Where to Find the Best Hourly Employees

You might be surprised to learn that the best source of new employees in convenience retailing has changed very little over the past 25 years. The number one best source of great employees still is and always has been referrals—people you already know or who your employees know. In surveys we conducted between Feb. 2007

Convenience Industry Study Outlined at All Candy Expo

Three industry associations are partnering on a groundbreaking research effort to identify more effective and profitable opportunities in confections. Details of the study, which was spearheaded by The Hershey Co. and Eby-Brown, were announced at a press conference at the All Candy Expo Wednesday in Chicago. The study is intended to help generate increased sales

Banking on Big Branding

When it came to choosing between a bank and quick-service restaurant to complement a Tom’s Convenience Store in a travel plaza just outside State College, Pa., Tom’s parent company, Shipley Energy, placed its money where the mouths are. It’s a decision that could pay big dividends for York, Pa.-based Shipley Energy, owner and operator of

Hand-Wrapped Sandwich Line

Pierre Foods has once again tipped the scales on innovation and product quality. Six new Big Az items have all of the attributes of the classic Big Az brand, but are now wrapped in specially designed paper packaging that allows for the sandwiches to be held in the warmer case for four hours. The new

McDonald’s Eyes C-store Customers

McDonald’s Corp. is urging its store owners in the Western U.S. to slash large soda prices to $1 this summer in a move the company hopes will attract consumers away from convenience stores, a company memo obtained by Crain’s Chicago Business showed. "Let’s take the c-store drink out of their hands and build our transactions,"

Hangover Defense

Drinkin’ Mate is nature’s answer to alcohol’s unpleasant side effects. Made with all-natural guava leaf extract, Drinkin’ Mate maintains balance in the body and defends against headaches, queasy stomach and dehydration. Media testing was conducted in five markets during the fall of 2007 to determine the most effective methods of establishing awareness with 21-to-44-year-old males.

Bring Trust and Loyalty Back to the Workplace

Once upon a time in corporate America people actually liked going to work every day. They enjoyed the camaraderie of their co-workers, and they truly believed their work was making a difference, not only in the organization, but also in the world. Likewise, the company took care of its people, listened to them, and provided

A Call to Arms

Richard Oneslager enjoys a good joke, so he couldn’t help sharing one of his new favorites. "Did you hear the one about the retailer who sat down with Visa to discuss his interchange fees? Of course you didn’t. Visa doesn’t sit down with retailers!" Oneslager, president of Balmar Petroleum and chairman of the National Association

Lemon Line

Mike and Ike Lemonade Blends is now arriving on store shelves. This new Mike and Ike flavor is the result of Just Born’s 2007 “Mix Master” consumer contest to choose the next Mike and Ike candy. Over 140,000 online votes resulted in Lemonade Blends being chosen as consumers’ favorite. Lemonade Blends candy is a five-flavor

P&G Plans Car Washes in Ohio, Kentucky

After seeing strong sales at two test locations, Procter & Gamble is planning to open up to seven more Mr. Clean Performance Car Washes in southern Ohio and Kentucky. Procter & Gamble plans to test several full-service locations in the Cincinnati area before deciding to launch a national chain, though the company has yet to

Prairie Four-Pack

Prairie City Bakery offers retailers the foodservice bulk bakery solutions they need, with the right size packages, right now to meet the needs of their morning bakery case customers. Its foodservice bulk bakery solutions in four-packs and new white box donut six-packs are the ideal morning solution. The cinnamon rolls, muffins, danishes and doughnuts are

Tobacco products that reduce harm featured at Tobacco Plus Expo

It all began to take place on April 23, 2008 on US Airways flight #797 as I was headed to the Tobacco Plus Expo 08 in Las Vegas. As usual I was excited to explore new products and programs at this year’s show, and as I would learn, the show would not disappoint. The night

NACS SOI Reveals Mixed Results

Convenience store industry sales reached a new high of $577.4 billion in 2007, but profits dropped by $1.4 billion, largely because of higher credit card fees, the 2008 NACS State of the Industry report found. Overall, industry revenues climbed only 1.4%, leveling off an extraordinary decade of growth that saw industry revenue grow more than

Stix Snacks

The Procter & Gamble Co. is introducing consumers to a totally different kind of Pringle snack treat with the official nationwide rollout of Pringles Stix, an all-crispy, all-crunchy, baked cracker stick. Pringles Stix are baked-wheat, crispy-cracker sticks with a one-of-a-kind great taste. Pringles Stix are available in four popular snacking flavors including Crunchy Wheat, Vanilla,

No Mystery Here: Speedway Voted Best Customer Service

It’s impossible to know if the pool of customers hired by market research firm Corporate Research International (CRI) would have pegged Speedway SuperAmerica LLC as the leader in customer service five years ago. The Enon, Ohio-based marketer wasn’t even among the handful of convenience store chains whose customer service was evaluated quarterly by the research

Energy On the Go

Dynatabs Energy Support are natural dietary supplements in fast-dissolving, great-tasting, fun- to-take convenient strips offering consumers that extra boost of energy. Its unique oral strip format allows for the strip to dissolve quickly on the tongue so customers don’t need any water.  They’re packed in ultra-thin pocket-pack dispensers making them convenient to carry around. Taking

Finding Success with Divesting Dealer Sites

I’ve devoted several articles over the past few years to the necessity of implementing a network rationalization strategy whereby marginal retail sites are divested and proceeds redeployed to improve chain quality. Heeding the call, several marketers have enlisted our support to find optimal solutions for their unique retail circumstances including both direct store operations and

Fresh Look for Quick Chek

Quick Chek Food Stores, the Whitehouse, N.J. chain of more than 100 stores throughout New Jersey and New York, launched a new brand positioning complete with logo, private-label product packaging and enhanced Web site. With its new logo in the shape of a bright, lime green-colored letter "Q" with tail shaped like a dark green

Supreme Cookies

Otis Spunkmeyer’s Supreme Indulgence super-premium cookie dough offers the appeal of gourmet made-from-scratch cookies without the labor. Meet customer demand and command higher price points with larger sizes, more generous inclusions and distinctive eye appeal. Conveniently preportioned dough eliminates thawing, scooping or mixing. Supreme Indulgence is available in nine delicious flavors: Shortbread, Honey Nut Chocolate

Hinsdale’s Friendly Faces

Whether they’re spending $2 or $250,000, customers descending on the 200 block of East Ogden Ave. in Hinsdale, Ill., are likely to require some fundamental features in the products they purchase. It doesn’t matter if it’s a turkey on rye from Hinsdale Shell Food Mart at 210 East Ogden Ave. or a Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder

Team M&M’s

Mars Direct Inc., a division of Mars Snackfood US, reached a licensing partnership with Major League Baseball Properties to create the new My Team M&M’S Brand Chocolate Candies. MY Team M&M’S features the team logos of any of the 30 Major League Baseball Clubs on M&M’S. MY Team M&M’S give fans a fun and delicious

Changing the Channel

Maybe it’s all headed toward a day of total convergence, when the lines separating one industry from the next will be irreversibly blurred. Consider the freewheeling dynamics of retailing in the past few years: McDonald’s has been offering DVD rentals by way of in-store kiosks. Blockbuster stores have begun offering c-store fare such as fountain

Mixed First Quarter Results for Sunoco

Not every oil company is enjoying windfall profits in the era of expensive oil. Sunoco Inc., which refines oil it buys from producers, today reported a net loss of $59 million on sales of $12.8 billion for the first quarter of the year. Sunoco earned $175 million on sales of $9.3 billion in the first

Kum & Go Names New Vice President

Kum & Go, operator of more than 430 convenience stores in 12 states, named Terry Montgomery its new vice president of business intelligence. In this newly created position, Montgomery’s main focuses will be developing the new Kum & Go Business Intelligence department and the expansion and growth of business intelligence function for the West Des

Mars, Wrigley Meld $23-Billion Merger

Mars Inc., of McLean, Va., announced a merger agreement with Chicago-based Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, a transaction that could ultimately be valued at $23 billion, the companies said. The agreement will make Wrigley, a $5.4 billion gum and confections company, a separate, stand-alone subsidiary of Mars. The agreement has been unanimously approved by both companies’

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