The World's Unsexiest Business
adding a little sizzle to the convenience store industry
As I'm sitting in a DTLA Starbucks on a rainy Friday morning, I happen to overhear (by the way, it's not considered eavesdropping when everyone can hear it!) in an all too Hollywood fashion and bursting bright techni-color-ful detail a rather boisterous legalese speaking and c-suite budding 'bro' on an epic conference call with his "strategic execution team" spelling out the very details of a market disrupting plan. The lack of discretion of such a plan might lead you to think it's all just a bunch of bro-grammers trying to sell their latest hare-brained idea to a deep pocketed retailer. But when "Jelinek's onboard in a way you cannot even imagine" gets peppered in every couple of minutes, that very braggadocio might lead you to strongly think otherwise. If you didn't know or care to realize, Craig Jelinek is the current CEO of the behemoth retailer Costco who has given somewhat 'carte blanche' status to his retail gas business development strategists to build that business at any cost.
Now what happened to be uttered oh so vociferously in such a public display of corporate non-discretion and brogrammer bravado were the following:
1. "serious game changer"
2. "shop while your car gets filled up"
3. "blockchain nah scrap that QR code type of validation valet ticket type of system"
4. "those small time dirty gas stations don't know what's coming their way"
Such a rollout is slated for an undisclosed (at least to my semi-prying ears) Northern California Costco in close proximity to a technology startup that is working with the disrupting retailer to launch the initiative.
Top-tier gas fuel retailers and marketers beware! Looks like preparations might be in order for a rough year ahead. Margin erosion might be just the beginning.