RETAIL NEWS

Publix announces second location for specialty market

BY Marianne Wilson

The grocery retailer has selected Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, as the second location for its new GreenWise Market concept, which focuses on the specialty, natural and organic sector. The 25,000-sq.-ft. store is expected to open in early 2019.

Publix announced plans earlier this year to reignite its GreenWise store concept, with the first location due to open in Tallahassee, Florida, in 2018. The store is currently under construction. The grocer launched the format in 2007, and currently operates three stores under the banner. But it has not opened a new GreenWise location since 2008.

Publix plans to share additional details about its reworked GreenWise format closer to the inaugural store opening. The company did say it continues to look for additional GreenWise Market locations throughout its operating areas.

“We’re creating an environment where fresh, specialty, natural and organic food is celebrated,” stated Kevin Murphy, Publix senior VP of retail operations, in a release about the Mount Pleasant store. “We’ll have something for everyone, from the indulgent foodie ready to discover something new to the health-conscious shopper seeking fresh, high-quality ingredients.”

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Rite Aid successfully transfers first stores to Walgreens Boots Alliance

BY Michael Johnsen

Camp Hill, Pa.-based Rite Aid late Monday announced that it has completed the pilot closing and first subsequent closings under the amended and restated asset purchase agreement with Walgreens Boots Alliance.

“Successfully completing the pilot closing and first subsequent closings marks an important step in realizing the full benefits of this transaction,” stated John Standley, Rite Aid chairman and CEO. “I am proud of the entire Rite Aid team for their commitment and dedication to helping us reach this milestone. I also want to thank our team for their continued support as we complete the transfer process over the next several months and implement our plans to deliver improved results.”

Rite Aid executed the transfer of 97 stores and related assets to Walgreens.

Under the amended and restated agreement, WBA will purchase a total of 1,932 stores, three distribution centers and related inventory from Rite Aid for an all-cash purchase price of $4.375 billion on a cash-free, debt-free basis. Rite Aid and WBA expect to continue to transfer ownership of the stores in phases over the coming months, with the goal being to complete the store transfers in spring of 2018.

 

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Shopko shares predictions for holiday shopping trends

BY Gisselle Gaitan

With the holiday shopping season fast approaching, companies are trying to entice consumers by announcing Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals before the actual day. With that type of information out in the open, Wisconsin-based company Shopko also decided to share its predictions for what exactly consumers will be on the hunt for when hitting retailers nationwide.

A survey recently done by Deloitte found that 27% of consumers prefer to purchase gifts that provide an experience for the recipient. Also concluded by the survey, more than half of consumers prefer purchasing indulgent gifts or items the recipient wouldn’t buy for themselves.

“Traditional gifts like clothes and electronics are still popular. But in today’s world of Pinterest and personalization, we are finding new trends where shoppers are looking for gifts that fit a person’s personality or lifestyle, whether it’s a Barcalounger to provide relaxation at home, a kayak for someone who loves the outdoors, or combining several smaller gifts to offer a combination of both,” Ron Ota, Shopko SVP Chief Merchandising Officer, said.

Also identified by Shopko is six different categories of consumers, with an infographic showcasing items falling into their preferences. The types of shoppers the company identified are the caregiver who thinks of others and never treats themselves, the adventurer who is on the hunt for the next thrill, the techy who enjoys the latest in gaming in technology, the fashionista who is up-to-date with the season’s trends, the kitchen master who always has the latest cooking gadgets and the littles, composed of children and toddlers with active imaginations.

Shopko will be open for 2017 Black Friday shopping from 4:00 p.m. on Thanksgiving day, Nov. 23 and will close at 10:00 p.m. on Nov. 24. Black Friday online shopping will start on Nov. 22, and instead of Cyber Monday the company has announced Cyber Week. This will include seven days of online deals beginning on Nov. 26 and ending on Dec. 2, with prices being available online and in-stores.

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