Past

The Allsup’s story is truly one of achieving the American Dream of success through nothing more than hard work and vision. Lonnie and Barbara Allsup grew up in the small town of Morton, Texas. High school sweethearts, they were married in 1950. After a few years in college, and a commitment to the Air Force, Lonnie was discharged and ready to begin a career in the grocery business. He acted on an opportunity to buy a small “drive-in” grocery in Roswell, New Mexico in 1956. As the predecessor of the modern day convenience store, a drive-in was open later hours and seven days a week. It was fully stocked and well lit and served a neighborhood. In addition to staple convenience store goods such as bread, milk and cigarettes, there was a large display of fresh fruit in season and a large display of soft drinks. Customers could even pick up cold watermelons on ice from a horse-watering tank in the parking lot! Lonnie and Barbara both worked in the store from opening to closing each day. Lonnie’s Drive-in, as it was named, had an open front, meaning the glass front of the building slid open like a garage and merchandise was even displayed on the porch! Once inside, shoppers discovered that the store was exceptionally clean and efficiently laid out so that you could get in and out of the store quickly. Click here to read more.

Present

Today, Allsup’s is still owned and operated by its founders, Lonnie and Barbara Allsup. With over 300 stores in 160 towns and cities, some things have changed, but the basic formula of convenience, new products, and good systems has not changed. Lonnie and Barbara still come to work every day, planning and overseeing their far-flung operation, and are supported in their efforts by a professional corporate management team and 3000 loyal store employees, many of whom have been with the company for 20 years or more. Allsup’s employees don’t work for a huge corporation - they work for Lonnie and Barbara. Lonnie and Barbara both speak of loyalty – loyalty of company to employee and employee to company. They believe this “family feeling” will remain the foundation, and in fact, will be the launching pad for the future of Allsup’s Convenience Stores. If not now, there soon will be “One Near You.”

Future

Recently Allsup’s has undertaken a very aggressive new store and remodeling program. In the 4th quarter of 2011 alone, the company will complete the remodeling of twenty-five stores. Lonnie and his team are also actively scouting our trade area for new properties and opportunities. To support the rapid growth of the company, Barbara and her team are building the accounting and information processing structures necessary to keep the company on sound footing financially as well as operationally. High on her list of priorities are implementing a network infrastructure that will insure the privacy of our customers’ data and identities as well as support the rapid exchange of information between the corporate office and retail management. Other projects include new systems to improve upon an extensive and growing gasoline supply chain, implementation of new internet services to support marketing, merchandising and customer interaction, a new proprietary POS system and an expansion of the corporate headquarters in Clovis to accommodate the growing “family” of Allsup’s employees.

Don’t be surprised if Allsup’s comes up with other innovations in the convenience store industry in the coming years. If the past is any indication – you can count on it!

And that burrito? Well, it is now world-famous!