Kyle Krause, President and CEO of Kum & Go, L.C., has been named one of the nation’s top four finalists for the prestigious Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur Of The Year 2012 Retail and Consumer Products Award.
Earlier this year, Krause was named the winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2012 retail and consumer products award in the Central Midwest region.
Krause was recognized for his achievement during the recent Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs, Calif., where all 26 finalists were invited to the Black Tie Awards Gala hosted by Jay Leno. The Strategic Growth Forum is the nation’s most prestigious gathering of high-growth, market-leading companies.
As a national finalist, Krause was recognized for his innovation, leadership, financial success, and personal commitment in growing Kum & Go to its current stature as the nation’s 5th largest privately-held convenience store chain. Kum & Go is a U.S.-based, family owned company with more than 425 stores in 11 states.
“Entrepreneurs continue to be a driving force in leading the economic recovery,” said Bryan Pearce, Americas director, Entrepreneur Of The Year, Ernst & Young LLP. “Their ability to see around corners and find new, better ways of doing things makes them an engine of growth.” Krause has identified and implemented many such innovations, including recently implementing a new store design that features a more customer-focused floor plan and a strong emphasis on sustainable construction.
Krause credits the company’s core values-passion, integrity, teamwork, caring and excellence, as well as the commitment to give back to its communities-with driving Kum & Go’s growth and financial success. He said, “I am honored to have been a finalist for this prestigious award. I also know that it would not have been possible without the significant contributions of Kum & Go’s associates and our loyal customers.”
In addition to Krause’s recognition, Chobani Founder Hamdi Ulukaya from Norwich, New York, was named Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Retail and Consumer Products Award winner and overall award winner. Other national finalists included: David Overton, Chairman and CEO, The Cheesecake Factory, based in Calabasas Hills, Calif.; Andrew Thomas Mack, CEO and Chairman of the Board, Teavana Holdings, Inc., based in Atlanta.