Kroger CEO Shops the Competition
By George Anderson
David Dillon, chairman and CEO of the Kroger Co., understands the importance of shopping the competition.
“I get in (stores owned by) most of our competitors a lot,” he told The Cincinnati Enquirer.
Mr. Dillon said he has been impressed on shopping trips to Target and Wal-Mart.
In response to what the competition is doing, Kroger has developed and operates targeted formats, including food/drug combos, multi-department units, price impact warehouses, convenience and jewelry stores.
Meanwhile, Supervalu’s bigg’s unit in the Cincinnati area is undergoing a change to what it calls its “fresh” format. While being short on specifics, the company says the new format will enhance its produce offerings as well as wine, ready-to-eat and natural food selections.
Steve Kaczynski, president of bigg’s, said, “Customers want choice. We are going to make a different offering to consumers, and we’ll let the customers decide.”
Tom Herman, senior vice president of bigg’s, said the changes being made were not going to be simply a cosmetic makeover of the stores. “If you just go in the store, change graphics
and signs, you don’t get much for that. But if you dramatically change assortment and merchandising, you change your competitive edges.”
Moderator’s Comment: What must retailers look for to make the best use of competitive shopping trips? What retailers do you believe make the best use
of competitive intelligence? – George Anderson – Moderator