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WASHINGTON -- The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), in conjunction with its Associate Member Council (AMC), presented Unilever with the 2007 CPG Award for Innovation and Creativity. The AMC CPG Award Subcommittee made the announcement at the GMA Executive Conference at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, W.V.
Unilever entered one of 16 case studies from GMA member companies vying for the award. The company and retail partner Ahold Stop & Shop grew center store sales by increasing conversion from food to health and beauty care. Unilever employed a three-pronged approach consisting of co-marketing promotions to persuade consumers to make a large shopping trip; in-store "programming" to boost shopper purchases across categories; and simplified and enhanced low-traffic aisles to improve the shopping experience.
"The grocery industry faces a common challenge, which is the need to drive growth in the center of the store," said Unilever v.p. of brand building and marketing excellence Lisa Klauser. "By really understanding shopper needs and behaviors, we were able to create a solution together with Ahold."
Added Klauser : "Ahold's business need was to bring shoppers into the store and increase the number of categories purchased during those trips, while Unilever's business need was to drive category growth through their brands such as Dove, Axe, Hellmann's and Ragu. The end results were sales and profit for both Unilever and Ahold, increased purchasing across categories, and elevated brand awareness."
"Unilever reported outstanding results this year with shopper trips to the store up by 90 percent, multiple category purchases up by 80 percent, sales per trip increasing by 25 percent, and total store sales up by 138 percent," noted judge Peter Brandt, AMC member and SAP Americas v.p. of consumer products/life sciences and PTG industry solution market. "Finally, both companies recognized positive brand awareness among shoppers."
"This competition allows us to point to the innovation and stellar management in our industry," said GMA s.v.p. of industry affairs Stephen Sibert. "It is a reminder that the creative companies we represent are at the forefront for new ideas."