After the Americas and Europe, Alimentations Couche-Tard set out to conquer Asia by announcing on Wednesday evening the acquisition of more than 350 convenience stores in Hong Kong and Macao for approximately $ 475 million.
The Laval flagship explained that it had acquired all the shares of Convenience Retail Asia (CRA) Limited. This company currently operates 340 convenience stores in Hong Kong and 33 on Macau Island under the Circle K HK banner.
The Chinese company also has 125 pastry shops of the Saint Honore chain, mainly located in Hong Kong, Macao and Guangzhou, as well as a dozen eyewear shops in Hong Kong.
The transaction, valued at Hong Kong $ 2.79 billion (approximately CAN $ 475 million), is due to be officially closed by December 31.
In doing so, Couche-Tard will become the owner of its first stores in Asia. The Quebec flagship is currently doing business with a network of approximately 2,350 franchised stores that operate the Circle K banner around the world, including in Hong Kong, Mongolia, Cambodia and Vietnam, but it did not directly own any trade in this region of the planet.
Couche-Tard President and CEO Brian Hannasch has suggested that this acquisition is just the first step for his business.
“By concluding this transaction, Couche-Tard will take an important step in its strategic ambition to enter the fast-growing Asia-Pacific market,” said Mr. Hannasch.
Couche-Tard intends to take advantage of the expertise of CRA executives to continue its expansion.
“I have closely followed the progress of Circle K Hong Kong for decades and deeply admire their leadership team. […]. I am confident that together we can reach millions of more customers in Hong Kong as well as across Asia to enable us to move forward towards our goal of becoming the preferred destination for the purchase of goods and fuel across the world, ”said the founder and executive chairman of the Laval giant, Alain Bouchard.
Couche-Tard currently owns some 12,000 convenience stores across North America (nearly 9,300) and in several European countries (over 2,700).