Convenience Store Decisions presents Chain of the Year award to Family Express.
Convenience store retailers joined to celebrate Family Express, Convenience Store Decisions’ (CSD) 2015 Convenience Store Chain of the Year award winner, during the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) Show on Monday, Oct. 12 at 6 p.m. at the Nirvana Pool inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas.
CSD’s Chain of the Year ceremony, an annual event for 26 years, is designed to allow the convenience store and petroleum industry to show its support for Family Express, gain insight into their success and network with peers in a relaxing and fun environment.
The Chain of the Year award is the oldest and most prestigious award for convenience retailing in the industry. Valparaiso, Ind.-based Family Express supplanted Atlanta-based RaceTrac Petroleum as Chain of the Year, considered the gold standard in convenience store retailing.
“Over the past 26 years, Convenience Store Decisions has consistently honored convenience retailing excellence. And while there have been some companies gobbled up in acquisitions, the chains we have honored remain industry leaders, starting with Wawa, the first chain of the year winner in 1990. Since then, we have honored a deserving chain annually. But while the industry leaders were relatively easy to identify in the early years, over the past decade, we have found that there are more and more chains deserving of this prestigious award every year,” said John Lofstock, vice president and editor-in-chief of Convenience Store Decisions.
“This across-the-board commitment to convenience retailing speaks volumes about the hard work and commitment each of makes every day to convenience retailing. So while we are here to honor Family Express, this is very much a night to celebrate the work being done by the entire industry. And family-owned businesses like Family Express very much remain the backbone of our great industry,” Lofstock said.
In keeping with tradition, Allison Moran, CEO of RaceTrac Petroleum, CSD’s 2014 Convenience Store Chain of the Year, presented this year’s award to this year’s award recipient, accepted by Gus Olympidis, founder, president and CEO of Family Express.
“Innovation, outstanding operations, superior leadership and the ongoing commitment to convenience retail are the common characteristics of the best convenience store chains in our industry. Family Express embodies all these qualities and more,” Moran said.
“I believe, like most of those at RaceTrac you will find that the Most rewarding aspect of receiving this award is the opportunity it gives you to celebrate the efforts of your people and all they do everyday to make your vision a reality.”
“This is a wonderful opportunity to recognize our people for a job well done,” said Olympidis. “I’ve been around a long time. Forty years is a long journey. I can’t really think of many things in the space of convenience that we do today that we did some 40 years ago, perhaps with the exception of one thing. Relationships make a big difference in bringing about a different outcome.”
“I’m here before you totally grateful for this recognition” he said, “but I’m here before you celebrating relationships one by one….relationships matter. They matter with employees, they matter with customers, they matter with the trade.”