Byrider honored more than a dozen different operators when the buy-here, pay-here dealership chain presented annual awards to its franchise body during the company’s annual convention in Marco Island, Fla., last month.

Byrider chief executive officer Craig Peters said, “These franchisees and their teams continue exceeding our customers’ expectations by doing everything possible to maximize our customers’ opportunity to advance with us. Their commitment powers our operation and contributes to the overall success of Byrider every year.”

Byrider chief marketing and franchise growth officer Walter Scott added, “Congratulations to these franchisees and their teams on their much-deserved recognition. Their efforts to advance our customers and reinforce Byrider’s purpose are vital to our growth.”

The Franchise of the Year award recognizes the best overall performance by a franchise group based on internal store rankings and a measure of how the business has contributed to the Byrider franchise community.

Honorees with four or more locations: Russ Larson, Jeff Lee, and Winston Sleeth, who have dealerships in Burlington, Iowa, Davenport, Iowa, Des Moines, Iowa, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Columbia, Mo., Joplin, Mo., and Springfield, Mo.

Honoree with two to three locations: Jonathan Gandolfo, who has dealerships in South Carolina in Columbia, Greenville and North Charleston.

Honorees with a single location: Keith Kocourek and Jennifer Freiboth, who have a dealership in Wausau, Wisc.

The President’s Awards recognize dealership locations included in the top 10% of stores as defined by Byrider’s store ranking system. Winners, in order of performance ranking, include:

—Springfield, Mo.: Russ Larson and Winston Sleeth

—Mansfield, Ohio: Chris McPhie and Greg Barrett

—Des Moines, Iowa: Russ Larson and Jeff Lee

—Joplin, Mo.: Russ Larson and Winston Sleeth

—Davenport, Iowa: Russ Larson and Jeff Lee

—Burlington, Iowa: Russ Larson and Jeff Lee

—Ashtabula, Ohio: Chris McPhie and Greg Barrett

—Akron, Ohio: Chris McPhie and Greg Barrett

—Muncie, Ind.: Terry Gerhart

—Canton, Ohio: Chris McPhie and Greg Barrett

—Wausau, Wisc.: Keith Kocourek and Jennifer Freiboth

—Bloomington, Ind.: Terry Gerhart

—Springdale, Ark.: Dave Hanson

—Evansville, Ind.: Terry Gerhart

—Cedar Rapids, Iowa: Russ Larson and Jeff Lee

The Most Improved Awards were given to stores that demonstrated the most improvement from 2022 to 2023 based on store rankings (earnings, customer advancement, service comebacks, reputation management, portfolio performance, etc.), organized by franchise size.

—Most Improved Single Point: Springdale, Ark., Dave Hanson

—Most Improved with 2-3 Locations: Panama City, Jacksonville and Pinellas Park, Fla., Jim Kagiliery and Jim Thompson

—Most Improved with 4 or More Locations: East Dundee, Glendale Heights, Joliet, and South Holland, Ill., Mike Burgstone

—Top Store in Customer Satisfaction Award: Panama City, Fla., The Locklear Group

Finally, the Advancement Award — a new accolade for 2023’s convention — was handed out to recognize the store that saw the most per capita contract completions over the year, which highlights the dealership’s commitment to Byrider’s purpose of advancing customers through the program.

It went to Russ Larson and Winston Sleeth for their location in Springfield, Mo.