Customer experience and feedback are considered as the most important traction point in any business sector. But creating a refined customer experience in-house is far more crucial. This, undoubtedly, is the need of the hour and retail giants are leaving no stone unturned to make their sales skyrocket. Whether it is joining hands with technology or adopting new strategies for driving sales, the grocery sector has woken up to a new era altogether.
Rick Findlay, VP of Fresh Merchandising at Fresh Thyme’s Farmer’s Market and Mike Fogarty, Founder & CEO of Choice Market will join the SN Editor-in-Chief Becky Schilling for an interview session “Dare to be Different”. All ears are expected to be glued to the grocery spectrum discussions that will roll out at the SN Summit on October 1, Monday from 3:05 t0 4 pm. The SN Summit is co-located with Multi-Unit Food Service Operators(MUFSO) conference, providing an occasion for restaurateurs and retailers to mutually interact and learn from each other.
The exclusive interview will talk about the future of foodservice as the industry charges on to an online transformation journey in the grocery retail shopping segment. The speakers shall also discuss the impact of bold in-store strategies, future change planning and ways to benchmark progress.
Rick Findlay arrived at Fresh Thyme with over 40 years of experience from companies like Whole Foods and H-E-B. Rick plans to speak about how this Midwest retailer has been growing ever since through its unique shopping proposition to the customers. He is a part of the team that flips the script by putting in ‘perimeter’ departments in the center of this traditional grocery store.
Fresh Thyme has been strategically slowing down its expansion after reaching a store count of 68 in the last four years; further planning to focus on long-term success. CEO Chris Sherell affirmed, “We are looking forward to prioritizing on different things for this year. After having opened 10 stores in 2018, we now wish to reverse our business direction to improve the existing infrastructure, speeding up technology and getting systems in place. Soon to be a billion-dollar company, we got to make sure our systems are on par with the upcoming volumes.”
Mike Fogarty, responsible for creating the hybrid convenience store ‘Choice Market’, was inspired by small format stores of Europe. He has tried making this a ‘c-store’ concept drawing in particularly millennials. Choice Market is drawing this sector of consumers by offering them some truly amazing products that the consumers can’t find anywhere else.
“We call it a suitability store, but genuinely, it’s a new model featuring hybrid grocery-convenience concept,” he said. The store features in a 2,700 square foot space showcasing grocery selection including basic items, perishable goods and toiletries. This is further accompanied by an extensive menu of grab-and-go and made-to-order fresh foods prepared with fresh, local ingredients. The store section includes a mobile app and touchscreen kiosk for placing orders.
Learn more about Fresh Thyme and Choice Market at Dallas’s Supermarket News Summit to be held from Oct. 1-3.