Allegra Network names Carl Gerhardt as company's new CEO
Northville, Mich., March 8, 2007 – Allegra Network® LLC, one of the world's largest print and graphic communications franchises, recently announced that Carl Gerhardt, Allegra's current President and Chief Operating Officer has been named President and Chief Executive Officer. Bill McIntyre, former CEO, will remain the company's chairman as well as its managing partner and will continue to focus on acquisitions, new initiatives and financial planning.
Since taking the reigns as president of the company in January of 2004, Carl's leadership made a significant contribution to the success of Allegra Network:
In 2000 the company was purchased by the executive management team with the backing of Tom Monaghan, founder and former Chief Executive Officer of Domino's Pizza and former Vice President of Domino's Mike Marcantonio a Following the purchase of Allegra Network LLC the company implemented several strategic initiatives which resulted in its current rapid growth. These growth initiatives included two major acquisitions of graphic communications franchisors, renewed emphasis of its development programs including the launching of its Digital Print Centers franchise concept and the diversification of the services offered by its approximately 600 franchise members. Under Gerhardt's leadership the company has reconfigured its management structure by appointing four new vice presidents in functional areas to help foster the growth of the company and that of its franchise members. Allegra Network recorded its highest system-wide sales ever for 2006 with $369 million, a 30% increase since Gerhardt became president.
Gerhardt has played an instrumental role in the development of Allegra Network for more than 20 years. In 1985, he and his wife, Judy, opened an American Speedy Printing Centers franchise in Colorado Springs, Colorado. As one of the leaders in the Allegra Network system, they grew their business to more than $2 million in sales. In 1997, they were among the first franchise members to offer advanced digital technologies and transition to the company's premier brand, Allegra Print & Imaging, and have since sold the company to their business partner. Throughout the years, Gerhardt has assisted in the development of master franchises, conducted Profit Mastery Assessments for franchise members and provided regional support. In 2000, Gerhardt became an Allegra Network shareholder when the company was purchased by members of the management team as part of the Monaghan investment group.In 2003, he worked with the National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) to develop and launch Allegra Network's first Strategic Management course. Due to the tremendous response to the program, the course was expanded into a comprehensive annual program, with courses for both business owners and general managers.
Gerhardt commented, "Although in my twenty years as a franchisee I shared very much with our franchise members as their peer, it has been even more rewarding to share my insights as a leader of Allegra Network. I look forward to continued pursuit of new growth strategies to benefit our franchise members." The feeling is mutual – Allegra Network franchise members truly appreciate the valuable leadership and strategic direction Gerhardt offers. In fact, in a recent network-wide survey, franchise members ranked Carl's expertise as one the most positive influences in the development of their businesses. This is a unique benefit Allegra Network franchise members receive, as it is one of the few industry franchises led by a former franchisee.
About Allegra Network
Allegra Network LLC is one of world's largest print and graphic communications franchises linking more than 600 locations across North America and abroad. With system-wide sales of $369 million (2006), the company ranks in the top 150 among all franchise companies in the world and is considered a leader in franchise training, technology implementation and franchise member profitability. Allegra Network was founded in 1976 and today supports three primary brands under its print division – Allegra Print & Imaging, American Speedy Printing and Insty-Prints and the Signs Now brand under its sign division. Principal shareholders include Domino's Pizza founder/former CEO and Ave Maria University founder Thomas S. Monaghan and members of Allegra Network management.