When Jacksons Food Stores Inc. announced in September 2017 its partnership with Chevron USA Inc. to rebrand 60 company-owned stores as ExtraMile convenience stores, it raised industry eyebrows over its “win-win” audacity and sparked speculation about similar deals.
“We are looking forward to combining the entrepreneurial spirit of the franchisees with the ExtraMile brand and the capabilities of Jacksons,” President and CEO John Jackson said when the companies announced the deal. With Jacksons, Chevron extends its ExtraMile brand with the expertise of a proven operator already flying the Chevron flag. Jacksons sites that offer the Shell brand will retain the Jacksons Food Stores name.
Jackson knows all about the entrepreneurial spirit. Now 62, he followed in his father’s footsteps and began running his first service station in Caldwell, Idaho, in 1975, he told the Idaho Statesman. It was a Texaco station soon to be displaced by the construction of Interstate 84. He took a semester off from his junior year at Boise State University, where he was studying accounting, to run the station for the final six months of the owner’s lease.
The construction was delayed five more years, and he never went back to school.
Jackson bought several more stations, which blossomed into Jacksons Food Stores. As the company grew, he added Jackson Energy, a wholesale and transportation company delivering fuel to more than 800 branded retail locations in nine western states; Capitol Distributing, a grocery wholesaler that delivers merchandise to more than 650 c-stores in six western states; and Jackson Jet Center, which offers charter-aircraft fuel, maintenance, sales and planning services.
And it’s all in the family. Jackson’s wife, Bonnie, is chief information officer for the four companies. Son Cory is Jacksons Food Stores president and oversees Capitol Distribution. Son Jeff is president of Jackson Jet Center.
With that entrepreneurial momentum, and if the Jacksons-Chevron partnership is the bellwether many in the industry believe, expect other deals like it to follow—and always expect more action from Jackson.
6 months—How long John Jackson thought he would operate a gas station before it was displaced by the interstate and he would go back to college. Spoiler alert: He never went back.