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Circle K at 611 South Kings Hwy and Shoney's at 13th South Kings Close May 1st.

City businesses close 15 days before peak season begins

Just weeks before the start of peak season in the city of Myrtle Beach two long established franchises closed their doors yesterday.

The Circle K on 611 South Kings Highway could be seen with chains around the front door. According to Convenience Store News, there are 6,800 Circle K convenience stores around the world. In 2018, less than 1% closed their doors.

Circle K declared bankruptcy in 1990, however, the brand has since rebounded becoming one of the most consistent performers in market. It’s stock trades on Wall Street at a respectable $58 per share.

Circle K’s doors chained with notes on each door

Shoney’s is another story altogether. It’s stock is currently trading under $1 per share. The Shoney’s on 13th Avenue, however, has been a mainstay in Myrtle Beach for several decades.

We reached out to corporate headquarters asking why the restaurant would close just 15 days before the heavy tourist season begins.

7:23 p.m. building abandoned. Doors locked. Open light on. Empty lot, no notice of store closure.

We received no word from the company, however, we did find the below comment from another franchise owner.

Two new businesses coming

The City of Myrtle Beach currently touts two new businesses to be built on a section of beachfront property between 18th and 19th Avenue South. That property previously sat vacant as well since 2006. The plan is to build two restaurants right off Ocean Boulevard.

INSIDER PROPERTY OWNERS

The two new developments are Bubba’s Fish Shak and Ultimate California Pizza. Investors in the Ultimate California Pizza franchise, however, happen to also be among the largest property management (hotel) firms in the city of Myrtle Beach. Myrtle Beach increasingly finds fewer and fewer “out of market” investors willing to locate a business inside the city limits.

Currently there are 123 empty store fronts within the city limits of Myrtle Beach.

Once a business location closes, on average, the property sits empty for 3.7 years.

County-Wide Boom

Such is not true of the 60 mile area equally called the Grand Strand or “Myrtle Beach” in general terms. Areas including the City of North Myrtle Beach, Carolina Forest, Murrells Inlet, Surfside Beach (at Highway 544 and 17 bypass), and Pawleys Island continue remarkable growth.

While the City of Myrtle Beach struggles, Horry County continues to be among the fastest growing counties in the state. The county grew at 28% in 2018, leading the state. Greenville, S.C. came in second growing at a rate of 24%.

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About David Hucks

Born in 1961, David is a 12th generation descendant of the area we now call Myrtle Beach, S.C. David attended Coastal Carolina University and like most of his family, has never left the area. David is the lead journalist at MyrtleBeachSC.com

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