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Dollar General to open 635 new stores in 2013

BY Alaric DeArment

GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn. — Dollar General is adding 635 new stores and relocating 550 this year, the dollar store chain said.

"Dollar General’s continued growth reflects our customers’ increasing satisfaction with our everyday low prices and convenience," Dollar General chairman and CEO Rick Dreiling said. "Further, 2013 will mark another growth milestone as we plan to open the organization’s 11,000th store before the year’s end when we will begin our 75th anniversary in 2014."

The chain also is participating in proactive hiring initiatives such as Paychecks for Patriots in order to provide jobs for veterans and resolve the challenges of unemployment that often face them.


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Rite Aid raises more than $590k for United Way

BY Alaric DeArment

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid has raised nearly $600,000 for a United Way chapter in Pennsylvania, the retail pharmacy chain said.

The company announced that employees in its corporate offices around the greater Harrisburg, Pa., area had raised $590,159 during its fundraising campaign for United Way of the Capital Region, for a total of nearly $5.8 million since 2002. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania’s state capital, is near the company’s headquarters in Camp Hill, Pa.

"One of our company’s core values is to be a caring neighbor, involved in the communities we serve in meaningful ways," Rite Aid chairman, president and CEO John Standley said. "I’m proud of how our associates took our compaign theme, ‘Give and Live United,’ to heart and raised an amazing amount of money to help those in their own backyard who need it the most."


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Crossmark develops BrandMasters for experiential marketing solutions

BY Antoinette Alexander

PLANO, Texas – Crossmark, a sales and marketing services company in the consumer goods industry, has formed BrandMasters, a new experiential marketing agency that will aim to provide turnkey solutions for brands to create meaningful shopper experiences through personal engagement.

BrandMasters was developed to meet the growing need among consumer goods brands to influence shoppers on the path to purchase, according to Crossmark. Services will address all phases of experiential marketing, from shopper insights to turnkey execution and measurement of programs ranging from in-store product sampling to outside events and digital engagement.

“Today, as brands face challenges in connecting with their consumers and shoppers, it’s become more critical than ever for a brand to deliver a message to its target audience that is relevant to them as individuals,” said Crossmark CEO Joe Crafton. “People connecting with people is the most powerful means of influence, and BrandMasters connects brands with consumers along the path to purchase through personal engagement in-store and out of the store,” he said.

CROSSMARK will leverage its position as an in-store marketing service, including in-store events through its NCiM division and Shopper Events joint venture. In addition, its field Intelligence group is the largest in-store data collection force in North America. There is synergy with Twin Oaks, Crossmark’s shopper marketing venture with industry leader MARS Advertising, the company stated.   

BrandMasters will develop turnkey, national programs for consumer goods brands and services will include coordination of retailer-contracted event execution companies such as NCiM and other retailer event agencies.

Ed Hoehn, most recently VP of client services at Mosaic, has joined BrandMasters as SVP of marketing services. Having spent the last 13 years in the agency business, Hoehn has developed experiential solutions for more than 35 brands such as Microsoft, HP, Sony, Sharp and Verizon. Hoehn will lead the agency’s efforts in providing turnkey experiential marketing solutions for consumer goods clients. “Our approach is uniquely positioned to add value. We have built a platform on the strengths of Crossmark and added experiential marketing expertise. The platform includes proprietary data and analytics, retail expertise, exceptional field talent, and strong relationships with retailers and consumer goods companies. Adding experiential strategy, design and management allows us to build and execute smart programs to drive tangible results for clients,” stated Hoehn.


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