Energizer, One Million Lights team for the Energizer Night Race for a Brighter World event
ST. LOUIS, Mo. — Energizer has teamed up with nonprofit organization One Million Lights on the Energizer Night Race for a Brighter World event to help shed light on the worldwide need for safe and reliable lighting.
As part of its new global platform, "now that’s positivenergy," Energizer has pledged to donate 11 million hours of light in 2011 to rural communities in need around the world that currently may be using costly and health-hazardous kerosene lamps. Kicking off the weekend of Nov. 11 with a series of nighttime races in various countries, Energizer will equip runners with an Energizer headlight. Each runner who participates helps bring Energizer closer to its goal of donating 11 million hours of solar light to One Million Lights, a global charity dedicated to improving the lives of people around the world by providing them with clean and healthy solar lighting, according to Energizer. The Energizer Night Race for a Brighter World series will continue throughout the year in additional countries.
"The solar-powered LED lanterns and bulbs donated by Energizer are invaluable to these rural communities," said Anna Sidana, founder of One Million Lights. "Safe and healthy solar lighting not only saves money and lives, but it also gives these families the opportunity to work, study and play when they otherwise could not."
The Energizer Night Race for a Brighter World is the first global initiative of the new "now that’s positivenergy" platform, which "combines performance plus responsibility and demonstrates Energizer’s long-standing commitment to responsible power and serving the community," according to the company.
"We know people share our desire to help make the world a better place," said Jeff Ziminski, chief marketing officer for Energizer. "Every person who participates in the Energizer Night Race for a Brighter World helps bring us closer to reaching our donation goal, reinforcing the idea that each one of us has the power to make a positive impact."
Energizer Night Race for a Brighter World Races in 2011 will take place in Argentina, Belgium, Canada (4 locations), Colombia, Ecuador, Greece, Korea, Philippines, South Africa, Uruguay and the United States (2 locations), with more races to take place in other countries in 2012.
The U.S. race will kick off in Houston, Texas, on Nov. 11 with an 11K race and 1.1 mile fun run for runners and walkers of all ages and skill sets. Representatives of One Million Lights will be on hand with information, photos and videos to explain the benefits of safe, portable solar lighting for families and their communities.
Abusable prescription drugs easy to find for young people, survey finds
BOSTON — More than half of parents in Massachusetts said their children have access to prescription drugs that could be abused, according to a new survey.
Results of the survey of 300 parents with children ages 12 to 25 years, released Wednesday by The Partnership at Drugfree.org during a briefing at the Massachusetts State House, indicated that 56% of parents said their kids had access to their drugs, while 14% had given their children prescription pain medicines for which the children did not have prescriptions. More people in Massachusetts die each year from fatal drug overdoses than from car accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while according to the state’s public health department, an average of 12 residents each week die from opioid overdoses.
"The survey findings are alarming and indicate that parents are often providing prescription drugs to their kids in an improper and dangerous manner," Partnership at Drugfree.org president and CEO Steve Pasierb said. "Add to that their acknowledgement that their children have ready access to potentially dangerous pain relievers, and we have a high-risk situation in homes across the commonwealth."
Safeway sales positive thanks to fuel, loyal shoppers
PLEASANTON, Calif. — Sales at Safeway are looking up thanks in large part to fuel gains, but the grocer’s loyalty card program is expected to continue driving that sales momentum into next year as the company rolls out its Just for U digital marketing platform and explores health-and-wellness initiatives.
"The upside in the quarter was driven mostly by better than expected sales, as [identical store sales] of [greater than] 1.5% exceeded consensus and our estimate of just under a 1% increase," Edward Kelly, research analyst for Credit Suisse, wrote in a note Thursday morning. "Bottom line here is that the quarter was much better then very low expectations. While it does not represent an inflection point in the company’s challenging fundamentals, it does provide more comfort in the company’s ability to achieve current years numbers against a low valuation."
Safeway also beat analyst earnings estimates and same-store sale projections.
"Our sales momentum continued to build in the third quarter, and our costs were well-controlled," stated Steve Burd, chairman, president and CEO. "At the same time, we continued to innovate throughout the business to meet our customers’ needs and build their loyalty. Our ‘Just for U’ digital marketing platform and our proprietary Open Nature line of 100% natural foods are good examples of these efforts."
Safeway has currently rolled out its Just for U platform — a personalized deal generator that utilizes purchase histories from Safeway’s loyalty card program — in just two markets. Safeway is rolling that platform into one more market this year and plans to have it available companywide by second quarter 2012, Burd told analysts Thursday morning during a conference call. And while the program has not been heavily promoted within those two markets, Burd added, those are "the two markets where we gained the most this year." Safeway is realizing double-digit sales increases across its most loyal consumers, Burd said.
The company’s overall loyalty card is helping to drive positive lifts in households shopping Safeway. Deals associated with the loyalty card program are "fairly aggressive," Burd said, and are linked to savings at the pumps. Safeway has realized the greatest success in those markets saturated with Safeway fuel stations. "We have some other deals for markets that are not as well-compelemented with fuel," Burd said.
Higher fuel revenue was credited to a 26% increase in the price per gallon of gas as compared to the year-ago and a 13% lift in same-store gallons of gas sold.
Burd also suggested Safeway will be rolling out several health-and-wellness initiatives into 2012. Safeway named its first chief medical officer, Kent Bradley, in September. Bradley has been charged with lowering Safeway’s healthcare outlay for its more than 200,000 covered employees. Simultaneously, Bradley is part of a team at Safeway exploring ways to monetize those health-and-wellness initiatives at its stores. For example, a weight management tool may be one of the initiatives to be introduced in the coming year, Burd said.
For the third quarter ended Sept. 10, Safeway posted sales of $10.1 billion, a 7.4% increase credited primarily to higher fuel sales. Safeway reported a 1.5% increase in identical-store sales (excluding fuel).
Safeway completed five new stores and seven Lifestyle remodels, and closed 11 stores in the quarter. For the year, Safeway plans to invest approximately $1 billion in capital expenditures, while completing 26 new Lifestyle stores and 30 Lifestyle remodels.