Not long ago, ampm was a regional phenomenon. It all began back in 1978, when ARCO stations in southern California began tempting on-the-go consumers with food as well as fuel.
Nowadays, consumers around the country can fill their tanks and satisfy their appetites at ampm stores in places such as Chicago, Atlanta and Cincinnati. The ampm tagline, Too Much Good Stuff, describes the store’s unique vision: a “snack food theme park” where customers can indulge their taste buds.
Too Much Good Stuff goes east
The brand’s trek across the United States started in 2007, when BP decided to retool its convenience stores east of the Rockies. As part of that transformation, about 250 BP Connect and Wild Bean locations were converted to ampm locations.
That November, BP — which acquired ARCO in 2000 — announced that it would be selling more than 700 company-owned sites to franchisees as well as dealers and jobbers.
ARCO-branded ampm stores are found in the following states:
BP-branded ampm stores are located in the following metropolitan areas:
• Columbus, Ohio
• Orlando, Fla.
Consumers can also find ampm overseas. There are more than 1,800 ampm stores in Brazil and Japan.
Tasty offerings, edgy experience make ampm different
One way ampm stands apart from other convenience stores is its strong proprietary program. The store satisfies cravings with its private-label beverages, snacks and all day, every day choice of prepared foods. Besides warm fare such as hot dogs and hamburgers, ampm recently launched a hot breakfast menu with burritos, croissant sandwiches and empanadas.
ampm also offers customers a lively in-store experience. Quirky signage, bold packaging and upbeat background music greet ampm customers, appealing to several of their senses at once.
ampm in the headlines
Since starting the conversion to a franchise-based model, ampm has moved up the ranks of several franchise lists.
Franchise Times magazine, for example, ranked ampm at No. 29 on its list of the top 200 franchise systems for 2008 and 2009. Entrepreneur magazine listed ampm as No. 35 on its annual “Franchise 500” compilation for two years in a row.
Industry publications have also noted ampm’s success in whetting appetites across the country. Convenience Store Decisions magazine recapped the changes in an April 1, 2009, article titled “Focused on the Franchise.”
More good stuff on the way
As for what lies ahead, BP will continue to sell off its company-owned ampm locations through the end of 2009. Thirty years after its inception, ampm is now a national franchise stretching from coast to coast with a bright and exciting future!