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Couche-Tard Achieves Record Results

LAVAL, Quebec -- Alimentation Couche-Tard announced record results for the 52-week period ended April 24, 2005, a performance primarily reflecting Circle K's major contribution for the full year, its efficient integration and high motor fuel gross margins in the United States.

Adding to this strong contribution from the company's U.S. network, the Canadian network performed well and also made a significant contribution to financial results. This growth is especially satisfactory since Canadian markets faced unfavorable weather conditions in the summer of 2004 and Florida suffered damages as a result of four hurricanes. Nevertheless, these markets subsequently underwent an excellent recovery.

“We are very pleased we successfully completed a milestone in our growth this year. We achieved excellent results, which allowed us to further strengthen our financial position. We generated cash flows of $404.3 million while investing $320.2 million in capital including fixed assets and three small business acquisitions, and we ended the year with $312.0 million in cash,” said Alain Bouchard, president and CEO.

“Subsequent to the integration, our organization is flexible and structured into autonomous and skilled teams, which is vital to undertake a new growth phase,” he continued. “In addition to successfully completing the integration, Circle K's business units drew up business plans and various concrete projects to build upon their markets' potential. In 2005-2006, therefore, we can further focus on leveraging Circle K's strong potential.”

Among the highlights of Couche-Tards's financial report:

-- The company has realized synergies of $76.7 million from the Circle K integration for the year ended April 24, 2005, and synergies of $86.7 million since the acquisition on Dec. 17, 2003.

-- Revenues are up by 74.1 percent to $10.2 billion.

-- Net earnings increased by 164.2 percent to reach $199.5 million or 97 cents per share on a diluted basis, reflecting mainly Circle K's contribution for the full year and a strong motor fuel gross margin in the U.S. operations.

-- The company had a strong financial position as of April 24, 2005, with $312.0 million in cash and total equity of $905.4 million.
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