Ahold USA marks 120th pickup point, Chicago e-commerce development center
CARLISLE, Pa. — Ahold USA has opened 120 pickup points for online orders as of the end of 2013, the supermarket operator said Monday.
Ahold, which hopes to triple its online food sales by 2016, said the opening of pickup points in the United States and Europe would be an important part of reaching that goal. Most of the pickup points in the United States are operated under the Stop & Shop, Giant Food of Landover, Md., and Giant Food Stores of Carlisle, Pa., banners. The 120 pickup points compare with only eight a year ago.
The company’s online grocery division, Peapod, also announced the opening of a digital innovation center in Chicago, dubbed Peapod Propulsion Labs, which the company said would further drive its e-commerce efforts.
"There is healthy competition for online talent, and we want to attract that talent to fuel our ambitious growth plans," Ahold USA EVP e-commerce and supply chain Jan van Dam said. "A highly inspired workplace in Chicago is a good start in getting key online talent into our company. Peapod Propulsion Labs is designed to leverage Peapod’s e-commerce expertise across our organization as we continue to take steps to help customers shop where they want, how they want and when they want."
Most retailers are not nearly as far up the learning curve as Ahold’s Peapod when it comes to online shopping. Creating this “center of expertise” allows them to combine decades of experience with the skills and motivation of a new generation of data scientists. The result, at minimum, should be a “great leap forward” in online sales.
Kleenex partners with Isaac Mizrahi for new designs
DALLAS — In celebration of its 90th anniversary, Kleenex brand is partnering with fashion industry icon Isaac Mizrahi to produce four new designs for the Kleenex Expressions line of products.
"We’re thrilled to be partnering with such an inspirational designer and we are excited about his creative contribution to our brand’s portfolio," Anna Elledge, Kleenex brand manager, said. "Our teams have worked together to select the final collection to commemorate the Kleenex brand anniversary, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate this 90-year milestone."
In the past, Kleenex has mainly pulled design inspiration from trends in home decor. The inspiration for the latest patterns was driven with an eye toward the latest trends in fashion. The four designs will be unveiled at a launch even in Manhattan in spring 2014 and will be available on store shelves on April 1.
"Innovation has been a critical element to my personal success as a designer and something that is at the crux of the Kleenex brand and its design philosophy," Mizrahi said. "The brand has an impressive history of design and it’s an honor to be included in the celebration of this important moment in time."
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Shopko offers interim supplies of drugs to insurance marketplace enrollees
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Shopko is the latest retailer to offer prescriptions at no upfront cost to customers who have enrolled in the new health insurance marketplaces but haven’t received their identification cards.
The retail chain said Monday that it would offer supplies of prescriptions in the interim to customers who could provide proof of enrollment. The chain operates 326 stores in the Midwest, Rocky Mountain, North Central and Pacific Northwest regions.
"Consistent with our usual practice, Shopko will do what is needed to take care of the customer so they do not experience any delays filling prescriptions and getting necessary medications," Shopko COO Mike Bettiga said.
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