FriendShip announced the retirement today of industry veteran and Vice President of Operations Gregg Edwards. Gregg capped off a storied career by joining the company in 2013 to implement a newly developed strategic plan. He led the food and convenience retailer during a period of unprecedented growth and innovation while maintaining a laser focus on culture and customer experience. Under Gregg’s leadership, FriendShip grew its store count by 35%, its retail team by 50% and store sales by over 100%.
“We were very excited when Gregg agreed to join our team,” said company co-owner Brian Beck. “We recruited Gregg to help us execute a newly created strategic plan centered around providing our guests with WACS (Wicked Awesome Customer Service) and shifting our stores to a food-first format. Bringing him on board was a great decision and a pivotal moment in FriendShip’s 35-year history. He led our retail team during a period that positioned us to successfully launch our FriendShip Kitchen concept in 2018, an award-winning brand that now represents over half of our 27 FriendShip locations.”
The company celebrated Gregg’s career with a luncheon and presented him with a commemorative plaque with the following inscription: “In recognition and appreciation for your creative vision in creating a FriendShip team where employees are proud of where they work, where every member of the team feels like family, and where each person has benefited from your commitment and dedication to the organization. With heartfelt appreciation for your loyalty, leadership and dedicated service. May you always remember that it is with great respect, gratitude and fondness that we honor you! Wishing you the best in your retirement!”
“I feel extremely fortunate to have finished my career with FriendShip and Beck Suppliers,” expressed Gregg Edwards. “I have worked for some great convenience retailers, but none with such an incredible culture based on humble leadership, teamwork and communication. I am very proud to have been part of the FriendShip Kitchen transformation and am excited to see my great teammates continue to grow the brand.”
With Gregg’s retirement, the company has promoted Kirk Matthews to vice president of retail operations, Kevin Campbell to director
of retail operations and Aaron Hirt to category manager and business analyst. Kirk had previously served as the company’s
vice president of food service and marketing and will now be responsible for the entire FriendShip division.
“Gregg has been a great mentor for me over the past five years,” said Chelsea Carvalho, fourth-generation Beck family member and district manager. “He is extremely knowledgeable and has been very generous sharing his experiences and philosophies with me and the entire FriendShip team. We will miss Gregg and thank him for the positive and lasting impact he has made on our company.”
Founded by Virgil Beck in 1950, Beck Suppliers is a family owned and operated retail and wholesale petroleum marketer. The company distributes Marathon, Sunoco, BP, Shell and Valero motor fuels to independent retailers as well as to its company operated FriendShip and FriendShip Kitchen stores. Beck Propane & Fuels distributes propane and heating oil to thousands of Midwest homes and businesses. Beck Fuel Systems specializes in the installation and removal of petroleum fueling systems, and Beck Car Wash Systems installs, maintains, supports and operates car washes.