RICHMOND, Va.—ARKO Corp. announced that its GPM Investments subsidiary will purchase Pride Convenience Holdings for $230 million plus the value of inventory. Pride operates 31 convenience stores in Massachusetts and Northern Connecticut.
“Our agreement to acquire Pride highlights ARKO’s continued focus on creating long-term shareholder value by growing our core convenience store business,” said Arie Kotler, ARKO’s chairman, president and CEO. “We believe Pride stores are top-tier assets, with a focus on excellent customer service and a quality loyalty program; and we further believe that we can add value to these assets through our operational and merchandising abilities and scale. We look forward to welcoming Pride’s employees to our family of community brands and working together to enhance the business.”
The acquisition would expand ARKO’s convenience store footprint into Massachusetts, making it the 34th state in which the company will operate.
Pride has many large format stores, including two high-volume travel centers for long-haul truckers and two modern City Stop locations that cater to short-haul truckers. Additionally, Pride operates a centralized kitchen that provides bakery items, sandwiches and other items to in-store Pride Kitchens and grab-and-go options made fresh daily.
Additionally, Pride stores include Subway and Chester’s Chicken franchises, as well as seven high volume beer and wine operations. Some Pride stores have drive-thru service and offer delivery options such as DoorDash, Uber Eats and Grubhub.
Pride recently launched a proprietary app-based loyalty program which enables in-store and fuel purchases as well as access to coupons. The company also has a network of on-site electric-vehicle chargers, significantly increasing the EV charger count in ARKO’s footprint, according to ARKO.
“Pride is a success because of its dedicated team members, and we are excited for the opportunity to join a growing, long-term focused convenience store company with the scale Pride needs to continue enhancing our excellent offerings and strong brand name,” said Marsha Medina, chief executive officer of Pride.
In January, former Pride owner Bob Bolduc sold his family-owned company to an affiliate of ArcLight Capital Partners for an undisclosed amount. The transaction included all 31 convenience stores and travel centers, eight vacant parcels for future development, 15 Subway franchises and 15 Chester's Chicken franchises. Pride was founded in 1917 by Bob Bolduc's grandfather as a horse and carriage business.
ARKO has over 1,388 company-operated convenience stores acquired through 21 acquisitions. Last month, GPM said it would acquire from Transit Energy Group (TEG) roughly 150 convenience stores, fuel supply rights to about 200 dealers, commercial, government and industrial customers, plus TEG’s bulk storage, distribution and transportation assets in the Southeastern U.S. The deal is valued at about $375 million.
Combined, Pride and TEG are expected to grow the company’s base of convenience stores by approximately 15%, adding 181 stores.
In July, GPM closed its acquisition of 121 branded and 63 contracted cardlock sites and 46 independent dealer locations from Quarles Petroleum. It was GPM’s 21st acquisition in 10 years.
“With our liquidity and deal-making ability, we believe we have a long runway to continue our long-term growth strategy, making disciplined, accretive acquisitions at attractive multiples to continue growing our convenience store footprint,” said Kotler.
For more about ARKO and GPM's vision for the future, read “Tying it All Together” from the March 2021 issue of NACS Magazine.