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    A&P Inks Multiyear In-store Marketing Agreement

    MONTVALE, N.J. -- The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co., Inc. here has signed a multiyear agreement with New York-based News America Marketing, a division of News Corp. re-establishing a previous partnership between the parties to deliver a broad assortment of in-store marketing programs under the SmartSource brand name, starting next month.

    MONTVALE, N.J. -- The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co., Inc. here has signed a multiyear agreement with New York-based News America Marketing, a division of News Corp. re-establishing a previous partnership between the parties to deliver a broad assortment of in-store marketing programs under the SmartSource brand name, starting next month.

    According to the agreement, News America Marketing will serve as the exclusive third-party provider of marketing programs at A&P and will offer its portfolio of SmartSource in-store programs. This signing adds almost 387 stores to News America Marketing's network, bolstering its leading position in over 34,000 food, drug, and mass retailers.

    "Bringing our programs back to the shelves of A&P underscores the diligence and relationship-building skills of our organization, as well as the outstanding value that News America Marketing brings to the retail community and ultimately, to the shopping experience," noted Jesse Aversano, e.v.p. marketing at News America Marketing, in a statement.

    The SmartSource portfolio will include at-shelf coupon dispensers, shelf messaging, floor advertising, and shopping cart advertising on an exclusive basis in all A&P stores.

    In other A&P news, the hiring of new s.v.p. merchandising Rebecca Philbert has ended the grocer's months-long search for a successor to Stephen Slade, who left the company in September to pursue other interests.

    Philbert, who oversaw the development of Safeway's Lifestyle store concept, will "lead merchandising initiatives for the company's retail strategies," A&P spokeswoman Patti Councill told Progressive Grocer.

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