C-stores account for 34.3% of all U.S. retail outlets
ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The U.S. convenience store count increased to 151,282 stores as of December 31, 2013, a 1.4% increase (2,062 stores) from the year prior, according to the 2014 NACS/Nielsen Convenience Industry Store Count. Convenience stores account for 34.3% of all retail outlets in the United States, according to Nielsen, which is significantly higher than the U.S. total of other retail channels including drug stores (41,378 stores), supermarket/supercenter (37,459 stores) and dollar stores (24,853 stores).
Among the states, Texas continues to lead in store count with 15,191 stores, up from 14,920 in 2013. The rest of the top 10 states for convenience stores are California (11,188), Florida (9,737), New York (8,154), Georgia (6,750), North Carolina (6,272), Ohio (5,452), Michigan, (4,903), Illinois (4,607) and Virginia (4,512).
The link between fuels and convenience retailing continues to grow. Overall, 83.7% of convenience stores (126,658 total) sell motor fuels, a 2.7% increase (3,369 stores) over 2013. The growth of convenience stores selling motor fuels is double the overall growth in the industry, as fuel retailers add convenience operations and convenience retailers add fueling operations.
The convenience retailing industry continues to be dominated by single-store operators, which account for 62.8% of all convenience stores (95,056 stores total).
The convenience retailing industry has roughly doubled in size over the last three decades. At year-end 1983, the store count was 80,900 stores, at year-end 1993 the store count was 98,400 stores and at year-end 2003 the store count was 132,659 stores.
Hudson’s Bay, Lord & Taylor launch app integrating traditional media and m-commerce
Toronto — The HBC Department Store Group announced the launch of a new mobile shopping application for both its Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor divisions that allows customers to instantly buy products seen in print by simply scanning an image.
HBC is partnering with Pounce, a mobile app that turns static print ads into instant digital storefronts by enabling customers to scan product images and complete a purchase in less than 30 seconds. It provides a secure, one-tap checkout, integrating with the retailer’s existing e-commerce system
“Our goal with this initiative is to complement traditional media with popular mobile technology, and Pounce creates the opportunity to combine offline and online channels in a seamless way,” said Michael Crotty, chief marketing officer for HBC. “Pounce’s unique capability is a natural fit as we roll-out and grow our omni-channel strategy for HBC.”
The app launched in Canada on Thursday, just ahead of this year’s Olympic Winter Games. Hudson’s Bay is the official apparel sponsor of the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Teams for the Sochi 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, and the upcoming ads for HBC Olympic apparel will be the first to display the Pounce mobile app opportunity for customers.
Wal-Mart announces $10 million fund to support U.S. manufacturing
Washington, D.C. — Wal-Mart Stores announced that it has created a $10 million fund to support manufacturing in the United States. In a joint announcement, Kent International, a New Jersey-based bicycle maker and one of the chain’s suppliers, said that it will move its production from overseas to Clarendon, S.C.
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation will fund the five-year program and work in collaboration with the U.S. Conference of Mayors to launch it in March. The fund will provide grants to innovators in the manufacturing sector and seeks to create new processes, ideas, and jobs that support America’s manufacturing footprint.
“If we want to grow manufacturing and help rebuild America’s middle class, we need the brightest minds in our universities, in our think tanks, and in our towns to tackle obstacles to U.S. manufacturing," said Bill Simon, U.S. president, Wal-Mart, at the United States Conference of Mayors’ winter meeting in Washington, D.C. "The $10 million fund will identify and award leaders in manufacturing innovation and help us all work together to create opportunity."
Wal-Mart also announced that it will host its second U.S. manufacturing summit in Denver, in August 2014. One focus of this year’s summit will be connecting manufacturers in need of component parts to factories with excess capacity.
"Many factories aren’t operating at full capacity. By working together, we have an opportunity to repurpose or help add production to some of these communities," said Simon. "This will help rebuild the American supply chain to support U.S. manufacturing and create more jobs."