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Starbucks entering yogurt business in deal with Dannon

BY Marianne Wilson

Seattle — Starbucks Coffee Company is entering the yogurt business. The company announced it has entered into a strategic agreement with the makers of Dannon to offer a jointly created and developed selection of specialty yogurt products in participating Starbucks stores and in grocery channels.

The line, branded as Evolution Fresh, Inspired by Dannon, will feature ready-to-eat Parfait Greek yogurt products co-created by Starbucks and Danone for exclusive distribution in the U.S. Starbucks will offer the products through its stores in spring 2014, and Danone (makers of Dannon) in grocery channels in 2015.

Distribution is planned to be extended to include targeted markets around the world in a second phase that builds upon the success of the U.S. initiative.

“Starbucks is committed to evolving and enhancing our customer experience with innovative and wholesome food offerings. Today’s announcement underscores this commitment through the transformation of our existing yogurt offerings and our multi-year agreement with Danone,” said Howard Schultz, Starbucks chairman, president and CEO.

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Study: One-in-three shoppers showroom

BY Dan Berthiaume

Lewisville, Texas — Almost six-in-10 (58%) U.S. smartphone owners, representing one-in-three overall shoppers, “showroom” or check for better prices on in-store items using their mobile devices. The Parago Dynamic Pricing Study also shows that Amazon is the number one way U.S. consumers compare prices on smartphones in store.

Other key findings include that a price difference of just $5 can sway shoppers from in-store to Amazon purchasing, the majority of showroomers will buy a similar, but not identical item that they find on their smartphone if it is significantly cheaper, 67% of showroom shoppers will buy from a physical store over Amazon when the store matches Amazon’s price with a rebate, and that shoppers showroom across a variety of retail categories including apparel, appliance, automotive, building supplies and tools, electronics and technology, entertainment, housewares and office supplies.

“Shopping behavior has fundamentally changed,” said Rodney Mason, CMO of Parago. “The combination of growing smartphone use, consumers’ determination to find the lowest price and the ability to make purchases on smartphones while in store is resulting in brick-and-mortar retailers losing buyers to savvy e-tailers like Amazon in unprecedented numbers.”

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T.Platt says:
Jul-24-2013 11:29 am

Retailers best combat #showrooming by selling what, when and where shoppers want to buy, via #CEM http://amex.co/13rIN5K

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Rite Aid to remove Coutu from board

BY Dan Berthiaume

Camp Hill, Pa. – Rite Aid will remove François J. Coutu from the board of directors effective as of Oct. 31. 24/7 Wall Street reports that a recent share sale by The Jean Coutu Group, which has held a seat on the board since 2007, brings its ownership of the company under the 5% threshold for board membership.

According to 24/7 Wall Street, The Jean Coutu Group has been selling Rite Aid shares at less than purchase price for some time.

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