OPERATIONS

Duane Reade seeks to expand customer engagement with location-based game from Niantic Labs

BY Staff Writer

New York — Duane Reade announced that its 250 plus stores are integrating into Niantic Labs’ new mobile game, Ingress. The drugstore chain is one of the first retail partners in the New York metropolitan area for "Ingress," which blends the physical and virtual world to create a one-of-a-kind gaming experience.

"Customer engagement strategy via location-based gaming has elevated to new levels and Duane Reade understands that", said Calvin Peters, PR/Online manager for Duane Reade. "Strategically engaging gamification experiences that utilize LBS platforms are becoming increasingly relevant as mobile concentration within the retail space continues to expand. It’s important for us to be where our consumers are; including the virtual world. We’re excited to have this opportunity to work with Niantic Labs at Google and participate in this exciting new endeavor while continuing to provide the best possible customer experience."

An Ingress logo is located on the front window of Duane Reade stores around the city signaling players of the company’s participation and the existence of a value-added game asset located inside the store. Each asset will display its own unique code, which gives players a range of resources for playing the game including energy (XM), offensive and defensive game objects (resonators, weapons, shields) and possibly media objects. Each code may be used only once, but can be shared with each player’s online community. As the game evolved, cooperation across neighborhoods, cities, and countries will be needed to achieve the ultimate victory for either faction.

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OPERATIONS

Jones Group names merchandising exec for Nine West brand

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York — The Jones Group Inc. said Monday it has appointed Joseph Stafiniak to the newly created position of SVP merchandising of Nine West, effective immediately.

Stafiniak will operate as the lead merchant for Nine West, overseeing merchandising strategies and the execution of product to meet the expanding needs of the brand’s global business.

Stafiniak comes to Jones Group from Coach, where he most recently served as SVP licensed categories.

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Duncan takes the reins at Supervalu

BY Marianne Wilson

Minneapolis — Supervalu on Monday announced that Sam K. Duncan will become president and CEO, effective immediately. He succeeds Wayne Sales, who has served as the company’s president and CEO since July 2012.

Last month, Supervalu announced an agreement with AB Acquisition LLC to sell five of its retail banners, as well as enter into an agreement with Symphony Investors LLC to conduct a tender offer for up to 30% of Supervalu’s outstanding common stock. Both AB Acquisition LLC and Symphony Investors LLC are Cerberus Capital Management-led entities. The retailer had previously announced that Duncan would assume the role of president and chief executive officer upon closing of the transaction.

“Following January’s announcement, I have visited stores, spoken with many of our independent retailers and Save-a-Lot licensees, and met many team members,” Duncan said. “These activities have reinforced my belief that Supervalu has a bright future; and I’m excited to start putting in place plans to improve our results and increase shareholder value.”

Duncan, 61, most recently served from 2005-2011 as chairman, CEO and president of OfficeMax.

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