Giant Eagle Launches New Gas Discount Pilot, Cuts HBC Prices

PITTSBURGH -- Giant Eagle here is beginning a four-week test today of a program that will award additional fuel discounts to shoppers at 81 of its Pennsylvania stores. The new gas discount pilot, Bonus fuelperks, will be layered on top of the regional market leader's existing self-funded fuelperks! rewards program, which gives Advantage loyalty cardholders 10 cents off a gallon gas at Giant Eagle's GetGo c-stores for every $50 spent.

Under the test program, which runs today through July 5, card users will receive additional cents off gas rewards when buying specific products and brands.

"Hundreds of items throughout the store will count for Bonus fuelperks!," Dan Donovan, Giant Eagle spokesman told Progressive Grocer. "Bonus amounts vary by product, from 1cents up to 20 cents extra off per gallon for each unit purchased. Any products on Bonus fuelperks! will still also count toward the $50 spend to earn 10 cents in fuelperks!"

Among the participating brands included in the first wave of Bonus fuelperks! discounts are: Colgate Total Toothpaste, 7.8 oz: $0.01 in fuelperks! rewards per item; Gatorade Lemonade 8 Pack, 20 oz: 2 cents in fuelperks! rewards per item; Star-Kist Chunk Light Pouch Tuna, 12 oz.: 3 cents in fuelperks! rewards per item; Huggies Little Swimmers, Small, 12 CT: 1 cent in fuelperks! rewards per item; and Brawny 2 Giant Roll Paper Towels, 2 rolls: 3 cents in fuelperks! rewards per item.

The chain is launching the four-week trial amid plans underway by other local competitors to offer similar gas rewards programs. Giant Eagle's move to up the ante has been anticipated for several months by many in the local vendor community. Local vendors have also reported that Supervalu's local Shop 'n Save and Foodland franchisees are also considering new programs to help customers earn gas discounts. Shop 'n Save's program would reportedly involve Philadelphia-based Sunoco gas stations.

In other Giant Eagle news, the chain is cutting prices between 8.5 and 10 percent on 1,800 health and beauty care products. Donovan said the latest round of HBC price reductions is a result of improved corporate efficiencies. The company has done three previous rounds of price cuts chainwide, and most recently instituted targeted cuts in Columbus and Canton, Ohio.

Total customer annualized savings equate to some $3 million, said Donovan, noting the HBC price reductions will affect all Giant Eagle stores in all markets across the chain, excluding its GetGo c-stores.

Giant Eagle operates 140 corporate and 74 independently owned and operated supermarkets in addition to 100 fuel and convenience stores throughout western Pennsylvania, Ohio, north central West Virginia and Maryland.

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