BEAUTY CARE

Rite Aid debuts newly remodeled store as revamped beauty section sees sales lift

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Rite Aid had a ribbon-cutting ceremony to debut its newly remodeled Wellness store in New York’s West Village neighborhood Tuesday.

The store is one of several in the chain of nearly 4,600 stores to test a newly revamped beauty section called Beauty Vision, which features a new look and feel and a wider range of products, as illustrated in DSN‘s recent slide show of the store. Meanwhile, special store attendants called Beauty Vision advisers provide customers with information and advice on cosmetic products.

A person familiar with the program told DSN that cosmetics sales at the West Village store had increased by about 50% over the past week, with lifts as high as 70% to 80% in some product lines.

 

Correction: An earlier version of this story included an incorrect number and locations of stores with the Beauty Vision concept based on a figure given to the reporter. This version of the story does not contain the number or locations of the stores, which Rite Aid Corp. is not officially disclosing.

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Unilever to shed Soft & Beautiful, TCB and Pro-Line Comb-Thru brands

BY Antoinette Alexander

LONDON and ROTTERDAM, Netherlands — Unilever is looking to sell its Soft & Beautiful, TCB and Pro-Line Comb-Thru brands to Strength of Nature. The sale excludes TCB’s business in Africa.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed and it is expected to close in early December.

“Soft & Beautiful, TCB and Pro-Line Comb-Thru are each terrific brands with a long legacy in the ethnic hair care category. These brands are part of one of the fastest growing categories in the personal care sector and we believe their potential can now be more fully realised with Strength of Nature,” Kees Kruythoff, president of Unilever North America stated.

“We are extremely pleased to add these great brands to our expanding portfolio. Soft & Beautiful, Soft & Beautiful Botanicals, TCB and Pro-Line Comb-Thru are brands with strong consumer following, high awareness and a long tradition of serving their consumers. We are excited about their potential, and strongly believe they each provide an excellent foundation for expanded innovation and product improvement,” Mario de la Guardia, Strength of Nature CEO added.

 

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Shopper survey: Possibility of another government shutdown casting dark cloud over holiday season

BY Michael Johnsen

CHICAGO — Shoppers are already looking past the holiday season and not liking what they see, according to a special survey conducted between Oct. 31 and Nov. 5 by IRI that was released Tuesday. While consumers are hoping for the best, they’re bracing for the worst when it comes to the possibility of another government shutdown and debt ceiling crisis in early 2014. 

“The impending debt ceiling crisis and government shutdown is yet one more straw on the camel’s back, and consumers are ready to react by locking down their wallets,” Susan Viamari, editor of Times & Trends, IRI said. “CPG marketers must continue to monitor the situation carefully and be poised to rapidly deploy programs that will support consumers through the next financial obstacle, but it is critical that these programs are carefully designed to support—not erode—brand equity and justify the expenditure with a solid value proposition.”

Overall, 53% of consumers are not confident that an agreement will be met to avert another government shutdown and debt ceiling crisis, while 32% are unsure and 15% are confident. This skepticism is chipping away at consumer confidence, so many are already putting some safety nets in place to weather the storm and holiday spending is right in the cross hairs.

In fact, 43% of all consumers are budgeting less money for the upcoming holiday season out of concern that the country will hit the new debt ceiling, and the government will shut down once again. In addition, 52% of Hispanics, 47% of households with kids and 53% of lower-earning households will be pulling back on holiday spending.

If the country hits the new debt ceiling and the government shuts down in early 2014:

  • 57% of all consumers expect their financial strain to increase versus 46%, who anticipated increased strain before the October 2013 shutdown;
  • 45% of all consumers say they will have less money to spend on groceries versus 35% before the October 2013 shutdown; and
  • 44% of all consumers say they will have to reduce/eliminate trips to some of their favorite stores versus 31% before the October 2013 shutdown.

 

 

 

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