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    Food Lion to Open 5 Hispanic Stores Next Month

    The grocer dives into the new format early next month, a company executive said at the Hispanic 360 Summit.

    Food Lion is putting down stakes in the Hispanic grocery retailing game, with an initial five stores that have been made over according to a new format strategy at the 1,200-store chain, said a Food Lion executive yesterday at the Nielsen Hispanic Retail 360 Summit.

    Food Lion in early August will reopen five stores under the Food Lion banner that were remodeled and remerchandised to appeal to the product and shopping experience preferences of Hispanic consumers in the Raleigh-Durham, N.C. market, according to Daniel Herrera, marketing manager at the Salisbury, N.C.-based chain, which is owned by the Dutch conglomerate Delhaize Group.

    Herrera spoke briefly about the program in the context of an educational session, "Are You Organized for Hispanic Market Success," where he shared his experiences in establishing a Hispanic Retailing program within Food Lion, and the challenges and successes he encountered leading up to the initial five-store program debut.

    Herrera said the program involves the entire store, cuts across all functions in the company, and has strong senior management support within the Food Lion organization. The grocer is placing special emphasis in the merchandising and marketing revamp on departments and categories, including produce, deli-prepared foods, and other fresh departments; dry goods; beverages; paper products; detergents; and the front end, among others.

    During the educational session, Herrera shared the stage with Terry Soto, a noted Hispanic marketing consultant and the president of About Marketing Solutions, Inc. Soto worked with Herrera and Food Lion on establishing the program and selling it internally to all the constituents within the retail organization. She outlined how retailers like Food Lion, as well as other players in the grocery space, can create a more effective Hispanic retailing and marketing model.

    After the session, Soto said Food Lion planned to expand the Hispanic retail concept to as many as 100 stores.

    The Hispanic Retail 360 Summit wrapped up yesterday, after three days of store tours, major retail and CPG executive keynotes, and nuts-and-bolts workshops centered on practical solutions to the challenge of optimizing the Hispanic market opportunity at retail. Held in Miami, Fla., the summit was hosted by the Nielsen Business Media Retail Group, of which Progressive Grocer is a part.

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