Circle K–A Better Way
September 16, 2023
Circle K Stores, Inc. is a Canadian convenience store chain headquartered in Tempe, Arizona.
The Circle K chain of convenience stores was founded by entrepreneur Fred Hervey in 1951 in El Paso, Texas. Hervey began his business by purchasing three Kay’s Food Stores and renaming them to “Circle K Food Stores, Inc.” rather than “Kay.” The company went through several owners before being acquired by Alimentation Couche-tard in 2003.
As of August 2023, Circle K has 5,904 stores in the United States, 1,048 in Canada and many more locations in Europe.
Since the 1980s, Circle K has been the largest chain of company-owned and operated convenience stores in the United States.
In 2015, Circle K unveiled a new logo and brand identity. That same year, Couche-Tard announced that it would deploy the brand globally, rebranding Canada’s Mac’s brand and the United States’ Kangaroo Express brand to Circle K. The company also rebranded Europe’s Statoil brand.
As of February 2020, there were more than 14,800 stores with the Circle K brand worldwide.
Within the United States, Circle K owns and operates stores in every state with the exception of Nebraska, Utah and Wisconsin. The largest concentration of stores is found in Louisiana.
Fuel is sold under various brands, with the Circle K and Shell brands as the most common. Only 13 percent of stores worldwide do not sell fuel.
Circle K in Canada
The Circle K brand entered the Canadian market in 2008 when Couche-Tard acquired Irving Oil’s convenience store network. As of 2021, there were 1,048 Circle K stores in Canada.
About Circle K’s President and CEO
The President and Chief Executive Officer of Circle K is Brian Hannasch. Mr. Hannasch’s list of awards and recognition is long and illustrious, including having been inducted into the Convenience Store News Hall of Fame in 2022 and being named Retail Leader of the Year by Winsight Media in 2021. He was named the 2019 Retailer Executive of the Year by Convenience Store News’ blue-chip panel of C-store industry leaders.