OPERATIONS

Diedrich Coffee CEO Resigns

BY CSA STAFF

Irvine , Calif. Diedrich Coffee, Inc. announced that Stephen V. Coffey has tendered his resignation from his position as CEO. J. Russell Phillips has been appointed by the board of directors to assume the CEO position.

Phillips has served on the company’s board of directors since April 2007, and will remain as a member of the board. Since 2004, Phillips has served as managing principal of Transom Partners, an executive consultancy group that facilitates and develops new strategies with CEOs and executive teams. Diedrich Coffee has 136 retail outlets, the majority of which are franchised, located in 30 states.

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Award offers insight into marketing push

BY CSA STAFF

Wal-Mart’s increased emphasis on consumer insights, which surfaced two years ago, has resulted in The NPD Group being recognized as the syndicated supplier of the year for a department called, “insights and customer strategy.”

Accolades for supplier of the year are common throughout the retailer industry, but are typically bestowed on merchandise suppliers. In Wal-Mart’s case, the award received by The NPD Group underscores the important role now occupied by providers of consumer insights that follows a major shift several years ago that saw Wal-Mart adopt a customer segmentation strategy.

That shift followed a major overhaul of Wal-Mart’s marketing department that infused the organization with executives from the consumer packaged goods industry where customer segmentation strategies are commonplace. As Wal-Mart sought to better understand the behaviors and motivations of the customers shopping its stores, supplier teams dedicated to the Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club accounts increased their research capabilities and information providers developed new products.

That was the case with The NPD Group which created a customized Consumer Tracking Service for Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club, which provides the retailers and select suppliers with an extensive view of what’s happening within and across categories based on identified consumer segments.

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Market unfazed by top line disappointment

BY CSA STAFF

Investors didn’t seem to mind that January same-store sales results that Wal-Mart reported on Thursday for its U.S. operations were weaker than expected. Despite the disappointment, shares of the company traded higher on the day following an early morning sale release that showed January comps totaled 0.2%, compared to guidance of 2%. The news caused shares to open sharply lower at $47.85 from Wednesday’s close of $48.83. However, Wal-Mart shares staged a recovery throughout the day on heavier than normal trading volume to close up $1.01 at $49.84.

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