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LEADING HEADLINES

Fred’s Pharmacy appoints Jason Jenne CFO

Fred’s Pharmacy appoints Jason Jenne CFO

MEMPHIS — Fred’s Inc. has appointed Jason Jenne executive vice president and chief financial officer. He succeeds Rick Hans, who is stepping down from the company to pursue other opportunities. Hans will remain in an advisory capacity until August 18 and will work closely with

GMDC spotlights GM17 product showcase winners

GMDC spotlights GM17 product showcase winners

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Global Market Development Center (GMDC) announced the top 10 products and the board chair’s choice winners of the product showcase at its 2017 General Merchandise conference (GM17). The GM17 event, held in Orlando, Fla., featured more than 3,500 products and in-store

Store No. 8 and Thrive Global launch Innov8: V-Commerce

Store No. 8 and Thrive Global launch Innov8: V-Commerce

SAN BRUNO, Calif. — A competition designed to encourage “the virtual reality community” to submit ideas that might change the way consumers shop and live was launched on Thursday by Store No. 8 and Thrive Global in collaboration with Accenture LLP. The competition will culminate

Back-to-School spending forecast to rise

Back-to-School spending forecast to rise

NEW YORK — Back-to-school spending is forecast to rise this season, according to recent surveys from the National Retail Federation and Deloitte LLC. Families with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average $687.72 each, for a total of $29.5 billion, an

Amazon says Prime Day makes history

Amazon says Prime Day makes history

SEATTLE — Amazon.com Inc. said Tuesday that its Prime Day sale was on track to be the biggest shopping event in its history by sales. Third-party sellers sold over 50% more items on the site by noon local time than in the same time frame last

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RETAIL NEWS

Liz Ferneding named president of Kroger’s Ruler division

CINCINNATI — Kroger Co. has appointed Liz Ferneding to Ruler division president. She succeeds Paul Bowen, who retired in May. She joins Kroger from Aldi, where she has served in a variety of leadership roles for the last 11 years, including an international assignment in

NACDS offers input to U.S. drug abuse commission

ARLINGTON, Va. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores described retail pharmacy as a strong partner in the fight against drug abuse in a letter to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, chairman of the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Epidemic.

NRF: Retail employment grew in June

WASHINGTON – Retail employment turned a corner in June, gaining 7,400 jobs over May, the National Retail Federation said Friday. The association noted that its retail industry job figures exclude jobs at automobile dealers, gasoline stations and restaurants. The overall U.S. economy added 222,000 jobs

Walgreens Boots Alliance sees solid 3Q results

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Analysts said Walgreens Boots Alliance turned in a solid third quarter and stands to emerge on a positive note from its new deal with Rite Aid Corp. upon the termination of their merger. For the third quarter ended May 31, WBA posted

Fred’s remains optimistic about strategy

MEMPHIS — The overhaul of Fred’s Inc. will continue despite the collapse of its pending purchase of 865 stores in connection with the now abandoned Walgreens-Rite Aid merger, the regional chain said yesterday. “While the acquisition of additional stores was an opportunity for growth, we

SUPPLIER NEWS

Church & Dwight to acquire Water Pik for about $1 billion

EWING, N.J. — Church & Dwight Co. announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Water Pik Inc. for approximately $1 billion in cash. The transaction, which is subject to regulatory approval and other customary conditions, is expected to close in the third quarter.

Halls Kids Pops mark firsts in pediatric category

EAST HANOVER, N.J. — Halls has brought cough and sore throat relief to the pop format for children with the rollout of Halls Kids Pops. The Mondelez International brand said Halls Kids Pops, for children ages 5 and older, combine cough and sore throat lozenges

Mentholatum introduces Rohto Dry-Aid eye drops

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Mentholatum Co.’s Rohto brand has launched Rohto Dry-Aid, an over-the-counter dry eye drop product with a non-blurry tear repair formula. The company says the dry eye drop is formulated to relieve five symptoms: dryness, irritation, grittiness, burning and stinging. Rohto Dry-Aid

Aquaphor Baby debuts paste for fast diaper rash relief

WILTON, Conn. — Beiersdorf Inc.’s Aquaphor Baby brand has launched new maximum-strength Aquaphor Baby Fast Relief Paste to deliver relief for diaper rash. The creamy formula made with 40% zinc oxide creates a barrier to block moisture, helping to keep baby’s sensitive bottom dry and

Hallmark offers card innovations for the summer

KANSAS CITY — Hallmark Cards Inc. has introduced a number of innovations, licensed characters and a premium wedding collection to draw traffic over the summer.  In the area of virtual reality, Hallmark has added a roller coaster ride and an epic journey in a hot