Kesko Group reports of €799.6 million total sales excluding VAT in October 2014

Kesko Group’s sales, excluding VAT, in October 2014 totalled €799.6 million, down 3.3%.

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — In Kesko’s food trade, sales in October were €382.6 million, a decrease of 2.4% from the previous year.

In the home and speciality goods trade, sales in October were €114.6 million, a decrease of 9.4%. The sales performance was especially impacted by the decline in the sales of the department store trade, partly attributable to the closures of Anttila department stores in August. The sales of Indoor increased. The sales of online stores were up.

In the building and home improvement trade, sales in October were €238.9 million, representing the previous year’s level. In terms of local currencies, sales were up by 1.2%. Sales in Finland decreased by 7.7%. Sales abroad increased by 5.7% in euros and by 8.5% in local currencies.

In the car and machinery trade, sales in October were €79.9 million, a decrease of 6.5%. VV-Auto’s sales in October were €64.1 million, down 6.9%. Konekesko’s sales in October were €15.8 million, a decrease of 4.8% from the previous year.

Kesko Group’s sales in euros, excluding VAT, in October 2014:

October 2014 1.1. – 31.10.2014
€ million Change, % € million Change, %
Food trade, total 382.6 -2.4 3,611.4 -1.3
Home and speciality goods trade, total 114.6 -9.4 1,045.5 -9.3
Building and home improvement trade, Finland 99.9 -7.7 1,038.4 -0.9
Building and home improvement trade, other countries 139.0 5.7 1,263.7 1.2
Building and home improvement trade, total 238.9 -0.3 2,302.1 0.2
Car and machinery trade, total 79.9 -6.5 894.2 -1.9
Common operations and eliminations -16.4 -142.5
Grand total 799.6 -3.3 7,710.8 -2.1
Finland, total 643.4 -5.4 6,247.7 -3.0
Other countries, total 156.2 6.3 1,463.1 2.0
Grand total 799.6 -3.3 7,710.8 -2.1

Change, % indicates the change compared to the corresponding period of the previous year.

In October 2014, the number of selling days in Kesko’s wholesale in Finland was 23, which was the same as in the previous year. The total number of selling days in January-October was one less than in the previous year. The number of retail selling days in October was 31, which was the same as in the previous year. The total number of retail selling days in January-October was the same as in the previous year.

Kesko releases advance information on the K-Group’s retail sales quarterly, in connection with interim reports.

Further information is available from Vice President, Group Controller Eva Kaukinen, tel. +358 105 322 338.

Kesko Corporation

Merja Haverinen
Vice President, Group Communications

DISTRIBUTION
NASDAQ OMX Helsinki Ltd
Main news media
www.kesko.fi

NRF’s Gift Card Spending Survey: the average person buying gift cards will spend $172.74, up from $163.16 last year

WASHINGTON, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — The growth in gift card popularity is irrefutable, and this holiday season spending on tiny plastic or digital gift cards will top all previous records. According to NRF’s Gift Card Spending Survey, the average person buying gift cards will spend $172.74, up from $163.16 last year. Total spending is expected to reach $31.74 billion.* In an October NRF survey 62 percent of shoppers said they would like to receive a gift card, making gift cards the most requested gift item eight years in a row.

“No longer impersonal or only about convenience, gift cards have become the perfect, practical gift item for millions of holiday shoppers,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “And, as the most requested gift item for eight years in a row, we’re sure there will be plenty of happy individuals this holiday season who can look forward to treating themselves to something shiny and new come January when retailers start to offer promotions on fresh new merchandise.”

According to the survey, shoppers will spend an average of $47.87 per card, up from $45.16 last year. Total spending on gift cards has increased 83 percent since NRF began tracking consumers’ intentions to buy gift cards as holiday gifts in 2003.

Gift cards are a go-to gift for consumers of all ages; the survey found adults 65+ will spend the most on gift cards at an average of $204.59. Young adults between 18-24 years old will spend the least at an average of $113.75. Additionally, men plan to spend significantly more than women on gift cards ($180.81 vs. $165.09 respectively).

When asked why they are planning to buy gift cards this holiday season, more than half (51.8%) of shoppers said that gift cards allow the recipient to select their own gift, up from 43.1 percent last year and the highest since NRF started asking the question in 2010. Additionally, one-quarter (25.6%) said gift cards are easier and faster to buy, and 3.8 percent said this helps them stick to their holiday budget.

“These days, shoppers simply love the idea of gifting someone they care about with a little ‘free money’ in the form of a gift card,” said Prosper’s Principal Analyst Pam Goodfellow. “Consumers young and old want to find the best way possible to create a happy holiday experience for their loved ones, and gift cards are a great option every time.”

There are a plethora of options for shoppers when it comes to what type of card to get, and it is clear department stores, restaurants and coffee shops are among the most popular choice for gift givers.  According to the survey 37.7 percent of gift card buyers will give their loved ones a gift card from a department store, and 34 percent will give their friends and family the gift of a meal at a restaurant. One in five (20.6%) will pick up coffee shop gift cards, 18.1 percent will give the gift of entertainment, such as a movie theatre gift card, and 18.9 percent will give gift cards to electronics stores.

About the Survey
The NRF 2014 Gift Card Spending Survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the winter holidays. The survey polled 6,593 consumers and was conducted for NRF by Prosper Insights & Analytics, November 3-10, 2014. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.2 percentage points.

Prosper Insights and Analytics delivers executives timely, consumer-centric insights from multiple sources. As a comprehensive resource of information, Prosper represents the voice of the consumer and provides knowledge to marketers regarding consumer views on the economy, personal finance, retail, lifestyle, media and domestic and world issues. www.ProsperDiscovery.com

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. www.nrf.com.

Kathy Grannis
(202) 783-7971
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

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JCPenney showcases extraordinary selection of gifts that deliver great style for the entire family at unbeatable value

  • Company Helps Customers “Jingle More Bells” Through Amazing Holiday Gifts, Random Acts of Giving and Support of Military Families
  • Stores Welcome Black Friday Shoppers at 5 p.m. Thanksgiving Day with Free Disney Snow Globes and Coupoun Giveaway up to $100 Off Purchases

PLANO, TX, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — This holiday season, JCPenney is proving that there’s nothing better than the spirit that comes with giving. Through promotional sales events and an inspiring holiday campaign, JCPenney is encouraging customers to “Jingle More Bells” by showcasing an extraordinary selection of gifts that deliver great style for the entire family at an unbeatable value.

“‘Jingle More Bells’ is designed to answer the long-held question of whether it’s truly better to give or receive,” said Debra Berman, chief marketing officer at JCPenney. “Through a robust marketing campaign that includes consumer and philanthropic events, social media engagement and a series of creative ads, JCPenney is showing how easy it is to give this season by delighting customers with its amazing gift selection, compelling promotions and unique savings offers that make it possible to spread cheer to everyone on their list.”

Thanksgiving Shopping Feast
JCPenney kicks off the holiday shopping season with its annual Black Friday sale starting on Thanksgiving Day when doors open at 5 p.m. While supplies last, JCPenney will be greeting its early bird patrons with a free 2014 edition Disney® snow globe and a special Jingle Bell envelope containing a $10 off $10 coupon that is immediately redeemable in store. One out of every 100 coupons will offer a $100 off $100 or more purchase that is valid on Thanksgiving through Christmas Eve.

This year’s shopping event will be one of the biggest in Company history, featuring thousands of Doorbusters and Big Buys reflected within a 72-page Black Friday sales circular. Stores will stay open through 10 p.m. on Black Friday to offer some of the lowest prices on popular gifts this holiday season. Some of the most anticipated Doorbuster deals will include:

• $2.99 Home Expressions bath towel

• $4.99 Disney mini plush toy

• $9.99 small kitchen electrics

• $19.99 boots for her

• $39.99 Nuband fitness tracker

• $39.99 Protocol 4-pc luggage set

• $159.99 ½ ct. t.w. diamond stud earrings in 10k yellow or white gold

Customers can also take advantage of Black Friday prices on jcpenney.com all day on Thanksgiving through 1 p.m. on Black Friday, receiving free shipping on orders over $49. Over 50,000 Cyber Monday deals will be available at jcpenney.com on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 as part of a two-day “Out-Click St. Nick” sale. This will be the first year that Cyber Monday deals will be available in stores.

#JustGotJingled
In a unique social activation, JCPenney is inviting customers to share the moments when they’ve been able to “Jingle More Bells” this holiday season. Whether it’s sweeping an elderly neighbor’s sidewalk, paying for a stranger’s coffee or finding that perfect gift for a hard-to-please uncle, JCPenney is encouraging followers to share those giving occasions on social media using #JustGotJingled. The hashtag is intended to inspire a movement that encourages people to “jingle” it forward by spreading holiday cheer, capturing it on video or photo and then posting it to their favorite social media channel. The campaign will be supported by a JustGotJingled.com microsite, where visitors will find inspiration, weekly challenges and heartwarming videos demonstrating random acts of giving.

Warm Hands, Giving Spirits
This season, JCPenney associates from stores to supply chain centers will join in the holiday spirit by wearing special red and white candy cane-striped gloves, as seen in the holiday television commercials that debuted on Nov. 12. The festive gloves will be highlighted in weekly sales circulars and in-store signage with playful images of glove-clad hands signing “peace,” “love,” “joy” and more. The festive gloves serve as a warm reminder to honor the spirit of the season.

The gloves will also be worn by a team of helpful “elves” known as the JCPenney Jingle Brigade who will visit various cities across the country on Dec. 2,Giving Tuesday, to surprise and delight unsuspecting locals with spontaneous acts of generosity. During their nationwide stops, the Jingle Brigade will invite kids from a local Boys & Girls Club to visit a JCPenney store and participate in a special shopping experience that enables kids to select gifts for their families while being treated to a photo opportunity with a local hometown celebrity.

Giving Back to Those Who Serve
From Dec. 1-19, customers will be invited to round up their purchase to the nearest dollar and donate the difference to JCPenney Cares. Customer contributions donated to JCPenney Cares will directly fund programs focused on supporting military families through the USO (United Service Organization) and Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. Dedicated to supporting U.S. troops and their families, the USO provides the military community with programs, services and entertainment that keep them connected and comforted throughout their service. Through its partnership with the U.S. Armed Forces, Boys & Girls Clubs of America serves the unique needs of military families by offering a safe place, caring adult mentors and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours.

For holiday shopping b-roll, product and marketing visuals, please visit jcpnewsroom.com/posts/262/JCPenney-Celebrates-Giving. For the Spanish version of this holiday release, please click jcpnewsroom.com/browse/Comunicados-de-Prensa

JCPenney Media Relations
972-431-3400 or jcpnews@jcp.com
@jcpnews

About JCPenney
J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE: JCP), one of the nation’s largest apparel and home furnishing retailers, is dedicated to fitting the diversity of America with unparalleled style, quality and value. Across approximately 1,060 stores and at jcpenney.com, customers will discover a broad assortment of national, private and exclusive brands to fit all shapes, sizes, colors and wallets. For more information, please visit jcpenney.com.

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Rite Aid provides convenient and comprehensive resources to help customers prepare for the upcoming Affordable Care Act enrollment period

Customers Can Access Independent, Licensed Insurance Agents for Free Consultations Via Convenient Hotline

Camp Hill, Pa., 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — To help customers prepare for the upcoming Affordable Care Act enrollment period, Rite Aid is once again providing convenient and comprehensive resources to assist them in choosing the best health insurance choices for themselves and their families. Beginning Nov. 15, independent, licensed insurance agents will be available through a dedicated toll free number to enroll customers and provide free consultations with customers to answer questions on the Affordable Care Act.

The agents will be able to help customers compare healthcare plans based on individual needs, and will be able to advise customers on Medicaid eligibility in applicable states. Customers will also be able to enroll in a plan over the phone if they choose. All Rite Aid stores will have brochures with information on the Affordable Care Act and information will also be offered on www.riteaid.com/affordablecare.

“Providing customers with access to independent and licensed insurance agents reinforces our commitment to improving the health and wellness of our communities,” said Robert Thompson, Rite Aid executive vice president of pharmacy. “We know that many of our customers will be looking for help as they search for the best health insurance solutions for themselves and their families and our resources will help them make the right choices this enrollment period.”

Agents are available at 1-855-880-8777, Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. EST and Saturday-Sunday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.

The Affordable Care Act open enrollment period runs through February 15, 2015.

Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE: RAD) is one of the nation’s leading drugstore chains with nearly 4,600 stores in 31 states and the District of Columbia and fiscal 2014 annual revenues of $25.5 billion. Information about Rite Aid, including corporate background and press releases, is available through the company’s website at www.riteaid.com.

# # #

Contact:

Media: Kristin Kellum 717-975-5713

Wincor Nixdorf commissioned by zeb to take over the central operations management of its IT infrastructure

Paderborn, Germany, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — Wincor Nixdorf has been commissioned by zeb, a leading consulting company in the financial services sector, with taking over the central operations management of its IT infrastructure from October 1, 2014. The contract is due to run for up to seven years.

As an outsourcing partner, Wincor Nixdorf is therefore responsible for the operation and further development of an important part of zeb’s information technology. Wincor Nixdorf is transferring all central infrastructures and solutions to its own data centers in Paderborn and continuously optimizing technologies and IT processes to ensure sustainably efficient IT operations.

In detail, the services include the operation of two redundant data centers, about 450 server systems and more than 1,000 workstations, the provision and updating of software and applications for these systems, basic SAP operation as well as the operation of databases, the network and all communications facilities. In addition, Wincor Nixdorf has set up a user help desk for queries and problems. The services are being provided by Wincor Nixdorf’s sites in Paderborn, Bonn and Prague.

“By commissioning Wincor Nixdorf, zeb has taken precisely the step it always recommends to its customers: focusing on one’s own core competencies. More flexible IT costs, professional and secure IT operations and the fast use of innovative solutions are the main benefits in our eyes,” explained Andreas Schick, partner and CIO of zeb.

Richard Schlauri, Vice President at Wincor Nixdorf and responsible for global outsourcing and Managed Services, sees the conclusion of this contract as confirmation of Wincor Nixdorf’s extensive solution expertise in the banking sector: “This new order shows that Wincor Nixdorf is becoming a recognized specialist for the management of complex IT outsourcing projects.”

About zeb
Currently, zeb has more than 900 employees working at 18 locations in Germany, Denmark, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Austria, Poland, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Ukraine and Hungary. The group is one of the leading consulting companies for the financial services sector. Customers include both national and international banks, savings banks, Volksbank and Raiffeisenbank institutions as well as insurance companies.

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Wincor Nixdorf names Dr. Ulrich Näher as head of the global development network

Paderborn, Germany, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ —  As of January 1, 2015, Dr. Ulrich Näher (49) is taking over as head of the global development network at Wincor Nixdorf. His wealth of experience gained from his work at McKinsey and Company will stand him in good stead for his new role with the IT specialist for retail banks and retailers. Ulrich Näher is currently a Director in the Munich office of McKinsey, and leads the Global Product Development Practice. In the area of management consulting, he advises clients who come primarily from the electronics industry in Europe and Asia. From 2006 to 2011, he worked in the Tokyo office of McKinsey, before which he was employed in Corporate Development at Siemens. Näher studied physics and mathematics, and earned a doctorate in physics from the University of Stuttgart. As Head of Research and Development, he will be a member of the Executive Board at Wincor Nixdorf and Senior Vice President.

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Russia’s largest food retailer “Magnit” exceeded 250 thousand headcount

Krasnodar, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — PJSC “Magnit”, Russia’s largest food retailer (the “Company”; MICEX and LSE: MGNT), is pleased to announce that its total headcount has now exceeded 250 thousand.

Please be informed that the total headcount of PJSC “Magnit” group of companies has exceeded 250 000, including over 231 000 active employees (about 20 000 are on maternity leave).

The Company’s personnel breakdown is the following:
69.3% – in-store personnel;
21.2% – people engaged in distribution;
6.3% – people in regional branches;
3.2% – employed by the Head Office.

PJSC “Magnit” is the largest private employer in Russia.

For further information, please contact:
Timothy Post Director, Investor Relations
Email: post@magnit.ru
Office: +7-861-277-4554 x 17600
Mobile: +7-961-511-7678
Direct Line: +7-861-277-4562

Dina Svishcheva Deputy Director, Investor Relations
Email: Chistyak@magnit.ru
Office: +7-861-277-45-54 x 15101
Mobile: +7-961-511-0202
Direct Line: +7-861-277-4562

Company description:
Magnit is Russia’s largest food retailer. Founded in 1994, the company is headquartered in the southern Russian city of Krasnodar. As of September 30, 2014, Magnit operated 25 distribution centers and over 9,020 stores (7,891 convenience, 243 hypermarkets, and 886 drogerie stores) in approximately 2,000 cities and towns throughout 7 federal regions of the Russian Federation.

In accordance with the reviewed IFRS consolidated financial statements for 1H 2014, Magnit had revenues of $9,979 million USD and an EBITDA of $1,045 million USD. Magnit’s local shares are traded on the Moscow Stock Exchange (MICEX: MGNT) and its GDRs on the London Stock Exchange (LSE: MGNT) and it has a credit rating from Standard & Poor’s of BB. Measured by market capitalization, Magnit is one of the largest retailers in Europe.

Progressive Grocer named Stop & Shop and all of the Ahold USA businesses as 2014 Retailer of the Year

Recognized for company’s better neighbor efforts

Purchase, NY & Quincy, MA, 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — Progressive Grocer, a leading retail food industry trade publication, has named Stop & Shop and all of the Ahold USA businesses as 2014 Retailer of the Year. The recognition was given for the company’s exceptional philanthropic contributions and community outreach efforts. Stop & Shop is profiled in the October 2014 issue which can be found at www.progressivegrocer.com.

“Stop & Shop is enormously proud of this award,” said Don Sussman, president of Stop & Shop New York Metro Division. “It is our honor and privilege to be able to give back to each and every community that we do business in. It is essential that Stop & Shop set an example of what it means to be a responsible corporate citizen. The support we receive in our efforts from our customers and associates to make a difference is a source of great pride to Stop and Shop.”

Progressive Grocer’s profile highlights Stop & Shop’s community efforts related to charitable giving, health and wellness initiatives and associate engagement. In 2013, Stop & Shop New York and New England divisions donated over $20 million to help the communities they serve.

“This is the highest honor to be bestowed on a retailer and we are humbled yet honored to receive the Retailer of the Year award,” said Joe Kelley, President of Stop & Shop New England Division. “We would not have achieved this without the support and hard work from our associates who do an outstanding job serving our customers and of course our customers who support us on a daily basis to further emphasize that we are a great place to work and shop. The award is also a testament to our better neighbor programs and we are grateful to be able to give back to the communities in which we serve on a continued basis.”

“We are delighted to have the opportunity to celebrate the ongoing commitment and vital role Stop & Shop’s family of stores and associates play not only as a better neighbor but also as an exceptionally responsible retailer in countless meaningful ways,” said Progressive Grocer’s Editor-in-Chief Jim Dudlicek. “Their caring culture and commitment to good corporate citizenship have been at the forefront of the company’s success through the years.”

As the voice of the retail food industry for 90 years, Progressive Grocer’s core audience targets top management at headquarters and key decision makers at store-level from chain supermarkets, to regional and local independent grocers, supercenters, wholesaler distributors, manufacturers and other supply chain training partners.

About Stop & Shop
The Stop & Shop Supermarket Company LLC employs over 59,000 associates and operates 395 stores throughout Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York and New Jersey. The company helps support local communities fight hunger, combat childhood cancer and promote general health and wellness – with emphasis on children’s educational and support programs. In its commitment to be a sustainable company, Stop & Shop is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council and EPA’s Smart Way program and has been recognized by the EPA for the superior energy management of its stores. Stop & Shop is an Ahold company. To learn more about Stop & Shop, visit www.stopandshop.com or www.facebook.com/stopandshop.

Contacts:
Arlene Putterman
Stop & Shop NY Metro Division
(914) 251-2834
arlene.putterman@stopandshop.com

Annmarie Seldon
Stop & Shop New England Division
(617) 276-7756
aseldon@webershandwick.com

Giant Food removed from sale Salpica Ballpark Nacho & Black Bean Nacho products due to an undeclared allergen, wheat, on the ingredient label

Landover, Md., 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — Following a recall by Riba Foods, Inc., Giant Food announced it removed from sale Salpica Ballpark Nacho & Black Bean Nacho products due to an undeclared allergen, wheat, on the ingredient label. This product is safe to consume for individuals who do not suffer from a wheat allergy.

The following products are included in this recall:

  • Salpica Ballpark Nacho Sauce, 8 oz., UPC 60418332090 with best by dates of 9/12/14, 9/19/14, 10/8/14, 10/29/14 and 12/21/14
  • Salpica Ballpark Blackbean Nacho Sauce, 8 oz., UPC 60418332092 with best by dates of 9/12/14, 9/19/14, 10/8/14, 10/29/14 and 12/21/14

Giant has received no reports of illnesses to date. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to wheat may run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume this product. Symptoms of food allergies typically appear from within a few minutes to two hours after a person has eaten the food to which he or she is allergic. Allergic reactions can include: hives; flushed skin or rash; tingling or itchy sensation in the mouth; face, tongue, or lip swelling; vomiting and/or diarrhea; abdominal cramps; coughing or wheezing; dizziness and/or lightheadedness; swelling of the throat and vocal cords; difficulty breathing; loss of consciousness.

Customers who have purchased this product should discard any unused portions and bring their purchase receipt to Giant for a full refund.

Consumers looking for additional information on the recall may call Riba Foods at 800-327- 7422. In addition customers may call Giant Food Customer Service at 888-469-4426 for more information. Customers can also visit the Giant Food website at www.giantfood.com.

About Giant Food of Landover, Md.
Giant Food LLC, headquartered in Landover, Md., operates 170 supermarkets in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, and the District of Columbia, and employs approximately 20,000 associates. Included within the 170 stores are 158 full-service pharmacies. Giant is owned by Ahold USA, Inc. For more information on Giant, visit www.giantfood.com.

MEDIA CONTACT: Jamie Miller
(301) 341-8776
jmiller@giantfood.com

Commissary opens new store at Fort Polk

FORT LEE, Va., 2014-11-14— /EPR Retail News/ — Called another “jewel” for Fort Polk, the new commissary did not disappoint its patrons who got their first look during the grand opening Nov. 12.

“This is very nice,” said Army Staff Sgt. Artemus Renteria, who waited more than two hours along with his wife, Lyn, for the store to open. “The large produce department looks immaculate, and the deli-bakery has items and services that my family is going to enjoy.”

During the 9 a.m. opening ceremony, Army Brig. Gen. William. B. Hickman, commanding general, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk, referred to the commissary as “another jewel,” a welcome addition to the many services and features the installation offers to enhance military quality of life.

Replacing a commissary about a block away that had served the installation since 1976, the shopping area of the new store is 25 percent larger, with a greatly expanded produce department and features designed to make shopping more enjoyable, noted DeCA Director and CEO Joseph H. Jeu during his remarks.

The new Fort Polk store has nine regular checkouts, four self-checkouts, an international delicatessen and bakery, sushi-to-go services and a stock assortment of 17,000 items to serve a patron base of nearly 32,000 authorized shoppers.

With its energy efficient and environmentally friendly features, the expansive new facility is designed to make shopping pleasant, according to Ed Koerner, the store director.

Shopper Amanda Al Janahi echoed Koerner’s sentiments, saying “The wide aisles especially made it easy to navigate, and it is well organized.”

Lauren Manary, an Army spouse for two years, used “modern” to describe the commissary as she quickly toured the store. “I really appreciate the commissary savings. As someone new to Army life I’m still getting used to having access to low-priced groceries. I can’t wait to shop!”

All of that was good news to Koerner.

“The customer is king and our customers are going to love their new store,” said Koerner, who has more than 23 years of commissary experience. “It makes me and the store staff proud to boost the morale and the quality of life at Fort Polk by providing the commissary benefit in such a modern facility.”

Throughout the day, commissary industry partners and vendors were on hand to give away commissary gift cards and other prizes to customers as a way to celebrate the new store’s opening.

Commissary shoppers had a major role in making the store possible because the store was built using surcharge funds. The 5 percent surcharge is added to every commissary shopper’s grocery bill, and the money is used to pay for construction and renovation of commissary facilities.

For store hours and other information visit the Fort Polk store page.

NOTE: To see photos of the new Fort Polk Commissary grand opening, please visit our Flickr page. For a video of how DeCA employees and industry partners prepared the store for the grand opening, visit YouTube.

About DeCA: The Defense Commissary Agency operates a worldwide chain of commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment. Authorized patrons purchase items at cost plus a 5-percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones. Shoppers save an average of more than 30 percent on their purchases compared to commercial prices – savings amounting to thousands of dollars annually. A core military family support element, and a valued part of military pay and benefits, commissaries contribute to family readiness, enhance the quality of life for America’s military and their families, and help recruit and retain the best and brightest men and women to serve their country.

Media Contact:
Kevin L. Robinson
(804) 734-8000, Ext. 4-8773
kevin.robinson@deca.mil