business news in context, analysis with attitude

• Supervalu CEO Jeff Noddle told an analysts conference call this week that the company’s recently opened Hispanic format store, El Primero Mercado, “is performing very well.” And, he said, this week the company will open its natural/organic Sunflower Market, one of the programs that he believes will generate long-term success for the company.

• A&P CEO Christian Haub reportedly told an investors conference call this week that he believes that A&P’s revitalization is “off to the best possible start. He said that the company is working on expanding a fresh store concept, developing a new, high end version of its Food Emporium format, and that the company will consider consolidation opportunities in the US.

• Reports in the Chinese media say that Tesco will open its first store in Beijing in 2007, and hopes to be in a position to capture some of the new business that will be generated by the 2008 Olympics, which will be held in Beijing.

• A study by New York-based Marketing Evolutions says that the M&M’s characters are the best-liked brand icons in the US.

Runners up were, in descending order: the Pillsbury Doughboy, the Aflac Duck, Tony the Tiger, the Geico Gecko, the Energizer Bunny, Frito’s Chester the Cheetah, the Kool-Aid Man, Trix Rabbit, Snap! Crackle! Pop!, Snuggle the Bear and Willy Wonka.

• Atkins Nutritionals, the commercial arm of what used to be called the Atkins diet empire before low-carb went out of style, emerged from bankruptcy protection yesterday. The company has a reduced line of SKUs that it believes will be high performers.
KC's View: