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SoloHealth launches Obamacare awareness campaign

BY Alaric DeArment

ATLANTA — Kiosk maker SoloHealth will promote the new Health Insurance Marketplace and the website HealthCare.gov under an agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services, the company said Monday.

The company began running educational content last week across its network of more than 3,200 SoloHealth Station digital kiosks at Walmart, Sam’s Club and Safeway stores. The kiosks average more than 130,000 users per day, who spend about 4 and a half minutes per session for a total so far of more than 30 million sessions.

"Champion organizations like SoloHealth are already serving people and are a trusted source of information in communities across the country," Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services director of communications Julie Bataille said. "These organizations are natural places for people to learn about the marketplace, and we want to make sure that they have access to the tools and information to respond to people who want to sign up and enroll for coverage on Oct. 1."

SoloHealth CEO Bart Foster echoed Bataille’s sentiments.

"We are excited to partner with HHS and help share informative and valuable information about the upcoming Healthcare Insurance Marketplace so consumers understand their options and can take action," Foster said. "Our SoloHealth Stations are a prime vehicle to reach and engage with consumers when health is top-of-mind, with millions of consumers spending an average of 4.5 minutes with the station each visit. We are connecting daily with the target audience at high-traffic retail locations where they are frequenting and getting high engagement results."


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Study: Gen Y still enjoys in-store shopping

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Good news for brick-and-mortar retailers. Generation Y may turn to the Web for researching products, comparing prices and responding to flash sales, but they still love in-store purchasing. The catch: Keep the shopping experience exciting.

“Generation Y thoroughly enjoys shopping and frequently visits most types of centers. However, the challenging corollary is that 18- to 35-year-olds are bored easily, so they’re on the lookout for new excitement — online, in brick-and-mortar setting and in restaurants. Sensory aspects of retail facilities need to evolve constantly in order to retain young shoppers’ patronage,” researchers stated in the study, “Generation Y: Shopping and Entertainment in the Digital Age,” which was commissioned by the Urban Land Institute.

In January, ULI and Lachman Associates conducted the online survey among 1,251 Gen-Yers to gauge their retail, dining and entertainment preferences.

The survey found that more than half of all Gen-Yers go at least one a month to the following retail formats:

  • Discount department stores (91%);
  • Neighborhood and community shopping centers (74%);
  • Enclosed malls (64%);
  • Full-line department stores (64%);
  • Big-box power centers (63%);
  • Chain apparel stores (58%); and
  • Neighborhood business districts (54%).

Gen-Yers are turning to the Web to research products, compare prices, envision how clothing or accessories would look on them, or responding to flash sales or coupon offers. Yet, when it comes to actual purchasing, stores still dominate. Gen-Yers are multichannel shoppers but the most popular store types among this group are discount department stores and warehouse clubs.

It is important to note, though, that 91% of Gen Y shoppers made online purchases over the previous six months, and 45% spend more than an hour per day looking at retail-oriented websites, the study found.

When it comes to cosmetics and personal care products, the study found that 77% of Gen-Yers shop in stores.


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U.S. EPA honors Food Lion with 2012 Superior Goal Achievement Award

BY Antoinette Alexander

SALISBURY, N.C. — Food Lion has earned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2012 Superior Goal Achievement Award, one of the agency’s honors for commercial refrigeration achievements by GreenChill Partners.

Food Lion officials received the award Monday at the FMI Energy & Store Development Conference in Baltimore, Md. The annual achievement award is in recognition of Food Lion meeting its GreenChill commitment for reducing refrigerant emissions.

"Food Lion has been a member of GreenChill since the partnership began in 2007," stated Tom Land, GreenChill partnership manager. "Since then, Food Lion has continually renewed their commitment to reducing harmful refrigerant emissions. Earning a Superior Goal Achievement award is further evidence of this."

Food Lion has won GreenChill’s Distinguished Partner Award and its Superior Environmental Achievement Award in the past. Food Lion has pioneered various technologies that save energy and reduce harmful refrigerant leaks from GreenChill to building two Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, Certified stores in both North Carolina and South Carolina.

Food Lion has more than half of the nation’s Energy Star stores, with more than 1,000 certified stores. In addition, the company has partnered with utilities to evaluate a variety of such energy-saving opportunities as solar power.
 

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