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|Industry||Retail (convenience stores, fast food)|
September 25, 1958|
Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.
|Headquarters||Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.|
Number of locations
|Chet Cadieux (CEO)|
|Revenue||US$9.16 billion (FY 2017)|
Number of employees
The QuikTrip Corporation, more commonly known as QuikTrip (QT), is a Tulsa, Oklahoma–based chain of convenience stores that primarily operates in the Midwestern, Southern, and Southeastern United States as well as in Arizona.
The first QuikTrip was opened in 1958 in Tulsa by Burt Holmes and Chester Cadieux. The company expanded outside of Oklahoma in 1968, and started selling gasoline in 1971. Chester's son, Chet, Jr., is the current CEO.
Since 1991, QuikTrip has promoted its gasoline as "high quality" with an unconditional guarantee. In 2005, QuikTrip and Chevron were the first two retailers to earn a "Top Tier" rating from General Motors, BMW, Honda, Volkswagen, Audi, and Toyota. (The "Top Tier" rating exceeds the United States Environmental Protection Agency's standards for gasoline additives.)
QuikTrip has been consistently listed among Fortune's 100 Best Companies to Work For. The January 2006 version of the rankings placed QT at #21, ninth among companies classified as "mid-size"; for 2008 QT was ranked 27 in Fortune's top 100 list. QuikTrip often uses this fact in recruiting new employees. QuikTrip also ranked 33rd on Forbes magazine's list of largest private companies in 2016.
While driving through Dallas, Burt Holmes was intrigued by the success of 7-Eleven and decided to open a small grocery store in his hometown of Tulsa. He took on classmate Chester Cadieux as a partner in his planned venture.
The first QuikTrip store was opened in a Tulsa strip mall in 1958, which sold a limited selection of groceries with high prices for the convenience. The chain grew rapidly, opening its first store outside Tulsa in 1964, expanding to Missouri in 1971 and Iowa in 1974.
QuikTrip began to sell gasoline in 1971 as states legalized self-service stations. In the early 1970s, co-founder Cadieux eliminated slow-moving merchandise from the stores' inventory, such as canned vegetables, and stocked a larger quantity of items, priced low for high-volume sales, such as beer, soda, coffee, cigarettes, and candy. In 1976, it became one of the first convenience store chains to be open 24 hours a day. Also that year, it adopted its now-famous "QT" logo.
QuikTrip had its own branded goods marketed from the 1970s to the 1980s, including QT Beer—QT for "Quittin' Time". The ad campaign, "It's QT Time Again", would often show a dog named Lamar. The dog's owner was portrayed in television commercials by actor Ben Jones, who often asked the dog, "Ain't that right, Lamar?"
In 1988, upon rapid expansions into the St. Louis and Atlanta markets, QuikTrip began a renovation of all stores, primarily replacing the earthtone exterior and interior with a bright red color scheme. The interior decor featured red countertops and a red quarry tile floor; almond tile on the walls interspersed with painted red sections of the walls to create contrast. Some gold trim maintained continuity from the previous decor. The company also took more care with landscaping around the store. By the early 1990s, QuikTrip began to offer fast foods and fountain beverages at its stores, being the first convenience store to offer a self-serve soda fountain and a self-serve coffee bar. Expensive advertising led the company to phase out the private label beer by this time.
In 1994, QuikTrip acquired the former Memorex/Telex Communications headquarters in Tulsa and remodeled part of the building for its Oklahoma division. In 2003, QuikTrip decided to consolidate all employees into one corporate campus in south Tulsa and sold the building to Community Care College.
Products and services
In an attempt to increase speed and improve customer service at checkout, QuikTrip asks customers to stand at the counter versus standing in a long line. Employees are taught at orientation to go provide assistance on an additional register when the customer to cashier ratio exceeds 3:1, and to direct customers to the closest available checkout.
Since the early 1990s, QuikTrip has sold a private label brand of fast food, "Quick 'n Tasty" and "HOTZI sandwiches". "Quick 'n Tasty" heat-and-serve sandwiches include Texas Ham and Cheese, BarBQ Pork Rib, and the Super Po Boy. "HOTZI" breakfast sandwiches included the sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit and the breakfast burrito.
In 2012, QuikTrip began an initiative of offering fresh food made daily at its own bakery and commissary referred to as QT Kitchens. The products includes fresh sandwiches, wraps, salads, fruit, and various pastries made and delivered daily. Since then, QuikTrip has expanded the "QT Kitchens" brand to include actual kitchens in their stores with made-to-order hot food as well as specialty drinks. The company also retrofitted their older style stores to include the new kitchen operations, in addition to building entirely new "Gen 3" stores.
During rapid expansion in the late 1980s, some QuikTrip stores included large 'travel centers.' A smaller version of a truck stop, the travel centers included a 5,000-square-foot store, 12 gasoline pumps, five diesel pumps with an elevated canopy to accommodate large trucks, a truck scale, and a store to serve the needs of truck drivers.
In 1994, QuikTrip began test-marketing a dual-brand concept in St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield, and Atlanta, where a 3,000-square-foot Wendy's store was attached to each QuikTrip convenience store. In Des Moines, QuikTrip opened a new store with a Burger King with a separate entry and a drive-through window, but a passageway allowing movement between the convenience store and the restaurant.
In October 2007, QuikTrip opened a store within the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri. The location only offered concessions and not gasoline. The store was closed in mid-2013. The company's second store without gasoline—store No.1700— opened in midtown Atlanta at the Viewpoint Midtown condominium building on Peachtree Street.
In 2008, QuikTrip signed an agreement with the city of Grand Prairie, Texas for naming rights to the Grand Prairie AirHogs' new stadium, to be named QuikTrip Park. The deal included a QuikTrip booth at the stadium selling QT Kitchens products at the park for store price.
QuikTrip operates over 750 stores, which are located in the following areas of the United States:
- Arizona: Phoenix metro (91 stores)
- Arizona: Tucson metro (20 stores)
- Georgia: Atlanta metro (134 stores)
- Iowa: Des Moines metro (23 stores)
- Kansas: Wichita metro (38 stores)
- Kansas / Missouri: Kansas City metro (83 stores)
- Missouri / Illinois: St. Louis metro (73 stores)
- Nebraska / Iowa: Omaha metro (10 stores)
- North and South Carolina: Charlotte metro (39 stores)
- Oklahoma: Tulsa metro (77 stores)
- South Carolina: Greenville / Spartanburg metro (36 stores)
- Texas: Dallas / Fort Worth metro (135 stores)
- Texas: San Antonio metro (1 store)
All stores are owned and operated by the company.
In the Dallas/Fort Worth and Atlanta metro areas, QuikTrip competes head to head with RaceTrac, an Atlanta-based convenience store chain that is very similar to QuikTrip inside and out. Both chains tend to have new clean facilities with abundant on-site lighting and a large convenience area. In many cases, the two competitors are located directly across the street or on opposite street corners from one another.
Because the company operates stores in Iowa and retains the trademarks to the name within that state, competing chain Kwik Trip uses a different name for their stores in the state, Kwik Star.
In the Phoenix metropolitan area, there are no QuikTrip stores located within the city limits of the suburb of Scottsdale. This is due to a city ordinance that regulates the design and build of gas and service stations within city limits. Neither the city nor the company will give in to the other (in other words QuikTrip will not build a station to appease the ordinance and Scottsdale will not make an exception to QuikTrip), and therefore Scottsdale is the only city in the Phoenix area without a QuikTrip.
- Barber, Brian (2007-06-19). "A More Congenial Spot: Camelot site may be QuikTrip milestone". Tulsa World. Retrieved 2007-07-02.
- QuikTrip Gasoline Archived July 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
- "100 Best Companies to Work For". Fortune. 2006. Retrieved August 19, 2014.
- "QuikTrip on the Forbes America's Largest Private Companies List". Forbes.
- Company history page
- "QuikTrip Corporation History". Funding Universe. Retrieved October 16, 2016.
- Robinson, Robin (May 24, 1991). "QuikTrip's Lamar Returns". Tulsa World. Retrieved October 16, 2016.
- Winslow, Laurie (July 11, 2003). "QuikTrip Sells Former Office to School". Tulsa World.[dead link]
- Carroll, Rory (August 17, 2014). "In the Ferguson tempest, fury and resentment fuel protesters' fire". The Guardian.
- "QT KICKS UP ITS SPURS; BLAZES A TRAIL TO SAN ANTONIO AND AUSTIN". QuikTrip Corporation. Retrieved 2018-10-07.
- "QuikTrip Opens First San Antonio Store, With Dozens More to Come". Convenience Store News. Retrieved 2018-10-07.
- Siebenmark, Jerry (November 3, 2012). "QuikTrip to build Gen 3 store at Kellogg, Broadway". The Wichita Eagle.
- "QuikTrip Corporation > Food > Made Fresh To Order". QuikTrip Corporation.
- "QuikTrip will open store in Sprint Center". Kansas City Business Journal. September 20, 2007.
- Smith, Joyce. "QuikTrip to close in Sprint Center". The Kansas City Star.
- Ahles, Andrea (April 16, 2008). "QuikTrip Buys Naming Rights to Grand Prairie Minor League Stadium". Fort Worth Star Telegram. Retrieved October 16, 2016.
- "QuikTrip and RaceTrac Fueling Continued Growth".
- "Race trac or quick trip?".
- "Fuel wars heat up as new RaceTrac site going up near QuikTrip in Gainesville".
- Official website
- Reifman, Shlomo; Murphy, Andrea D. (November 6, 2008). "# 32 QuikTrip". "America's Largest Private Companies". Forbes.
- Voices of Oklahoma interview with Chester Cadieux. First person interview conducted on July 31, 2009, with Chester Cadieux, co-founder of QuikTrip.
- Voices of Oklahoma interview with Burt B. Holmes. First person interview conducted on May 28, 2014, with Burt B. Holmes, co-founder of QuikTrip. See Chapter 9 titled "QuikTrip."