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Couche-Tard Restructures North American Operations

LAVAL, Quebec -- Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc., which currently operates a network of more than 4,800 convenience stores, is restructuring the organization for its North American operations. This new structure fits into the company's decentralized business model and the integration of Circle K.

The operations of Couche-Tard's North American network will now be grouped under two large markets, Eastern North America and Western North America, giving rise to the creation of two newly created senior vice president positions.

Stephane Gonthier has been appointed senior vice president, Eastern North America, while Brian Hannasch has been appointed senior vice president for Western North America. Both will report directly to Real Plourde, executive vice president and COO.

"The creation of these two large operational markets that each comprise four business units will allow us to continue to improve our overall effectiveness and coordination of major activities among our units," said Plourde. "It should be pointed out that each business unit remains autonomous, headed by a vice president, operations, and that this new structure will favor decentralization, the application of quality of service standards, and our differentiation strategy, all of which drive our growth."

Based on the new structure, Gonthier will be responsible for the following business units: central Canada (of which he also remains vice president, operations, until the appointment of his successor), Eastern Canada, U.S. Southeast and the Florida/Gulf region. Hannasch will be responsible for the business units of the U.S. Midwest, Arizona, West Coast and Western Canada, while continuing with his current responsibility overseeing the Circle K Integration Committee until May 2005.
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