Emmet O’Neill, chief executive, Topaz
Alimentation Couche-Tard has acquired Ireland’s leading convenience and fuel retailer, Topaz.
Denis O’Brien took control of Topaz for €150m in December 2013 and the company now comprises 464 stations across Ireland, including its recently acquired Esso station network.
Canadian-based Couche-Tard is the largest independent convenience store operator in terms of number of company-operated stores in the US.
The company’s network comprises over 8,000 convenience stores throughout North America and it employs approximately 80,000 people in the US alone.
The agreement announced also encompasses a commercial fuels operation, with over 30 depots and two owned terminals.
Brian Hannasch, president and CEO, Couche-Tard, said: “Ireland has been on an extraordinary journey over the past decade. We have been looking at this market for several years. With the addition of Topaz, we would expand our geographic footprint into what, today, is one of Europe’s best performing economies.”
Jacob Schram, Group president Europe, Couche-Tard, commented: “As part of the larger Couche-Tard merchant family, and with the strong, global Circle K brand in our portfolio, we are well-equipped to take on this significant market. Topaz would be a great strategic fit for Couche-Tard and it would strengthen our position in western Europe. It has an extensive and attractive convenience and fuel network, with good locations, quality forecourts and stores, an excellent food offering and very professional teams. We look forward to welcoming Topaz into our family.”
Emmet O’Neill, chief executive, Topaz, said: described the acquisition as a game-changer for Ireland. “Couche-Tard is one of the strongest names in retail in the world and their presence in Ireland will transform the retail sector here. I am thrilled that they have chosen Topaz as the foundation for their entry to the Irish market. They will bring enormous skill, energy and resources to this business and this market.”