After more than 30 years in the gas station/convenience store industry, Bob Richard, president of J.F. Enterprises, has announced his retirement.
Richard, who owns 10 Barney’s Convenience Marts and 360 Fitness, 1703 Tollgate Drive in Maumee, said he is working with Armada Oil and Gas Co. out of Detroit, Mich. to purchase his chain.
“It hasn’t been sold yet, but we should close the deal in late August,” he said. “Barney’s and 360 will continue and 100 percent of our employees will remain.”
Richard said he is excited about the change and that Armada agreed to retain the employees.
“They need our people to bring Armada into the area,” he said. “They are excited to move here as well.”
Richard said he received a phone call from Armada’s lawyer, expressing an interest in purchasing his company.
“I told them I wanted to retain all of my employees before I would sell,” he said. “A few days later the lawyer called back and said ‘OK.’ ”
Richard said the decision was not easy.
“I’m pushing 60 and I have been disgruntled about the state of Ohio politicians and the taxes passed; it’s destroying the industry,” he said. “But I’m sad to leave.”
Julie Theobald, store manager at the 5821 N. Detroit Ave. Barney’s, said she is going to miss Richard.
“I’ve worked with him for 15 years,” she said. “I wish him the best of luck; he’s done a great job of looking out for us and keeping the prices low. He will be missed.”
Theobald said there was some uncertainty when she first heard about Richard’s upcoming retirement.
“I was a little worried about the future,” she said. “But he is looking out for us.”
Richard and his wife, Sandy, will move to the Rocky Mountains upon his retirement.
“I always wanted to live in the Rockies,” he said. “Will I get bored in a year, who knows?”
Richard said now he will have some time to participate in some of his hobbies.
“My wife and I love to travel,” he said. “We have visited 40 countries and I want to go to Antarctica because it will be the seventh continent I’ve been on.”