Blurred lines between channels and better HBA options will continue to drive dollar store growth
WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — It appears that even when the economy gets back to humming on all cylinders that America’s shopping patterns will have been forever changed, and that’s only going to support dollar store growth for years to come. Clearly, the two biggest competitors in Family Dollar and Dollar General are ramping up store growth all over the country, with the two companies lining up on opposite corners much the way drug chains began had done in the ’80s and ’90s. And dollar store assortments will continue to become better stocked with the name brands consumers are familiar with, particularly in core drug store categories like health and beauty, especially considering the two leading companies have strong drug channel pedigrees throughout the executive suite.
(THE NEWS: Deloitte: CPG companies not keeping up with explosive growth of dollar channel. For the full story, click here.)
Just last week, during an Oct. 3 conference call, former drug channel merchant and now Family Dollar president and COO Mike Bloom pointed to the expansion of health, beauty and personal care assortments by about 600 SKUs as one of the key drivers of future growth across the chain. "Our customers are really responding well to the new assortment," he said. "The biggest focus of our recent HBA expansion was in the OTC area. Our customer research indicates that our customers overindexed in 18 of the top 20 ailments affecting the U.S. population. Many of our customers do not have health insurance, so we are providing them with more solutions to take care of themselves and their families. We are encouraged by the early results in these categories, which typically take longer to ramp up."
Family Dollar’s executive chairman and CEO Howard Levine added, "As we look out over the next couple years, particularly with the healthcare changes coming on, it’s something that we’ll pay a lot of attention to in terms of how we may be able to better service some of the markets that we’re in with some additional benefits."
But it’s Dollar General that may be offering the greatest branded savings to consumers, at least according to a recent Kantar survey. As compared to Walmart, Stop & Shop, Family Dollar, Aldi, Target and Walgreens, Dollar General offered an 18% overall basket savings, driven by lower opening price points in its edible and nonedible baskets and representing a substantial savings to the value shopper, which by the time the economy gets back humming again on all cylinders is likely to be the everyday shopper.
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RediClinic treated its one-millionth patient
HOUSTON — Retail-based clinic operator RediClinic recently hit a milestone as it served its one-millionth patient in August.
“This would not have been possible without the support of our loyal patients, who have embraced our unique model of high-quality, convenient and affordable healthcare," stated RediClinic CEO Web Golinkin in a letter recently emailed patients.
To celebrate the milestone, the email features coupons with 15% off a B-12 shot, $15 dollars off a travel healthy visit and a free body mass index reading.
RediClinic operates 29 clinics inside select HEB stores in Houston, Austin and San Antonio.
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Are the final chapters of the age of big-box retailing upon us?
WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — DSN noted that 2012 would be the year more big-box retailers committed to “going small” and, while we may hate to toot our own horn, we are going to do it anyway.
(THE NEWS: Supercenters rule, but small formats to accelerate for Walmart. For the full story, click here)
As previously reported by Drug Store News, such big box retailers as Walmart, Target and Meijer have developed smaller-format stores, and we predicted at the end of 2011 that the industry would see this trend continue into 2012, especially as retailers look to further meet the needs of consumers residing in “food deserts.”
Well, that prediction is ringing true.
Earlier this year, Target unveiled its new, smaller urban format — dubbed CityTarget — that would enable it to become a factor in the big cities. Now WMT is committing to more small stores over the next few years. By year end, Walmart expects to be operating a total of 12 Express stores.
With trips to supercenters down in recent years, do you think these are the final chapters of the age of big-box retailing?
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