7-Eleven Hulkifies The Slurpee

7-Eleven, Inc. has hulked up its stores, unveiling everything from green-colored Slurpees and Super Hero sandwiches to a renamed Incredible Gulp fountain drink and a new edition of The Incredible Hulk comic book, created by Marvel Comics and available exclusively at 7-Eleven. It’s all part of the buzz-build for the June 13 release of Universal

7-Eleven Turns To Innovative Wireless LAN Creator

Aerohive Networks, creators of the controller-less "cooperative control" wireless LAN (WLAN) architecture, said 7-Eleven has deployed its wireless LAN in its Oklahoma City corporate office and chain of convenience stores. Infoworld recently chose Aerohive as among the Top 10 high tech startup companies, primarily because of Aerohive’s innovations in creating a centrally managed wireless network

Eyeing U.S. Up

Tokyo-based FamilyMart Co. is looking to expand its upscale convenience stores after last year’s opening of its first locations in West Hollywood and Westwood, Calif.,The Los Angeles Times reported. The chain hopes to have as many as 30 of its upscale, Asian-inspired “Famima” shops in the Los Angeles area by the end of this year

Chester’s Opens Mississippi Site

Chester’s International opened its newest chicken foodservice site in Florence, Miss., this week at Southern Oil convenience store on East Main Street. The new store is a franchised location operated by Mitchell Morris, owner and operator of the Southern Oil convenience store in historic Florence. With the Chester’s addition, the c-store chain will serve lunch

Sheetz Charity Adds Roethlisberger to Lineup

The 10th annual Sheetz Family Christmas "For the Kidz" Golf Classic in Williamsburg, Va. this week is drawing big-name stars like Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger, NFL greats Lawrence Taylor, Eric Dickerson, Cris Carter and LPGA pro Natalie Gulbis. The charity event, held yesterday and today at Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, raises thousands of dollars

McTreading on Other Channels

In yet another move that steps on the toes of the convenience store industry, fast-food giant McDonald’s is testing the sale of bottled and canned drinks at about 150 locations. While it may be years before the plan is fully realized, McDonald’s is testing the sale of bottled and canned colas, teas, energy drinks and

IRI Leveraging New Technologies

Market research firm Information Resources Inc., of Chicago, is pushing onward to lead the marketplace in consumer research panel innovation, namely through the continued development of new techniques and technologies such as panel-based Virtual Shopping, Web-based individual usage surveys, price monitoring and more. IRI said it’s shedding new light across the four stages in the

Dew Diligence in a ‘Dewmocracy’

While Barack Obama and John McCain have months to heat up their own race, Mountain Dew is firing up a campaign of its own, the “Dewmocracy” challenge. Consumers are casting their votes in a heated three-way race for the next addition to the Mountain Dew lineup, choosing one of three brands to become a permanent

Kum & Go Awards University For Finance Finesse

Students in a University of Iowa finance class cashed in on an opportunity to show their investment skills, a feat that won the school Kum & Go’s 2008 Krause Challenge investment competition. The Krause Challenge started in 1998 when W.A. Krause, founder and chairman of West Des Moines, Iowa-based Kum & Go, provided a one-time

Road Warriors: Gilbarco Veeder-Root Appearing On Travel Channel

Gilbarco Veeder-Root will be featured on The Travel Channel’s Made In America program on June 14 at noon Eastern, a segment that will highlight the company’s products used by consumer worldwide. The company’s product lineup features sophisticated technology developed and produced at the company’s Greensboro, N.C. headquarters. Program host John Ratzenberger will chat with Gilbarco

Food Workers Union Takes Aim At Tesco

The 1.3 million-strong United Food and Commercial Workers union, one of the largest in the country, has launched a campaign in the UK to expose what it calls “The Two Faces of Tesco." At a Westminster press launch chaired by Jon Cruddas MP, the union said it’s stepping up a campaign already begun in the

In the Days of Old…

Under attack from taxes, credit card fees and even some of our branded partners, retailers must continue to fight on. by Jim Callahan, Convenience Store Solutions In the days of old before crude was “liquid gold” and drive-offs were unheard of, we had low taxes and no faxes and just two blends to deal with.

Retooling the Retail Machine

CHICAGO — Research firm IRI has released the first in a series of studies gauging consumer shopping and purchasing behavior, giving manufacturers and retailers new insights on how they can respond in a market where increasing food and energy prices are uprooting the retail landscape. The study, “IRI Times & Trends Special Report: Competing in

Washington-area 7-Eleven Wants Slurpee Stardom

KENNEWICK, Wash. — A 7-Eleven store in Kennewick, Wash., sold more Slurpee drinks in 2007 than any other 7-Eleven in the U.S., and it’s on track to attain worldwide dominance in the Slurpee sales. 7-Eleven expects that the Kennewick Slurpee Factory, as the store has been unofficially named, will become the No. 1 store in

Boo Koo, Coke Team To Launch Energy Drink

ADDISON, Texas — Beverage manufacturer Boo Koo Holdings Inc. said it’s partnering with Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated, the nation’s second largest Coca-Cola bottler, to launch the new BooKoo Burner+ energy drink. Coke Consolidated will distribute the new drink to more 2,000 of its current convenience store customers throughout Nashville, Tenn.; Mobile, Ala.; Panama City, Fla.

Chester’s Opens in Wine Country

DELANO, Calif. – An area known for its expansive vineyards and great wine, Delano, Calif. has now become the latest expansion site for Chester’s International. The fried chicken company chose Akal Travel Plaza in Delano to install its latest store, which officially opened on May 30 in a grand opening ceremony. “Chester’s, a brand that

New West Petroleum Selling 32 Sites

New West Petroleum LLC, of Sacramento, Calif., is selling 32 sites on the West Coast, including 30 convenience stores and two undeveloped parcels, according to NRC Realty Advisors LLC, the Chicago-based company hired by New West to coordinate the sale. The 30 convenience stores include 22 fee-owned properties, seven leasehold properties and one fee/leasehold combination.

Red Bull Charges Into Cola Category

Red Bull is hoping its new Red Bull Cola, debuting in Las Vegas this month, will cut into a share of the mainstream cola crowd, brandweek.com reported. Red Bull Cola will be 100% natural and command a premium price, its formula consisting of kola nut and coca leaf. The debut comes as Red Bull has

QSR Magazine Releases Fast-food Survey Results

QSR Magazine has released its annual survey of consumer preferences and attitudes on quick-service restaurants, examining, among other things: how often consumers eat fast food, the factors most important in choosing a restaurant, favorite fast-food menu items, whether fast food has gotten healthier and more. "The yearly consumer survey is a great way for restaurant

CFTC Scrutinizing Crude Oil Trading, Energy Futures

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced last week a number of initiatives to increase transparency of the energy futures markets, while the Washington Post reported that the Commission had been investigating crude oil trading, storage and transportation for the past six months with a focus on possible "futures market manipulation." The Commodity Futures

The Competition: Discretionary Spending Looms Large

For the past decade, the list of retailers that have cut into the convenience store industry’s consumer base has included the usual suspects: Wal-Mart, Starbucks, McDonald’s, Walgreens and a slew of other national brands in a smattering of channels. C-stores are predictably pitted against those same powerhouses in 2008, but the environment is far more

Other Tobacco products: OTP On The Rise

A surefire marketing strategy: Develop a need where consumers don’t even know they have one. The flipside: Wait until a need becomes so apparent, so prevalent and so overwhelming that it can no longer be justifiably ignored as a legitimate need. A pocketful of lawsuits and a barrage of tax increases in its portfolio, and

Juices and teas: Fruit Drinks Flat, Teas Growing

Information Resources Inc. (IRI) reported that the total count for the sparkling juice category is $78 million and rising. Even so, it’s a bit difficult to tell how much traction the average c-store retailer can get from them given the huge number of beverage choices available in this category today. Other than specialty sparkling beverages

Car Wash and Motor Fuels: Fueling Frustration

Fuel price volatility is here to stay. Marketers must learn how to manage it to their advantage. That was the cold, hard message conveyed in the 2008 NACS State of the Industry (SOI) report. Marketers are urged to pay attention to sales volumes, but also focus on gross margin dollars and to always look at

Candy, gum and mints: Candy Continues to be Dominant

The U.S. retail confectionery category generated approximately $29 billion in sales in 2007 and the profit margin for the category was approximately 35%, according to the National Confectioners Association’s (NCA) U.S. Confectionery Market report. Convenience stores accounted for 15%, or $4.5 billion, of overall candy sales in 2007, surpassing drug stores and dollar stores, but

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