Robert DenningPresident & CEO
As the President & CEO of this 4th generation, 100 year old organization, Robert has led the transformation of the company into the international world class manufacturer and distributor it is today. Robert was promoted to President & CEO in 2000 after 20 years with the business. He holds an EMBA from the University at Buffalo, a BS in Business Administration from Buffalo State College and an AAS in Business Administration from Genesee Community College.
With Robert’s leadership driving the achievement of long range strategic goals, increasing sales and geographic expansion have occurred. Perry’s now offers over 1,500 unique items in distribution and has revenue coming from three sources; the Perry’s Ice Cream Brand, a Contract Manufacturing channel, and Partner Brand distribution.
Under Robert’s tenure, the company achieved its first international sales in 2007 to over 30 countries outside of the US, where these sales account for nearly 15% of the company’s manufactured revenues today. In 2008, after spearheading $10 Million in capital improvements, including equipment updates and a 20,000 sq. foot distribution center, the company was able to expand.
Robert’s vision to expand geographically in 2016 resulted in Perry’s posting revenues exceeding $100 Million in sales for the first time ever. In this same year, the company doubled its direct store delivery distribution footprint to over a 100,000 square mile geography, which now includes New York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, along with portions of Indiana, Kentucky and W. Virginia, while adding nearly 50 positions. The company is now approaching 400 team members with the addition of these new positions. This new territory is on a path to contribute $20 Million in sales within the first three years with incredible potential to sell the Perry’s Brand to more than 10 million new consumers.
As for the next five years, Robert sees the company continuing to invest and grow with top line sales approaching $150 Million with a balanced combination of Perry’s three revenue drivers; the Perry’s Ice Cream Brand, a Contract Manufacturing channel, and Partner Brand distribution.
Robert proudly serves the Western New York community by participating on various boards and committees such as the University at Buffalo Foundation board of trustees since 2002 (ten years as Chairman of the Finance committee and recently was named Vice Chair), the Buffalo Niagara Partnership board of directors (2004-2010), and Key Bank’s board of advisors (2002-2007), the UB Athletic advisory board and most recently, the Niagara University Food Marketing advisory board (2015-present).
He was the recipient of the 2001 Business First 40 Under 40 Award and the 2003 Young Alumnus Achievement Award from Buffalo State College. In 2004, he was invited to join the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), a group of more than 9,500 young global business leaders from 75 nations.
Robert resides in Clarence Center, NY with his wife, Gayle, and their four children; Leah, Paige, Lindsay and Noah.