E-Z Mart Stores aims to make filling gas tanks and stomachs EZR for small-town America. The regional convenience store chain operates about 295 stores across four neighboring states (Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas). Rather than build its own stores, the company usually expands through acquisitions. In addition to the standard hot dogs, sodas, coffee, and cigarettes, most E-Z Mart locations also offer Shell, Conoco, Phillips 66, or CITGO gasoline. E-Z Mart was founded in Ashdown, Arkansas in 1970 by Jim Yates. Yates died in late 1998 when the plane he was piloting crashed, leaving his daughter Sonja Hubbard at the company's helm as CEO.
E-Z Mart's stores rang up an estimated $640 million in retail sales in 2011.
While E-Z Mart has trimmed its store count over the past decade or so, exiting markets such as Missouri, it continues to make strategic acquisitions, such as the purchase of eight stores in Arkansas from B-B-F Oil Co. in late 2010. Like other convenience store operators seeking to boost in-store sales, E-Z Mart is expanding its food and beverage offering, adding fresh-brewed iced tea to all of its stores recently, and installing freezers. Outside, the company has a deal with Redbox to place its movie rental kiosks outside of E-Z Mart stores. – less