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Dr. Stephen Needel

Managing Partner
Advanced Simulations

I predict a trivial effect, and I'd predict the same regardless of the shopper's income. There's only a small group of shoppers who are seeking out healthier alternatives — and they probably have a better feel for what is healthier. The example used misses the point — the flavored Cream of...

If you go back to Brian Harris' early writings on category management, he viewed the process as a triad of vendor, retailer and consumer. We lost the consumer early in the process, as CM became a spreadsheet financial tool and a space management tool. The problem is that there...

The only challenge I see is that CVS may lose non-prescription sales. To the extent that someone switches from a CVS store to a Target/CVS pharmacy, there are potential lost sales opportunities. It sounds like this may be outweighed by the likely increase in prescription business.

Target is selling its...

This has failure written all over it. I don't see any benefit or point of differentiation, critical in a saturated market.

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Category captains are a necessary evil in the way we've perverted the concept of category management. That said, anyone showing up with good data (as opposed to bad research) that says they have a better way usually gets listened to. If I were Kroger, I'd watch how the third...

I'm with Joel re: personal liberties and, as a smoker (I know, I know) I've stopped going to CVS and started at Walgreens — I don't think I'm alone here. When I walk into any of the four CVS stores in my neighborhood, the first thing I see is the...

Having worked in this space for 23 years, I think it will be huge for gaming but not for retail. To say that VR can be disorienting is an understatement (under 25s appear to be immune to this problem). The question will be how to make this worthwhile to...

Can't imagine Target fairing better. Breaking new ground is not what they are known for, nor is small stores.

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The vendors I know have always been craving the ability to share their insights with retailers. So what Hershey is doing is nothing new, per se. It may be that retailers are showing more interest in that process. This strikes me as basic category management.

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Maybe the better question is, do we have any reason to believe that Safeway can succeed in Florida? No offense to Safeway folk, but I don't think they're doing anything better than any other mass-appeal grocer. And their profit margins can't be that good if they are supplying the...

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