PROFILE

Steve Montgomery

President, b2b Solutions, LLC

Steve is president of b2b Solutions, a consultancy that specializes in working with retailers and suppliers in the convenience retail/petroleum marketing industry. He has over 30 years of experience in top management positions in both entrepreneurial and large corporate business environments within the convenience retail/petroleum marketing industry.

After beginning his career as one of its franchisees, Steve served as President and Member of the Board of Directors for Dairy Mart Corporation. He then held the positions of General Manager for C-Stores and Manager of Convenience Retail Strategies and Programs for Amoco Oil Company.

He led Amoco’s efforts to develop and roll out their state of the art Split Second concept and to consolidate their various direct retail operations into a single entity. While at Amoco, he was also a member of its Retail Systems Steering and Facility Design Coordination Committees.

Steve has been actively involved with the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) since 1976. He is the only person to have been elected to its Retailer Board and Supplier Board of Directors.

He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Agricultural and Food Economics from the University of Massachusetts, and a MBA in Marketing from W. New England University. He currently serves as member of its International Business Advisory Board.

Steve is a frequent contributor to articles on the convenience retail/petroleum marketing industry and is a frequent speaker at industry functions. He has worked with NACS as a Program Director and Program Moderator on topics ranging Foodservice to the Non-Traditional Competitors.

b2b Solutions retail clients have ranged from single store operators to large multinational firms. These include such companies as Chevron USA Products Company, Crescent Oil Company, Exxon Company, USA, LG-Caltex, Lekkerland (Switzerland) Ltd., Mobil Oil Corporation, Murphy Oil USA, NACS, Pride Convenience, Inc., and Shell Canada Products Limited. Supplier clients include Coca-Cola USA, Food Concepts, Inc., Harmonic Systems, Inc., Kraft Foods, MGC Communication, Inc., and Westec Interactive.

Other Links from Steve Montgomery:

b2b Solutions, LLC Web Site

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  • Posted on: 08/06/2020

    As tech workers go remote, Facebook leases huge NYC offices

    There is a lot of talk about the two work environment options being WFH or working in an office. The third is likely to be what we will see occur for many companies. That is the blended option. Some will WFH full-time and others part of the time and some may be in the office every day. The option selected will be based on several factors, including what role the person has in the company and what they need to perform it.
  • Posted on: 08/05/2020

    Can influencers make stores feel safer?

    I agree. Pictures of real people in a store would be a far more powerful message for those of us who are not influenced by influencers.
  • Posted on: 07/30/2020

    What didn’t Jeff Bezos know and when didn’t he know it?

    Perhaps not knowing is purposeful. Not knowing prevents you from having to say "yes we do that. It's part of our growth strategy."
  • Posted on: 07/29/2020

    Will Amazon become the go-to place to buy face masks?

    Yes to both. It does something that the current U.S. site does not. It starts with a way to search by type and pack size rather that having to sort through a list of alternatives. By developing their own private label brand they have control over the product and customers have some assurance of the masks' quality.
  • Posted on: 07/29/2020

    Retailers hunt for spare change

    Georganne is right. Retailers, especially those like c-stores or QSRs who have items with single digit price points, could quickly develop several offers to solicit coins. Free fountain drinks, cups of coffee, sandwiches, etc. The issue comes when the retailer’s offer requires rolled coins because that requires having coin rolls to use. I understand why they do because should a customer come in with $20 in loose coins it takes time to count them which can impact speed of service for all the other customers. The issue becomes a lot easier when banks reopen those closed branches and customers get coin rolls or, better yet, come in with the jars of loose coins and the bank coin counter can be used to convert coins to bills.
  • Posted on: 07/24/2020

    Retail shrink rose to all-time high in 2019

    I agree. No technology is going to prevent ORC gangs or the flash mobs who loot a store and know they will not be prosecuted because they committed a misdemeanor.
  • Posted on: 07/24/2020

    Should online marketplaces be required to verify third-party sellers for safety’s sake?

    Online marketplaces deal with a tremendous number of third-party sellers which makes the verification process difficult. However, that does not negate their responsibility to do so. If you ask someone who bought an item from a third-party on Amazon where they got it, the answer will be Amazon. Consumers expect the marketplaces to ensure that what they buy is safe and is what it claims to be. To do less is to not fulfill their obligations to their customers.
  • Posted on: 07/23/2020

    Best Buy connects strong sales to frontline worker performance

    Companies can see their employees as an asset or as an expense. One of the changes that COVID-19 as brought about is more companies realize that their employees should be considered and assets worth investing in. Best Buy’s actions show that it realized its employees were an asset, including the oft forgotten frontline staff. This will place them in a stronger competitive position going forward.
  • Posted on: 07/22/2020

    Will Walmart, Target, Kroger and other chains fix America’s plastic bag problem?

    Retailers helped to create the plastic bag problem and it's great to see they working to resolve it. We are fortunate to live in an area where there are retailers who will accept plastic bags for recycling. The issue is getting customers to be willing to bring them back to the store. People prefer plastic primarily for one reason: the bags have handles making them easy to carry. Retailers like them because the are inexpensive to buy. Today, several of the stores we shop have paper bags with handles. I expect they are more expensive to buy, but they do address the plastic bag issue.
  • Posted on: 07/21/2020

    Will wholesaling change L.L.Bean for the better?

    I agree. L.L.Bean's strategy to adjust the SKUs to the type of store they are partnering with provides the host retailers with items their customers want and limits any dilution of their brand.
  • Posted on: 07/21/2020

    Can Trader Joe’s shake off its racist branding tag?

    The short answer is no. Customers are exceedingly loyal to the Trader Joe's brand and will continue to be so. Assuming the “we are already on it” statement is accurate, it shows that they had already become aware of the issue and were addressing it before the petition.
  • Posted on: 07/20/2020

    How will digital transform trade shows?

    No. Trade shows are about two things: visiting the booths -- seeing, touching, and talking about the products being displayed -- and networking. Neither can truly be done via a virtual trade show.
  • Posted on: 07/17/2020

    Should workers accept pay cuts in exchange for working remotely?

    What is the economic justification for a company to lower a worker’s wages because they happen to live in a less expensive area than a coworker? To me that is not justifiable. What’s next, lowering the wages of an employee who lives in an expensive area because they share an apartment with a roommate?
  • Posted on: 07/13/2020

    Starbucks becomes latest retailer to make masks mandatory

    The place to inform customers regarding your mask policy is before they enter the store. Retailers should post easily readable and highly visible signage that states wearing a mask is required to enter the store. I am sure there is far better wording but I see this as the same type of communication as "no shirt, no shoes, no service." While I doubt many will take the added step of putting this requirement in their ads they could state that they are following state rules (where it is applicable) in their ads and on their apps. I agree with Mark that over time this will become far less of an issue.
  • Posted on: 07/10/2020

    Can a socially distanced event launch a sneakerhead hub?

    The opening of SNIPES's flagship brick-and-mortar store will generate a lot of attention. Since the pandemic began there have been very few new brick-and-mortar retail locations opening up, and opening a flagship location in NYC is sure to generate more brand awareness. Had this happened six months ago the concept of streaming star appearances and social distancing would have seemed odd but it will be just the norm today.

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