Mac's Set to Create 1,600 New, Full-Time Jobs If Ontario Convenience Stores Permitted to Sell Beer, Wine and Spirits, Company Says

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - June 26, 2013) - Mac's Convenience Stores would create 1,600 new, full-time jobs if it could sell beer, wine and spirits at its 547 Ontario stores, the company said today.

"We want to provide good-paying jobs for hard-working people right across the province," said Tom Moher, Vice President of Operations for Mac's in Ontario. "And of course, we want to provide our valued customers with a one-stop shopping experience. They're continually telling us that they want to be able to purchase beer, wine and spirits at Mac's."

The employment estimate by Mac's comes shortly after the release of a study, commissioned by the Ontario Convenience Stores Association (OCSA), which found that the Government of Ontario would benefit from increased revenues if alcohol was permitted for sale in convenience stores across the province.

An earlier survey by the OCSA found that 67 per cent of Ontarians want to be able to purchase alcohol at their local convenience store.

"The people of Ontario are telling their politicians that it's time to modernize alcohol retailing in this province," said Moher, who explained that sales at stores which sell alcohol are significantly higher - requiring more staff to handle the demand.

"Many of our stores are in rural Ontario, which needs jobs. We want to provide them."

He observed that Mac's wants to be part of an expanded alcohol retailing system that not only creates employment and generates additional revenue for the Ontario government, but that saves the government-owned LCBO money.

"We in the private sector can build facilities for the sale of beer, wine and spirits," said Moher, "versus taxpayer investment in bricks and mortar."

As an example, he pointed to the gleaming Mac's convenience store in Thamesford, one of two Mac's "agency" stores in Ontario that are permitted to sell alcohol. The Thamesford store opened in December, 2012, at a cost of $3-million. (The other Mac's store permitted to sell beer, wine and spirits is located in Craigleith.)

Moher foresees the day when alcohol products are sold at Mac's outlets throughout Ontario -and emphasizes that the company wants to build stores like Thamesford across the province.

"We're experienced, responsible retailers of alcohol throughout Canada, the United States and the world," said Moher. "We're proud of our record, and our contributions to the communities we serve."

Currently, the company's CT division operates 665 corporate stores in Quebec, and Newfoundland and Labrador, which can sell beer.

The company also sells beer at 3,000 stores in the United States, and 1,400 in Europe.

About Mac's Convenience Stores Inc.

Mac's Convenience Stores Inc. is part of Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc., the leader in the Canadian convenience store industry. In North America, Couche-Tard is the second largest independent convenience store operator in terms of number of stores. Couche-Tard currently operates a network of 5,906 convenience stores, 4,128 of which dispense motor fuel, located in 11 large geographic markets, including eight in the United States covering 43 States, and three in Canada covering all 10 provinces. Some 53,000 people are employed throughout Couche-Tard's retail convenience network and executive offices.

Couche-Tard is a publicly-traded Canadian company with annual revenues of more than $15.9-billion. Shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX:ATD.A)(TSX:ATD.B).

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Jim Gray