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Kum & Go stores in region soon to become Maverik

Kum & Go convenience stores in the Rocky Mountain region — including 17 locations in Northern Colorado and the Boulder Valley — will be converted to Maverik stores beginning in January.

Maverik — Adventure’s First Stop, and its parent company, Salt Lake City-based FJ Management, last week announced that they have completed the acquisition of Des Moines, Iowa-based Kum & Go and 60-year-old tank-truck company Solar Transport from Salt Lake City-based Krause Group.

Financial details of the acquisition were not announced, but when Reuters first reported in February that the Krause family was considering selling the stores, it said undisclosed “people familiar with the matter” said such a deal could be worth close to $2 billion.

Kum & Go owns more than 430 convenience stores across 11 Rocky Mountain and Midwest states and has more than 5,000 employees.

Included in Kum & Go’s locations are stores at 5112 E. Bromley Lane, 70 W. Bridge St. and 2150 E. Bridge St. in Brighton; 127 Laura Way in Dacono; 2999 Bonanza Drive in Erie; 2901 37th St. and 3033 Eighth Ave. in Evans; 6503 29th St., 7027 20th St. and 366 71st Ave. in Greeley; 90 W. Veterans Drive in Keenesburg; 13799 Pacific Circle in Longmont; 1600 E. Eisenhower Blvd., 115 Knobcone Drive and 4330 Clydesdale Parkway in Loveland; 8150 Sixth St. in Wellington; and 375 E. Main St. in Windsor.

Maverik CEO Chuck Maggelet told the National Association of Convenience Stores that, “in Utah, Colorado, Idaho and Wyoming, starting this January, we’ll be working to convert those stores to Maveriks.” That accounts for about 120 to 140 Kum & Go stores. As for the remaining two-thirds of the stores, located in Midwestern states such as Iowa, Missouri and Oklahoma, Maggelet said “right now, we think we can bring a lot of what’s really good about Maverik into the Kum & Go world without necessarily rebranding and will continue to evaluate future changes.”

He told the Des Moines Register that rebranding the remaining stores in the Midwest “could happen. I don’t know. I think we’ll learn an awful lot when we do these first 120, 130, 140 stores. I think it will help us form an opinion. We are very much prepared to operate as two different brands, so we know we can go either direction, but we think we’re going to be focusing on rebranding, learning from it, and then if it makes sense maybe pushing a little further east.”

Maggelet said Maverik technology, including self-checkout lanes, would be added to the newly acquired Kum & Go stores.

Currently, the closest Maverik store is in the Casper, Wyoming, area. With existing stores in 12 western states, it claims to be “the largest independent fuel marketer in the Intermountain West.” The acquisition of Kum & Go grows Maverik’s footprint to more than 800 stores in 20 states, with approximately 14,000 employees.

“We are excited to welcome Kum & Go and Solar Transport team members to Maverik,” Maggelet said in a prepared statement. “Together, we’ll offer our customers an adventurous and differentiated convenience store experience across fuel, food service and inside-store offerings. We look forward to using our combined resources to grow our business and further elevate our product offerings to provide the best service to our customers.”

What would become the Kum & Go company was founded in 1959 as Hampton Oil Co. in Hampton, Iowa, by W.A. “Bill” Krause and T.S. “Tony” Gentle. Hampton Oil eventually became the Krause Gentle Corp. and today is a part of the Krause Group, which also owns other businesses including wineries, resorts, soccer teams and real estate firms.

Krause Gentle introduced the company’s first convenience stores in 1963, converting their gasoline stations into “station stores” that sold both fuel and merchandise. They adopted the Kum & Go name in 1975 to unify their array of stores under a single brand that was a play on the phrase “come and go” but changed the spelling to reflect the initials of Krause and Gentle.

Kyle Krause, CEO of Krause Group, stepped down as Kum & Go’s CEO in 2021, handing over control of the business to his son, Tanner Krause, who had been president of the company since 2017.

“Together over four generations — from my grandfather Tony and my dad Bill to me and my son Tanner — we built these businesses over 64 years through shared vision, collective entrepreneurship and teamwork,” Kyle Krause said in a news release. “I’m also incredibly thankful for our associates and their unique contributions that allowed Kum & Go and Solar Transport to reach this level of success.

“We’ve run the businesses and differentiated ourselves by putting people first and making days better in all we do. Over the last six years, Tanner’s leadership was at the core of these efforts, resulting in a tremendous impact on Kum & Go. I’m confident Kum & Go and Solar Transport are set up for future success with Maverik. As we start the next chapter at Krause Group, we will nurture our family of brands and create more opportunities to do good in the world.” 

Maggelet will lead the newly combined organization, but Tanner Krause will transition out of the company.

The transaction continues a recent trend in which convenience stores have resorted to dealmaking in the face of high inflation to save on costs through economies of scale and expand their footprint — although Kum & Go last year sold 14 of its stores in Missouri to White Oak Station. The largest acquisition in the sector’s history occurred in 2020 when 7-Eleven bought Speedway stores from Marathon Petroleum Corp. for $21 billion.

FJ Management Inc. is a private holding company that manages a diverse portfolio of petroleum, health-care, and hospitality related assets. It was founded in 1968 by O. Jay Call, and Crystal Maggelet took over as CEO in 2009.

For the Kum & Go acquisition, BofA Securities and BMO Capital Markets Corp. served as financial advisors to FJ Management, while Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as its legal advisor. J.P. Morgan Securities LLC served as financial advisor to Krause Group, and Vedder Price served as its legal adviser.

Source: BizWest