Supplier Spotlights: Anheuser-Busch, Cybera & Ferrero
NATIONAL REPORT — While it's important for convenience store retailers to market themselves, new products, services, promotions and other initiatives by c-store suppliers are a major part of capturing consumer interest. Convenience Store News will regularly highlight such efforts in this roundup.
Here are the latest supplier spotlights:
Alto-Sham will showcase its products on the road through its new mobile equipment lab, which enables operators, dealers and consultants to witness and experience the company's range of equipment without having to leave their own premises.
"We want a customer to be fully engaged, since they are the ones putting a roast in the Cook & Hold or pulling shrimp out of the Combi," said Chef Anthony Muzia of BSE Marketing, a representative for Alto-Shaam in the United States. "We've even had end users bring products from their own walk-ins. Getting it to become hands-on is a priority."
The truck features Alto-Shaam's complete kitchen solution including a Combitherm Oven, Vector H Series Multi-Cook Oven, Cook & Hold Oven, waterless hot food wells, heated holding cabinet and carving station.
Anheuser-Busch (A-B) and the Portland-based Craft Brew Alliance are expanding their partnership in an agreement through which A-B will purchase the remaining CBA shares it does not already own in a merger transaction for $16.50 per share, in cash.
"Today's announcement represents an exciting next step in a long and successful partnership with Anheuser-Busch, whose support for the growth of our business and brands traces back over 25 years," said Andy Thomas, CEO of CBA. "By combining our resources, our talented teammates, and dynamic brands, we will look to nurture the growth of CBA's existing portfolio as we continue investing in innovation to meet the changing needs of today's beverage consumers, all while delivering certainty of value to our shareholders."
The vast majority of CBA's brands are already distributed through A-B's network of independent wholesalers per the companies' existing commercial agreement.
"Anheuser-Busch has a long track record of working with its craft partners to help make the U.S. beer category stronger and more vibrant," said Michel Doukeris, CEO of Anheuser-Busch. "Our partnership with CBA goes back many years and we look forward to supporting CBA as they continue to bring great products to beer drinkers across the U.S."
Cybera is partnering with Apex Supply Chain Technologies to deliver a global solution that helps streamline the digital transformation of the retail space. The strategic partnership brings additional options to the growing ecosystem of both companies, better positioning the companies' customers and partners to scale self-serve solutions across distributed stores and franchisee bases, according to Cybera. Together, the integrated solution will help businesses drive incremental sales, increase foot traffic, improve customer loyalty, and maximize efficiencies to boost revenues.
"Consumers want a consistent, seamless, and positive experience, regardless of how or where they engage with a retailer or its brand. This expectation is driving remarkable changes in retail," said Cybera CEO Andrew Lev. "For these businesses, networking, security, and quickly enabling revenue generating services have become a critical focus. When we surround an Apex order pickup solution with a platform like CyberaONE, we create a great way to engage customers, ultimately accelerating their time-to-profit."
Additional benefits to customers from the Cybera and Apex partnership include:
- An integrated solution that simplifies connectivity and provides a high level of security and automation, allowing them to do more with less.
- The ability for larger brands and partners to easily provide IT support for remote sites, avoiding expensive onsite visits.
- More engaging customer experiences delivered across single-store remote locations, global distributed store environments, and self-serve IoT devices.
- Faster deployment of new revenue-generating apps, services, and devices at the farthest edges of the network, opening larger growth opportunities.
D&H United Fueling Solutions
D&H, a fueling systems service provider based in the Southwest, is teaming with Acumera, a provider of network security and management services for retailers and restaurants, to deliver end-to-end PCI compliant network management, remote access, and fueling system solutions. These joint solutions will provide fueling retailers with a secure and simple path to enabling outdoor EMV.
"D&H United is pleased to partner with Acumera, one of the industry's leading providers of managed network security services. With less than a year until the EMV liability shift, Acumera provides a key component of our overall EMV solution for petroleum retailers," said Bo Sasnett, CEO of D&H. "Acumera's product portfolio provides a foundation for our customers to achieve EMV enablement, PCI compliance, secure networks and payment systems."
In addition to Managed Network Service Provider (MNSP) and firewall services, Acumera's all-in-one solution also includes AcuLink technology, which provides PCI compliant remote access through authenticated, logged and secured ephemeral connections that automatically disconnect after a period of inactivity.
Chipita S.A., a Greece-based multinational leader in bakery snacks and owner of the 7DAYS brand, acquired a majority stake in EPTA America LLC, North American distributor of 7DAYS.
"We are very excited for this next chapter for EPTA. Thanks to our team and our incredible trade partners, growth in the US has been strong over the last 7 years. I know that Chipita's leadership will only help strengthen our presence in North America and accelerate our growth," said Jim Burns, CEO of EPTA America. "We will continue to operate as EPTA America LLC, and do not foresee any change in day-to-day operations."
Ferrero officially opened its new distribution center in Jonestown, Pa., in November. Designed to support the company's rapid organic growth and integration of new brands, the 730,000-square-foot facility will add 225 jobs with 75 new positions in 2019 and an additional 150 jobs by the end of 2020.
"The new Jonestown distribution center will play an important role in our U.S. and North American growth plans," said Paul Chibe, president and CEO, Ferrero North America.
The new facility adds capacity for Ferrero North America to distribute its growing portfolio of brands, including Baby Ruth, Butterfinger and Crunch. It will later begin distribution of other Ferrero brands.
Ferrero's new distribution center demonstrates the its commitment to contribute positively to the planet and its employees and suppliers, according to the company. In addition to the lithium-powered lifts, the center features an energy-saving HVAC system and zero-waste-to-landfill practices to reduce environmental impact.
Global sports and nutrition brand Grenade is accelerating its expansion in the United States through partnerships with c-stores such as Speedway, Royal Farms, Dash In, GetGo and Wawa. It also signed deals with major grocery chains Meijer and Giant Eagle, as well as Canteen's Avenue C micro-markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest.
"These latest partnerships are another exciting step as we look to grow the Grenade brand worldwide," said Alan Barratt, CEO and co-founder. "Busy lifestyles combined with a rising demand for healthy food has meant that the global healthy snacking market is predicted to reach $32.88 billion by 2025. North America in particular is tipped to be one of the most prominent markets for healthy snacking and with Carb Killa bars driving 57 percent more cash through the till than the average nutritional bar, we look forward to working with these stores to drive sales to the next level."
As the market leader in the United Kingdom, Grenade grew by 112 percent within the convenience channel last year and drove more actual category growth than all other brands put together, the company said.