The development marks further expansion of the two’s plans to open cannabis stores alongside Canadian Circle K gas stations.
“Couche-Tard continues to see promise in the cannabis market and is committed to learning more about the space as it evolves both in Canada and beyond,” said Alex Miller, executive vice president of operations in North America for Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. “With now five co-located cannabis stores next to high-traffic Circle K stores in the Greater Toronto area, we see it as a natural extension of our expertise to pair our convenient shopping experience and differentiating store footprint with the growing customer demand for cannabis products.”
The company said that four stores will open in the coming weeks:
- 10010 McLaughlin Rd., Brampton, Ontario
- 138 College Ave. W., Guelph, Ontario
- 1311 Harmony Rd. N., Oshawa, Ontario
- 648 King St. W., Hamilton, Ontario.
Fire & Flower also said that it proposed to buy two cannabis retail store locations in Kingston, Ontario, from a company owned by Couche-Tard.
The stores under negotiation would be slated to open as Fire & Flower owned, operated, and branded stores in the fourth quarter of this year:
- 500 Gardiners Road, Kingston, Ontario
- 1100 Princess Street, Kingston, Ontario
Under the accord, Fire & Flower will also issue 804,548 common shares to an affiliate of Couche-Tard, with up to an additional 804,548 common shares upon the achievement of certain performance metrics.
Closing the Kingston deal depends on conditions such as approval from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.
The Toronto Stock Exchange conditionally approved the Kingston deal.
“We continue to demonstrate major progress on the expansion of our strategic relationship with Couche-Tard through the licensing of Hifyre’s proprietary platform and Spark Perks member program at four additional co-located cannabis stores and the proposed acquisition of two cannabis stores,” said Fire & Flower CEO Stéphane Trudel. “Additionally, Couche-Tard has recently committed its financial support through the previously announced $11 million loan and $5 million private placement, subject to the receipt of shareholder approval.”
The deals would bring seven Circle K co-located cannabis stores under Fire & Flower corporate or technology licensing business models in Alberta and Ontario.
“Having access to Circle K’s valued real estate through these co-located stores demonstrates the differentiating value of the strategic relationship with our partner, Alimentation Couche-Tard,” Trudel said. “We continue to enhance a fast and convenient cannabis shopping experience with the Hifyre technology platform and recently began the delivery of other complimentary products, including snack foods through the Firebird Delivery platform.”