Alon USA Completes Skinny's Purchase

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Alon USA Completes Skinny's Purchase

DALLAS -- Alon USA Energy Inc., operator of 206 convenience stores in West Texas and New Mexico, closed the previously announced acquisition of Abilene, Texas-based Skinny's, Inc., a privately-held operator of 102 FINA-branded c-stores in Central and West Texas.

"At Alon, everything we do revolves around achieving our strategic objectives. By adding these 102 retail stores, we continue to build on our objective to expand the physical integration of our Big Spring refinery," Jeff Morris, president and CEO of Alon, said in a written statement. "Over the next few months, we will be converting these stores to the 7-Eleven brand, thereby solidifying our leadership position as the largest 7-Eleven licensee in the United States. We look forward to welcoming the Skinny's family, knowing that with their help we will make a successful transition."

The acquisition brings the number of stores Alon operates to 308. Alon paid approximately $70 million for the chain, subject to post-closing adjustments.

CSNews Online reported in early March the agreement came as part of a long-standing relationship between the companies. "We've been doing business [with Skinny's] for decades from our Big Spring refinery. We've fed them fuel for 10 to 15 years," Morris told CSNews Online at the time. "When Joe (Davis, president and CEO of Skinny's) reached a choice to investigate the market, he gave us a call and made it clear that there was a deal to be done. I think we struck a deal that's good for both."

Alon's Big Spring refinery -- located about 80 miles from the stores -- will supply fuel to the stations, and with it will support the stores, sustain integration, and also give a secure outlet for the refinery, Morris added. Of the stores, approximately two-thirds are owned and one-third are leased, according to the company.

The FINA branded stores are classic 1,500 to 2,000-square-foot models with traditional offerings such as cold beverages, cigarettes and candy, according to Morris. After the stores are rebranded to 7-Eleven and offerings such as Slurpees are added, there could be the addition of foodservice, Morris said.

"We are considering adding a foodservice program to Southwest Convenience Stores and we would consider adding it to these stores as well," Morris told CSNews Online. The stores "give us solid corners, good real estate, good and loyal customers," he noted.

"We are excited about the opportunity to join the Alon team under the 7-Eleven brand," said Davis when the acquisition was announced. "Our cultures are founded on the same premise of serving the customer. Both of our companies are proud of our West Texas heritage and we at Skinny's appreciate joining an organization that has operated the Big Spring Refinery for over 75 years. We are confident that our 102 stores will be a strong addition to Alon's existing 206 locations."

"It's always great to make a deal with someone you know and respect like Joe Davis," Morris concluded.