FedEx Kinko’s Introducing Candy And Snacks
By James Echeandia
FedEx Kinko’s is introducing an expanded confectionery range in several hundred locations throughout the country, according to a FedEx spokesperson at the company’s Dallas headquarters.
“We are excited to launch this national rollout in many of our locations across the country,” said Lacey Hautzinger, public relations spokesperson for FedEx Kinko’s, an operating company of FedEx Corp.
The candy and snack assortment now available is housed in the centers on a free-standing, 2-foot by 3-foot wire rack. Here one finds Mini Oreos, Planters nuts, Chex Mix, Pringles and Slim Jims added to the 29 candy and gum items including hanging bags and theater packs, in addition to count lines. So new is the program that the rack had been in place only about a week when we spotted it at a FedEx Kinko’s outlet in Allen, Texas, about 20 miles north of Dallas. The rack will be supplied and serviced by an existing FedEx Kinko’s supplier.
An alternative configuration was on display at the company’s McKinney, Texas, location about 30 miles north of Dallas. It featured a variety of candy and gum items, including the Altoids mints that have long been found at FedEx Kinko’s counters.
“The candy and gum sell well,” said James Covington, second shift senior project coordinator at the McKinney, Texas, location.
FedEx Kinko’s Office and Print Services Inc. is the world’s leading provider of document solutions and business services. Its global network of more than 1,500 digitally-connected locations (about 1,300 in the United States) offers access to technology for color printing, presentation services, Internet access and much more in addition to the full range of FedEx shipping services.
Candy and snack suppliers can hope that 1,300 locations will ultimately offer consumers access to a nice range of candy, gum and snacks too!
Planters Is 100, and It’s Time to Celebrate
2006 marks the 100th anniversary of the creation of the Planters peanut brand, now the flagship for the Salted Snacks Category of Kraft Foods Inc. The company will mark the occasion with a variety of festivities, many of them built around Mr. Peanut, the icon of Planters for 90 years.
In homage to Mr. Peanut, consumers will be invited to cast their vote to help select a fresh piece of anniversary attire for the dapper legume, who already wears a top hat, gloves and a monocle. Potential new options for Mr. Peanut include a bow tie, pocket watch or cufflinks.
In May the Planters Nut Mobile will embark on a four-month-long road trip, visiting landmarks in Planters history, as well as some of the nation’s leading fairs and festivals. Visitors to the Nut Mobile will have the opportunity to sample peanuts fresh from a roaster and take an interactive journey through the past century. Another highlight of the centennial festivities this year will be the dedication this July of a life-sized Mr. Peanut statue in Atlantic City. The sculpture will be positioned on a boardwalk bench in Kennedy Plaza near the Atlantic City Convention and Visitors Authority.  
Online sales of candy for Valentine’s Day are growing almost as rapidly as the blossoming of the Tom Cruise/Katie Holmes romance — up 140 percent this year compared with 2005.
Of the categories tracked, candy and jewelry netted the most sales by online shoppers — each accounting for 30 percent of the total Valentine’s sales tracked by PayPal.
Tesco to Cross the Atlantic in 2007
The British are coming, and the latest invasion has the potential to dramatically impact the U.S. convenience retailing landscape.
British grocery retail powerhouse Tesco announced last month that it will move into the U.S. marketplace next year with a convenience format slated for start-up on the West Coast. Tesco will model the U.S. stores on the successful Tesco Express shops it operates in five countries, although the concept has been designed specifically for this market.
It’s big news, industry watchers report. Writing in the online publication RetailWire, consultant Bill Bishop of Barrington, Ill.-based Willard Bishop Consulting describes the Tesco Express format as “a uniquely designed retail concept that combines exceptional shopper benefits with intense retail merchandising and sales.”
Tesco says it will invest $437 million annually into the new U.S. retailing venture, and that it expects to break even in year two.