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7-Eleven CEO Predicts Decline in Oil Prices

FORT WORTH, Texas -- James Keyes, CEO of Dallas-based 7-Eleven, tackled the recurring issue of inflated gas prices at Texas Christian University on Thursday, prefacing a talk on entrepreneurship to address an issue of concern to his customers and other motorists nationwide, reported the Fort Worth-based Star-Telegram.

"Of course, the economy is disrupted right now, and, of course, a commodity like oil is going to respond to that," Keyes said, noting that terrorism fears and political uncertainty have kept prices high. The cyclical nature of commodities will continue, he said, and oil and gas prices will eventually drop.

Keyes spoke on entrepreneurship at a breakfast sponsored by TCU's Neeley School of Business. Even his multibillion-dollar company must be a nimble competitor, he said.

The convenience store chain has developed new products, such as a house brand beer in stores a day after bottling. In Austin, the company is testing a new lineup of "performance foods" for on-the-go consumers who want a quick, healthy meal. The company now carries prepaid cell phones, and it recently got the rights to exclusively sell Jessica Simpson's new CD for 60 days before the album is distributed to music stores, he said.

"Even though we're a big company ... we see ourselves as entrepreneurs again," Keyes told an audience of 285 people.
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