King’s Hawaiian Tests ‘Smart Shelves’ to Reduce Out of Stocks 

King’s Hawaiian will be the first CPG company to use new smart shelves in supermarkets to reduce out-of-stock incidents and ensure shoppers can find its products while shopping this holiday season.
The maker of Hawaiian foods will rely on the Internet of Things (IoT) shelves installed in 15 supermarkets of a leading Midwest supermarket chain, which was not named in a press announcement. Powershelf and Hitachi Consulting are working with Microsoft to introduce smart shelves to US retail stores.

The IoT units consist of a series of shelves that hold and display products. Built-in technology tracks product availability; when a shelf is empty, a restocking alert is automatically sent to store personnel. The solution uses Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Power BI to analyze when, where, and why products sell so fast, allowing retailers and consumer product companies to identify trends and avoid out of stocks before they ever happen.

King’s and participating retailers will be able to access data gathered by the units – including historical out-of-stock incidents and loss of potential sales – in real-time through the IoT with a customized digital dashboard co-developed by Microsoft and Hitachi Consulting.

CPG Executive Changes

Among the recent executive changes in the CPG industry:

  • ConAgra Brands has appointed Thomas “Tad” Dickson to its Board of Directors.
  • Muhtar Kent is stepping down as Chief Executive Officer of The Coca-Cola Company, and President and COO James Quincey will succeed him, effective May 1. Kent will continue as chairman.
  • General Mills will give President Jeff Harmening responsibility for the company’s global operations effective Jan. 1

Oreo Launches Direct-to-Consumer Gifting Site for the Holidays

Just in time for the busiest shopping season of the year, Oreo is introducing, a totally new online gifting experience for consumers featuring festive Oreo tins filled with White Fudge Covered Oreo cookies, a seasonal favorite.

The new eCommerce pilot program will allow Mondelēz International to further build its direct-to-consumer credentials and is the latest initiative in the company's global e-commerce strategy, which aims to grow revenues to at least $1 billion by 2020.

“Our goal is to become the leader in eCommerce snacking by providing the best product assortment, value and convenience for consumers,” said Neil Ackerman, Global Director, eCommerce. “We're piloting a more flexible, agile supply chain model that will allow us to have a more direct interaction with shoppers during a time of year when they're increasingly turning to online sources to research gift ideas and complete purchases.”

Celebrity Chef Robert Irvine Launches Signature Side Dishes

Chef Robert Irvine is helping families eat healthy while saving time and money with his new line of Signature Sidekicks side dishes, exclusively available at Walmart. Signature Sidekicks cook in less than ten minutes and can only be found in Walmart’s fresh produce section. There are four varieties available, all for less than $7, including: Garlic Balsamic Broccoli, Sesame Ginger Stir Fry, Provençal Ratatouille and Braised Collard Greens.

“With hectic schedules, I know many families struggle to make healthy and delicious meals, especially at an affordable price,” said Chef Irvine. “I created Signature Sidekicks from my own personal recipes to give families across the US the opportunity to easily prepare restaurant-quality side dishes using fresh ingredients right at home.”

Signature Sidekicks are now available at Walmart stores across the U.S. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Signature Sidekicks will support The Robert Irvine Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to our men and women of the military and their families.

IRI and Clavis Insight Deliver E-Commerce Solution

IRI is continuing its e-commerce momentum through an alliance with Clavis Insight, provider of digital shelf analysis, insights and analytics for consumer packaged goods manufacturers. The alliance means CPG marketers will be able to track and assess a brand’s holistic online and offline performance in one place, to identify and capitalize on rapidly emerging e-commerce growth opportunities and maximize omnichannel sales and market share.

To win today’s consumer, the companies stated, brands need to engage with and understand the new-shopper journey across multiple platforms. For this reason, IRI and Clavis Insight have spent significant energy developing e-commerce offerings that provide CPG marketers with the most comprehensive insights into shoppers’ increasingly complicated paths to purchase.

“Our relationship with Clavis Insight further enables IRI to bring the physical and digital shopping world together by leveraging the best industry data sources at multiple levels to unlock the most advanced correlative and predictive omnichannel modeling and analytics for our clients,” said Robert I. Tomei, president of Consumer & Shopper Marketing for IRI.

“Brands no longer exist in just an e-commerce or physical store channel,” said Garry Moroney, CEO for Clavis Insight. “A brand’s success today depends on a deep understanding of the e-commerce and omnichannel universe. By combining Clavis Insight’s online channel data with IRI’s cross-channel solutions, and advanced analytics, we can supply brands with all the information they need to protect market share and to grow sales in an increasingly complicated and interconnected retail environment.”


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                                                                         Mid-December 2016
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