Supplier News—A study conducted by Gladson Interactive, a provider of product images for the consumer goods industry, last month revealed that 90 percent of the more than 200,000 products examined contained at least one error in either product height, width or depth dimensions. Significantly, nearly 1-in-5 products had errors of greater than 25 percent.
These dimensional errors in the Product Information Masterfile are a leading factor in store out-of-stocks, a major cause of consumer dissatisfaction, the company reported. “Based on our findings, there is a high probability that most planograms are never set as intended in the first place due to these product measurement inaccuracies,” stated Mike Spindler, Gladson chief executive officer.
Moreover, inaccuracies at the product-item level were found to be as costly to demand-chain applications as case-level inaccuracies were to supply-chain applications and a significant hindrance to the long-time industry goal of data synchronization.
The Council for Responsible Nutrition last month announced that it is sponsoring new research among healthcare professionals to better understand their personal use of dietary supplements and how it may impact the way they counsel their patients about dietary supplements as part of its “Life…supplemented” advertising campaign.
Steve Mister, CRN’s president and chief executive officer, noted that because of the disparities among definitions of dietary supplements, instruments and populations surveyed, more questions have been raised than are answered. “At this stage, it’s impossible to say with certainty whether the personal use of supplements by healthcare professionals correlates to their recommendations to patients.”
Results of the survey, which was fielded during September, are expected to be released in early November.
Bayer Healthcare last month announced in Europe the introduction of two wireless blood-glucose meters, the results of which can be transmitted wirelessly to the patients’ insulin pumps or to a hospital’s central data processing system.
“The addition of these two wireless meters—Contour Pro and Contour Link—to our business has given us a new strategic focus,” stated Roberto Parotelli, head of the European Diabetes Care Division of Bayer HealthCare. “Their complementary features will make a significant contribution to improving safety for people with diabetes.”
Fred’s reports both monthly and quarterly record sales
MEMPHIS, Tenn. Fred’s Inc. reported record sales for the five-week and eight-month periods which ended Oct. 6, 2007.
The company said Friday that its total sales for the month increased 2 percent to $161.4 million compared to the same period last year. Total sales for the year-to-date period increased 5 percent to $1.157 billion.
Same store sales for the month rose 1 percent on top of a 5 percent increase in September last year. On a comparable store basis, sales increased 1.3 percent through the first eight months of fiscal 2007 compared with a 2.7 percent gain in the year-earlier period. Same-store sales are a key predictor of how well the company performs in stores that have been open for several years, and how well the newly open stores will do in the future.
“September sales came in at the low end of our forecasted range of a 1 percent to 3 percent increase, affected by unusually warm weather across our markets and the disruption caused by the updating of 98 stores under our refresher program,” said Fred’s Stores chief executive officer Michael J. Hayes. “We look forward to finishing our refresher program in October with the last 60 stores and to a better economic environment for our customers going forward, as the benefits of the minimum wage increase and the focus of Federal Reserve Board on the credit crunch take hold.”
Fred’s opened four stores at the end of September, bringing total store openings to 22 for the year-to-date period. These new store openings have been balanced by the company’s decision to close underperforming stores. In the remaining months, Fred’s Stores said that it plans to open 14 additional stores, with no further planned closings, which will result in a net increase in stores of 2 percent for the year.
Fred’s Inc. operates 702 discount general merchandise stores, including 24 franchised stores in the southeastern United States.
Target to open another 61 stores nationwide
MINNEAPOLIS Target announced that it will be opening an additional 61 Target stores, the company said Friday.
The stores, which will all open Oct. 14, will open in 22 different states. The majority of the stores are making their debut in Arizona, California, Ohio and Texas.
In addition to offering the latest in trend-right merchandise, Target also brings a 44-year tradition of community involvement. The retail chain commits itself to local communities donating more than $3 million each week to area nonprofit organizations, becoming involved in local volunteerism efforts through Target Volunteers, and orchestrating other special projects that help meet area social service, arts and education needs.