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AARP launches marketing agency geared toward boomers

BY DSN STAFF

WASHINGTON — AARP Services has launched a marketing agency called Influent50, which helps businesses connect to consumers aged 50 and older.

Companies haven’t tapped the 50 and older market yet, according to Influent50.

"We know more about consumers than ever before, and Influent50 gives a voice to an often overlooked consumer group," Dave Austin, managing director of Influent50, said. "There is a paradigm shift around what it means to age and we get it. We know how to uniquely reach and communicate to consumers 50 and over better than anyone else, and we don't rely on outdated stereotypes."

Americans aged 50 and older control 70% of the nation's disposable income, spending $230 billion on consumer packaged goods annually, Influent50 said.

A recent Influent50 survey found that most boomers (83%) say that brands are making some kind of mistake when trying to appeal to people aged 50 to 69. One-third (36%) of respondents indicated that marketers "get it all wrong" when advertising to their age group. Half (47%) of the respondents say marketers use inaccurate stereotypes about people their age.

The survey indicated that three quarters (74%) of this group is willing to pay extra for convenience and higher quality, Influent50 said. Five out of six (84%) boomers say they're more likely to consider quality and features, and not just price when considering a new purchase. Half (52%) of boomers say they are more willing to splurge on purchases now than they were when they were younger.

"Anyone can buy a list and identify people over the age of 50,” Scott Collin, chief creative director for Influent50, said. “At Influent50, we help brands identify with these consumers. We use our data, research, knowledge and expertise to turn facts into insights, and insights into communications that connect with people on a personal level. Consumers over the age of 50 don't look at their disposable income as disposable. Neither do we."

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Price Chopper acquires Fairway Pharmacy in Montrose, PA

BY David Salazar

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. — Price Chopper Supermarkets announced Tuesday that it had acquired the Montrose, PA-based Fairway Pharmacy. Until a new pharmacy is constructed inside Montrose’s Price Chopper location, operations will continue out of the acquired location. The Fairway team has joined Price Chopper, including owner Jerry Prusack, who will continue as the pharmacist at the acquired location.

“We are delighted to welcome Jerry and the Fairway team to the Price Chopper family,” Kathy Bryant, VP Pharmacy for Price Chopper, said. “We look forward to building upon the foundation of trusted and convenient pharmacy care that they have long provided to the Montrose community, while expanding and enhancing the patient services that are offered.”

As a result of the acquisition, Fairway customers now have access to Price Chopper’s savings programs and services like Fuel AdvantEdge rewards, free prenatal and children’s vitamins and free diabetes medications and diabetic supplies. The pharmacy’s hours have also expanded and Price Chopper is offering customers $25 off a new or transferred prescription until Nov. 7.

“We look forward to continuing to provide the high level of care that our patients have come to expect from us, and believe that the addition of support from Price Chopper’s highly regarded pharmacy division will increase our ability to serve the community,” Prusack said. “The construction of a brand new pharmacy inside the Price Chopper Supermarket marks a significant investment in our community that will provide our customers with the added convenience of one-stop shopping.”

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Realignment of Southwest division underscores Kroger commitment to Texas market

BY Michael Johnsen

CINCINNATI – Kroger on Tuesday split its Southwest division into two new supermarket divisions, a Dallas division and a Houston division, to support significant investment in the Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston markets. 
 
Dana Zurcher has been promoted to serve as president of the company's new Dallas division. And Bill Breetz, who has been serving as president of the Southwest division since 2002, will continue to oversee operations in Texas and Louisiana for the remainder of the year, and serve as president of the new Houston division. 
 
Kroger previously outlined capital investment plans of approximately $700 million in Dallas-Fort Worth and $500 million in Houston over the next three years. 
 
"We see opportunities for growth in both Dallas and Houston thanks in large part to Bill's leadership the past 13 years," stated Rodney McMullen, Kroger chairman and CEO. "This move will bring resources closer to our store teams, customers and communities."
 
Kroger's new Dallas division includes 105 stores in the Dallas and Fort Worth markets and in the Shreveport and Alexandria, La. area. The new Houston division includes 109 stores in the greater Houston region, as well as stores in Lake Charles, Louisiana. 
 
"Dana's experience spans several retail divisions, and she understands nearly every aspect of our business," McMullen said. "She is an exceptional leader who is known for helping associates discover their full potential. We are excited to have Dana lead our team in Dallas."
 
Zurcher brings 30 years of leadership experience to her new role. She began her Kroger career in Indianapolis store management in 1985. She served in a number of leadership roles in the Central division, including store manager and district coordinator. In 2002, she was named a district manager in the company's Fry's division in Phoenix. In 2008, she was promoted to director of operations for the Ralphs division in Los Angeles, where she served until she was promoted to VP operations for Kroger's Mid-South division in 2011. She has served in her current role of VP operations Southwest division since 2013. 
 
 
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