Parker's Adds Tobacco Veteran to Its 'Bench'

Retailer hires former Liggett, RJR exec Gancedo to manage chain's tobacco category

Mike Gancedo

Mike Gancedo

SAVANNAH, Ga. -- Convenience retailer Parker's, in another move designed to execute its growth strategy, has hired nationally recognized tobacco sales leader Mike A. Gancedo as a category manager for the chain.

Greg Parker, president and CEO of The Parker Cos., said in the October issue of CSP that he wants "to grow Parker's from a $500-million company to a multibillion-dollar company over the next decade. My goal isn't to achieve a specific number of stores by a particular date. Instead, I'm looking for a steady 20% return on investment for every dollar spent and am planning to operate the most profitable stores possible. I'm determined to move Parker's from the Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing private companies in America to the elite Inc. 500 list, underscoring our position as a national business leader."

To accomplish this goal, he said that the company's first step is to improve its "bench."

"I'm a firm believer that no company can succeed without having a strong team in place," he said. "That's why as we prepare for strategic growth over the next several years, we're hiring the industry's best … to expand our team. We offer great career opportunities for the right 'Type A' leaders who want to take their career to the next level."

Earlier this year, the company hired Jeff Bush as director of fuel services.

In his new position, Gancedo is responsible for the sale of tobacco products at all Parker's retail stores.

Gancedo brings 20 years of retail experience to his position at Parker's, including 13 years of Fortune 500 company management experience. Before joining Parker's, he served as the south chain sales manager for Liggett Vector Tobacco Co.

He also worked for R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. for 14 years, including serving as senior key account manager, senior division manager and division retail manager. He has earned national recognition for creating a new sales program which increased market share and has been honored by RJ R with the Division of the Year Award and the Breakthrough Accomplishment Award.

"We're delighted to welcome such an accomplished industry professional to our growing team at Parker's," said Parker. "Mike has keen insight into the tobacco industry and will help maximize our sales in this important category."

Savannah, Ga.-based Parker's currently operates 31 convenience stores in six counties throughout southeast Georgia and South Carolina and sells Parker's proprietary brand gasoline.