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Walgreens Q2 sales rise 5.2%

BY Dan Berthiaume

Deerfield Park, Ill. – Total sales for the second quarter of fiscal 2014 at Walgreens were $19.61 billion, up 5.2% from $18.65 billion in the same quarter in the prior year. Same-store sales for the second quarter of fiscal 2014 increased 4.5%, while front-end same-store sales for the quarter increased 2%. Prescriptions filled at same stores increased 2.4% in the second quarter and same-store pharmacy sales increased 6.1%.

Severe winter weather is estimated to have negatively impacted second quarter same-store front-end sales by 0.6 percentage point and negatively impacted the quarter’s prescriptions filled at comparable stores by 0.8 percentage point. Additionally, the company incurred incremental selling, general and administrative expenses throughout the quarter from the severe weather

In addition, Walgreens had February 2014 sales of $6.05 billion, an increase of 5% from $5.76 billion for the same month in fiscal 2013. Same-store sales grew 4.5%.Total front-end sales increased 3% compared with the same month in fiscal 2013, while same-store front-end sales increased 2% Customer traffic in same stores decreased 0.7% while basket size increased 2.7%.

Walgreens opened eight stores during February, including five relocations. On Feb. 28, 2014, Walgreens operated 8,681 locations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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Amy Poehler set to help sales at Old Navy

BY CSA STAFF

Saturday Night Live alum and “Parks and Recreation” star Amy Poehler will appear in commercials for Old Navy following last year’s involvement with Best Buy.

Ad Age is reporting that along with starring in the commercials, Poehler will help write and direct them. The first ad, said Ad Age, features Poehler as an executive at a law firm interviewing a job candidate but getting distracted by the woman’s outfit from Old Navy.

"We approached Amy with a list of scenarios we’d come up with, and she started playing around with them too. She liked some, didn’t like some, came up with some new ones," said Ivan Wicksteed, global CMO at Old Navy, to Ad Age. "Amy is protective of her own brand and thinks very carefully about who she wants to work with. I think that was an important consideration in deciding to work with us. We gave her a lot of creative control. We’re not dictating what she has to say in advertisements."

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Report: Consumers seek digital value

BY Dan Berthiaume

Livonia, Mich. – A large majority of consumers consider themselves value seekers, and they are increasingly using the Internet, social media and mobile devices to obtain value. According to the new Valassis Shopper Marketing Report, nearly eight in 10 consumers consider themselves value seekers, self-described as promotion sensitive or price conscious.

According to the Valassis Shopper Marketing Report, 71% of those who search the Internet for coupons have done so after hearing about it in social media; an average of 67% engage in showrooming, with Millennials at a much higher rate; 40% say their coupon usage has increased during the past year; and 24% report their use of smartphones to get deals has increased.

Other notable figures include:

• 85% of shoppers who use coupons search online and more than one-third say they are doing so more in 2013 compared to 2012;

• 40% have shared or traded coupons on social media, a 10%age point jump from 2012;

• 92% of Millennials use coupons to plan shopping lists;

• 51% of Millennials say their coupon usage has increased this past year, higher than all consumers and generational breakouts;

• 5% of Hispanic Internet users download coupons from retailer websites or mobile apps before shopping; and

• 70% have used a coupon found on social media; a 16%age point difference from all consumers.

“Marketers have access to a wealth of data and media choices. These results highlight the need for considering multiple touch points to deliver the right message using the right blend of print, digital and in-store media,” said Lisa Reynolds, Valassis VP, brand strategy and campaign solutions. “With a holistic view of the consumer, marketers can best identify their target audience and optimal ways to reach and activate them along their path to purchase.”

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