RETAIL NEWS

CVS’ Foulkes named CEO at Hudson’s Bay Company

BY Marianne Wilson

Helena Foulkes, the executive vice president of CVS Health and president of CVS Pharmacy, has been named CEO of Hudson’s Bay Company, the parent company of Lord & Taylor, Saks Fifth Avenue, Hudson’s Bay and other retail banners.

Foulkes’ appointment is effective Feb. 19. She will be responsible for HBC’s global strategy and operations for all banners, overseeing more than 66,000 associates worldwide across a portfolio of more than 480 stores, related e-commerce platforms, supply chain, logistics and technology. Upon joining HBC, she will also be appointed the company’s board.

Foulkes joined CVS in 1992. She has served as executive vice president of CVS Health and president of CVS Pharmacy since January 2014. In the role, she led the strategic vision as well as the operations for all aspects of the company’s retail business, including its nearly 9,700 retail stores, 20 distribution centers and e-commerce sites, as well as merchandising, supply chain, marketing and real estate. She helped lead CVS’s move to discontinue sales of tobacco products. Most recently, she led the company’s decision to eliminate airbrushing of models from the imagery used to promote its in-house beauty brands.

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Kroger sells c-store unit to U.K. retailer

BY Michael Johnsen

Kroger on Monday inked a deal with EG Group, a privately-held petrol forecourt c-store retailer based in Blackburn, England, on the sale of Kroger’s c-store business unit for $2.2 billion. The companies expect to close the transaction during the first quarter of Kroger’s fiscal year.

As part of the agreement, EG Group will establish their North American headquarters in Kroger’s hometown market Cincinnati and continue to operate stores under their established banner names, which include Turkey Hill, Tom Thumb and Quik Stop.

“Our convenience store business has been a part of our company for many years. We want to thank our management team and associates for their enduring commitment to our customers, and for the contributions they have made to build our supermarket fuel business,” said Mike Schlotman, Kroger executive vice president and CFO. “As part of our regular review of assets, it has become clear that our strong convenience store business unit will better meet its full potential outside of our business.”

“This is an exciting time for EG Group, the entry into the U.S. market presents a fantastic opportunity to deliver a successful retail offer to consumers across the various states,” Mohsin Issa, EG Group founder and co-CEO, said. “We have had much success across Europe and we firmly believe the Kroger assets present a fantastic foundation to overlay our retail experience and know-how in the US. We are committed to investing in the Kroger network, partnering with leading retail brands and working with the exceptional management team and associates transferring across to deliver a comprehensive retail offer.”

Kroger’s convenience store business operates in 18 states. It includes 66 franchise operations. The stores employ 11,000 associates and operate under the following banner names: Turkey Hill, Loaf ‘N Jug, Kwik Shop, Tom Thumb and Quik Stop. Kroger’s convenience store business generated revenue of $4 billion, including selling 1.2 billion gallons of fuel, in 2016.

Kroger announced in October 2017 its intention to explore strategic alternatives for its convenience store business, including a potential sale, in conjunction with Restock Kroger.

Kroger plans to use net proceeds from the sale to repurchase shares and to lower its net total debt to adjusted EBITDA ratio.

Kroger’s supermarket fuel centers and its Turkey Hill Dairy are not included in the sale.

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Food Lion intros new shopper loyalty program

BY Michael Johnsen

Following successful tests last year, Food Lion has launched the Shop & Earn MVP Customer Loyalty Program across its 10-state market in the U.S., providing customers with a new way to significantly increase their savings through personalized offers on products and categories they already buy. An enhancement to the popular MVP Customer Rewards Program, Shop & Earn lets shoppers easily save more every month, in addition to their MVP savings and coupons.

“Shop & Earn is a unique loyalty program that puts our customers in charge of their savings,” said Deborah Sabo, senior vice president marketing, Food Lion. “The more our customers shop, the more they will save. Offers are targeted to customers based on their specific purchases, fueling a program with nearly endless savings opportunities.”

The Shop & Earn rollout comes after successful pilots last year in the Raleigh and Greensboro markets in North Carolina.

With Shop & Earn, new offers will be made available the first of each month. Customers can begin earning rewards as soon as their account is activated and will have until the last day of the month to earn rewards. These rewards may be redeemed until the end of the following month.

To celebrate the program’s launch, Food Lion Feeds is partnering with Feeding America to donate one meal to local food banks for each Shop & Earn activation, up to 1 million meals, throughout February.

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