Alimentation Couche-Tard, which operates the Circle K fuel retail banner, has reported earnings of $670.7 million (€612.8 million) in the fourth quarter of its financial year, up from $477.7 million (€436.5 million) in the corresponding period last year.
The Canada-based group said that its improved performance was primarily driven by organic growth in its convenience operations, as well as by higher gross profit on road transportation fuel in its European operations.
Merchandise & Service
Its 'Merchandise & Service' arm, which includes its forecourt retail business, reported revenue of $4.2 billion (€3.84 billion) in the period, an increase of 11.0% year-on-year.
Same-store revenues increased by 3.3% in the United States, by 3.0% in Europe and other regions, and by 5.9% in Canada, it added. Gross margins in the division were up by 1.0% in the US (to 34.1%), by 2.6% in Europe (to 40.9%) and by 1.7% in Canada (to 34.1%).
'Exceptional Fiscal Year'
"We are pleased to announce an exceptional fiscal year as well as strong fourth quarter results," said Brian Hannasch, president and chief executive of Alimentation Couche-Tard, adding that the group has hit the targets outlined in its five-year 'Double Again' strategic plan.
"While many organisations chart ambitious strategic plans, they can lose momentum along the way. We were able to march forward – growing, innovating, and producing remarkable financial results – because of our award-winning engaged team members and customer-centric culture."
During the quarter, Alimentation Couche-Tard signed a deal to acquire some 2,193 sites in Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, and Luxembourg, as well as concluding the acquisition of 65 express tunnel car wash sites and 55 convenience and retail fuel sites in the United States. It also entered into a binding agreement to acquire an additional 112 sites in the US.
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