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Target does creative fitness deal with Lifetime

BY Mike Troy

MINNEAPOLIS — Target is flexing its marketing muscles with the introduction of a 39-minute workout regimen at Lifetime Fitness clubs to shape up sales of its proprietary C9 Champion activewear brand.

Dubbed the C9 Challenge, Target and Life Time Fitness, operator of 114 health clubs nationwide, developed the novel idea of offering the branded and strenuous exercise class and promoting its exclusive availability at Life Time’s clubs. The class will be available in May and was developed in collaboration with Life Time experts and Target’s C9 Champion brand ambassador Adam Rosante, author of “The 30-Second Body: Eat Clean. Train Dirty. Live Hard.”

“The C9 Challenge class we’ve developed with Target’s C9 Champion ambassador Adam Rosante will be social and fun, with a broad appeal for women and men alike yet, and as Adam says, push them to realize they’re stronger than they think they are,” said Kimberly Spreen-Glick, Life Time national senior director of group fitness. “Life Time is known for bringing our members effective, innovative and one-of-a-kind group fitness classes designed and taught by the industry’s best instructors. We can’t wait for members to experience C9 Challenge.”

In addition to promoting brand awareness of the proprietary Target brand in an unconventional way, the class is designed to challenge nine core areas of the body in 39 minutes. Each class begins with a dynamic warm up, followed by three fitness blocks focused on upper body, lower body and core followed by a one minute cardio burst to drive the heart up and ensure a metabolic after burn.

“This new Life Time class smashes the notion that you need to spend lot of time at the club to get a solid workout,” said Rosante. “We all want to look good and feel great in class, and Target’s exclusive line of C9 Champion activewear can deliver that at a great price without sacrificing on performance.”

In addition to the class, C9 Champion will be integrated throughout Life Time destinations in a variety of ways including in-club video and signage, surprise and delight moments for those taking the class, and sneak peeks at new products.

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Electronic payments up 5% in 2014

BY Dan Berthiaume

HERNDON, Va. — In 2014, ACH (automated clearing house) volume grew to almost 23 billion electronic payments, an increase of almost 5%, or 1 billion transactions, from 2013 volume. According to new statistics released by NACHA — The Electronic Payments Association, a total of more than $40 trillion was transferred via NACHA’s ACH Network in 2014, increasing more than 3% compared to 2013.
 
Reflecting the industry’s continued adoption and use of electronic payments, native electronic payments, or transactions that start and end as electronic, constituted 90% of ACH Network volume. In 2014, there were more than 16 billion native electronic payments, up 6.3% from 2013.
 
Specific categories of native electronic payments that saw significant growth in 2014 include online payments (Web transactions), business-to-business payments, and recurring payments such as direct deposit via ACH.
 
Web debit or credit payments made when authorization is provided via the Internet or a wireless network grew 10.2% in 2014. A total of 3.6 billion Web transactions were exchanged via the ACH Network in 2014. In total, Web transactions accounted for almost 20% of ACH Network volume.  
 
In 2014, the ACH Network processed a total of 2.7 billion business-to-business transactions. This was an increase of 7.3% from 2013.
 
Recurring payments, which account for almost half of total ACH Network volume, grew by 4.4% in 2014. Direct deposit via ACH increased 3.6% from 2013.
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In celebration of founder’s legacy, Publix organizes #PublixServes event

BY Michael Johnsen

LAKELAND, Fla. — More than 4,000 Publix associates across the company’s six operating states will be volunteering Friday with more than 125 local nonprofit organizations whose focus is on youth, education and/or the plight of the hungry and homeless.
 
In the company’s first organized annual day of service, associates will be giving of their time and talents along with $1,000 — plus $85 for their anniversary — per district. The funds will help purchase items needed for food pantries, soup kitchens, backpack programs, beautification efforts and reading libraries just to name a few. See the activity by following the hashtag #PublixServes.
 
 
 
The company launched Publix Serves earlier this month as its community program that unites its more than 175,000 associates in community service efforts.
 
“Publix Serves celebrates our associates and embraces our communities. We’re thrilled to have more than 4,000 associates volunteering today in the communities we serve,” said Maria Brous, director of media and community relations. “Community service is ingrained in our culture – it’s who we are. We serve our customers in our stores; we serve each other and our communities in times of need. There is nothing more gratifying than to hear and see the impact our associates make in our communities each and every day.”
 
Publix celebrates its 85th anniversary this year and is sharing with associates and customers lessons from their founder, George Jenkins. April’s lesson is Give Back. Jenkins was once asked how much he thought he would be worth if he hadn’t given so much away. Without hesitation he responded, “Probably nothing.” He believed in the importance of giving, and he set the example for being involved in the community. He felt giving back was an investment, a responsibility and a privilege.

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