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The National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) has released a new study saying that the number of convenience stores in the United States grew 3.2 percent over the past year and now stands at 145,119. Ten years ago, there were 104,600 U.S. convenience stores.

In addition, the study noted that “convenience stores account for the majority of motor fuels sales in the United States, and this is reflected in the number of stores that sell motor fuels — 114,974 stores — or 79.2 percent of all convenience stores, a slight decrease from the 80.2 percent of stores that sold motor fuels the year prior.”

Other excerpts from the report:

• “Texas continues to be home to nearly one-tenth of all U.S. convenience stores, with 14,175 stores total. The rest of the top 10 states in terms of stores are: California (10,212 stores), Florida (9,380), New York (7,663), Georgia (6,262), North Carolina (6,190), Ohio (5,174), Michigan (4,797), Illinois (4,548) and Virginia (4,506). The same states have occupied the top 10 for several years in a row. The only difference in order for the latest store count is Illinois passed Virginia to move to ninth place.

• “The convenience store industry continues to be dominated by small, ‘mom-and-pop’ stores — those that are owned and operated as a one-store business or franchise. The number of one-store owners now stands at 89,957 stores, 62 percent of all stores in the United States. This is the highest percentage recorded to date; only five years ago the percentage of one-store operators stood at 50.0 percent.”

• “Despite shrinking margins, motor fuels operations continue to be an important part of the industry. Texas reported the most stores selling motor fuels, 11,950 stores, or 84.3 percent of all convenience stores in the state, and is above the national average of 79.2 percent of convenience stores selling motor fuels. However, there are several states where that percentage exceeds 95 percent, led by North Dakota (96.7 percent), Iowa and Montana (each at 95.8 percent), Kansas (95.7 percent), South Dakota (95.4 percent) and Nebraska (95.3 percent). Not surprisingly, the two states that mandate full-service for motor fuels sales had among the lowest percentages of stores selling motor fuels. New Jersey had the smallest percentage of stores selling fuels (37.9 percent), and Oregon had the fourth lowest (57.7 percent). Other states in the bottom five were Massachusetts (44.1), New York (53.2 percent) and Maryland (64.1 percent).”
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