Schaumburg, IL 60194
Results driven leader with record of developing new businesses and delivering results in retail merchandising, procurement and store operations among industry giants. Key strengths in growing profitable sales, building partnerships with top CPG companies and negotiating impactful and creative agreements with key suppliers. Focused, pragmatic and tireless in efforts to build exciting consumer venues, effective vendor partnerships and realizing profitable growth.
• Competitive Analysis • Process Improvement • Business Performance Analysis
• Negotiation • Program Development • Marketing Strategies
• Supplier Relationship • Business Launch • Partner & Alliance Development
TOPCO ASSOCIATES, LLC, Skokie, IL 2006 – 2012
Topco is a co-operative owned by 53 grocery retailers, who, when combined, are the 3rd largest grocery retailer in the U.S.
Business Development Manager
Led program development, managed and engaged in high-level negotiations with Topco National Brands, the national brand division of Topco Associates, LLC. Represented this combined entity and negotiated with top suppliers to maximize the scale of the group and created the most profitable result for all. Responsible for selling the programming into the retailers (Meijer, Hy-Vee, Giant Eagle, Stater Bros, etc) at high levels to insure maximum results.
• Managed program volume of $300MM annually from suppliers such as ConAgra Foods, Mars Chocolate, Nestle USA, H.J. Heinz and Kimberly-Clark. This represented over 75% of the total volume of Topco National Brands.
• Member retailers received incremental profits of $6.6MM from managed programming in 2011.
• Created “speed-to-shelf” program that resulted in $1.4MM in profits in 2011, the most profitable single initiative in the company.
• Used IRI data and category trends to identify 8 categories where the member retailers could reduce SKU counts, create supply chain efficiencies and increase profitability. Result was $750K in profits in 2011.
SEARS HOLDINGS CORPORATION, Hoffman Estates, IL 2004 – 2006
Merchant / Buyer, Sears Grand and Sears Essentials
Pioneered Sears’ off-mall retail strategy and responsible for 58 new format locations nationally. Ensured scalable growth, increased sales and inventory turns through effective merchandising programs, advertising strategy, business analytics and vendor negotiations.
• Managed $170MM in sales annually.
• Responsible for 18,000 SKUs in Food, Consumables, Health & Beauty and Cosmetics.
• Led development of process to integrate new SKUs into existing systems.
GARY VANICEK PAGE TWO
SEARS HOLDINGS CORPORATION (Continued)
• Successfully launched 52 new locations in 1 year.
• The format succeeded by leveraging high turn consumables to create repeat customer traffic and driving overall store sales, leading to interest from Kmart, who purchased Sears in July 2005.
KMART CORPORATION, Troy, MI 1995 – 2004
Regional Grocery Buyer, SuperCenters and Big K Stores
Developed strategies for regional DSD promotional buying, pricing and item management. Managed collection of all vendor allowance monies. Responsible for the Midwest region with 233 Big K locations and 16 Kmart SuperCenters.
• Gross margin accountability for $362MM business unit and profits were $5.3MM in 2004.
• Led introduction of key suppliers such as Hinckley Springs Water and Voortman Cookies into the Chicago area stores. Sales were $2MM per year.
• Actively sought partnerships with suppliers such as Dr. Pepper / Snapple, Snyder’s of Hanover and Crystal Farms Dairy to provide consumers with alternatives to larger brands and provide stores with increased profitability. Sales for these vendors annually were $19MM.
• Previously, as Regional Merchandise Planner, developed and implemented category planograms, controlled SKU mix via rationalization, new and discontinued item procedures and managed store resets.
• Demonstrated store operational excellence and first-hand knowledge of what consumers look for as a store manager.
WAL-MART STORES, LTD, Bentonville, AR 1992 – 1995
Assistant SuperCenter Manager, Gainesville, GA
Managed all aspects of this $60MM location with specific accountability for the $19MM Food Center.
• Responsible for market performance, total operational control and promotional execution.
• Contributed to several district initiatives that produced top results for my location year over year. This included:
o Controlling payroll to less than 4% of sales,
o Reducing shrink to less than 1%
o Increasing base sales versus promotional sales.
NASH FINCH COMPANY, Minneapolis, MN 1987 – 1992
Store Manager, Greeley, CO
Recruited from college by this Fortune 500 retail / wholesale company, successfully completed management training program and became Store Manager of an $11MM location.
BA, Economics, University of Nebraska - Lincoln