Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. has announced that Réal Plourde is stepping down as chief operating officer effective today.
Plourde plans to remain executive vice-president and a member of the executive committee. Brian Hannasch, currently senior vice-president of U.S. operations and a close associate of Plourde, will succeed him as chief operating officer.
“Plourde’s contribution to the growth of Couche-Tard over the past 25 years has been exceptional. His leadership and deep knowledge of our industry has been a key factor in allowing the company to attainment preeminent position in Canada and U.S.,” the company said in a press release.
“I carefully weighed and prepared this change, which meets two key objectives: I will be free to devote more time to personal ventures while continuing to actively contribute to the company’s strategic direction,” Plourde said in a statement.
“We are delighted that Plourde agreed to remain in an active capacity as a member of the executive committee. As a result, we can still tap into his tremendous experience and knowledge of the convenience industry”, said Alain Bouchard, president and CEO.
Bouchard also noted that Hannasch’s new role underscores the company’s dedication to promote talent within its own ranks when possible and to ensure a seamless transition as the company continues to grow.
Hannasch joined Couche-Tard in 2001 as part of the Bigfoot Food Stores acquisition. At that time, Hannasch held the position of vice-president of operations for Bigfoot. Since then, he has held a range of vice-president and senior vice-president positions within the company. These included acquisition, integration and operations roles with oversight for Canadian and U.S. divisions. Regarded as a highly skilled manager, he built his reputation by focusing on flawless execution and delivering results. Previous to joining the company, Hannasch spends 13 years with Amoco and BP in various downstream positions.