Mac’s Rebrands to Circle K Across Canada and Beyond

Posted on Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015 by

It’s time to say goodbye to Mac’s.

Founded in 1962 as Mac’s Milk Limited, and changed to Mac’s Convenience Stores Limited in 1975, the chain of gas stations and stores is gearing up for another change. And this time it’s going to be a big one.Mac’s parent company, Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. has announced that all Mac’s locations, as well as Statoil, Kangaroo Express, current Circle K, and Couche-Tard stores (excluding Quebec) will be rebranded to Circle K with new logo and branding. It’s a move that will impact more than 850 stores in Canada, as well as locations in the Unites States, Scandinavia and Central and Eastern Europe.

Note: The parent company has said that they won’t be rebranding the Couche-Tard locations in Quebec because they feel that their Couche-Tard branding is appropriately familiar and strong in that given market. And while that may be true, it seems more likely that Couche-Tard is trying to ensure they don’t alienate or provoke french language customers in Quebec even if it means not having a fully rebranded and consistent brand across all of their locations and countries.

The announcement has been made that the rebrand will start to take effect in the United States in January 2016, Europe in May 2016, and Canada in 2017.

The question in Canada is, does it matter? With the abundance of mom and pop convenience stores to go along with brands like 7/11, and the fact that Mac’s already sits low on the totem pole of gas stations in Canada, will rebranding Mac’s to Circle K result in any new revenue, brand recognition or market share?

What do you think?

Is the "Mac's to Circle K" Rebrand a Good Idea?

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Posted in: Branding

Joshua Murray

About Joshua Murray

Fuelled by ideas, opportunity and coffee, Joshua attacks the social media landscape every day with a purpose. His experience in retail, customer service and public relations have combined to give him a 360 degree view of social media for brands and he is committed to helping all of his clients leverage their voice in the social sphere.

  • Jake

    Most people won’t care, but if I may nitpick for a moment…

    - “Circle K” is VERY American, particularly the Southwestern region where the Circle K chain has its roots. It’s reminiscent of ranching, cattle branding, etc.
    - “Mac’s” is VERY Canadian. It is vaguely reminiscent of the Mac- prefix in many Scottish surnames, which are ubiquitous in this country.

    With this dichotomy in mind, I think that transitioning from Mac’s to Circle K will cause the brand to lose its Canadian identity. How much that’ll affect their bottom line remains to be seen, as the re-brand will definitely allow for savings. The simplicity of stamping “Circle K” on everything will save money on the production end and allow locations to move stock between one another in cases of shortfalls.