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WAYCROSS, Ga. -- Friendly Express is joining forces with global brand agency CBX to update the design and branding of its 42-store network of convenience stores in southeast Georgia.
According to CBX, its assignment is to update the chain’s logo and redesign the interiors and exteriors of Friendly Express' convenience stores, which range in size from 2,000 to 3,500 square feet. The stores, which offer gasoline, are located in several different southeast Georgia communities, including Waycross, Jesup, Folkston, Brunswick and St. Simons Island.
“Friendly Express, which has been in business for more than 25 years, is known for its strong commitment to the communities it serves,” said Joseph Bona, president of branded environments at New York-based CBX, which has extensive experience in the energy and convenience store channel. “In keeping with that commitment, the company’s management team is eager to exceed customer expectations by working with CBX to adopt next-generation approaches to the c-store experience.”
The strategic goals of the project include bolstering design and branding elements of important categories and areas of the store, particularly the coffee and overall foodservice experience, noted Bona.
This is in keeping with broader trends across the U.S. convenience store sector, in which higher-quality foodservice is one of the biggest growth areas, he added. “Nowadays, consumers expect more from convenience stores, in part because so many players out there — names like Wawa, RaceTrac, Sheetz and Thorntons — continually seek to innovate and push the boundaries,” he explained.
Friendly Express has already scored a hit with its loyal customers through its proprietary and locally produced DeDe’s doughnut brand. “There is an authenticity to DeDe’s and we might well incorporate elements of this story into the rebranding project,” Bona said. “Today’s c-stores really need to ‘own’ coffee and bakery and, among other improvements, we aim to help Friendly Express do precisely that.”
As befits its name, Friendly Express is known for its friendly customer service, as well as its strong commitment to local communities. From providing coats for children in need to supporting research to fight breast cancer, giving back is one of the retailer's top priorities.
“Friendly Express is excited to team up with such a reputable company as CBX,” said Danny Smith, CEO of Friendly Express. “After checking their references and meeting with them personally, we realized they have a passion for what they do and a willingness to do whatever it takes to deliver on their service. They understand our business, our financial challenges and our desire to evolve without reinventing ourselves. Most importantly, they listen and they always, always ask questions to better understand what we want to be when we grow up.”
Friendly Express traces its origins to Lewis Oil Co. (now Lewis and Raulerson Inc.).
CBX specializes in corporate identity, consumer branding and retail. The company's client base includes Wawa, BP, Aloha Petroleum and PetroChina. In addition to its New York City headquarters, CBX has an office in Minneapolis and operates offices around the globe through the CBX Worldwide Partnership.