NACS Show Recap

Nearly 22,000 representatives of the global convenience and petroleum retailing industry turned out for this year’s NACS Show, according to attendance figures released by NACS. Overall, 21,983 attendees were at the NACS Show, including 1,328 international attendees.

The NACS Show took place Oct. 5-8 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. It is ranked as one of the 50 largest annual trade shows in the U.S.

The NACS Show featured a 370,000-plus net-square-foot exposition floor with 1,300 exhibiting companies-including 330 companies new to the NACS Show. In addition, the event featured a record 75 educational workshops and five training sessions, drawing a cumulative 7,500 attendees, and three days of standing-room-only general sessions, including a Closing General Session address by President George W. Bush.

“Our solid attendance numbers demonstrate that the convenience and petroleum retailing channel remains strong, while many other channels have struggled during the economic downturn,” said NACS Vice Chairman of Convention Steve Loehr, vice president of operations support for Kwik Trip Inc. “The NACS Show continues to be embraced by both retailers and suppliers who come to the show to grow their businesses as they find new products and services, make new business connections and share new ideas in our educational workshops.”

“The success of this year’s NACS Show goes beyond the numbers,” said NACS Supplier Board Chair Tom Joyce, vice president of customer industry affairs for The Hershey Co. “The buzz on the expo floor and feedback from exhibitors has been tremendous.”

NACS has held an annual meeting every year since its founding in 1961, but it wasn’t until 1976 that the meeting included an expo, which was part of the meeting every two or three years. From 1986 on, the annual meeting included an expo, although those early years featured a greatly scaled-down expo every other year until the early 1990s. The Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) has held its Fall Meeting as part of the NACS Show since in 1995 and the Petroleum Equipment Institute (PEI) has held its annual meeting as part of the NACS Show since in 2002. Today, the NACS Show is rotated between three cities: Chicago, Las Vegas and Atlanta.

The NACS Show also is a business meeting. At the conclusion of the Show, Jeff Miller, president of Norfolk, Virginia-based Miller Oil Co. Inc., became the association’s 2010-11 chairman of the board, succeeding Jay Ricker. In this role, Miller also oversees the NACS Executive Committee. Also named to the NACS Executive Committee were the following NACS retail members:

* NACS Vice Chairman-Treasurer: Tom Robinson, president of Santa Clara, Calif.-based Robinson Oil Corp.;
* NACS Vice Chairman of NACSPAC: Dave Carpenter, president and CEO of Urbandale, Iowa-based J.D. Carpenter Companies Inc.;
* NACS Vice Chairman of Technology: Patrick Lewis, partner of Twin Falls, Idaho-based Oasis Stop ‘N Go Convenience Stores;
* NACS Vice Chairman of Government Relations: Brad Call, general counsel and executive vice president of human resources, public relations and adventure culture of North Salt Lake, Utah-based Maverik Inc.;
* NACS Vice Chairman of Member Services: Jack Kofdarali, president of Corona, Calif.-based J&R Oil Company;
* NACS Vice Chairman of Research: Fran Duskiewicz, senior executive vice president for Canastota, N.Y.-based Nice N Easy Grocery Shoppes Inc.; and
* NACS Vice Chairman of Convention: Steve Loehr, vice president of operations support for LaCrosse, Wis.-based Kwik Trip Inc.

NACS also named five new members to its Board of Directors:

* Rahim Budhwani, CEO of 6040 LLC (Hoover, Ala.);
* Wendy Chronister, CEO of Chronister Oil Co. (Springfield, Ill.);
* Frank Gleeson, retail director of Topaz Energy Group (Dublin, Ireland);
* Jeff Parker, president, Kwik Shop Inc. (Hutchinson, Kan.);
* Peter Tedeschi, president & CEO of Tedeschi Food Shops (Rockland, Mass.).

On the supplier side, Tom Joyce, vice president of customer industry affairs for The Hershey Company, was named 2010-11 chairman of the NACS Supplier Board. Scott Hill, vice president of convenience sales, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, was named chair-elect and will succeed Joyce as 2011-12 chairman.

There are 144,541 convenience stores in the U.S. – one per every 2,100 people. Cumulatively, their $511 billion in sales are similar to competing channels that are often thought of to be much greater, including restaurants ($580 billion), supermarkets ($556 billion) and drug stores ($218 billion, not including prescriptions). The U.S. convenience store industry alone serves nearly 160 million customers per day, and 58 billion customers every year.

The 2011 NACS Show will take place Oct. 1-4 in Chicago.

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