OUR VISION Drive innovation to become the nation’s leading retail technology partner.

OUR MISSION Develop innovative solutions and services targeted at customer’s business needs.  Build customers’ business through progressive solutions encompassing technologies, professional services and responsive support. Expand our success with customer service dedication and expansion across the country. 

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The Senior Leadership team at North Country Business Products (NCBP) is comprised of exceptional, creative and dedicated professionals. Their diverse backgrounds provide a cohesive umbrella of experience to lead NCBP to the next level. They embody NCBP’s core values and are steadfast in their efforts to create an environment where Associates and Customers thrive.

Jim Freed, CEO and President

Leading the team is our President and CEO Jim Freed. He began his career in 1994 as a Field Technician for ACME Business Machines in Peoria, IL, later purchased by NCBP in 2005. The majority of Jim’s time here has been spent developing our hospitality teams, but he quickly embraced the grocery vertical’s nuances after becoming the Senior Director of Service Operations in 2016.
Jim is a member of multiple partner advisory boards and is an active member of the RSPA community. He enjoys fostering relationships with partners and vendors, sharing best practices and staying on top of industry trends.
Jim appreciates working closely with his teams and getting to know them on a personal level.  He enjoys hosting social gatherings and events to foster and promote teambuilding on a genuinely personal level.  His approachable nature, authenticity, and integrity have helped develop a culture that empowers our people, while evolving our business and our customers through technology. He takes pride in regularly making time to connect with the team and provide support on a personal and professional level. His door is always open and is never too busy for anyone in the organization.
Jim's leadership has shaped a vision that delivers mutual success, solves tomorrow's needs, and has enabled our associates and customers to thrive. 


Matthew Swanson, Vice President of Operations

Matt is a technology leader that has helped NCBP evolve into the cutting-edge solution provider we are today.  He joined NCBP in 2008 and charted a vision for our internal and customer-facing technologies that has helped enable NCBP and our customers to face the business challenges of today and tomorrow.  That vision has included spearheading multiple initiatives with a focus on securing and protecting NCBP and our customers’ data against the ever-evolving threat landscape that exists today. 

Matt’s approach to leadership strives to balance a tenacious focus on results against making sure associates and their families are well-cared for.  He is passionate about his family, and endeavors to build a team that allows our associates the space to achieve results while also being able to achieve their desired work-life balance.   

He has held several roles at NCBP and has focused on the design and implementation of their Project Management Office as well as numerous process improvement, operational excellence and strategic technology initiatives. He credits both his Lean Six Sigma Black Belt training and his Tae Kwon Do Black Belt training for helping build successful teams and to drive results.  He truly strives to live by the tenants of Tae Kwon Doembraces his indomitable spiritand you should see him break a board! 


Jandi Ketelsen, Sr. Director, Financial Services and Administration

One might say Jandi has “grown-up” at NCBP, hired just after graduating from Bemidji State University Jandi began her career as an Accounts Receivable Associate in 2000.  During the last two decades she has learned and mastered every facet of NCBP’s accounting and financial systems.  Her passion for the company has led her to act as our unofficial company historian 

During her formative years at NCBP, Jandi drew her inspiration and drive to excel from her leaders. She appreciated the work ethiccustomer service focus and family atmosphere that was present and took every opportunity presented to learn and grow.  Having an employee ownership mentality is one of her greatest strengths as part of the leadership team.  Her dedication to always thinking and acting like an owner is steadfast and front and center whether she’s busy working on new processes, strategizing or developing associates.  She believes that having a culture where all associates think and act like owners is what sets NCBP apart from others (it's part of NCBP’s secret sauce). 

Relationship building is something Jandi uses daily; from bringing NCBP associates together to working with our valued partners she can create bridges and resolve issues. Her excellent business acumen includes managing NCBP cash flow, budgeting, inventory management, and business operations. She’s also a huge fan of EOS Traction! 

Jandi hopes to one day cheer the Minnesota Vikings in a super bowl.... SKOL! 


Jeff Zimmerman, Director of Grocery Sales

Raised on a small farm in Colorado shaped Jeff's work ethic. After graduating from the University of Northern Colorado, he entered a wholesaler management program where he started his lifelong career in the grocery industry. He parlayed that experience into a General Manager position at an independent grocery chain he held for several years.   

Jeff joined NCBP in 2005 as an Account Manager in Iowa. He quickly achieved success in that territory and was asked to build NCBP's presence in Chicago, IL. His eagerness to understand the marketplace and deliver results were essential in achieving success in this market, which led Jeff into the current position he holds today, Director of Sales.  

Throughout his tenure, Jeff has focused on building relationships with our customers, partners, and associates. Jeff holds a deep belief that personal connections are an integral part of everyone's success in business. That is especially true for solution providers, such as NCBP, who are an essential part of their customers' business operations, goals, and visions.  

His expertise in the grocery industry's fundamentals has enabled him to quarterback the continued success of the NCBP sales organization. Jeff is passionate about understanding the needs of our customers and their unique situations, crafting the best possible solution, and is relenting on his focus on delivering a positive experience for customers of any size.

Unfortunately, his favorite colors are blue and orange-Go 

Kirk Benson, Director of Hospitality Sales

Kirk leads the NCBP sales team serving Hospitality, Food & Beverage and Hotel industry clients across the US.
With 20 years of Food and Beverage technology experience, Kirk brings a passion for helping our customers deliver an excellent dining experience to their guests while optimizing business operations and financial performance. Kirk leads advances in hospitality technology for NCBP and drives business with key customers, vendors and stakeholders.
Kirk actively participates in Industry groups and events and has a passion for supporting the local restaurant and craft beverage scene. He enjoys cooking for family and friends, spending relaxing weekends at the lake, and being the outdoors with his wife Megan and their 3 children

Monica Laurent, Director of Human Resoruces

The newest member of the NCBP Senior Leadership Team is Monica Laurent, our Director of Human Resources (HR). Monica joined North Country in 2020 and is responsible for all aspects of HR, including talent acquisition; performance acceleration; diversity, equity and inclusion strategy; and the overall associate experience.
Monica has a passion for all things HR and brings over 20 years of human resources leadership experience to North Country. Her special areas of focus are employee engagement, leadership development, and strategic planning.
Monica has earned both SPHR-SCP and SHRM certification and is an active member of several HR associations. She also volunteers for TwinCities R!SE, an organization devoted to transforming lives through personal empowerment, career training and meaningful employment.

A graduate of Minnesota State University (Go Mavericks!), Monica double-majored in International Business and Business Administration. She was raised in Iowa and loves traveling, hiking, and concerts. She lives in Cottage Grove, Minnesota with her husband, Paul, and her son