Make us your home page
Instagram

Florida's first Thorntons convenience store to open in Clearwater

Business briefs

midwest convenience store comes to florida: Thorntons Inc., an independent gasoline/convenience-chain retailer, will open its first Florida location in Clearwater on the site of the former Krispy Kreme doughnut shop at 1698 Gulf-to-Bay Blvd.

The company recently announced its expansion into the Florida regional metro market. The Clearwater store is slated to open in late November.

The plan for the region is to add 15 to 20 stores in the Tampa, St. Petersburg and Clearwater area during the next three years.

"Our goal is to have six stores open by the end of this year or early next year," said John Zikias, senior vice president of supply chain and category management with Thorntons.

Each store will be open 24 hours a day. The company plans to hire several hundred people in the coming months.

Initially, three grades of gasoline as well as diesel fuel will be available at Thorntons. E85, an environmentally friendly alternative fuel for FlexFuel vehicles, will not be immediately available until the logistics of its delivery are worked out.

In the store, visitors will be able to pick up a wide variety of products including groceries and beverages, fresh food, baked goods, money orders, gift cards and lottery tickets.

Founded by James H. Thornton in 1971, the company's first station opened in Clarksville, Ind., and featured a kiosk building and a full-service attendant.

In the 1980s, Thorntons transitioned from kiosk locations to convenience stores in more 100 locations throughout Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee.

In 1997, Thorntons created a new prototype store that featured a wide variety of fast-food products, groceries and beverages within a well-lit, customer-friendly environment.

Since August 2001, James Thornton's son, Matthew A. Thornton, has served as president and CEO of Thorntons, Kentucky's largest privately held corporation with interests in retail gasoline and convenience stores, petroleum terminals and bulk plants, and transportation and commissary operations.

A 1993 graduate of the University of Alabama with a bachelor of science degree in management, Matthew Thornton has focused the organization on maintaining financial flexibility through conservative balance sheet management. As a result, the company consistently builds six to 10 new stores annually.

This is the company's first foray into a new metro/state region since 2007. With this expansion, the Thorntons brand will now be available in six states.

Send business news to Nova Beall at Tampa Bay Times, 710 Court St., Clearwater, FL 33756; fax (727) 445-4119; or email nbeall@tampabay.com.

Florida's first Thorntons convenience store to open in Clearwater 08/23/12 [Last modified: Thursday, August 23, 2012 5:53pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Why are so few Tampa Bay houses for sale? They're being rented

    Real Estate

    Oreste Mesa Jr. owns a modest 40-year-old house in West Tampa just off MacDill Avenue. It's an area where many homeowners are hearing the siren song of builders and cashing out while the market is strong.

    Attorney David Eaton poses in front of his rental home at 899 72nd Ave. North. in St. Petersburg. He's among a growing number of property owners who see more value in renting out unused homes than selling them. 
[SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  2. Wanted: New businesses on Safety Harbor's Main Street

    Local Government

    SAFETY HARBOR — A green grocery store, a hardware store, restaurants, boutiques and multi-use buildings are all wanted downtown, according to discussion at a community redevelopment workshop held last week. And to bring them to the Main Street district, city commissioners, led by Mayor Joe Ayoub, gave City Manager …

    Whistle Stop Bar & Grill is one of the main stops on Main Street in Safety Harbor. [LUIS SANTANA | Times]
  3. Q&A: A business leader and historian jointly delve into Tampa's waterfront

    Business

    TAMPA — As a native of Tampa, Arthur Savage has always had a passion for his hometown's history. And as a third-generation owner and operator of A.R. Savage & Son, a Tampa-based shipping agency, his affinity for his hometown also extends to its local waterways.

    Arthur Savage (left) and Rodney Kite-Powell, co-authors of "Tampa Bay's Waterfront: Its History and Development," stand for a portrait with the bust of James McKay Sr. in downtown Tampa on Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2017. McKay, who passed away in 1876, was a prominent businessman, among other things, in the Tampa area. He was Arthur Savage's great great grandfather. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. Tampa's connected-vehicle program looking for volunteers

    Transportation

    TAMPA — Drivers on the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway can save on their monthly toll bill by volunteering to test new technology that will warn them about potential crashes and traffic jams.

    A rendering shows how new technology available through the Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority will warn driver's about crashes, traffic jams, speed decreases and more. THEA is seeking 1,600 volunteers to install the devices, which will display alerts in their review mirrors, as part of an 18-month connected-vehicle pilot.
  5. St. Pete Sculpture Museum announces move to Central Avenue

    Visual Arts

    Another museum is joining the mix in St. Petersburg's downtown Central Arts District.

    Sculptor Jon Hair with his 26-foot lion sculpture. Hair's St. Pete Sculpture Museum will soon move to a prominent spot on Central Avenue, Hair said. [Courtesy of Jon Hair]