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What You Missed in the Biz Brief This Week: May 14, 2014

Posted in: Industry Trends & News

In today’s information-overloaded business world, we often find ourselves deluged with literally hundreds of news items from dozens of sources. While it is likely impossible to read every article and remain productive, by not doing so we risk missing the one article that could change a key business practice or thought process. And that is where the NATSO Foundation’s newest publication, Biz Brief, provides assistance! The NATSO Foundation's Biz Brief is a daily collection of the most relevant business intelligence for truckstop and travel plaza operators. 

While we think the Biz Brief is a must-read every day, if you only read ten news articles this week, these ten most-clicked Biz Brief articles are the ten to read. 

  1. Elvis In the Truckstop 
    Much of the memory and memorabilia of Elvis Presley can be found, not in Memphis, Tenn., at Graceland, but at the TravelCenters of America in Sparks, Nev. The Elvis items that are on display at the facility include rings, gold- and diamond-encrusted watches and pens and part of Elvis' gun collection. A number of pistols that Presley used to shoot light bulbs in the Graceland swimming pool and television sets are housed at the travel plaza. The guns are part of a collection acquired by the former owner of Sid Sierra's Casino and Travel Center Plaza that TA acquired a number of years ago. Click here to read more >

  2. The Hidden Agenda of Tolling Proponents 
    Government efforts to discourage driving and encourage fuel conservation are the real motivators behind the Obama Administration's new push for tolls, according to an editorial written by University of Tennessee professor Glenn Harlan Reynolds. Click here to read more >

  3. New TA Comes to Iowa 
    TravelCenters of America announced the acquisition, renovation and rebranding of a new location in Brooklyn, Iowa. The facility has seven fueling lanes for trucks, a Country Pride Restaurant, five private showers and a Dunkin' Donuts Express. The chain will add a 63-space truck parking area and a CAT Scale in the near future. The location at Exit 197 on Interstate 80 is the company's third site in Iowa. Click here to read more >

  4. Restaurant Performance Hits 10-Month High 
    The National Restaurant Association's Restaurant Performance Index reached 101.4 in March, marking the index' highest level in 10 months. The index monitors the current health and the outlook for the future. The Current Situation Index, which measures factors like same-store sales, traffic, labor and capital expenditures, increased 1.5 percent in March to a level of 100.8. Fifty-five percent of restaurant operators reported a same-store sales gain between March 2013 and March 2014, while 46 percent of operators reported higher customer counts in March than in the prior year. Click here to read more >

  5. Love's to Open Two Fast-Fill CNG Locations 
    Love's Travel Stops announced that the company will open two fast-fill compressed natural gas locations for use by heavy-duty trucks and passenger vehicles. The installations, which will be located at travel stops in Albuquerque, N.M., and Williams, Ariz., will be the first fast-fill CNG facilities west of Amarillo, Texas, on the 960-mile stretch of I-40. Seaboard Foods will be the anchor customer at both locations. Click here to read more >

  6. Love's to Open Two Fast-Fill CNG Locations 
    Love's Travel Stops announced that the company will open two fast-fill compressed natural gas locations for use by heavy-duty trucks and passenger vehicles. The installations, which will be located at travel stops in Albuquerque, N.M., and Williams, Ariz., will be the first fast-fill CNG facilities west of Amarillo, Texas, on the 960-mile stretch of I-40. Seaboard Foods will be the anchor customer at both locations. Click here to read more >
  7. Employee Retention Keys 
    Holding on to great teammates is a challenge for many in the industry. Here are a couple of keys to retaining good people: Do you have good benchmarks for the position, what traits are required in the position to make for success, and is the job description a realistic one? Often times, poor retention is caused by a poor fit. As this author says - "You can teach a bear to dance, but it will always dance like a bear." Click here to read more >

  8. Senator Predicts Minimum Wage Increase Within Six Months 
    Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Congress will approve the $10.10 minimum wage within the next six months. Previously, Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) said that he would be open to increasing the minimum wage if the Keystone pipeline is approved in exchange. The increase of the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour appears to be an issue that will surface often in the coming months. Click here to read more >

  9. Comparing Truckstops to Communities 
    GovLoop, an online social network for people in and around government, recently posted a blog comparing truckstops to communities. While blogger Hope Horner positioned the article to offer suggestions as to how to change communities, the thoughts might also apply to travel plazas. More than 600,000 government employees participate on GovLoop. Click here to read more >
  10. C-Store Carbonated Soft Drink Sales Drop 
    Carbonated soft drink sales fell 2.8 percent in the convenience store industry in 2013. Regular and diet soda sales both fell as did non-cola sodas. Actual unit sales of drinks fell further to 3.9 percent. Energy drinks, which now contribute nearly 26 percent of total non-alcoholic drinks, gained share during the year. Water comprised 12 percent of this same market segment and sports drinks contributed 10 percent. Carbonated soft drinks are an $8.6 billion market in the convenience store segment. Click here to read more >

I might be biased, but I think if you aren't receiving Biz Brief, you are missing out! Not a subscriber? Be sure to submit a request to be added to the email list. Already receive it and have feedback for me? Be sure to email me at editor@natso.com.

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About the Author

Roger Cole

Roger Cole

Roger Cole serves as edior of the NATSO Foundation's Biz Brief. The Biz Brief is a daily e-newsletter created to provide readers with business intelligence tailored specifically for truckstop and travel plaza owners and operators. Cole shifts through hundreds of news sources daily, selects the most relevant and timely news and then editorially distills it into a must-read briefing.