RETAIL NEWS

Kroger seeks leg up on digital offering through new hiring blitz

BY Michael Johnsen

Kroger announced Thursday that the Cincinnati grocer is actively recruiting experienced retail and digital and technology talent for new and open corporate and store management roles across its family of companies.

“With so many recent changes in the retail landscape, we recognize there are talented individuals in our communities who may be searching for a new career with a new company,” Tim Massa, Kroger’s group vice president of human resources and labor relations, said. “As we continue to grow and redefine the customer experience through Restock Kroger, there has never been a better time to join The Kroger Co.”

As part of Restock Kroger, the company is also investing an incremental $500 million in human capital over the next three years. This will be in addition to Kroger’s continued efforts to rebalance store associate pay and benefits while also focusing on certifications, performance incentives, advancement opportunities and training for associates.

“We want retail and digital and tech talent to know that we’re hiring,” Massa added.

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Almost one-third of Food Lion store base now delivers

BY Michael Johnsen

Food Lion is continuing to expand its partnership with Instacart and is now offering home delivery in 29% of its footprint in the Southeast, parent company Ahold Delhaize reported Thursday. The convenient service, which builds on Food Lion’s promise to ensure an easy, fresh and affordable shopping experience, will allow customers to order and receive their groceries in as little as an hour.

“Since its launch in the Raleigh area in June 2016, Instacart has been well received by our customers and we are excited for its continued expansion,” Neil Norman, director of customer loyalty at Food Lion, said. “Food Lion is proud to continue to deliver on our commitment to making grocery shopping easy and convenient for our customers.”

Additionally, by linking their personal MVP cards to their Instacart accounts, Food Lion customers can continue to take advantage of Food Lion’s weekly savings specials, including MVP discounts. Food Lion customers using Instacart for the first time will receive their first home delivery fee for free.

With the addition this month of the city of Sanford, N.C., Food Lion and Instacart are delivering to 157 postal code areas, including the initial markets of Charlotte and Raleigh that launched in mid-2016. Last October, the companies started service in the Greensboro area in North Carolina and the Norfolk and Richmond markets in Virginia.

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Report: Kroger Edge may redefine in-store shopping experience

BY Michael Johnsen

Looking to pair a some at-shelf pizzazz with shopper convenience and utility, Kroger may be changing the face of merchandising with new shelf technology, called Kroger Edge, rolling out to nearly 200 stores by year’s end, the Cincinnati grocer told Business Insider earlier this week.

The new merchandisers will be placed primarily on endcaps for now. Kroger has been testing digitally-based shelf-talker technology for some years now. The digital shelf strip displays pricing and nutritional information along with video ads and coupons. The space age supermarket ultimately hopes to interact with consumer smartphones as they walk down the aisle.

“It’s an exciting platform for a lot of future innovation,” Chris Hjelm, chief information officer, Kroger, told Business Insider. “As you walk down the aisle, it will highlight the next item for you to pick on your shopping list.” That feature is expected to significantly improve shopping efficiency.

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