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Raley's, Giant Eagle, Harris Teeter in WBC Total Store 'Super Study'

BARRINGTON, Ill. -- Willard Bishop Consulting is conducting a total store "super study" with three geographically dispersed supermarket chains – Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle, Matthews, N.C.-based Harris Teeter, and West Sacramento, Calif.-based Raley's -- which company officials say will provide new insights into specific performance of the entire store.

WBC will focus on a select group of stores based on size and volume, to segment data in specific clusters. It will evaluate the full scope of sales share, activity-based costs, net profit contribution, cash flow, and working capital; and identify where value is created across every category, aisle, and department, Paul Weitzel, v.p. of WBC told Progressive Grocer.

A key objective, according to Weitzel, "Is understanding the bottom line performance of how and where retailers are making money, identifying opportunities to improve with regard to which aisles, categories and departments can improve from a performance standpoint, and finally, to use the information to optimize the entire store's space productivity."

The study will probe "where opportunities are to adjust space across the entire store in relation to total store optimization," he added, including all random weight products like fresh meat, seafood and produce. Findings are scheduled to be released at the end of the first quarter of 2005.

Auburn Hills, Mich.-based RGIS Inventory Specialists will provide store mapping support, while RetaiLogic, Manchester, Mass., will produce a model that optimizes total store space.

Manufacturers are sponsoring the study, Weitzelsaid. The sponsors will receive access to the total store database, containing more than 70 key metrics about the performance of over 250 categories and 1,000 subcategories, as well as a written report of study results.
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