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b2b Solutions Recent Projects

Coffee Program Development:

b2b Solutions works with chains to assist in the development of their fresh coffee offer. Projects typically include the integration of coffee presentation into new store design, equipment layout and planogram recommendations. The scope can also include coffee specifications, menu and supplier recommendations. The AM Daypart has historically been a strong meal occasion for the industry and b2b Solutions believes that “If you own the Morning, you own the Day”. C-stores’ recent growth in the coffee category brings it to over a 20% share of the restaurant coffee industry. Due to the size of the prize for independent retailers, it is imperative to optimize your customers’ coffee experience.

In a recent project, b2b Solutions recommended the following actions to reinvent a six store chain’s Hot Beverage business.

Our review of the coffee category helps ensure a customer experience that exceeds their expectation with: Product and positioning that fits, the right supplier, best practice brewing methods, and a presentation that grows your business.

Provide Upside Potential and Downside Risk Assessment:

b2b Solutions works with Private Equity funds to provide operational due diligence regarding potential investment/acquisitions of convenience retail / petroleum marketing companies. We analyze historic results on a store by store basis and corporate level to determine if there are variations that require further analysis. This includes an analysis of trends and benchmarking that data against industry standards. Based on this analysis we develop a questionnaire to complete with current management to ensure our client is presented with the best information available.

Our process also includes visiting all or a representative sample of the locations (depending on the number on units involved). During these store inspections we benchmark current operational and marketing against industry best practices. Locations are graded on a number of criteria. Photos are taken to document our findings. 

In addition, provide clients a review of the organizational strengths and weaknesses. This can include structural and/or personnel. Areas covered can be current information systems, reporting formats, and scalability.    

Clients are provided an in-depth report including our analysis, on site findings, and recommended next steps.

Operational Due Diligence – Leading to Investment
Private equity firm was looking to invest in a chain seeking funds allowing it to grow utilizing its unique positioning. The investment would not necessarily include changes in current management. b2b Solutions:

Operational Due Diligence – Leading to Purchase
Private equity fund was investigating purchasing a company that included a jobbership and number of company sites and dealers sites.  This was the first of a planned series of acquisitions that met their investment criteria.  Post-acquisition the company would install its own leadership team with selected members of the existing staff being retained. b2b Solutions:

Operational Assessments:

b2b Solutions Operational Assessment process is customized to meet the needs of each client. It consists of three phases.  Phase One is an off-site analysis of the client’s data. This begins with an analysis of their P&L and can include a very complete data set depending on the size of the company and the availability of the information available. Phase Two involves meeting on-site with members of the management team, touring their sites, and potentially that of their competitors. Phase Three is the development of a report of our findings and action steps we recommend. The level of detailed involved varies with the client’s needs.

Economic Development Department
b2b Solutions worked with a city’s Economic Development department to provide information to the city and selected c-stores within its borders on how to improve their appearance and performance. The city selected four locations to participate in the project.  Each was individually owned and operated. b2b Solutions:

Small Chain
b2b Solutions conducted an Operational Assessment for a small chain who was faced with a new well known best in class competitor who had recently opened across the street from one of its larger locations. This included a future remodel. The chains other locations were widely dispersed and varied significantly in volume. b2b Solutions:

Single Site
b2b Solutions was contacted by a single site operator who had relocated from a small neighborhood location to a new large c-store on a local commuter route. Unfortunately while the move resulted in increased volume the bottom line was not meeting expectations. The owner engaged b2b Solutions to conduct an Operational Assessment of the new location and its operation. b2b Solutions:

Truck Stops
b2b Solutions was originally contacted by an operator of multiple truckstops regarding an Operational Assessment. He then decided to utilize the services of a local consultant. However, six months later he engaged b2b Solutions because the locations were still unprofitable. b2b Solutions: