AmeriGas has a new president and chief executive officer—Jerry E. Sheridan, who joined AmeriGas in 2005 as vice president and chief financial officer and was elected to the position of vice president and chief operating officer in May 2011. Sheridan succeeds Eugene V. N. Bissell, who retired March 2. Prior to joining AmeriGas, Sheridan served as president and CEO of Potters Industries, Inc., a global manufacturer of engineered glass materials and a wholly owned subsidiary of PQ Corporation.
Sheridan is well-versed in acquisitions, with AmeriGas having completed approximately 50 in the last seven years since he came to the company as CFO, and he expects the integration of AmeriGas and Heritage to be transformative. Here, Sheridan shares some of his thoughts on the path ahead.
What are you most excited about for 2012?
In 2012, we’re taking on the three-pronged challenge of integrating the Heritage businesses and completing our rollout of upgraded systems technology at more than 300 locations while also managing the day-to-day business in an extreme warm weather year. It’s not so much thisyear but next year when we expect to realize efficiencies from the joining of the businesses and see the best practices from both organizations combine to enhance service to our customers.
Where do you see the new AmeriGas in five years?
In five years, we will have moved well beyond the integration, doing business as one company—the new AmeriGas—but we’ll also be providing a more consistent service experience to customers across all of our locations. We expect AmeriGas to be the largest acquirer of propane businesses in the United States, and we see our enhanced technology allowing us to delight a new generation of propane customers who will prefer that we market and transact with them online.
How will consumers benefit from the joining of the two companies?
The integration will make AmeriGas Cylinder Exchange more easily available to consumers in 220 new geographic areas, as well as offering many businesses in those areas the benefits of centralized billing and service through our national accounts program. Most importantly, as the largest propane supplier, we have the resources to invest in equipment and technology that can maximize the customer experience while maintaining the folksy feel of the “local propane company” in all of our locations.
Who is your favorite superhero?
Superman. He’s, nearly invincible. And he has the greatest tagline: fighting for truth, justice and the American way.