Hiawatha Chef wins Excellerator Award

ESCANABA — Hiawatha Chef Supply of Escanaba and Appleton has won an Excellerator Award from the Denver-based Excell Marketing & Procurement Group. The award recognizes the company for doing at least $500,000 worth of business with Excell member vendors in 2016, and for increasing its business with Excell vendors by more than 25 percent over 2015. Hiawatha grew its purchases by 29%, according to Gyle Walker, vice president of sales for Excell.

An engraved glass trophy was presented to owner Tracy Thompson and his wife Debbie, showroom manager at the Escanaba store, during the Excell Annual Buying Conference awards dinner Thursday, March 30, at Universal’s Islands of AdventureTM theme park in Orlando, Fla. The conference itself was held March 29-April 1 at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress resort in Orlando.

Hiawatha’s increased purchases last year also won the Thompsons a July 2017 Alaska cruise aboard Celebrity Cruises®’ Celebrity Solstice®. The ship will leave from Seattle, Washington, and stop in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, and in Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway, Alaska. The week-long cruise was a prize in the group’s Excellathon 2016-2017 dealer purchasing promotion.

Mary Feldhusen, general manager of Hiawatha Chef Supply, Inc., credits employees at both the Escanaba and Appleton stores for the accomplishment, saying, “We all worked especially hard last year to increase sales overall , which resulted in the corresponding increase in purchases through Excell. We’re on track to do equally well this year, if not better,” she adds, “and hope to win another Excellerator Award for Hiawatha in 2018.”

This year’s is the third such award for Hiawatha Chef Supply since it joined the group in 2005; the company also won awards in 2011 and 2015. It was one of just 28 dealers to receive Excellerator Awards at this year’s conference. Hiawatha’s purchase volume put it in the top half of the 135 leading North American foodservice equipment supply dealers enrolled in the Excell Marketing & Procurement Group. Thompson and his wife attended the group’s dealer meeting March 29 and, between them, met with representatives of all the 170 Excell member vendors represented at the conference over four days.