business news in context, analysis with attitude

Business Week reports that Family Dollar is turning to alcohol as it looks to increase sales among economically challenged consumers who are its core customers.

But not in a bad way. (At least, not necessarily.) The story says that "Family Dollar has been experimenting with selling alcohol at about 200 stores this summer, and the results have been strong enough for nationwide expansion of beer and wine sales."

The story notes that the only problem with beer and wine sales is that they tend to be lower-margin items, so they won't necessarily be contributing a great deal to Family Dollar's profit line. But, the reasoning goes, if it can get more customers in the store by offering booze, they'll buy other stuff, and the long-term impact will be positive because it will eat into other retailers' market shares.
KC's View:
Maybe. At the very least, I'd expect sales to go up at Family Dollar stores within two miles of a college campus.