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Report: Small-Business Outlook Looks Good for End of 2007

BY CSA STAFF

Washington, D.C., The small-business economic outlook remains good for the end of 2007, according to recent data from National Federation of Independent Business’ (NFIB) Small Business Economic Trends report.

“With Internet sales and gift cards, we won’t know until next February how good retail sales were, but so far, so good,” said William Dunkelberg, chief economist at the NFIB. “Only 10% have reported lower selling prices, and 32% have reported higher selling prices, so it looks like demand is solid.”

And small-business owners shouldn’t worry about a declining economy—at least not this holiday season, he said.

“Consumer spending has been very strong in spite of all the bad news on the economy delivered by the media,” Dunkelberg said. “We may be talking ourselves into a recession next year, but the fourth quarter will be good.”

Conditions appear to be favorable for consumer spending, according to Dunkelberg. “Employment is historically high, the unemployment rate is low, energy prices are falling and income gains have been pretty good,” he stated.

He also notes that new job creation has been solid, and may continue throughout the rest of the year.

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Stop & Shop to expand deli kiosk service

BY CSA STAFF

BOSTON Stop & Shop will be offering customers access to self-service deli ordering in more than 200 stores by the first quarter of 2008.

Modiv Media, the maker of the Modiv DeliVision kiosk used by Stop & Shop in select stores, as well as other supermarket chains, announced Monday that Stop & Shop would be expanding the use of the service, which allows customers to place their deli order using a touch screen and informs them when the order will be filled, thus eliminating the need to wait in line. In addition, customers, are able to scan their loyalty card for easy ordering of their favorite items.

 

Using Modiv DeliVision, Stop & Shop can now provide a new way for customers to shop, said Christine Dorman, senior vp of operational and strategic initiatives and support services for Stop & Shop. DeliVision gives us an opportunity to enhance customer satisfaction and increase our efficiency. 

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Del Monte board elects Williams-Sonoma cfo

BY CSA STAFF

SAN FRANCISCO Del Monte Foods has announced that it has named Williams-Sonoma executive Sharon McCollam to its board of directors.

Sharon McCollam has served as evp, coo and cfo of Williams-Sonoma since July 2006. She joined the company in March 2000 as vp of finance. From 1993 to 2000, McCollam held a variety of positions at Dole Foods, including vp and cfo of the Dole fresh vegetables division from 1996 to 2000.

We are delighted to welcome Sharon to our board of directors, commented Richard Wolford, ceo and chairman of the board. We believe Sharons participation as a board member will be very beneficial to Del Monte Foods. Her experience is complementary to our business; she contributes additional financial expertise, and as well, will provide important retail and consumer packaged goods perspective for our business. 

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