DES MOINES, Iowa — As the convenience channel experiences a wave of consolidation, Kum & Go LC is reportedly exploring all options for its network of more than 400 convenience stores.
These options include a refinancing, real estate leasebacks or other forms of recapitalization as potential alternatives, reported Reuters.
A sale of Kum & Go is also possible, according to sources familiar with the matter, who put the value of the c-store chain at close to $2 billion. The sources cautioned that no transaction is certain and asked not to be identified because the deliberations are confidential, the news outlet added.
The Krause family, which launched Kum & Go more than 60 years ago, is currently working with JPMorgan Chase & Co. to identify the most financially attractive option.
A spokesman representing both the Krause family and Kum & Go declined to comment, citing a policy of not discussing "rumors or speculation." JPMorgan declined to comment.
Kum & Go has already shed some stores that no longer align with its expansion plans. Last year, the company sold 14 c-stores in Missouri and in December, Kum & Go announced plans to close four out of five of its fuel-free locations in Denver; Ames, Iowa; and Omaha, Neb., as Convenience Store News previously reported.
The Des Moines-based retailer recently entered its 13th Midwest market with the opening of its first store in the Grand Rapids, Mich., area on Jan. 19. The move marked the second of Kum & Go's new market ventures. The c-store retailer entered the Salt Lake City market in December with the opening of a Kum & Go store in Draper, Utah. It is the first of several locations set to open in the Salt Lake City area over the next year.
Kum & Go is also set to enter Boise, Idaho, later this year, followed by Detroit in 2024.
Established in 1959 by Bill Krause and Tony Gentle with a single gas station in Hampton, Iowa, Kum & Go is a part of Krause Group, which operates a diverse set of companies that also includes Solar Transport, Italian wineries Vietti and Enrico Serafino, Krause+, Dalla Terra Ranch, Teamwork Ranch and the Des Moines Menace soccer club, and Italian soccer club Parma Calcio 1913.
Kyle Krause is CEO of Krause Group. He stepped down as Kum & Go's CEO in 2021, handing over the reins of the business to his son, Tanner Krause.