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Jet.com tries brick-and-mortar at Story in Manhattan

BY DSN STAFF

NEW YORK — Story, the innovative store in Manhattan that totally reinvents itself every six to eight weeks, has a new theme and this time Walmart is in on the act.

On May 10, Story unveiled its latest iteration, “Fresh,” which is being done in collaboration with Walmart’s Jet.com division. Here is how Story described its new theme:

“What’s fresher than fresh? Having healthy produce dropped at your door—and you don’t even have to be home to receive it. This is the magic of Jet.com, and to celebrate their innovative approach to delivering perishable groceries, we’ve teamed up with the online service to bring to life Fresh Story at a time when the city feels ripe with energy and inspiration.”

This is Jet.com’s first physical venture of any kind. It comes as Amazon is testing its own offline food concepts, including the no-checkout AmazonGo convenience store and its new AmazonFresh Pickup format.

The merchandise mix at the 2,000-sq.-ft. Story is heavy on cool kitchen gadgets and accessories, along with cookbooks, fresh produce and select menu-inspired grocery items. In-store events will include talks and workshops by food and beverage pros. In June, Story will bake cookies and pizzas every day on site — using jet.com ingredients.

Story always revamps its décor to match its new theme, and this time around is no exception. The floor is carpeted with green faux grass, and the walls are accented with life-sized recipes done by food illustrator Claudia Pearson. The scent of cherries wafts through the store, courtesy of cherry-scented wallpaper (from Brooklyn-based Flavor paper). In some areas, Jet.com boxes are artfully stacked up and serve as display fixtures.

Story is located at 144 10th Avenue, at 19th St., in Manhattan. It opens at 11 a.m. seven days a week, and closes at 7 p.m. or 8 p.m., depending on the day.

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SLIDESHOW: First look at Target’s next-gen store concept

BY DSN STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS — Target has unveiled its next-generation store format, which will make its debut in Richmond, Texas — a Houston suburb — in October.

In addition to the new 124,000-sq.-ft. Richmond store, 40 additional Target locations will receive elements of the redesign when they are updated, also in October.
Speaking at Shoptalk in Las Vegas, Target chairman and CEO Brian Cornell addressed Target’s plan to invest billions of dollars over the next three years as part of the company’s strategy to create a “smart” network, with stores, digital channels and supply chain all working together to meet shoppers’ needs.
Target’s new store design emphasizes elevated product presentations, a more open feel, and a number of time-saving features, both physical and digital.
“Expect lots of flexibility, open sight lines and discovery moments throughout the store,” Cornell told the audience at Shoptalk. “We’re going to take what we learn in Houston to help guide us as we customize and remodel hundreds and hundreds of stores over the next three years.”
One of the biggest changes is the creation of two separate entrances: one for shoppers who are time-pressed and only looking to buy a few items or pick up an online order, and the other for people who want to leisurely shop.
The entrance for folks in a hurry will offer fast access to grocery, a wine & beer shop, self-checkout lanes and a dedicated Order Pickup counter, all within steps from each other. Reserved parking spaces will be located outside this entrance, allowing Target associates to deliver online orders to customers in their cars.
In another time-saving move, Target store associates will be equipped with new technology – available in all stores this fall – to search inventory, take payment from a mobile point-of-sale system and arrange delivery, all from the sales floor.
Here are some other features of the new design:
  • Modernized design features will include lazed, large glass windows at the front of store, with stenciled concrete floors and unique lighting throughout;
  • An upgraded grocery department, with woodgrain fixtures and increased fresh produce and grab-and-go options and meal solutions;
  • Elevated, cross-merchandise product presentations that encourage browsing and are designed to amplify Target’s exclusive style assortment across apparel and accessories, home, jewelry and beauty: and
  • Curved, more circular center aisles that feature merchandise displays to engage shoppers “with compelling products in unexpected places,” Target said.

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Rite Aid, Folds of Honor celebrate DreamShip’s inaugural launch

BY David Salazar
JERSEY CITY, N.J. — With the Statue of Liberty, One World Trade Center and Ellis Island as a backdrop, nonprofit Folds of Honor inaugurated its DreamShip — a full-size hot air balloon — at Liberty State Park Thursday, kicking off a yearlong, awareness-raising nationwide tour for the balloon, with Rite Aid executives and associates, Folds of Honor founder Maj. Dan Rooney, New Jersey Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, scholarship recipients and other sponsors in attendance.
Folds of Honor, which was started in 2007 by Rooney, who served three tours of duty in Iraq, provides scholarships to the children of fallen or disabled veterans. In June, the Rite Aid Foundation pledged $6 million over the next three years through its KidCents program, and in 2015 awarded more than $1.3 million to the organization. The DreamShip showcases artwork created by Folds of Honor scholarship recipients — about 130 of the balloon’s more than 400 fabric panels feature drawings of the dreams of children helped by Folds of Honor.
The event kicked off with the national anthem and a patriotic medley by students with Renaissance Youth Center’s Music With a Message program — a Bronx-based children’s organization that is among the KidCents beneficiaries. Representing Rite Aid were SVP and chief communications officer Susan Henderson, EVP marketing David Abelman, EVP store operations Byran Everett, chairman and CEO John Standley and Rite Aid CEO of stores, president of Rite Aid Corp. and president of the Rite Aid Foundation Ken Martindale.
Martindale took the stage at the event to discuss why Folds of Honor is a necessary presence in the lives of children whose parents have fallen or been injured while serving their country, and why the location was fitting. Gesturing toward the landmarks around him, Martindale said, “These iconic points in the skyline really mean something to everybody in this room. They represent one of our country’s most prized possessions: freedom.”
“I think we all agree that we’re very fortunate to live in a country that allows us the freedom that we have, but I think it’s critical that we remember that freedom isn’t free,” Martindale said. “Since the country’s earliest days, millions of our citizens have fought to protect those rights. Not only those who have served, but their families have sacrificed so that future can enjoy the freedoms we all enjoy today. In many cases, those families have endured the ultimate sacrifice, and that’s really what this is all about. It’s important that these families know that we’re not forgetting that and that their contributions do not go unnoticed.”
Martindale introduced Guadagno — a military mother herself — who discussed the significance of the landmarks surrounding the event, recognizing the New Jersey residents who died in the September 11, 2001, terror attacks and the veterans from New Jersey who have fallen in the line of duty in the 15 years since.
After Guadagno, Rooney took the stage to discuss how he came to start Folds of Honor after flying back from Iraq to the U.S. on a commercial flight carrying the remains of Corporal Brock Bucklin and felt the need to do something to help Bucklin’s family and families in similar circumstances.
“We cannot think of a better way to showcase the stories and dreams of our scholarship recipients than to lift them up with the DreamShip for the world to see,” Rooney said. “Folds of Honor is so fortunate to partner with The Rite Aid Foundation in our mission to educate the legacy of our fallen and disabled service members. We look forward to following the DreamShip on its journey across the country and sharing the stories of our deserving scholarship recipients.”
After Rooney spoke, he and Martindale recognized several scholarship recipients in attendance, and the event closed with a toast to the DreamShip and the balloonist’s prayer.
“From here on out, with every launch, the DreamShip will lift up the dreams of children helped by Folds of Honor, both physically and metaphorically, and the Rite Aid Foundation could not envision a better way to show our support of Folds of Honor, our veterans and their children,” Martindale said.

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