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Safeway reports Q1 results

BY Allison Cerra

PLEASANTON, Calif. Safeway reported Thursday a 33.5% drop in its net income for the first quarter, compared with the year-ago period.

The Pleasanton, Calif.-based chain said its net income totaled $96 million from $144.2 million last year. Despite the net income decrease, total sales for Safeway increased to $9.3 billion, compared with $9.2 billion in the year-ago period. Meanwhile, Safeway’s gross profit declined to 28.4% from 28.7%, a result the chain contributed to increased advertising, partly offset by changes in product mix and improved shrink.

“Our first-quarter results were in line with our expectations, and we are reaffirming our earnings per share guidance for 2010 of $1.65 to $1.85,” said Steve Burd, chairman, president and CEO. “We are encouraged by our volume trends in the first quarter of 2010 compared to the fourth quarter of 2009, and the trends have improved in the second quarter of 2010. We believe we will continue to see positive trends in the second half of the year as the economy improves, deflation subsides and consumer confidence builds.”

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Grill Daddy promises to clean your BBQ in a cinch

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK Barbecue cleaning just got a little easier with the help of Grill Daddy.

By preheating the grill and filling the Grill Daddy with water, chefs can easily brush away caked-on food residue and grease. The Grill Daddy releases water as you brush, the water hits the grill, turns to steam, and rinses away burnt on food, grease and dirt. Safe for porcelain, steel and iron grills, whether they are hot or cold, it cleans between grill grates utilizing specially-designed stainless-steel bristles and leaves cooking surfaces clean and sanitary. Grill Daddy offers three models; the original Grill Daddy, the Grill Daddy Pro for tougher jobs, and the commercial-grade, metal-alloy Grill Daddy Platinum.  All Grill Daddys have an ergonomic handle that keeps hands away from heat while providing maximum leverage.

“Cleaning the grill doesn’t have to be a hassle anymore,” said Michael Wales, president and inventor of the Grill Daddy. “A dirty grill can be cleaned in several minutes, free of unsightly black burned food residue adhering to steaks, hamburgers, hotdogs, and fish ruining the appetites of guests and family members. The Grill Daddy is the only grill cleaning tool on the market that does the job to the satisfaction of the most demanding chefs.”

Prices start at $19.95 with a 30-day money back guarantee and are available at such retailers as CVS/pharmacy, Target and more.

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Whitepaper discusses PLM implementation, debunks retailing myths

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK A new whitepaper released by Kurt Salmon Associates discusses ways retailers that use product lifecycle management software can take to get value from their PLM investments.

“The Three Stages of Retail PLM Adoption,” available for download at www.kurtsalmon.com, underscores the need for retailers to improve their implementation approach that includes designers, merchants and external suppliers.

The whitepaper takes on five retailing myths: agents, the product development department, sourcing, factories and management itself.

  • Myth 1: My agent knows better than I do. This gives agents too much power. Most agents communicate between a retailer on one end and a supplier on the other. Warning: Don’t assume your manufacturing agent knows more than you
  • Myth 2: Our product development department is more trustworthy than our suppliers. Rather than keeping vendors away from setting specs, retailers should focus on communicating clearly what needs to be done, then capitalize on the skills of the vendors to do most of the technical work
  • Myth 3: Only sourcing can understand what suppliers are talking about. That thinking stands in the way of designers getting into direct dialogs with suppliers about ways to tweak product designs for more efficient manufacturing and distribution
  • Myth 4: Our factories won’t want to share their supply chain. Retailers who show a factory the rewards of stronger collaboration will be able to create a competitive advantage
  • Myth 5: We can’t change ourselves. Retailers who do not use PLM technology to revamp the way they develop products and work with suppliers will suffer higher costs and be late to market, and that’s a recipe for shrinking market share.

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