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Survey notes rise in MP3 player usage while driving

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK Drug stores should get involved in the consumer electronics game, as the number of people who listen to an iPod or MP3 player continues to rise.

According to a survey of 1,753 people ages 12 years and older, 24% of people have listened to music devices while connected to a car stereo, survey conductors from Arbitron and Edison Research revealed. Additionally, the new national study showed that 44% of all Americans ages 12 years and older own an iPod or MP3 player. Among that group, 54% have connected their players for listening in the car.

“The car is clearly a crucial battleground for people’s attention, and our study shows that most of those who do listen in this fashion do so more than once a week,” said Larry Rosin, Edison Research president.

This is the 18th in a series of studies Arbitron and Edison have conducted since 1998 on topics relating to the Internet and new media.

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StoreBoard gets new SVP, office in Minneapolis

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK StoreBoard Media opened a new office in Minneapolis and will be run by its newest SVP, the company announced Monday.

The indoor billboard network’s newest office will be run by Edward Parker, who will be responsible for supporting the company’s retail initiatives and helping to expand its retail network.

Parker, a Minneapolis native, joins StoreBoard from Supervalu, where he was director of sales and marketing for the company’s store design services division. In that role, Parker represented to independent grocers nationwide all the services necessary to create powerful retail environments including store planning, architecture and engineering, interior design, branding, visual merchandising, project management and equipment procurement.

“Edward Parker brings to StoreBoard Media a two-decade track record of developing profitable in-store and online marketing programs, as well as award-winning retail environments,” said Doug Leeds, StoreBoard’s CEO. “He is a great addition to our management team at a time when we are poised to expand our in-store media network beyond the drug store category. Ed’s relationships and expertise in myriad categories of retail will be of great value as we enter this next phase of our growth.”

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Supervalu sells Bigg’s stores

BY Allison Cerra

MINNEAPOLIS Six Bigg’s stores and their pharmacies will be sold to a northern Kentucky-based supermarket chain.

Supervalu said it has entered an agreement with Remke Markets to transfer the ownership of six Bigg’s stores and their pharmacies in the greater Cincinnati area. The transaction is expected to close in spring 2010 and will bring Remke Markets’ complement of locally owned and operated stores to 13. Each of these locations will be supplied by the Supervalu distribution center in Xenia, Ohio.

“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome these bigg’s stores and their customers into the Remke family,” said Bill Remke, president and CEO of Remke Markets. “The Bigg’s stores bring many assets to our organization, and we look forward to blending the strengths of two great grocery chains to create an organization committed to service, quality and value.”

Supervalu said it plans to close its five remaining Bigg’s stores before the end of May. Its Kentucky-based Bigg’s stores’ prescription files will be transferred to Remke Market’s Turfway store later this spring. The other four pharmacies’ files will be transferred to another local company.

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