Predictions of fuel demand's demise have been rampant for years, but the COVID-19 pandemic simulated what that scenario might look like. Retailers need to reflect and consider whether their business was prepared to thrive in this environment. Next time, it's unlikely they'll be thrown the life preserver of stock-up behavior and high fuel margins. Let's discuss the challenging headwinds—and potential ways that retailers might thrive in the coming decades.
About the Speakers
Frank Beard is a Des Moines, Iowa-based analyst, consultant, and speaker who focuses on the fuel and convenience retailing industry. Beard’s analyses have been featured in NPR, the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Grocery Dive, and more. He is also the co-host of the In-Convenience Podcast and enjoys visiting exceptional retailers both across the United States and internationally. Follow Beard on LinkedIn, Twitter, or at inconveniencepodcast.com.
Gray literally grew up in the convenience store industry with the opening of the family’s first convenience store in 1963. Involved in the family business, comprised of 87 stores, he gained experience in all phases of convenience store and chain retail operations.
Gray has been involved on a variety of projects, including heading global product management for three of the world’s largest retail petroleum equipment and systems suppliers and Vice President of Research & Technology for the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS). Gray managed product portfolios that included payment platforms for EMV migration markets from Malaysia to Canada, as well as mobile/RFID payments initiatives. Gray also established NACS’ card payments program which saved the industry $60M in its first year of operations, and currently serves over 1,500 stores, doing 100m transactions annually.