7-Eleven said today (3 November) it still wants to pursue “aggressive” expansion in North America even after its bid to buy local c-store chain Casey’s General Stores failed.

A second offer, worth US$43 a share and up from an earlier $40-a-share bid, was rebuffed by the Casey’s board, which said earlier today that talks between the two sides had now come to an end after two months.

Casey’s insisted neither bid matched the value it had placed on the business, although 7-Eleven, the US arm of Japanese retailer Seven & I Holdings, insisted the second offer “fairly valued” the business.

Nonetheless, 7-Eleven still wants to expand in what it claimed was a “highly fragmented” convenience channel. The company said the “majority” of the convenience industry was made by small chains or independent owners.

“While we are no longer in talks with Casey’s regarding a transaction, our strategy is to grow aggressively in the US and Canada,” 7-Eleven president and CEO Joe DePinto.

7-Eleven, which runs, franchises or licences over 8,200 stores in North America, said it expects to have added over 300 outlets in the US and Canada this year.

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CFO Stan Reynolds added: “7-Eleven has the size, scale and financial flexibility to aggressively increase its store base over the next several years. We have a strong balance sheet, solid operating results and the resources to add significantly to our asset base.”