys is open, after which time they are locked. This is due to vandalism.

Ah, because normally with fast food co-brands there's a little entrance between the convenience store and the fast food. I've never seen a 7-Eleven with the fast food co-brand (then again, I'm rarely in 7-Eleven country all that much). Stripes was never one for fast food co-brands, but when they took over Sac-N-Pac that changed (in Bastrop, there's a Stripes with a KFC nearby). The Rattlers stores were sold with the condition that Kolkhorst maintained ownership of the Burger King franchise they owned (a few Rattlers have Wendy's instead). A TETCO in Burnet, Texas that was co-branded with a McDonald's vanished after the rebuild of the pad just had the McDonald's instead.

Sunoco also acquired 18 stores from Valentine Stores, which was a Nice N Easy Grocery Shoppes franchisee (though Nice N Easy was acquired by CST Brands in 2014, which by extension is now owned by Circle K), but they didn't rebrand it (so is it now APlus, or paradoxically soon to be Circle K if they rebrand before the 7-Eleven sale?)

EDIT: It looks like there are a few examples of 7-Eleven/McDonald's co-brands, but they are few and far between. I predict that like with Stripes, there will be more examples, especially if they actually follow through and rebrand the Rattlers (which have yet to be rebranded to Stripes).

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by pseudo3d » September 1st, 2017, 10:31 am

The merger hasn't even closed yet and Sunoco is already sacking backoffice support.

http://www.csnews.com/industry-news-and ... cquisition

Something's off here...Stripes was on a major growth spurt, building stores, and even purchasing other chains (like Sac-N-Pac) all over Texas (at least Houston, Austin, in between them, and around them), Sunoco buys them and uses them to accelerate their brand (Sunoco had hardly any stores in Texas prior to this, at least in my neck of the woods), and then they want to dismantle the chain by selling their entire convenience store stock to 7-Eleven, all within the course of a few years. What is going on?

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by wnetmacman » September 1st, 2017, 1:10 pm

pseudo3d wrote:The merger hasn't even closed yet and Sunoco is already sacking backoffice support.

http://www.csnews.com/industry-news-and ... cquisition

Something's off here...Stripes was on a major growth spurt, building stores, and even purchasing other chains (like Sac-N-Pac) all over Texas (at least Houston, Austin, in between them, and around them), Sunoco buys them and uses them to accelerate their brand (Sunoco had hardly any stores in Texas prior to this, at least in my neck of the woods), and then they want to dismantle the chain by selling their entire convenience store stock to 7-Eleven, all within the course of a few years. What is going on?


I believe the term is called "Maximizing Shareholder Value". See Eddie Lampert for the true definition.

Seriously, it isn't common for companies to be broken up after a merger to try to get the most value out of the holding. Albertsons did it, and Lampert has been doing it with Kmart/Sears for some time now.

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Re: 7-Eleven to buy Stripes

Post by pseudo3d » September 1st, 2017, 10:59 pm

wnetmacman wrote:
pseudo3d wrote:The merger hasn't even closed yet and Sunoco is already sacking backoffice support.

http://www.csnews.com/industry-news-and ... cquisition

Something's off here...Stripes was on a major growth spurt, building stores, and even purchasing other chains (like Sac-N-Pac) all over Texas (at least Houston, Austin, in between them, and around them), Sunoco buys them and uses them to accelerate their brand (Sunoco had hardly any stores in Texas prior to this, at least in my neck of the woods), and then they want to dismantle the chain by selling their entire convenience store stock to 7-Eleven, all within the course of a few years. What is going on?


I believe the term is called "Maximizing Shareholder Value". See Eddie Lampert for the true definition.

Seriously, it isn't common for companies to be broken up after a merger to try to get the most value out of the holding. Albertsons did it, and Lampert has been doing it with Kmart/Sears for some time now.

But Sunoco's the one selling, and they've held onto Stripes and kept it growing until very recently. (Conversely, Albertsons LLC and Lampert just closed stores)

Given that 7-Eleven has to keep the Sunoco branding on the acquired stores, it was probably part of the deal so 7-Eleven didn't have to deal with severance packages.

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