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Parkland USA Secures Training Pact for C-store Network

Retail employees will be able to access the online trainingGrid learning management system.

CALGARY, Alberta — Parkland USA is enhancing its employee training process, better preparing them to for a successful career with the company, which is in a long-term growth phase.

The company partnered with Ready Training Inc. (RTO), a full-service provider of online training solutions, to provide training content services to Parkland's retail locations throughout the United States.

"We're committed to our employees' success and believe that proper training is essential to both their growth and our company's success," said Jeff Bush, vice president of business development at Parkland USA. "Offering training developed specifically for both newly created and existing roles demonstrates our investment in the career development of employees at every level, providing more opportunities for them to advance and establish long and successful careers in the convenience store industry."

The training will be delivered online through RTO's trainingGrid learning management system.

"Using RTO's career development learning paths known as Gears to Your Career, Parkland is now able to provide their employees with a clear avenue to growth and development within the company," added Jeff Kahler, president and CEO at RTO.

This increased focus on training should pay off as Parkland USA pursues an expansion strategy. The company plans to double its store count in the future without having to enter new markets, Parkland USA President Doug Haugh said earlier this year.

Parkland USA sees significant industry consolidation on the horizon in the 11 states in which it operates: Idaho, Montana, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico and Florida.

"We are a consolidator. We have been very successful at consolidating the convenience and fuel marketing space," said Bob Espey, president and CEO of parent company Parkland Corp., as Convenience Store News reported. "We're not a pure-play convenience company. We're not a pure-play fuel company. But those opportunities allow us to buy good assets at good value and grow them.

For example, Parkland USA entered into an agreement to acquire substantially all of the assets of Lynch Oil and its affiliates in November. Lynch Oil's operations are concentrated in southern and central Idaho, and include five large-format convenience stores and forecourts, two travel centers, two standalone car washes, and a rail storage terminal. This acquisition also will add annual fuel sales of more than 180 million liters.

"What drives the difference in valuations is that if you're a pure-play retail consolidator and you want to add scale and you've already got thousands of stores, you won't find many chains that also have thousands of stores. Instead, we're going to leverage stores like Lynch Oil with five large-format c-stores and two travel centers," Haugh explained.

The company is also positioned to build up its scale in Florida with the acquisition of Urbieta Oil Co., which includes the purchase of 94 locations, 54 of which are "strategic sites." These locations are situated in two counties that are close to one another.

Parkland USA is a subsidiary of Canada-based Parkland Corp., a leading global operator and consolidator of convenience retail and fuel marketing businesses. Parkland currently services customers across Canada, the United States, the Caribbean region, and the Americas through three channels: retail, commercial and wholesale.

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