Atlas Oil Opens New Chapter for Fiene

Former Open Pantry COO joins Mich.-based fuel supply, distribution company as retail EVP

Jennifer Bulat, Group Director of Editorial Production, CSP

Jim Fiene

TAYLOR, Mich. -- Making the trek from one side of Lake Michigan to the other, James Fiene is moving from COO of convenience store retailer Open Pantry Food Marts of Wisconsin Inc., Pleasant Prairie, Wis., to executive vice president of retail operations for fuel supply and distribution company Atlas Oil Co., Taylor, Mich., CSP Daily News has learned.

Open Pantry sold 19 of its 27 stores to Dallas-based 7-Eleven Inc. in late June. President and CEO Robert Buhler said Open Pantry will continue to operate the remaining eight stores (see Related Content below for previous coverage.)

At Atlas, Fiene will report to CEO Sam Simon and also join the company's senior leadership team.

"Jim is a strong addition to our leadership team at Atlas," said Simon. "He brings more than 30 years of experience and success in the retail sector where he learned from the ground up. His leadership and skills will be instrumental to our company's retail growth."

As first reported in a Raymond James/CSP Daily News Flash on Wednesday, in his new role, Fiene will be responsible for retail sales and operations for nearly 400 sites in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Ohio.

"I am truly excited about this new opportunity to help Atlas Oil grow its retail business," said Fiene. "My passion for this industry is driven by a need to reinvent our industry offerings, and most importantly, serve our customers by developing our store team members every day."

He added for CSP Daily News, "As we focus on the growth of our supplier partners, this opportunity will enhance our offerings through building partnerships with industry leaders."

Fiene started at Open Pantry in 2003. During his time there, he transformed the chain from a convenience store to an upscale convenience market by recognizing the growing consumer desire for quality food and offerings.

Fiene began his career in the c-store industry at SuperAmerica in 1981 as a store associate. After four years at SuperAmerica, he joined Thornton Oil Co. in Louisville, Ky., as a regional manager. There he provided leadership for more than 17 years, working his way through the company, finally serving as vice president of retail sales.

During his tenure at Thornton, he was part of the team that doubled the size of the organization from 80 to more than 160 stores and $1 billion in sales through a strategy of organic and acquisition growth.

Fiene serves on many industry boards and is a member of multiple associations including NACS Show Committee and the retail advisory boards of Kraft Foods, Mars Foods and U.S. Tobacco.

Fiene and his family currently reside in Milwaukee, but will relocate to Michigan, he said.

Atlas also recently named Daniel Ravid as its chief administrative officer and vice president of finance. Ravid "brings considerable experience to us, not only with traditional financial functions but also strategically with his background in M&A and financial advisory services. His skills will be instrumental to our company's growth," said Kirk Haggarty, executive vice president and CFO at Atlas.

Ravid will be responsible for leadership and management of the accounting, credit, collections, finance and treasury functions. He will also assume leadership of the Atlas Resource Center in Taylor.

Ravid came to Atlas in March 2012 in an interim role and has 22 years of experience in business management and financial consulting. Previously, Ravid held the position of managing director of corporate finance at FTI Consulting. He also held positions at PricewaterhouseCoopers and other consulting firms where he performed financial, M&A, restructuring and strategic advisory services. Also, Ravid held the position of vice president and general manager of RRI, a national consumer products manufacturer and distributor that was a vendor to all major retailer chains in the United States. Ravid played an integral role in the financing, launching and long-term branding of several national product lines.

Atlas is a national fuel supply and distribution company. With 24/7/365 operations, the company meets the fuel and service needs of businesses, municipalities and government agencies in 19 states. Atlas also supplies fuel to nearly 400 gasoline c-stores throughout Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio. Based in Michigan, Atlas maintains operational centers in Taylor and Niles, Mich.; Hammond, Ind.; Houston; and Toledo, Ohio, and satellite offices in Minneapolis; Scottsdale, Ariz.; La Feria and Odessa, Texas; and Albuquerque, N.M.

By Jennifer Bulat, Group Director of Editorial Production, CSP
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