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    ACNielsen, C-store Group Form Data Alliance

    SCHAUMBURG, Ill. and ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- Progressive Grocer's sister company ACNielsen and the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) said yesterday they have formed a long-term strategic alliance to provide comprehensive analysis of sales data on the half-trillion-dollar U.S. convenience and petroleum marketing industry.

    SCHAUMBURG, Ill. and ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- Progressive Grocer's sister company ACNielsen and the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) said yesterday they have formed a long-term strategic alliance to provide comprehensive analysis of sales data on the half-trillion-dollar U.S. convenience and petroleum marketing industry.

    The two organizations said the alliance will permit them to provide retailers and suppliers alike with the industry's most comprehensive category benchmarks, and to add clarity to sales and trends for such emerging subcategories as alternative beverages, which includes energy drinks.

    The collaboration will spur new and expanded industry initiatives and educational activities created to help convenience and petroleum retailers boost their opportunities for growth and profitability, they said. Chief among the new offerings will be a convergence of industry data sources to NACS category definitions, and enhanced NACS "State of the Industry" reports, which will feature better tracking and content development.

    The agreement applies to ACNielsen U.S., but it will also align with other NACS initiatives now underway in Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa.

    Offering marketing information services in more than 100 countries, ACNielsen, a VNU business, provides measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics and consumer attitudes and behavior.

    NACS represents more than 2,200 retail and 1,800 supplier member companies worldwide. The U.S. convenience store industry, with over 140,600 stores across the country, reported $495.3 billion in total sales last year, with $344.2 billion in motor fuels sales.

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