Can You Buy Wawa Stock? Key Things to Know

wawa stock

One of my favorite gas stations is Wawa. You might know Wawa, Inc., as they are one of the most trusted and reliable American chains of gas stations and convenience stores servicing the East Coast of the US, operating in Florida, D.C., Washington, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.

As an investor, I am always looking for companies that I use and increasing business. That started me thinking about Wawa stock and, more importantly how to buy Wawa stock.

As of the year 2008, their company is known to be one, if not, the largest convenience store chain present in the Greater Philadelphia, and they are also the 3rd biggest retailer of food in Greater Philadelphia.

Because of their popularity and reputation, investors find it interesting to invest with their company. The biggest question is, whether or not you can buy Wawa stocks.

Is There A Way To Buy Wawa Stock?

Who would not like to invest in a company that is not only stable but also growing as time passes by? Wawa is a target for many investors but unfortunately, Wawa stock is not yet available in any of the public stock exchange markets as they want to keep its ownership, private.

Needless to say, the company offers ESOP or Employee Stock Ownership Plan, the same as what the Waffle House has. Wawa’s ESOP allows the company’s eligible employees to get a percentage of the earnings they contributed to the plan.

To be eligible for the ESOP, the employee should be 18 years old, have been a part of the company for 12 months from the date he/she was hired, and have worked in Wawa for a minimum of one thousand hours every year. This plan started to roll out way back in 1977.

Currently, ESOP has about 20,000 participants. 40% of Wawa is owned by the participants of the plan (employee ownership). As per an article released by Inc., the planned shares of Wawa were about $900 worth in 2003, and in 2020, the shares increased their value to about $14,000. This is a quite good return, especially for someone who keeps the shares for a long duration of time.

With all the above being said, you can never get a share of Wawa’s stock unless you are one of their employees. This is very unfortunate to the general public, as there is no way they can buy stocks of Wawa until they decide to go on public, which by the way is not known yet when.

Who Are They?

You might be asking, why more and more people are very interested to invest with their company. Is it just their success? Maybe yes, but their history plays a huge part in it.

The company that you know and fell in love with today, had not come into anyone’s senses until almost 100 years back. It was in 1890 when George Wood decided to move to Pennsylvania so he could start a farm that is focused on producing dairy products.

But when did the major turnaround take place? In the year 1964, Grahame Wood made a decision to open his very first Wawa Food Market which was located in Folsom, PA, and up until the year 2016, his first-ever shop remained operational.

This was considered to be the company’s first entry in the field of convenience store market. During that time, convenience stores were starting to boom and showcase their worth in society, so it is not a surprise that Wawa’s first entry into the convenience store world market became an instant hit and earned a truly massive success.

Currently, the convenience store chain is visible in more than nine hundred locations with over thirty-one thousand employees on board.

Knowing their explosive growth history, it is fair to believe that their number will continuously rise in the future. Their branches are spread from the North and South of the United States’ east coast to Pennsylvania.

Currently, they have stores in the states given below, and they are looking forward to more stores to come in the future:

•      New Jersey

•      Delaware

•      Pennsylvania

•      Virginia

•      Maryland

•      Florida

•      Washington, D.C.

With the company’s plan to continuously span its reach, expect that Wawa’s funds will only grow further.

Although they are based in Pennsylvania, they were able to grow their locations to more than 900, and almost all of their locations or branches are open and operational 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and their stores offer a wide selection of highly sought after beverages and food.

As you know, Wawa was able to build a great reputation for their fresh coffee, and delicious, fresh made-to-order sandwiches and hoagies too.

Their company was not always a chain of gasoline stations. It comes as a surprise for some, that their company has no relation to gasoline when they started. They started as a dairy farm in New Jersey which was popularly called as the Wawa Dairy Farm.

Who Owns Wawa?

As per Forbes, more than 200 successors of the Wood family hold nearly half of the stock of Wawa. While more than 40% of their stock is owned by the Wawa employees through their ESOP option.

How Much Is Wawa’s Worth?

The worth of Wawa is not currently published, but anyhow, there are a few numbers that their company makes available for public information. They currently hold estimated assets of about $1.6 billion. There is no exact number disclosed as of the moment, maybe because the company wants to keep information about their business finances private, the same as with the stock ownership.

What Is The Company’s Revenue?

It was reported that the company generates a gross yearly revenue of more than $13 billion. Wawa’s net sales revenue is about $118 million.

Why are they successful?

You might be wondering, why despite the tight competition in the world of convenience stores and gas stations, how were able to maintain and achieve success. Actually, Wawa is successful because of several reasons, and one of the most evident is how they take care of their employees.

Their employee cultures and company are grounded in their core values which are – responsibility, openness, honesty and care. Through their core values, they were able to keep both their customers and employees satisfied.

The company’s commitment in ensuring that their work culture is instrumental to success is not only meant for the company but their employees as well.

The value they give their employees is outstanding, and to name some of the benefits they provide, read the following:

– They encourage their employees to take ownership of the company through ESOP

– Employees working for them are offered benefits – dental, vision, health and even retirement

– They offer scholarship programs for their employees so they can finish college education

– The culture of their company is based on servant leadership

– Their employees can enjoy paid time off

Apart from taking care of their employees, they also find ways to make sure that their customers are happy and satisfied with the service they receive from them.

Some of the programs they recently offered to their customers are below:

– They offer Free Coffee Tuesdays for their reward members in May

– They provide no surcharge fee for all their customers’ ATM use

– A comfortable seating in each of their convenience store

– They offer customizable drinks and food through the use of their touch screen station

– Great selection of fresh foods in some of their stores

What they offer are perks and great offers no other shops can give to their customers and associates

How To Get Wawa Stocks?

Wawa is unfortunately not a company available for the public to trade, meaning, their shares are not available on any public exchange. Although this is bad news for investors, the company’s employees can truly enjoy the opportunity of owning a stock in Wawa.

Currently, there are more than 9000 employees holding a stock in Wawa. But of course, you have to be eligible with their requirements first before you can buy their stocks. Employees can contribute to ESOP by investing there through their earnings.

Before this plan became available, Wawa was already sharing earning with their associates, and this they do through their profit-sharing plan.

With this you would know, how loyal they are with their customers since they started in the industry.

Wawa IPO Date

Gossips were all around years back, about Wawa going public, but unfortunately, up to this date, Wawa has never been available on the line up. With their success, you would know, that they are already doing well on their own, and it seems like they do not need help from outside capital to widen their expansion even more.

Wawa has never said a word of intent of having an IPO, maybe because they already offer a huge chunk of their shares to their employees.

No IPO date announced yet, and it seems like the hopes of the investors will not come to reality sooner.

Stock Symbol Of Wawa

They are not publicly traded just yet, so they do not have a ticker symbol (stock symbol) just yet. No one would know their stock sticker just yet until their company finally submits or reserves a ticker or S-1 filing.

Although the time may not be close just yet, here are some tickers the company can consider:

– WAWA

– WAW

– WWA

Stock Price Of Wawa

Wawa’s current stock is estimated to be fourteen thousand dollars per share, that was previously just $900, 10 years back. This is an estimate of 1,455% increase in the share price of the company since Wawa’s plan, ESOP, was introduced.

Those holding the company’s stock for a long period of time might have already earned a huge amount, as the price of their stock increased so well.

It is specified that employees of Wawa are not allowed to sell the stocks they own to someone else, in case they want to let go of the shares they own, they need to cash it out through Wawa, nowhere else.

Is buying Wawa A Good Idea When It Goes Public?

Because of the successful trend of the company, it is highly recommended that you grab a few of their shares in the event they decide to go public. The company has been successful with their expansion in the past few years, and to add on the good news, there is no sign that they will slow down any moment.

When they go public, it is still recommended that you practice due diligence before you decide on investing your hard-earned money.

Final Thought

Wawa is considered to be one of the most successful chains for anyone who is looking for reliable and fast service. They started only as a dairy farm that offers home delivery, and now, they are so successful that they are considered to be one of the popular pit stops out there.

Although they are gas stations, they are also a place where you can grab a coffee or a bite to eat.

Apart from being a great gas station and convenience store, they are also a great place to work. They offer great promotions and programs to their customers, and one of which is their highly likable ESOP.

Expect that when they open their shares to the public, their prices may be high, so it is up to you whether or not to invest in them or not.

Some Stock FAQ For Wawa Stock

Are their stocks available to the public?

Sorry to disappoint the investors, but currently, they are not available to the public and there is no sign that they will be in the near future. There is no way you can trade Wawa stock in the public market at this time. The only time you can get hold of their stocks is if you become an employee and pass all their requirements.

To add, employees are not allowed to sell their shares to anyone outside their company. If they want to cash out their stocks, they need to do it with Wawa, and no one else.

What is the Wawa stock price?

There is not price on Wawa stock because it is not public.

Wawa’s ESOP

According to Wawa’s website, all employees have access to Wawa ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan). They are elligable to purchase stock. Requirements are that the employee must be 18 or older, hired for at least 1 year and work at least 1,000 hours each year. Here is the Wawa’s ESOP fact sheet.

Who is Wawa’s Parent Company?

Wawa does not have any parent company. They came in the industry with their own distinct identity. The company was never owned by anyone apart from the Wood family and their employees.  Hopefully this will happen in the future, but opening to the public seems to be a long shot for now.

How Much Is The Worth of Wawa ESOP?

As per the Inquirer, currently, Wawa ESOP is about $2 billion. Earlier, when the program was initially introduced, the worth of their share was just $900, and today, it is believed that it has jumped to as much as $14000. Imagine the increment since it was started, good deal indeed, especially for those who hold the stock since day one until today.

How Much Is the Worth Of the Wawa Family?

There is no recent estimate announced regarding the Wawa family’s worth, but many believe that their worth was around the ballpark of 1.3 billion dollars back in the year 2015. Considering the employee stock options are currently estimated to more than $2 billion, it is fair to believe that the worth of the Wawa family is close to that.

How Much Their CEO Make

Chris Gheynens, Wawa’s CEO, reportedly earns around two hundred thirty thousand per year, this includes his bonus and base salary. There is no way to confirm this amount, but the amount stated is what is widely reported.

Who Owns Wawa?

As previously stated, Wawa’s employees own around 40% of the company through their plan, ESOP. The founder of the company, the Wood family, also owns a huge part of the business. Based on the data from Forbes, based on 2015, the estimated net worth of their family is more than a billion dollars.

Will They Ever Become Public?

Sure, investors would love to see Wawa go public. And yes, there are reports and gossip running around the public trade market about Wawa going public.  Unfortunately, up until this moment, this has never come to reality.

If you read the article by The Philadelphia Inquirer, their spokesperson, Lori Bruce stated“To be clear, we are committed to remaining privately held and to sharing ownership with our associates though our ESOP. We believe our ownership structure between the founding family and our associates is the foundation of our culture and our ongoing success.”

To add on how they stressed on private ownership, their CEO, Chris Gheysens stated in the year 2014, that the company will never go public. He added that their company’s success can be attributed, at least partly, to the company’s flexibility and its ability to make long term decisions.Although their statement seems clear and strong, you still never know what happens next.

You will never know what will happen in the future, for now, the only thing investors can do is to hope that they will give others a chance to own even a small part of their business, and not just share it with their lucky employees.

Will They Ever Become Public?

Sure, investors would love to see Wawa to go public. And yes, there are reports and gossips running around the public trade market about Wawa going public.  Unfortunately, up until this moment, this has never come to reality.

If you read the article by The Philadelphia Inquirer, their spokesperson, Lori Bruce stated “To be clear, we are committed to remaining privately held and to sharing ownership with our associates though our ESOP. We believe our ownership structure between the founding family and our associates is the foundation of our culture and our ongoing success.”

To add on how they stressed on private ownership, their CEO, Chris Gheysens stated in the year 2014, that the company will never go public. He added that their company’s success can be attributed, at least partly, to the company’s flexibility and its ability to make long term decisions.

Although their statement seems clear and strong, you still never know what happens next. You will never know what will happen in the future, for now, the only thing investors can do is to hope that they will give others a chance to own even a small part of their business, and not just share it with their lucky employees.

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