Hackettstown, NJ — Mars Wrigley Confectionery U.S., LLC has chosen Kum & Go, L.C. as its first Innovative Merchandising Incubator program participant.
The c-store chain will receive custom solutions to drive sales and “seamlessly improve its merchandising as new products and trends continue to create category blurring, resulting in more crossover,” the candymaker reports. Customized merchandising solutions are anticipated to be in stores by the second half of this year. After the testing period the retailer and manufacturer will meet to evaluate the success of the program and determine if new or additional recommendations are needed to continue propelling sales in subsequent years.
“Many retailers are now looking to evolve their shopping experience, and collaboration is at the heart of what we do at Mars Wrigley. We are committed to working with retailers, national and regional, to understand their business and implement insights and recommendations that propel the category,” says Shaf Lalani, vice-president of customer experience at Mars Wrigley. “After reviewing each applicant, we knew Kum & Go was the best choice to develop trailblazing solutions because of their fearlessness to test first-of-its-kind recommendations and loyal customer following.”
The company announced the program in April, with retailers submitting their biggest challenges for the opportunity be the first to try the incubator initiative. Submissions were evaluated on criteria such as national or strong regional presence, number of stores and openness to implement in-store merchandising recommendations. Mars Wrigley reports it will explore continuing the program in 2020 and beyond.
“We are thrilled to be chosen as this year’s retailer for the Innovative Merchandising Incubator and begin our new test-and-learn with Mars Wrigley,” says Stephanie Poitry, senior category manager of center store at Kum & Go. “We’ve worked with Mars Wrigley for many years to offer the products our shoppers love. With this opportunity, we’ll be able to create a better retail experience and get ahead of the changing marketplace with innovative solutions stemming from this customized test.”