MACS's New HQ Lives Up to Its Name

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MACS's New HQ Lives Up to Its Name

By Melissa Kress, Convenience Store News - 03/29/2011

RICHMOND, Va. -- Quality not quantity counts when it comes to Mid-Atlantic Convenience Stores (MACS) as it prepares to cut the ribbon on its new headquarters in the Boulder office park here. The MACS Business Support Center consolidates the company's previous four offices.

The $1-billion company, which is the largest fuel distributor for Exxon Mobil, moved 70 employees into the new building right before Christmas but tonight marks the official ribbon cutting ceremony, Jim Summers, president and COO of MACS, told CSNews Online this morning. The grand opening festivities will include local dignitaries, like Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones, who will speak about what MACS brings, economically, to the community; and Art Warren, a member of the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors. MACS leaders will also present a check to its chosen charity, the Children's Miracle Network. And, maybe most notably, the company will dedicate its training center to Linda Uphoff, who founded Uppy's Convenience Stores with her husband Steven. MACS acquired Uppy's in June 2010.

"Linda left a great legacy with the company," Summers explained. "She helped bring the company to a different level."

But behind all the ceremony is a new headquarters that is geared to supporting every member of MACS's 800-employee team. "Our jobs are to support everyone out there in the field interacting with the customers every day," he said. "We simplify things for the people in the field and everybody gets that."

The new business support center features test kitchens where MACS employees test everything from new roller grills to tea programs to pizza. It also features a computer lab where employees test new items to make sure they work properly before they send them out to the company's 300-plus stores in Virginia and Maryland, Summers added. In addition it boasts a relaxation room for employees and walking trails behind the facility.

"We built it as a great place to work, a fun place to work," he said, adding that employees even get to sample the new test products.

"A number of us put our heads together and realized we couldn't build the Taj Mahal but asked what we could build that would be a comfortable place to work," Summers explained. And after seven weeks of renovating the four-story office building, which included demolishing walls and removing ceilings and carpets and building out new, MACS had its dream headquarters, he added.

"I told everyone that I didn't want to hear that we couldn't get it done but I want to hear how we could get it done in seven weeks time," Summers explained. "And everyone did a great job. The place is beautiful and we did it frugally."