2022 Category Captain Leadership Award for Comprehensive Multi-Category Management: Core-Mark & Eby-Brown

The firm's Center of Excellence curates an environment for out-of-the-box thinking.
Core-Mark & Eby-Brown

The Leadership Award for Comprehensive Multi-Category Management is a brand-new award in the Category Captains program. The team at Core-Mark/Eby-Brown put together an extremely compelling entry illustrating how the wholesale distribution firm is a true retailer partner concerned with growing sales across many different product categories.

In today's complex retail environment, c-store operators need every advantage — information specific to their stores, strategies that addresses their challenges, and a keen understanding of their priorities. A customized visit to the firm's Center of Excellence provides a day immersed in these advantages.

Available to all retail customers, from independent stores to large chains, this proactive approach to driving store sales uncovers what a retailer needs beyond the basics of distribution. The entire visit is rich in relevant data and affords access to experts in every facet of the convenience business, delivering research, strategy, innovation and, most importantly, solutions. 

The 14,000-square-foot Center of Excellence is designed with "hubs" of activity. A visit might include a stop at each hub to garner valuable information across the enterprise, each one specific to the customer. Those with a more defined goal might delve deeper into just one or two hubs. This flexibility allows the Center to create a fully customized customer experience.

The hubs include: 

  • The Collaboration Hub, where customers hear directly from company leadership on consumer trends, data and more.
  • The Core Solutions Hub, where retailers consult with experts in all facets of marketing and get overviews of Core-Mark's tools.
  • The Food Forward Thinking Hub, where retailers can address the growing demand for fresh and prepared foods and utilize the Center's test kitchen for discussions with foodservice team members. 
  • The Store Innovation Hub, where retailers step inside the store of tomorrow and discover all the c-store could be, with trending products and cutting-edge technology — like SKIP, Core-Mark's contactless mobile checkout system — giving store owners a tactile experience of how such advances could impact their operation.
  • The Data & Insights Hub, where customers can acquire an unbiased assessment of product performance. Totally data-driven and without emotional ties or sponsor influence, products are ranked via Blue Yonder's Assortment Optimization Function, pointing the way to what's working best and what's selling most. 

At its Center of Excellence, the firm curates an environment for out-of-the-box thinking with no barriers to aspirational ideas or future dreams. Instead, it urges conversation and supports those discussions with hard data, strategic insights and expert advice.

Customers who visited the Center reported their same-store non-cigarette sales grew 5 percent higher than Core-Mark customers overall. They also had nearly twice the sales dollars per store compared with the overall Core-Mark base.

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