Sprouts Farmers Market partners with Instacart to expand its home delivery service

PHOENIX, 2018-Jan-11 — /EPR Retail News/ — Sprouts Farmers Market (NASDAQ:SFM) today (Jan. 09, 2018)  announced it will expand home delivery service to its major markets across the country through a new partnership with Instacart. Customers will be able to enjoy quick, convenient delivery of thousands of fresh, natural and organic products from Sprouts by simply visiting delivery.sprouts.com, the Instacart website or mobile app, where they can choose to have their groceries delivered same-day within one or two hours, or schedule a delivery for later in the week.

Sprouts, which currently offers home delivery in eight cities across the country, will roll out the Instacart service to markets in phases, starting with select zip codes in Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona today. Additional markets will be announced at a later date.

“We are excited to respond to customer demand for fast, convenient home delivery of their favorite Sprouts products in all of our major markets across the country,” said Sprouts chief executive officer Amin Maredia. “Home delivery is a natural way for Sprouts to engage with our customers on their healthy living journey, and our partnership with Instacart allows us to quickly scale for growth.”

“Customers choose Instacart because of our ability to bring the products they want from their favorite neighborhood stores straight to their doorsteps,” said Apoorva Mehta, Founder and CEO of Instacart. “Partnering with a value-driven brand like Sprouts Farmers Market allows us to provide customers with same-day delivery of the fresh, natural and organic groceries they depend on to nourish their families.”

To download media assets, including B-roll video, please visit sprouts.com/media-resources.

About Instacart 
Instacart helps people cross grocery shopping off their to-do lists with just a few clicks. Customers use the Instacart website or app to fill their virtual shopping cart with items from their favorite, local stores and Instacart connects them with shoppers who hand pick the items and deliver them straight to their door. Founded in San Francisco in 2012, Instacart has quickly scaled to over 190 markets and partnered with retailers across North America, including popular national chains as well as local, regional grocers. By combining a personal touch with cutting-edge technology, Instacart offers customers a simple solution to save time and eat fresh food from the most trusted grocery brands. Instacart is the only grocery service that can meet today’s on-demand lifestyle by delivering in as little as one hour. First delivery is free at www.instacart.com.

About Sprouts Farmers Market 
Sprouts Farmers Market, Inc. specializes in fresh, natural and organic products at prices that appeal to everyday grocery shoppers. Based on the belief that healthy food should be affordable, Sprouts’ welcoming environment and knowledgeable team members continue to drive its growth. Sprouts offers a complete shopping experience that includes an array of fresh produce in the heart of the store, a deli with prepared entrees and side dishes, The Butcher Shop, The Fish Market, an expansive vitamins and supplements department and more. Headquartered in Phoenix, Ariz., Sprouts employs more than 27,000 team members and operates more than 280 stores in 15 states from coast to coast. Visit sprouts.com for more information.


Donna Egan

Source: Sprouts Farmers Market/globenewswire

SPAR China Partners further expands with new store openings

China, 2017-Nov-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — In the last few months, SPAR China Partners have opened a number of new stores in different regions, varying from SPAR Neighbourhood and a SPAR lifestyle Supermarket to large SPAR Hypermarkets, showing the diversity of the SPAR format in this highly competitive market.

SPAR Guangdong opens three new stores

SPAR Partner Guangdong is accelerating its store network expansion and within just a few weeks of each other, three new stores were recently opened.

The first was the much anticipated second SPAR store in Dalingshan Town. The 335m2 store offers customers a great retail experience with its focus on fresh food, including a wide selection of fresh meats, fruits, vegetables and various ready-to-eat meal solutions, complemented by excellent dry food and non-food product categories. The offerings include freshly prepared foods to order, as well as an extensive Food-to-Go selection. The store has a free WiFi zone and an inviting, open terrace awaits customers. In addition, the store also provides an extensive value-added service offering, including money transfer and credit card & bill payments. This new SPAR lifestyle store enticed crowds of shoppers on opening day who rushed to see the newest luxury shopping destination.

Following on from the Dalingshan Town SPAR store opening, SPAR Guangdong announced the grand opening of SPAR Futong Zizaicheng. The 186m2 SPAR store has an inviting space and atmosphere – designed to satisfy the needs of local residents by combining an extensive range of fresh produce and Food-to-Go options with daily necessities, as well as newspapers, magazines and office stationery. Huge crowds poured into the store to enjoy this new grocery experience on the opening day. “With the opening of SPAR, there is no need to go far anymore to purchase fresh produce,” said a local resident.

The third recent SPAR Guangdong opening took place in Chenzhou – a city located in the south of Henan province. This latest opening has signalled SPAR Guangdong’s ambition to enter new regions. The store has an operating area of 3,000m2 and following the SPAR principles of freshness, choice, value and service, it offers customers value-for-money, top-quality products, sourced both locally and internationally. The product selection includes imported seafood, local specialties and European bakery products to name just a few. The SPAR Own Brand range, the best choice for shoppers, was introduced with high quality products at a low price.

To date, SPAR Guangdong has a presence in eight cities in Guangdong province, operating a total of 78 SPAR stores up from 70 at the start of the year. The new stores give locals access to the globally renowned SPAR Brand, providing shoppers with a pleasant shopping experience that mirrors European best practice retail standards, satisfying the needs of modern consumers who expect top-quality products and service.

SPAR Beijing re-opens renovated store

SPAR Beijing has re-opened its renovated Beilu Garden store. The opening was advertised on local TV, generating strong brand awareness and helping to draw big crowds on opening day.

The newly renovated store is a community-based supermarket offering over 1,500 products, with an increased focus on fresh food items instore such as ready-to-eat meals.

SPAR Beijing is the first retailer in the city to use additive-free ingredients for its pasta and noodle products. The SPAR Partner offers high quality products, enhanced customer service and a pleasant shopping experience, making it a popular choice among shoppers.

SPAR Sichuan holds two grand re-openings

SPAR Sichuan recently celebrated the grand re-opening of two stores. The first, SPAR Barkam, is the most popular community-based supermarket in the region and customers were delighted to once again be able to shop at their favourite store. SPAR Barkam’s fresh department, which has become the focal point of the store, has been enriched with new product ranges available at an attractive price – giving customers easy access to a wide range of sought after fresh produce such as seafood, fruits and vegetables. Barkam is a county-level city located in the northwest of Sichuan province. SPAR Sichuan has identified great market potential in the region and as such has invested in the launch of more stores in the near future.

SPAR Tongjiang, a neighbourhood store in Nuojiang Town, was the second re-opening to take place. The store is representative of the company’s next generation store design and customer experience. Remodelled from the previous Baixin store, it brings customers world-class retailing under the SPAR Brand. The shopping experience and convenience offer are unprecedented thanks to the many improvements like the new branding, bright interior design, new departmental layout and easy-to-read signage. To celebrate the re-opening and thank local shoppers for their loyalty, a series of promotions and discount programmes were offered during the opening days.

With an ever-increasing degree of competition for retailers, SPAR Sichuan has vowed to deepen the partnership with SPAR by enhancing knowledge exchange, implementing best practice from worldwide resources, and opening more new stores catering to the ever-evolving needs of customers.

For more SPAR China news, follow this link.

About SPAR China:

SPAR was introduced to China with the signing of the licence agreement for Shandong Province in 2004. This was followed by the addition of more partners, and now SPAR is operational in nine provinces: Shandong, Guangdong, Shanxi, Inner Mongolia, Beijing, Sichuan, Henan, Hubei and Hebei.

The privately owned retail chains licensed to operate SPAR have a cooperative relationship in line with the original SPAR mission of working together to reduce costs, maximise sales and increase profits. The SPAR China Partners, whilst part of a leading international group, maintain 100% local ownership.


SPAR International
Email: info@spar-international.com
Tel: +3120 626 6749

Source: Spar International

Starbucks provides critical illness insurance plan for partners in China

Starbucks provides critical illness insurance plan for partners in China


  • New benefit will provide fully-sponsored critical illness insurance coverage to more than 10,000 parents of its Chinese partners
  • Program honors the strong role parents have in the success of its partners, while recognizing the deeply-rooted Chinese family values

BEIJING, China, 2017-Apr-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Starbucks Coffee Company (NASDAQ: SBUX) today (April 10, 2017) established a new precedent for the role and responsibility of a public company leading through the lens of humanity in China – its largest and fastest-growing second market. Beginning June 1, 2017, Starbucks will offer a critical illness insurance plan for the parents* of its eligible** full-time partners (employees) in company-operated stores across Mainland China. This industry-leading investment will benefit over 10,000 parents of its Chinese partners.

The ‘Starbucks China Parent Care Program’ was announced by Howard Schultz, executive chairman, Starbucks Coffee Company, and Belinda Wong, ceo, Starbucks China, at a Starbucks Partner Family Forum in Beijing, the latest in a series of family forums the company has held with its Chinese partners and their families since 2012.

“Our core purpose and reason for being has always been driven by a set of beliefs steeped in humanity and I’m extremely proud to be able to support our Chinese partners and their parents through the Parent Care Program,” said Schultz. “Supporting critical illnesses for aging parents exemplifies what we believe is our responsibility as a global public company and honors the family values deeply-rooted in the Chinese culture.”

Addressing a key concern of partners

In 2010, the company introduced Starbucks Caring Unites Partners (C.U.P.) Fund in China which provides financial assistance to partners and their families in times of need. An analysis of the C.U.P Fund requests over the past seven years, as well as conversations with partners revealed that more than 70 percent of Chinese partners are concerned about the health of their parents as they age. Those who are single, making up 80 percent of retail partners in China, are specifically concerned about their financial ability to provide for their parents’ long-term care should a critical illness occur.

“Culturally, parents play an important role in the lives and career choices of our Chinese partners and they are a natural extension of our Starbucks family in China. Through this new investment, we are stepping up on our responsibility to help our partners take care of their aging parents by alleviating the financial costs that may arise during a family emergency,” added Belinda Wong, ceo, Starbucks China. “Starbucks success in China is directly attributed to the passion and dedication of our partners as well as the unwavering support from their family.”

Redefining health care benefits in China

The ‘Starbucks China Parent Care Program’ is a unique, innovative plan created in collaboration with one of the top insurers in the country to complement the current China Social Medical Insurance Program. The plan leverages Starbucks considerable partner base in China to create a tailored program to alleviate health care and treatment costs associated with a critical illness for its partners.

“The active participation by the private sector is critical to China’s efforts to further enhance the social security system to support our aging population. Starbucks has responded positively to the Government’s call to elevate the commercial health insurance industry, our social security network and to promote a ‘Healthy China’. It is also a firm demonstration of Starbucks social responsibility efforts to give back to the community in a meaningful manner,” said Mr. Jiang Chongguang, Deputy Secretary-General of the Insurance Society of China.

Li Ling, 29, a Starbucks store manager and Coffee Master in Deyang, Sichuan Province, and her family experienced the financial burden when both her mother and grandmother fell ill at the same time.

“I’ve always been concerned by the financial responsibility of caring for my family and now I have my Starbucks extended family here to support me,” said Ling. “It’s a great relief to me, and all of my Chinese partners, that Starbucks has taken a leadership position to support the health and care of our aging parents. I’m incredibly grateful to be with a company that understands our hopes, dreams and aspirations for the future.”

With more than 2,600 stores, across 127 cities, and nearly 40,000 partners across the country, the ‘Starbucks China Parent Care Program’ builds on Starbucks health insurance coverage available to both full- and part-time partners, their spouses and children across the country and its unparalleled, locally-relevant partner benefits, including: the Starbucks China University, Starbucks China Talent Exchange Program, a housing allowance subsidy for full-time baristas and shift supervisors, and a Career Coffee Break (sabbatical).

Starbucks has a long history of providing industry-leading benefits. Since 1988, Starbucks has offered comprehensive benefits, including affordable and comprehensive health care to eligible part-time and full-time partners in the U.S. To address the growing cost of higher education in the United States, Starbucks created the Starbucks College Achievement Plan in 2014 for eligible U.S. partners to earn bachelor’s degrees through Arizona State University with full tuition reimbursement. Announced in 2015, the innovative Home Sweet Loan programme in the U.K. provides an interest-free loan to help partners pay rental deposits when moving into a new home and, last year, Starbucks Korea introduced its College Achievement Plan to provide tuition support for partners who want to finish their four-year college degrees.

*Parents of Starbucks partners must be below the age of 75 to qualify for the insurance program. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing health requirements stipulated by the insurance coverage provider. It will cover the medical treatment of 30 common critical illnesses among the elderly in China.

**Fully sponsored critical illness insurance program will be extended to partners who have served at least two years in the company’s company-owned markets. The parents must also currently be residing within Mainland China.


Phone: 206 318 7100
Email: press@starbucks.com

SOURCE: Starbucks Corporation


Vancouver International Airport (YVR) partners with SSP Canada to bring Lift Bar & Grill concept to the airport

Vancouver International Airport (YVR) partners with SSP Canada to bring Lift Bar & Grill concept to the airport


LONDON, 2017-Jan-11 — /EPR Retail News/ — Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is ringing in the New Year with a new full-service restaurant, Lift Bar & Grill. Inspired by the original location in downtown Vancouver, passengers are now able to enjoy their well-known selection of seasonal cuisine with a focus on local seafood offerings.

“YVR provides the first and last impression of British Columbia so we are delighted to welcome Lift Bar & Grill to bring our passengers a unique West Coast dining experience,” said Scott Norris, Vice President, Commercial Development, Vancouver Airport Authority. “We take great pride in delivering exceptional customer experiences and having quality food and beverage offerings play a huge role in that—we look forward to hearing our passengers’ feedback.”

Centrally located in the international terminal, the restaurant is wrapped around the airport’s iconic aquarium and is designed to draw on a coastal waters theme. This is evident in both the interior detailing with tones of warm oak, steel blue and charcoal greys as well as the menu, featuring Oceanwise certified seafood. YVR partnered with SSP Canada, a division of SSP Group, a leading operator of food and beverage brands in travel locations worldwide, to bring the Lift Bar & Grill concept to the airport. With over 50 years of experience, the SSP Group serves approximately a million customers every day. They currently operate approximately 2,000 units in over 30 countries around the world, including 10 locations at YVR.

Michael Svagdis, Chief Executive Officer of SSP Canada commented, “With the international departures area serving as a global gateway between Asia and the Americas, Lift Bar & Grill is a welcome addition to the worldly minded passengers of YVR. We’re honored to work closely with Chef Soojin Park and the Lift team to craft a stylish restaurant experience that truly delivers a memorable taste of Vancouver before passengers head to their next destination.”

In addition to Lift Bar & Grill, SSP Canada will open five other food and beverage locations, occupying 14,225 square feet at YVR. The restaurants will include a mix of local as well as modern, world-class international and proprietary brands. Pajo’s Fish & Chips serves up locally sourced, but world famous fish and chips; Bánh Shop features traditional Vietnamese street sandwiches and bowls; and Freshii provides fresh and healthy food options. These offerings will be opening throughout 2017 with two additional concepts to be opened in 2019. The entire portfolio will further enhance YVR’s award-winning concession program.

If you are a journalist and have a press enquiry, please call:
Templemere Public Relations
+44 (0) 1306 735574

Source: SSP Group


Kmart Pharmacy partners with eHealth to help seniors determine the best Medicare insurance plan for them

Comparing drug coverage under Medicare insurance plans is now easier than ever for Kmart Pharmacy patients

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., 2016-Nov-07 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kmart Pharmacy announced today (Nov 3, 2016) a new partnership with eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH), the nation’s leading online marketplace for Medicare Part D, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans, to help eligible seniors determine the best Medicare insurance plan for them.

The partnership provides Kmart Pharmacy patients and members access to eHealth’s Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Comparison Tool. The tool is specifically designed to help patients find the Medicare drug plan with the highest estimated-savings based on their needs. Patients can simply enter their zip code and drug regimen to compare available plans and enroll in the Medicare insurance plan that provides them with estimated best coverage for their prescription drugs. “Kmart Pharmacy is excited to offer this free eHealth tool benefit to our senior members and caregivers alike,” said Phil Keough, president, Kmart Pharmacy. “Navigating Medicare can be confusing, and the added pressure of a looming open enrollment deadline can be overwhelming – which is why it is important we provide our patients with resources like eHealth.

Our experienced pharmacists are available to help patients better understand their options, provide detailed plan information and help answer questions they may have.”Medicare’s annual enrollment period is happening now through Dec. 7, 2016. During the enrollment period, Kmart Pharmacy encourages patients to review their prescription coverage by utilizing eHealth’s Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Comparison Tool. Prescription drug coverage under Medicare insurance plans may change each year and patients’ individual prescription needs may also change, so comparing plans could potentially save patients hundreds of dollars per month. For patients evaluating available prescription drug plans, it is important for them to consider each plan’s annual deductible, premium and co-payments, as well as which plans cover the prescriptions.

Kmart Pharmacy is preferred in many Medicare prescription drug plans – however, it does not endorse any specific Medicare insurance company and accepts most major Medicare prescription drug plans. It participates in several regional and national preferred pharmacy networks that offer additional savings for beneficiaries, including low co-pays on generic medications. Your local Kmart pharmacist can tell you in which plans your Kmart Pharmacy participates in as a preferred provider.

Please visit KmartPharmacy.com/ for more information and additional resources. To learn more about Medicare Part D or to enroll, visit medicare.gov.

About Kmart
Kmart is making shopping fun again. The retailer, a subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ: SHLD), is bringing back the iconic Bluelight Specials, hosting Freebie Saturdays and in-store family events for its Shop Your Way members and customers. Kmart offers customers thrilling deals and amazing finds on quality products and exclusive brands including Jaclyn Smith, Joe Boxer, Route 66 and Smart Sense.

About eHealth
eHealth, Inc. (NASDAQ: EHTH) owns eHealth.com, the nation’s first and largest private online health insurance exchange where individuals, families and small businesses can compare health insurance products from leading insurers side by side and purchase and enroll in coverage online. eHealth offers thousands of individual, family and small business health plans underwritten by many of the nation’s leading health insurance companies. eHealth (through its subsidiaries) is licensed to sell health insurance in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. eHealth also offers educational resources and powerful online and pharmacy-based tools to help Medicare beneficiaries navigate Medicare health insurance options, choose the right plan and enroll in select plans online through Medicare.com (www.Medicare.com), eHealthMedicare.com (www.eHealthMedicare.com) and PlanPrescriber.com (www.PlanPrescriber.com).


Tricia Perrotti

Hallie Herrmann
Zeno Group for Kmart
312-527-2SHC (2742)


Kohl’s partners with wellness ambassadors to inspire families to move towards a healthy lifestyle

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis, 2016-Oct-31 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) announced today a new partnership with six healthy-living ambassadors to energize families through motivating wellness experiences and personalized content. The company is also making it even easier to find the right active solutions for everyone in the family by enhancing its portfolio of authoritative national brands with new offerings from fitness wearables leader Fitbit and global performance brand Under Armour. Kohl’s compelling combination of engaging partnerships and powerful brand expansions delivers an unmatched wellness experience for families.

“We know Kohl’s customers want to live happy, healthy and fulfilled lives with their families and are looking for ways to bring fitness into real life,” said Michelle Gass, Kohl’s chief merchandising and customer officer. “By connecting our customers to experts who motivate in this space with the launch of our ambassador program and providing inspiration with our growing brand portfolio with new brands like Under Armour, Kohl’s makes it easy for families to integrate wellness into their lives.”

New Partnerships

For the first time, Kohl’s has partnered with six leading experts in the industry to share inspiring wellness tips and product recommendations, showing families how fun and easy it is to make their move towards a healthy lifestyle. The cascade of information will include multiple consumer and fan touch points, including Facebook Live feeds, in-person workouts, demonstrations and more. The wellness ambassadors include:

Tone It Up – Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott are the founders of Tone It Up, a healthy lifestyle brand and community for women. Karena and Katrina are both healthy living and fitness experts, having inspired millions worldwide to pursue their best lives through a fun, energetic and positive approach to all things fitness and nutrition. The duo offers workout content and guidance, the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan and branded active gear and apparel. For Kohl’s, Karena and Katrina will share high-energy exercise routines and wellness tips to motivate families to stay active.

Kevin Curry – Kevin Curry launched the Fit Men Cook blog to share his healthy food ideas and keep his followers motivated on their fitness journey. He has mastered the art of creating mouthwatering dishes that are also affordable. His philosophy is that it is all about everyday people — no matter the fitness level or athletic ability — aiming to live the best life possible through fitness and healthy eating. Kevin will share easyto-do cooking demonstrations and recipes proving how simple and delicious it can be to eat healthy.

Bob Harper – With more than 20 years of experience, Bob Harper is a health and fitness expert, host of NBC’s The Biggest Loser, celebrity trainer and three-time #1 New York Times best-selling author. He is a proven lifestyle expert who is known for full-body exercises and nutrition plans for anyone on a fitness journey. Bob will provide a variety of fun ways for everyone in the family to get moving and enjoy the outdoors.

Sophie Jaffe – Sophie Jaffe is a health and wellness expert, certified as a raw food chef and yoga teacher. She launched Philosophie, a blog with the goal of making it easier, more inspiring and more delicious to attain optimal health and wellness. Sophie’s content for Kohl’s will focus on tips for families to find balance and get active.

Jordan Younger – Jordan Younger is the blogger behind the wellness and lifestyle blog The Balanced Blonde and is the author of the finding-balance memoir Breaking Vegan. She has emerged as a leading voice in the space due to her authenticity, unique voice, passion for all things wellness and relatability. Jordan’s tips and advice will guide families on how to start small on their healthy eating journeys.

Alicia Archer – With a background in dance, Alicia shares her fitness to showcase the power of movement as it relates to living a healthy and active lifestyle. She demonstrates new and exciting ways to get moving, whether in a yoga studio, in a city setting or exploring a new neighborhood park.

Amazing Product

Kohl’s also offers the right mix of products to ensure families across the country can find everything they need to reach their wellness goals. This includes new brand and product offerings with the launch of Under Armour, one of the most authentic and fastest growing active brands in the world, and new fitness trackers and accessories from Fitbit, the pioneer and leader in the connected health and fitness market. These are on top of what customers can already find on shelves with Nike, Columbia, New Balance, adidas and more.

Under Armour – The introduction of Under Armour performance apparel, footwear and accessories in early spring 2017 will be the biggest brand launch in the history of Kohl’s, reinforcing its promise to deliver powerful and relevant national brands that customers want. The innovative, performance-focused brand will take Kohl’s active offerings to a new level both in store and online. Under Armour products, designed to make all athletes better, will be available for the entire family, including men’s, women’s and youth.

Fitbit – Kohl’s has expanded its collection of Fitbit devices with exclusive accessory styles and new product offerings for consumers to have even more choices to express their personal style while leading a healthy, active lifestyle.

o Products available now include:

 Fitbit Alta Activity Tracker ($129.99), a slim, sleek customizable fitness wristband with motivational health and fitness features.
 Fitbit Alta Special Edition Gold Series Activity Tracker ($149.99), a hand-polished, goldplated, stainless steel tracker available in pink or black classic fitness band. Find the pink colorway for a fresh look exclusively at Kohl’s stores nationwide, Kohls.com and Fitbit.com. Additional accessories sold separately.
 Five exclusive Simply Vera Vera Wang for Fitbit Alta ($79.99) accessory designs inspired by Vera Wang’s signature style, ultimately creating unique accessories for everyday wear. Activity tracker sold separately.
 Fitbit Charge 2 Heart Rate Activity Tracker ($149.99) fitness wristband featuring innovative health and fitness tools based on its continuous wrist-based heart rate tracking technology, an enhanced fitness experience, smarter technology and a sleek new look with interchangeable bands that can easily go from a workout to a night out.

o New merchandise available this November includes:

 Fitbit Flex 2 Activity Tracker ($99.99), the first-ever swim-proof fitness wristband from the company, features an ultra-slim design and removable tracker to effortlessly track all-day activity, exercise and sleep in a style that can be personalized.
 Two Simply Vera Vera Wang for Fitbit Flex 2 hinge bangles ($69.99) that mix super-sleek black or silver metal with understated silicone to create a casual and chic bracelet option for versatile wear. Activity tracker sold separately

Engaging Experiences

This holiday, make your move with Kohl’s by kick-starting the season with an exciting Under Armour customer challenge called “Maintain Your Momentum.” The healthy eating motivator and sweepstakes encourages and rewards participants to log 15 meals on their MyFitnessPal app account during the month of November. Once the 15 meals are recorded starting November 1 through November 30, participants can enter for a chance to win an Under Armour HealthBox Connected Fitness System and Kohl’s gift card. Find additional contest information and terms and conditions at MyFitnessPal’s mobile app.

Incredible Savings On top of offering amazing national brands for all active and wellness needs, Kohl’s makes it easy to save. Customers who sign up for Kohl’s Yes2You Rewards will find extra savings every time they shop. Members earn one point for every dollar they spend, no matter how they pay, with no limit on points earned and no cost to join. They also receive a $5 reward for every 100 points in addition to other exciting benefits, like guaranteed savings offers, chances to earn bonus points and more. Only at Kohl’s, customers can earn $10 Kohl’s Cash for every $50 spent in store or online during Kohl’s Cash promotions. Best of all, there is no limit to how much customers can earn, and they can use it to save on a future purchase.

About Kohl’s

Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) is a leading specialty department store with more than 1,100 stores in 49 states. With a commitment to inspiring and empowering families to lead fulfilled lives, the company offers amazing national and exclusive brands, incredible savings and inspiring shopping experiences in-store, online at Kohls.com and via mobile devices. Committed to its communities, Kohl’s has raised nearly $300 million for children’s initiatives nationwide through its Kohl’s Cares® cause merchandise program, which operates under Kohl’s Cares, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. For additional information about Kohl’s philanthropic and environmental initiatives, visit http://www.Kohls.com/Cares. For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit www.Kohls.com

Connect with Kohl’s:
Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/Kohls)
Twitter (http://twitter.com/Kohls)
Google+ (http://plus.google.com/+Kohls)
Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/Kohls)
Instagram (http://instagram.com/Kohls) YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/kohls

Lisa Hellman

Molly Verette

Source: Kohl’s

Kesko partners with Tieto to accelerate development of K-Group’s new digital services

HELSINKI, 2016-Oct-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kesko has signed an extensive cooperation agreement with Tieto to significantly enhance its functions related to the maintenance and development of ICT services. The renewal is aimed to accelerate the development of the K-Group’s new digital services and the improvement of user experience.

”Tieto was chosen from among 20 leading ICT service companies, because it could best meet Kesko’s strategic requirements for the improvement of effectiveness and quality of continuous services, as well as investments in new technologies and competencies that underpin Kesko’s growth strategy,” says Chief Information Officer Arto Hiltunen.

The renewal will help unify the K-Group’s ICT services and system architecture. The change is aimed to enhance ICT functions, increase agility in the development of digital services and ensure uninterrupted business processes.

”The new, more cost effective, standardized ICT environment will enable us to invest more strongly in the development of new digital services for the K-Group customers, personnel and partners.”

The agreement signed with Tieto is for five years. Kesko’s other information and communication technology partners include, for example, Elisa, Fujitsu, OpusCapita and Gapgemini.

Kesko is a Finnish listed trading sector company. Kesko operates in the grocery trade, the building and technical trade and the car trade. Its divisions and chains act in close cooperation with retailer entrepreneurs and other partners. In 2015, Kesko’s net sales totalled €8.7 billion and it employed nearly 20,000 people. Kesko operates in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Belarus and Poland. Kesko’s shares are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. The company’s domicile and main premises are in Helsinki. www.kesko.fi

Further information:
Arto Hiltunen
Kesko Corporation
tel. +358 105 322 191

Source: Kesko

Balsam Hill partners with Macy’s to debut “Deck The Halls” float in the 90th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®

NEW YORK, 2016-Oct-04 — /EPR Retail News/ — For the past decade, Redwood City-based Balsam Hill has been spreading Christmas cheer to families around the world with its highly-realistic artificial Christmas trees and holiday décor. To celebrate its 10th anniversary, Balsam Hill is partnering with Macy’s (NYSE:M) to debut “Deck The Halls,” a wondrous float bringing the magic of Christmas to life in the 90th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®. For more than 3.5 million spectators and more than 50 million viewers nationwide, the Macy’s Parade signifies the beginning of the holiday season and Balsam Hill is pleased to be part of such a long-standing tradition. As part of the 10-year celebration, Balsam Hill is giving away a trip for four to New York City to attend the Parade and witness the float make its debut.

“Since our inception, it was our intention to be a long-standing holiday tradition that families around the world welcome into their home. After a decade, we can now realize that dream and join the float family of one of our world’s most beloved holiday traditions that millions welcome into their home, as they tune in to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving DayParade,” said Thomas Harman, CEO of Balsam Brands.

“What people are going to see coming down the parade route on Thanksgiving is an exceptional float. It is perfect for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade,” said Amy Kule, executive producer of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. She added, “Balsam Hill, to me, is about family celebration – and this is a family celebration … Balsam Hill tells that story.”

Standing more than 30 feet tall, Balsam Hill’s “Deck The Halls” will embody all that is Christmas – from toys and decorated trees to entertainment and joy. Modeled after the traditional wooden pyramid, each of the three levels are hand-carved and hand-painted by the Macy’s Parade Studio to encapsulate different aspects of the holiday season enjoyed around the world. “Knowing who Balsam Hill was, for us, we immediately zeroed in on authenticity. We wanted things to have that kind of detail and overall beauty,” said John Piper, vice president of Macy’s Parade Studio. He added, “This one was just a real work of joy and love for us.”

At the base of the float, multiple Balsam Hill trees will be adorned with stunning decorations in different styles to showcase a host of family traditions. Whimsical, larger-than-life ornaments, toys and a snowman help capture the magic and joy of Christmas. The centerpiece of the float is a stunning carousel that will spin as it is ridden by children dressed in snowy winter wonderland-inspired costumes. To complete the scene, a special performer will delight audiences as the float makes its way down the Parade route and into millions of homes this Thanksgiving. To enter to win a trip to New York City to attend the 90th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and for rules and regulations, please visit BalsamHill.com.

The 90th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade airs nationwide on NBC-TV, on Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016 from 9 a.m. – noon in all time zones.

About the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade:

With more than 50 million viewers across the country and more than 3.5 million spectators that line up along the streets of New York City each year, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a national icon that has grown into a world-famous holiday event. For 90 years, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has marked the official start of the holiday season. Growing in size and scale, the Parade proudly marches down a more than 2-mile route in New York City with more than 8,000 participants in tow including Macy’s employees, their families, celebrities, athletes, clowns and dance groups spreading holiday cheer. The Parade also features America’s best marching bands, fabulous floats and Macy’s signature giant helium character balloons. For more information on the Macy’s Parade, please visit http://www.macys.com/parade or call the Parade hotline at (212) 494-4495.

About Balsam Hill:

Founded ten years ago in Redwood City, Calif., Balsam Hill is committed to creating the best Christmas trees on the market. Founder Thomas Harman was inspired to start Balsam Hill by a family member who was allergic to live trees but wanted to create a festive atmosphere in his home during the holidays. When Thomas’ search for a lifelike artificial Christmas tree came up empty-handed, our mission was born to develop the most realistic and luxurious artificial trees. To accomplish this mission, our designers carefully craft trees to mimic nature using site visits and cuttings from live trees as a guide. Balsam Hill holds several patented and trademarked technology that brings the holidays to life including ultra-realistic True Needle™ branches, unique Color+Clear™ or Candlelight™ LED lights, and innovative Flip Tree™ technology. For more information visit the company’s website at http://www.balsamhill.com/.

Macy’s Media Relations:
Orlando Veras

Christine Olver

Balsam Hill
Jennifer Faulkner


Balsam Hill partners with Macy’s to debut “Deck The Halls” float in the 90th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®
Balsam Hill partners with Macy’s to debut “Deck The Halls” float in the 90th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®


Source: Macy’s

Bartell Drugs honored its vendors, product suppliers and partners at its 27th annual Vendor Breakfast

SEATTLE, 2016-Oct-04 — /EPR Retail News/ — Bartell Drugs welcomed more than 150 guests at its annual Vendor Breakfast, the 27th such event it has hosted to thank the vendor and supplier community for their business and support.

The event was held at the Ballard Bay Club on September 29 and featured owners, CEOs, presidents, product representatives and others to foster the partnerships Bartell’s values with more than 80 companies, including more than 25 locally based organizations.

“Bartell Drugs is extremely appreciative of the relationships it has with its many vendors,” said Brent Beebe, Senior Vice president of Merchandising for the 126-year-old, Seattle-based pharmacy/retail chain. “We place a high value not only on the products these companies carry, but also the collaborative atmosphere and shared goal of offering quality products at competitive prices.”

The event also provides the opportunity for Bartells to present a number of awards to those vendors that go above-and-beyond in assisting the company, the oldest, family-owned pharmacy chain in the country.

The Family Values Award, given by the company’s owners for exceptional service,  was given to Geoffrey Clark with Kodak Alaris, an independent, global technology company on a mission to unlock the power of images and information for businesses and consumers. Sales Representative of the Year was awarded to Brian Balistrieri with Johnson & Johnson, an international group of companies devoted to consumer health products, pharmaceuticals and medical devices. Ron Runyan with Cashco garnered the Local Vendor of the Year award. The Portland, Oregon-based distributor specializes in travel and trail-size products.

About Bartell Drugs:

Family-owned since 1890, Seattle-based Bartell Drugs is proud of its more than 125-year history based here in the Northwest. Four generations of the Bartell family have continuously focused on the future — and how the drugstore chain can better serve its customers. With exceptional customer service, locally made products and a focus on your overall wellbeing, Bartell Drugs is here to help. Operating 65 locations in King, Snohomish and Pierce counties, it is the nation’s oldest family-owned drugstore chain.  For more information on Bartell Drugs, visit www.bartelldrugs.com.

Media Contact:

Ric Brewer
Senior Communications Manager
Bartell Drugs
206-933-9416 (office)
206-276-5200 (cell)

Source: Bartell Drugs

Office Depot partners with Pocket Points, an app that rewards college students who stay off their phones

BOCA RATON, Fla., 2016-Sep-09 — /EPR Retail News/ — Office Depot, Inc. (NASDAQ: ODP), a leading global provider of office products, services, and solutions, through its Office Depot and OfficeMax brands, today (September 8, 2016) announced it is the sole national school and office supply retailer with Pocket Points, an app that rewards students for refraining from using their phones during class and offers savings with retailers

College students are more distracted than ever, spending 20 percent of class time using digital devices for unrelated activities, according to a 2013 University of Nebraska-Lincoln study.

“Office Depot’s exclusive partnership with Pocket Points furthers our commitment to finding new and innovative ways to help students utilize technology to succeed in the classroom,” said Diane Nick, senior vice president of marketing for Office Depot, Inc. “This is a win-win for users of the app and our company to reach students on this popular platform. In addition to helping students maintain good classroom habits throughout the year, Office Depot wants to provide them with access to savings on the gear they need to succeed.”

When students open the app on campus and lock their phones, they start earning points that can be redeemed directly through the app or online to save money on school and dorm supplies online at officedepot.com.

“Pocket Points and Office Depot have formed a partnership in providing the tools for students to succeed. Our team is elated to be working closely with a company of Office Depot’s caliber. Pocket Points’ mission has always been to provide value to students and merchants. This partnership will enhance the experience on all fronts,” said Mitch Gardner, co-founder and chief operations officer of Pocket Points.

Office Depot will be available in 45 of Pocket Points’ markets including but not limited to: Auburn University, University of Colorado-Boulder, Pennsylvania State University and Texas A&M University.

About Office Depot, Inc.
Office Depot, Inc. is a leading global provider of products, services, and solutions for every workplace – whether your workplace is an office, home, school or car.

Office Depot, Inc. is a resource and a catalyst to help customers work better. We are a single source for everything customers need to be more productive, including the latest technology, core office supplies, print and document services, business services, facilities products, furniture, and school essentials.

The company has annual sales of approximately $14 billion, employs approximately 49,000 associates, and serves consumers and businesses in 59 countries with approximately 1,800 retail stores, award-winning e-commerce sites and a dedicated business-to-business sales organization – all delivered through a global network of wholly owned operations, franchisees, licensees and alliance partners. The company operates under several banner brands including Office Depot, OfficeMax, Grand & Toy, and Viking. The company’s portfolio of exclusive product brands include TUL, Foray, Brenton Studio, Ativa, WorkPro, Realspace and HighMark.

Office Depot, Inc.’s common stock is listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol ODP. Additional press information can be found at: http://news.officedepot.com.

About Pocket Points
Founded in 2014 at Chico State University, Pocket Points has quickly become the “Must-have” mobile application for college students. By creating a rewards platform that influences students to lock their phones in class, Pocket Points has created a Win-Win-Win product. Students, businesses, and teachers have all become major advocates of the mobile app, which has enabled Pocket Points to grow organically. The positive reinforcement method has resonated with High School and College students, as a more effective way of influencing desired outcomes. The team is continuing to open up additional schools and merchants, with the goal of enabling more users the ability to benefit from the application.

Julianne Embry

Sarah England

Source: Office Depot, Inc.

LVMH: TAG Heuer partners with China’s Mars Exploration Program

LVMH: TAG Heuer partners with China’s Mars Exploration Program


PARIS, 2016-Aug-27 — /EPR Retail News/ — TAG Heuer has announced its partnership with China’s Mars Exploration Program at an official press conference in Beijing. The Swiss watchmaker renews its links with the conquest of space after having been the first Swiss watch in space in 1962.

During an official press conference on August 23rd in Beijing, Jean-Claude Biver, TAG Heuer CEO and President of the LVMH Watch Division, announced that the Swiss watchmaker would take part in a Mars exploration mission planned for 2020. The Chinese program was presented by Jizhong Liu, representing the Lunar Exploration Program and the Space Engineering Center, and Ronggiao Zhang, chief designer of China’s Mars Exploration Mission. The mission to explore the red planet using an unmanned Mars Rover will for the first time conduct research on the planet’s soil, environment and atmosphere.

“Mars exploration is one of the greatest missions in man’s conquest of space as we explore our solar system. The formation and evolution of Mars are comparable to those of the Earth, which will help us understand the history of our planet and its future. It is an honor and a privilege to support this dream, the next giant leap for mankind,” said Jean-Claude Biver.

This is not TAG Heuer’s first foray into space. On February 20, 1962, TAG Heuer became the first Swiss watchmaker in space by providing the stopwatch worn by U.S. astronaut John Glenn. NASA selected TAG Heuer after the repeated failures of other watch brands on earlier flights and the Swiss watchmaker’s ability to withstand the high G-forces of lift-off. TAG Heuer has since taken part in other space missions including in 2012, when the Carrera Calibre 1887 was brought to the International Space Station to test its reliability under the most extreme circumstances ever.

What’s more, TAG Heuer will soon take part in the Swiss Space Systems program that will for the first time enable the public to experience zero gravity. The Swiss watchmaker continues on its ongoing mission to set new records for accuracy and push the frontiers of watchmaking all the way into space…


LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton
22, avenue Montaigne, 75008 Paris – France
Tel: +33 (0)1 44 13 22 22
Fax: +33 (0)1 44 13 22 23

Source: LVMH


NACS partners with REDTAIL to offer Background Check program

ALEXANDRIA, VA, 2016-Aug-09 — /EPR Retail News/ — NACS has partnered with REDTAIL to offer the NACS Background Check program. The REDTAIL program incorporates award-winning background screening services from SecurTest and patented iReviewNow technology, offering an FCRA-compliant and accurate background screening solution.

The NACS Background Check Program offers access to a unique background screening solution with benefits, including:

  • Compliance with FCRA and EEOC laws and regulations
  • Fast and easy-to-access results
  • Full transparency for the applicant, reducing the risk of potential costly litigation
  • Access to the most Accuratized® background reports

In 2015, the industry turnover rate for convenience store sales associates was 95%, according to NACS State of the Industry data. “It’s no surprise that hiring and retaining high performing employees is a serious challenge for the industry,” said Doug Spencer, NACS director of products and services. “One of the best ways to prevent turnover is to make the right hire—and that starts with a reputable, comprehensive background check.”

In 2012 and 2013, the REDTAIL and SecurTest solution was named the No. 1 background screening provider by HRO Today. REDTAIL and SecurTest solutions are used by many federal, state and local government agencies along with commercial employers and retailers.

There is a range of options to choose from—making it easy for retailers to find a solution that fits their needs. Packages can be purchased immediately begin the background screening process for a single applicant, or you can create a long-term, customizable solution by speaking with a REDTAIL representative. NACS members receive a special discounted rate.

Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS (nacsonline.com) is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 154,000 stores across the country, conducts 160 million transactions a day, sells 80% of the fuel purchased in the country and had total sales of $575 billion in 2015. NACS has 2,100 retail and 1,700 supplier member companies, which do business in nearly 50 countries.

(703) 684-3600 (phone)
(703) 836-4564 (fax)

Source: NACS

FMI partners with Trace Register for the 3rd Annual Traceability Leadership Forum

Seattle, Wash., 2016-Aug-05 — /EPR Retail News/ — Trace Register, the global leader in seafood traceability, will host its third annual Traceability Leadership Forum from 8:00 am to 11:30 am on Wednesday, August 10, 2016 at the New Orleans Marriott in New Orleans, Louisiana. This year’s event will take place as part of the Pre-Summit Sessions of the Food Marketing Institute’s and Grocery Manufacturers Association’s 2016 Global Sustainability Summit.

“As a featured educational opportunity for the nation’s food retailer, seafood, and sustainability executives, FMI is pleased to partner with Trace Register for the 3rd Annual Traceability Leadership Forum,” FMI’s Rick Stein, Vice President, Fresh Foods, said. “Retailers and stakeholders are committed to better understanding how technological advancements are streamlining the intensive process of verifying product requirements and ultimately enhance the consumer experience.”

Retailers and trading partners are invited to attend the forum and will have the opportunity to discuss and learn about the latest developments in traceability with regards to managing specifications in seafood supply chains, meeting regulatory compliance including the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and the power of digital certificates in achieving corporate and social responsibility goals.

“We have a great line-up of speakers. Participants will learn how big data is becoming a powerful tool in seafood supply chains to deliver more consistent seafood while minimizing risk,” states Phil Werdal, CEO of Trace Register. “We will also share how powerful data analytical tools flag problems before they happen.”

Interested retailers can view a list of speakers and topics and register for the Traceability Leadership Forum (part of the Pre-Summit Sessions).


Ryan Boudreaux, Whole Foods Market

Gary Bauer, Pontchartrain Blue Crab, Inc.

Is Implementing Digital Traceability Overwhelming? (Fact or Fiction)

Dag Heggelund, PhD., Trace Register

Peter Larkins, Trace Register

Seafood Supply Chains Meet Big Data Analytics

Ryan Stover, Whole Foods Market

George Parmenter, Delhaize America

(Hannaford | Food Lion)

Variation in Seafood Supply Chains

Howard Tenen, Quirch Foods

Meeting Current and Future Regulatory Compliance with Digital Traceability

Reese Antley, Wood’s Fisheries

Laura Picariello, Audubon Nature Institute

Digital Certificates, Validating a Fishery Improvement Project (FIP)

Peter Larkins, Trace Register

Digital Certificates, Helping Combat Human Trafficking

Food Marketing Institute proudly advocates on behalf of the food retail industry. FMI’s U.S. members operate nearly 40,000 retail food stores and 25,000 pharmacies, representing a combined annual sales volume of almost $770 billion. Through programs in public affairs, food safety, research, education and industry relations, FMI offers resources and provides valuable benefits to more than 1,225 food retail and wholesale member companies in the United States and around the world. FMI membership covers the spectrum of diverse venues where food is sold, including single owner grocery stores, large multi-store supermarket chains and mixed retail stores. For more information, visit www.fmi.org and for information regarding the FMI foundation, visit www.fmifoundation.org.

Tel: 202-452-8444
Fax: 202-429-4519

Source: FMI

Starbucks in Kuala Lumpur partners with The Society of Interpreters for the Deaf open store to provide jobs for Deaf partners

Seattle, 2016-Jul-21 — /EPR Retail News/ — A Starbucks in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, looks like many other stores in the region. Baristas are handcrafting beverages with the rich aroma of coffee lingering in the air. However, when customers reach the counter to order a drink, they’ll notice something different. Instead of calling out beverage orders, baristas use sign language.

Berjaya Starbucks Coffee Company Sdn. Bhd. (“Starbucks Malaysia”) in collaboration with The Society of Interpreters for the Deaf (SID), are opening a store dedicated to providing employment opportunities for Deaf partners (employees). Located in the busy Bangsar Village II shopping mall, the store is the first-of-a-kind for Starbucks globally.

“We are proud to support people with disabilities through fulfilling work to create a culture of empowerment and to bring new perspectives to the workplace, which ultimately makes us a better company,” said Sydney Quays, managing director, Starbucks Malaysia. “We have a rich history of creating opportunities for underrepresented groups and our aim is to raise public awareness of the value people with disabilities bring to the workplace and to enrich the lives of many more Deaf partners.”

Related: GIFs: American Sign Language Words to Describe Coffee

In an effort to provide a better career path and sense of belonging for Deaf partners, Starbucks selected SID to help develop the store. Founded in 1990, SID strives to enable the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community an opportunity for equal rights and access to information and communication.

“We are proud to be working with Starbucks to provide job opportunities for Deaf people,” said Alvin YM Wong, Chairman of the Society of Interpreters for the Deaf (SID), Selangor and Federal Territory, Malaysia. “Through Starbucks, these Deaf partners are trained and empowered to move forward in their careers, which will give them a sense of pride and accomplishment in the long run.”

SID provided Starbucks with two sign language interpreters to translate during hiring, training and coaching for Deaf partners. They will also teach sign language to hearing partners at the store.

Finding a Rewarding Career
The store employs 10 Deaf partners and three hearing partners including store manager Evonne Lo, who joined Starbucks three years ago.

“When I first heard of this initiative, I immediately signed up for the position and the challenge,” said Lo. “I think it will be a truly rewarding experience.”

Lo will be supported by Mohammad Aizad Bin Ariffin, a Deaf partner who will serve as the store’s shift manager.

“Since I joined Starbucks three years ago as a barista, my goal has been to become Starbucks Malaysia’s first Deaf store manager and after my recent promotion to shift manager, I’m well on way to achieving this dream,” said Ariffin. “It’s an incredible feeling to share my journey and help develop other Deaf partners.”

Building the Store Experience
The Bangsar Village II Starbucks provides a welcome environment for Deaf and hearing customers alike. It is equipped with a Starbucks Card kiosk to enable visitors to check their card balance and rewards before requesting drinks and food items on a Starbucks order ticket. Baristas will key in the order, which is displayed on a point-of-sale dual screen, so customers can see that the order is accurate. Customers then collect their beverages and food when their order number is displayed on a large screen above the pick-up counter.

Starbucks Malaysia’s commitment to excellence in the workplace has resulted in recognition as a leading employer by several prominent organizations. The company received Employer of Choice by the Malaysia HR Awards 2015, Best Companies to Work for in Asia 2015 by HR Asia and Best of the Best Award, Malaysia’s Best Employer 2015 by Aon Hewitt.

Media contact:

Phone: 206 318 7100
Email: press@starbucks.co


Starbucks in Kuala Lumpur partners with The Society of Interpreters for the Deaf open store to provide jobs for Deaf partners
Starbucks in Kuala Lumpur partners with The Society of Interpreters for the Deaf open store to provide jobs for Deaf partners


Source: Starbucks

SPAR International partners with conglomerate Max Group LLC to open its first stores in Mongolia

AMSTERDAM, 2016-Jul-20 — /EPR Retail News/ — SPAR, the world’s largest food retail voluntary chain, has announced a new partnership with conglomerate Max Group LLC, to open its first stores in Mongolia. The partnership, which will see up to 60 SPAR-branded multi-format stores in Mongolia by 2020, was made at an official signing ceremony which took place during the visit of the Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, to Mongolian capital Ulaanbaatar.

Max Group is one of Mongolia’s leading retailers operating the existing chain of Max Food Supermarkets.  The new partnership will see these stores transfer to the SPAR brand, and the opening of new SPAR supermarkets from 2017 onwards. The Netherlands-based SPAR International reported global retail sales in 2015 of €33 billion from over 12,100 stores across four continents. Mongolia brings to 43 the number of countries where SPAR has operations globally.

Prime Minister Rutte was visiting Mongolia to attend the 11th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Summit and to promote trade with the Netherlands in the region. Speaking at the signing of the contracts between SPAR and Max Group, the Prime Minister Rutte, said, “It is greatly encouraging to see a company like SPAR, which started as a partnership of Dutch retailers and wholesalers more than 80 years ago, helping bring retail best practice to the Mongolian marketplace.”

SPAR International Managing Director, Tobias Wasmuht said “SPAR is delighted to be launching in Mongolia in partnership with the Max Group.  We see Mongolia as a dynamic and rapidly developing consumer market with a growing demand for modern world class food retail. We are highly confident that we can build on our strong presence in the region by leveraging our scale with the SPAR operations in neighbouring Irkutsk, Russia and Inner Mongolia, China. This collaboration combined with our modern retail formats, supply chain and international sourcing as well as investing in the training and development in people locally will act as a significant support structure for the growth and development of SPAR in Mongolia. I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands who were instrumental in facilitating the partnership between SPAR and the Max Group.”

Max Group LLC is a family business established in the 1990s which has a wide variety of operations and business interests including supermarkets, fast food restaurants, department stores, real estate, precious metal mining and is the country’s largest dairy producer and milk bottler. Max Group LLC already employs over 2,500 people in Mongolia. Max Group President, Ganbaatar Dagvadorj said “Bringing the words leading retail chain, SPAR, to Mongolia is not just beneficial to Max Group it is a big opportunity for Mongolia as well and I am very excited about this partnership. Max is dedicated to bringing the SPAR’s commitment to excellence in fresh, passion for quality, outstanding service and exceptional value to consumers in Mongolia.”


Telephone:+31 20 626 6749

Source: Spar-International

Forever 21 partners with Vision Street Wear on an exclusive 17-piece capsule apparel collection

LOS ANGELES, CA, 2016-Jul-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Forever 21, one of the world’s largest and most recognized independent fashion retailers, has partnered with Vision Street Wear, the original skate and street wear brand, on an exclusive 17-piece capsule collection of apparel for women and men.

“Vision is one of the originators of street wear,” said Linda Chang, Vice President Merchandising Forever 21. “Bringing a fashion-forward capsule collection to our customers with a brand that also continues to innovate and push the boundaries of style and design was a natural fit.”

Vision Street Wear’s collaboration with Forever 21 revitalizes the iconic ‘90s trend of fusing music and skate with street wear.  The collection features modern, updated styles including bodysuits, bomber jackets, cropped t-shirts, shorts, tanks and lounge wear all of which showcase the brand’s iconic logo.

“Forever 21 is renowned for connecting with today’s fashion trend-seeking audience and Vision Street Wear has been associated with creating its own trends since the inception of U.S. skate culture, making this collaboration the perfect marriage,” said Nick Woodhouse, President and CMO, ABG, owner of the Vision Street Wear brand. “We are excited to share this interpretation of Vision with a whole new generation.”

The Forever 21 x Vision Street Wear collection will launch on Wednesday, June 22, 2016, in Japan and U.S. stores, and on Forever21.com. Customers are encouraged to share their favorite Forever 21 x Vision Street Wear look using the hashtag, #F21xVision, on their social platforms.

Forever 21, Inc., headquartered in Los Angeles, California, is a fashion retailer of women’s, men’s and kids clothing and accessories and is known for offering the hottest, most current fashion trends at a great value to consumers. This model operates by keeping the store exciting with new merchandise brought in daily. Founded in 1984, Forever 21 operates more than 730 stores in 48 countries with retailers in the United States, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Latin America, Mexico, Philippines and United Kingdom. For more information please visit: www.newsroom.forever21.com


METRO Cash & Carry partners with UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) to combat hunger around the world

Düsseldorf, Germany, 2016-Jul-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — METRO Cash & Carry has entered into a global partnership with the World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations agency mandated to combat hunger around the world. This is an opportunity for METRO to help WFP advance towards the second of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals: to “end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture by 2030”.

The global partnership between METRO and WFP relies on three pillars: empowering customers to donate, engaging employees in fundraising, and sharing expertise between the two organisations. Specific activities and campaigns will be developed for METRO Horeca customers (restaurant and catering professionals).

The partnership grew out of a successful four-year-old collaboration between WFP Italia – the Italian non-profit organisation supporting the World Food Programme – and METRO Cash & Carry Italy. Following this example, METRO and WFP will now enter into a globally planned, locally implemented partnership. It will be gradually implemented in selected countries and allow for country-specific fundraising activities.

“We are proud to be partnering with WFP. This cooperation will enhance our strategy for corporate social responsibility and our commitment to corporate citizenship issues,” said Heiko Hutmacher, Member of the Management Board and responsible for sustainability at METRO AG.

Mr Hutmacher was speaking in Munich at the launch of WFP’s Innovation Accelerator, which harnesses ideas and solutions and scales them up to achieve zero hunger.

“The partnership also highlights the need for innovation in the field of sustainability,” Mr Hutmacher added. With its Innovation Accelerator, WFP is demonstrating how it will use new ideas and technologies to achieve its goal of ending hunger. We feel that this message complements our own corporate strategy and are eager to support WFP in their initiative.”

“The partnership between WFP and METRO Cash & Carry shows us how business and the UN family can team up to pursue vital global goals,” said Jay Aldous, Director of Private Partnerships at WFP. “With its global market reach and deep consumer insights, METRO Cash and Carry can contribute to achieving a world where food is accessable and affordable for all. We are excited by this opportunity to join forces on a global level and explore common solutions to achieving a world with zero hunger.”

METRO Cash & Carry is represented in 25 countries with over 750 self-service wholesale stores. With a headcount of about 110,000 employees worldwide, the wholesale company achieved sales of around €30 billion in financial year 2014/15. METRO Cash & Carry is a sales line of METRO GROUP. METRO GROUP is one of the largest and most important international retail companies. In financial year 2014/15, it generated sales of around €59 billion. The company operates over 2,000 stores in 29 countries and has a headcount of more than 220,000 employees. The performance of METRO GROUP is based on the strength of its sales brands that operate independently in their respective market segments: METRO/MAKRO Cash & Carry – the international leader in self-service wholesale; Media Markt and Saturn – the European market leader in consumer electronics retailing; and Real hypermarkets. For more information, visit www.metrogroup.de

WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80 million people in around 80 countries. For more information, visit: www.wfp.org

Media contacts:
Telephone: +49 211 6886-4252
Telefax: +49 211 6886-2001
E-Mail METRO GROUP: presse@metro.de

Source: Metro Group

eBay partners with the International Trade Centre to help SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets

San Jose, California, 2016-Jul-06 — /EPR Retail News/ — eBay has joined forces with the International Trade Centre (ITC) – a joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations — to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in developing countries to take advantage of the opportunities offered by global digital commerce.

eBay’s Vice President for Greater Europe, Eben Sermon, and ITC Executive Director, Arancha González, announced the collaboration at the annual meeting of ITC’s Joint Advisory Group in Geneva on July 4, 2016.

With more than 162 million active users globally, and 900 million product listings, eBay’s marketplace provides a perfect match for export-ready companies supported by ITC’s e-Solutions program. The program provides training and advisory services to SMEs in developing countries to help them overcome barriers to trade and trade digitally.

ITC helps SMEs to become more competitive in global markets, contributing to sustainable economic development within the frameworks of the Aid-for-Trade agenda and the United Nations’ Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

Under the agreement, eBay’s marketplace will give these companies the opportunity to open ‘anchor stores’ on eBay – providing them with greater online visibility, and the chance to reach more customers.

SMEs participating in ITC’s e-Solutions program will also have access to eBay’s network of fulfillment centers, making logistics more cost-effective. And they’ll benefit from eBay’s cutting-edge e-commerce research, allowing them to leverage this knowledge and better position their offerings in selected target markets.

“Partnering with eBay is an important step in scaling up ITC’s e-Solutions program and will help us to continue to bring SMEs onto the digital highway,” Arancha González said.

“Together we will collaborate to provide tools and platforms to SMEs throughout the developing world to help them take advantage of the opportunities offered by the digital economy.”

eBay’s Vice President for Greater Europe, Eben Sermon added: “Collaborating with ITC allows eBay to connect with enterprises in developing countries that are currently absent from the world of e-commerce. It is a model for Connected Commerce that can contribute to better trade and economic growth where it is most needed, and it will open up a world of new products for our customers across the world.”

eBay will also provide training — to complement that offered by ITC – aimed at helping companies to optimize their product listings; providing insights into best practices in online promotion, and improving skills in analytics and inventory management.

Kick-starting the partnership, eBay and ITC — in collaboration with logistics company DHL — have organized an e-Commerce Caravan that is currently touring Switzerland.

In Geneva, from June 30 to July 5, entrepreneurs from Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Morocco, Rwanda, Senegal and Syria will be showcasing products that sold online. On July 6 and 7, the e-Commerce Caravan will be at eBay’s headquarters in Zurich.

United States: press@ebay.com


eBay partners with the International Trade Centre to help SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets
eBay partners with the International Trade Centre to help SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets


Source: Ebay