Couche-Tard to Acquire True Blue Car Wash

Dan Smith

LAVAL, Quebec — Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. is expanding its car wash business with the acquisition of True Blue Car Wash LLC. As part of the deal, Couche-Tard will acquire full membership of True Blue, which operates high-speed tunnel car washes under the Clean Freak brand in the US Southwest and Rainstorm brand in the Midwest US. Founded in 2016, True Blue currently has 65 car washes in high-traffic areas of Arizona, Texas, Illinois and Indiana, with future industry-first sites planned and under development is. With approximately 170,000 Fastpass subscribers representing more than half of its total revenue, True Blue has enjoyed strong growth in recent years and is well positioned to continue growing in a highly fragmented and growing industry. It consists of independent operators who own 1-2 car washes. True Blue washed more than 10 million cars last year, the company reports.

The True Blue site is a natural extension of Couche-Tard's current car wash network of more than 2,500 locations, further enhancing the customer experience. With over 85% of True Blue stores located within 3 miles of Circle K stores, the deal is strong to support offers that drive traffic between True Blue stores and Circle K convenience stores. geographic overlap.

“We are committed to leading and innovating in a fast-growing segment that meets the needs of our customers. We see great opportunities to expand into industry subcategories, increasing value for our customers," said Brian Hannasch, President and CEO of Alimentation Couche-Tard. “Adding True Blue's quality car wash to our family provides a compelling opportunity to mutually foster and build loyalty and engagement for both our customers and our team members. We look forward to working with that talented team to create a convenient future.” The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2023, subject to standard regulatory approvals and closing conditions. It will be funded using Couche-Tard's available cash and/or existing lines of credit. “We have been impressed with the strong growth True Blue has achieved in recent years, as evidenced by an approximately 45% increase in the total number of car washes from 2018 to 2021, and this acquisition will enable us to expand our reach in this segment. We are confident that Couche-Tard will be able to grow in the future, not only by contributing to creating value for our shareholders." Upon completion of the acquisition, True Blue's administrative, office and operations teams will join Couche-Tard. Current CEO Stuart Crum will lead its operations. “I am delighted and excited to join the Couche-Tard/Circle K team. I am confident that together we can build a world-class express car wash business, just as Couche-Tard has done with convenience stores for the past 40 years.” It's a business," Crumb said. “We intend to incorporate our industry-leading playbook into Couche-Tard's operating and growth model to become a leading operator in the car wash industry.”

Circle K is the global convenience store brand of Laval-based Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. The company has nearly 14,300 of his stores in 24 countries and territories, of which about 10,900 provide road transportation fuel. Couche-Tard, best known for the Couche-Tard and Circle K banners, is one of the largest independent c-store operators in the United States and a leader in the c-store industry and road transportation fuel retail in Canada and Scandinavia. , Baltic States, Ireland.