3925 Fortune Blvd.
P.O. Box 5947
Saginaw, Michigan 48603
Garb-Ko, Inc. was the first 7-Eleven domestic licensee. Founded by Devere Kostoff and Ike Garber, the company was incorporated in 1969 and opened its first store on July 11 (7-Eleven Day!), 1970 in Saginaw, Mich.
Garb-Ko has corporate and franchise operations in parts of Michigan, Indiana and Ohio.
Garb-Ko’s corporate office, training center and training store are located in Saginaw, Mich.
The company operates a total of 107 stores: 90 in Michigan, 9 in Indiana and 8 in Ohio. Gasoline is available at 33 of these sites. Currently, the company has 500 employees, including 75 at the corporate office.
Careers with Garb-Ko, Inc.
Garb-Ko, Inc. has employment opportunities in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio. Positions include product manager, field representative, store manager and sales associate. A full-time Garb-Ko employee is entitled to health, dental, vision and life insurance, a profit sharing 401(k) plan, paid vacation and tuition reimbursement. Sales associates’ benefits may not include all of the above.
The product manager manages assigned product categories that contribute to the overall Garb-Ko marketing sales and profit plan while maintaining the highest quality and consistency of products and services. A thorough understanding of 7-Eleven store operations is necessary, along with an ability to negotiate product costs, discount agreements and service agreements with national vendors. A degree in business management or marketing and/or equivalent on-the-job retail experience is required.
The Garb-Ko field representative advises and counsels 7-Eleven franchisees in the profitable operation of their franchise, or the field representative may assume total responsibility for an assigned group of corporate stores. With either assignment, the field representative works to ensure that the stores meet the company’s high standards of business operations.
The field representative makes several visits to each store during the week, is responsible for reviewing store operating conditions and making recommendations for the maximization of sales and profits. Field representatives must be able to use approved personal computer software programs and maintain an acceptable driving record and liability limits on automobile insurance as determined by Garb-Ko. A degree in business management and/or equivalent retail experience, including a minimum of two years in management and two years as a retail clerk, are required, as well as excellent communications and coaching skills and the ability to analyze financial data.
The Garb-Ko store manager is creative, customer-focused and responsible for the operation, expenses, organization, appearance, customer service and sales and profits of his or her 7-Eleven stores. A store manager also is responsible for recruiting employees and developing a competent store team. To be a successful manager, applicants must have excellent communications and math skills and be able to run a fast, friendly and efficient retail operation. In addition, they must be certified through special training programs required by the company.
The Garb-Ko sales associate ensures consistent, 24-hour, fast, friendly professional service to 7-Eleven customers while maintaining a clean, attractive store environment. Sales associates also are responsible for controlling the store’s cash and inventory, plus-selling, maintaining in-store displays and promoting incentive programs. Good math skills are required, and the sales associate must be certified through the required Garb-Ko training. Because 7-Eleven is an extended hour operation, sales associates must be willing to work the store shifts scheduled by the store manager.
Franchising Opportunities with Garb-Ko, Inc.
Garb-Ko, Inc. grants franchises for the operation of 7-Eleven stores in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana. The initial franchise fee varies from $5,000 to $60,000, based on merchandise sales per location.
Garb-Ko stores are extended-hour retail convenience stores that provide groceries, take-out foods, beverages, dairy products, non-food merchandise, specialty items and incidental services. In some locations, gasoline is available. Garb-Ko stores are generally open every day of the year, and the vast majority are open 24 hours a day. Stores range from 2,400 to 3,200 square feet in size and carry 2,500 to 3,000 items.
Each franchisee is licensed to use the 7-Eleven trademark and business system and leases the necessary building and equipment from Garb-Ko. The company also establishes and maintains bookkeeping records for each operation and provides franchisees with counseling, merchandising assistance and advertising support. Franchisees of Garb-Ko 7-Eleven stores operate their own business, control their own inventory and hire and supervise their own employees.
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