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LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Dean Dirks, a foodservice columnist for Convenience Store News, joined b2b Solutions as a consulting partner. The Chicago-based consultancy specializes in working with retailers and suppliers in the convenience store and petroleum marketing industry.
"Dean has a long and very successful history in the industry as a retailer and supplier. b2b Solutions is extremely proud to be able make his extensive foodservice expertise available to our retailer clients," Steve Montgomery, president of b2b Solutions, said in a statement.
Dirks has had a long career in foodservice and c-stores that began in his father's grocery stores when he was just eight years old. He worked his way through college at Safeway. After graduating from Washington State University in 1983, Dirks accepted a position in retail foodservice with Marriott. In this role, he supervised branded concepts including Starbucks, Dominoes Pizza, Godfather's and Little Caesars as well as proprietary foodservice.
In 1996, he joined West Star as vice president of operations. His responsibilities included supervising 30 Shell-branded convenience stores and 20 restaurants including Subway, Taco Bell, A&W, Winchell's Donuts, Seattle Best Coffee and a number of proprietary foodservice concepts. After West Star was sold, Dirks accepted a position with Balmar Petroleum as its senior category manager, overseeing all categories including foodservice.
In 2006, Dirks formed Dirks & Associates, focusing on convenience store foodservice.
b2b Solutions works with retailers in the areas of business planning; consolidation/merger and acquisition advice; operations analysis and improvement; marketing plans/tactics; foodservice; human resources; training; technology integration and gasoline marketing.