Red Stripe Says That, Whatever the Cost, It Will Buy a New Bobsled for Jamaica

The Jamaican bobsled team has been a world-famous underdog since first appearing on the Olympic scene in 1988. The team’s unlikely path to the global stage was made famous in the 1993 movie Cool Runnings, but returning to the Olympics has been a challenge ever since, with financial support often in short supply.

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This year, the Jamaican men’s team fell short of qualifying for the Olympics, but that disappointment was offset by a new milestone: the country’s first women’s bobsled team made it to the games.

But the path to glory remains rough sledding, as the women’s team now faces the risk of losing its sled, whose ownership is disputed. Team coach Sandra Kiriasis, a German gold medalist, abruptly quit after being demoted to track analyst, and her comments make it unclear whether she’ll take the sled with her.

While the Jamaican team says it’s been “approached by many nations with extra equipment,” another potential benefactor has stepped into the fray: Red Stripe.

The proudly Jamaican beer brand tweeted today that it would happily pay for a new bobsled if the team needs one:Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 5.23.25 PM.png

According to one estimate, an Olympic bobsled can cost around $50,000. Such an amount can be prohibitive for Jamaica, which relied on fan donations to pull together (and surpass) the $80,000 needed for the team to compete in Sochi in 2014.

Adweek spoke to Red Stripe’s marketing manager to learn more about the offer:

Adweek: Have you had any conversations with the Jamaican team yet? Any response?
Andrew Anguin, senior marketing manager, Red Stripe: When Red Stripe caught wind of the news, we immediately huddled as a team and made the decision to show our support. We then reached out after receiving the information for the correct person at the Jamaica Bobsleigh Federation. We’re hopeful to begin a quick dialogue on how we can help in any way possible.

Just to confirm, this is a literal offer, right? Not a joke.
This is not a joke. The games are an honor to compete in, and as the No. 1 beer in Jamaica, we want to help those athletes realize their dreams. The athletes clearly have no quit, so we would love to do our part and put the cost of a new bobsled on our “bar tab.” We’re happy to discuss specifics with the team at the Jamaican federation.

Have you priced out what a bobsled would cost and if it’s logistically feasible to have one there in time?
While we’re experts in beer, we won’t know the cost of a new bobsled until we’re able to speak with representatives from the team. That said, as a beer born and brewed on the same island as these athletes, we want to ensure they have what they need to proudly compete.

from Ad Week: http://www.adweek.com/creativity/red-stripe-offers-to-buy-a-new-bobsled-for-jamaican-olympians/

Fresh Thyme Farmers Market Selects Schafer Condon Carter (SCC) as Agency of Record

Fresh Thyme Farmers Market announced today that it has named independent agency, Schafer Condon Carter (SCC), as its first Agency of Record. SCC will be responsible for elevating the brand’s marketing initiatives including brand strategy, creative development, public relations, influencer and social as well as media strategy, planning, and buying across traditional and digital media platforms.

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Fresh Thyme, which offers a broad selection of natural, organic and fresh food at amazing prices, has grown significantly since opening its doors in 2014, and today has over 66 locations across 10 states. Most recently, the Illinois-based retailer announced that it would be opening 10 new stores this year in Pennsylvania, Iowa and beyond, and has plans to hit a 150-store mark by the year 2020.

“Fresh Thyme is at a very exciting time in its growth,” said Mark Doiron, Chief Marketing and Merchandising Officer of Fresh Thyme. “We knew we were ready to bring on a partner who could help us achieve the brand’s great potential, and SCC demonstrated not only a deep understanding of our brand and the consumer we serve, but also the creativity, broad integrated capabilities and passion that we were looking for.”

Adding to its momentous growth in 2017, Fresh Thyme made significant hires at the executive level and further developed its private label offering – a private brand program that emphasizes clean ingredients and locally sourced products as often as possible. The program is a core driver of the brand’s mission to improve the way communities eat by offering fresh, healthy food at refreshingly low prices.

“Fresh Thyme is an incredible business and brand in an extremely dynamic category,” said David Selby, SCC CEO.  “We are thrilled to be selected as Fresh Thyme’s partner to help tell their story and expand their mission of bringing fresh, natural and organic food to a broader population.”

ABOUT FRESH THYME FARMERS MARKET
Fresh Thyme Farmers Market is a full-service specialty retailer focusing on value-priced fresh, healthy, natural and organic offerings. It boasts an extensive produce department with organic and local fruits and vegetables, a natural meat department, healthy deli foods to go, bakery goods, 400 bulk food bins, dairy and frozen, health supplement products, and its own line of organic and natural private label products.

Learn more at freshthyme.com. Keep in touch by liking at facebook.com/freshthymefarmersmarkets and following  at twitter.com/freshthymefm.

ABOUT SCHAFER CONDON CARTER 
Schafer Condon Carter (SCC) is an independent creative and technology company that delivers transformative brand and business ideas to drive results for its clients. AOR clients include Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, National Pork Board, Chicago Cubs, Ideal Industries, Friendly’s Restaurants and Solo Cup Company among others. A simple mission drives SCC’s entrepreneurial, results-driven culture: “Think Again.” SCC’s integrated assets include SCC|Digital, SCC|Social, SCC|Prism, MAKE247 Content Studio and SCC|Design Services. The company also operates a private equity portfolio, SCC|Ventures, which has holdings in the food and tech sectors. Headquartered in a landmark building in Chicago’s historic West Loop district, SCC has a full-time staff of over 120.

To learn more about SCC, visit: http://www.SCCThinkAgain.com/

from Globe News Wire: https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2018/02/14/1348317/0/en/Fresh-Thyme-Farmers-Market-Selects-Schafer-Condon-Carter-SCC-as-Agency-of-Record.html

Publix And Wegmans Named America’s Favorite Grocery Stores

Publix Super Markets and Wegmans tied for first place, with each scoring 77% on Market Force Information’s most recent Customer Loyalty Index. Trader Joe’s Market was a close second with a score of 76% and H-E-B was third with a score of 69%.

Publix has ranked second for the past four years. This is the second consecutive year Wegmans has earned top honors. Both companies have repeatedly been named to Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For.

The Results

A group of 12,774 consumers was surveyed and rated their favorite grocery chains on attributes including value for money, cashier courtesy, fast checkouts, availability of items, ease of finding items, specialty department service and store cleanliness. Participants were asked to rate their satisfaction with their most grocery shopping experience and their likelihood to recommend it to others. The results were then averaged to rank each brand on a Composite Loyalty Index Score.

Publix outshone the competition in ease of finding items, having the cleanest stores and fastest checkouts. Wegmans was tops in its specialty department service and second in item availability. Trader Joe’s was number one in cashier courtesy, followed closely by Publix and Wegmans. ALDI won the top spot for value, followed by WinCo Foods and Costco; Wegmans was 14th on that attribute and Publix wasn’t ranked.

The complete rankings were:

1. Publix (77%)
1. Wegmans (77%)
2. Trader Joe’s (76%)
3. H-E-B (69%)
4. Aldi (68%)
5. Harris Teeter (66%)
6. Hy-Vee Food Stores (65%)
6. Costco (65%)
7. WinCo Foods (62%)
8. Whole Foods Market (61%)
9. Fry’s (58%)
10. Kroger (57%)
11. Target (56%)
12. Winn-Dixie Stores (54%)
13. Shoprite (53%)
14. Food Lion (52%)
15. Albertson’s (49%)
15. Meijer (49%)
15. Sam’s Club(49%)
16. Giant Food Stores (43%)
17. Safeway (39%)
18. Stop & Shop (38%)
19. Walmart (31%)

Disruption May Be Coming

Market Force also reported that click-and-collect services, where shoppers put products in an online shopping cart and then pick their order up at the grocery store, are becoming increasingly popular.

The use of click-and-collect has more than doubled since 2016, the company reported, and 78% of those who have reported using it were very satisfied or satisfied with the service. The stores most frequently cited for use of click-and-collect services were Walmart, Kroger, Sam’s Club and Harris Teeter. Twenty-six percent of those surveyed used the service at least monthly.

Read more at Forbes: https://www.forbes.com/sites/marciaturner/2018/01/18/publix-and-wegmans-named-americas-favorite-grocery-stores/#7ebd40e66d69

Gatorade partners with Seattle startup Volt, will integrate nutrition advice into workout app

Volt Athletics is teaming up with one of the biggest names in sports business.

The Seattle startup today announced a new partnership with Gatorade and will rename its strength and conditioning consumer app to “Volt Fueled by Gatorade.”

The revamped app combines Volt’s “intelligent” workout technology with Gatorade’s sports nutrition expertise, offering a more complete digital fitness guide for athletes.

It’s a milestone deal for Volt, which has more than 100,000 users across 120 countries on its platform that launched in 2013. Volt CEO and co-founder Dan Giuliani called it “a truly unique offering in the fitness app space” and said it could lead to similar partnerships with other companies.

“Partnering with Gatorade allows Volt to take a huge step toward providing a truly comprehensive training platform for our athletes,” he told GeekWire. “When you think about all the factors that can affect an athlete’s performance — strength training, cardiovascular conditioning, sleep, hydration, nutrition, nutrient timing, rest and recovery practices, and more — you can see the potential for future partnership opportunities.”

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Volt not only tracks and stores workout metrics for more than 35 sports, but its app also offers personalized, mobile-friendly training content that adjusts based on a user’s performance. The partnership with Gatorade will add nutrition tips tailored to pre- and post-workout occasions, along with other related content like video tips.

Michael Smith, head of digital strategy at PepsiCo-Gatorade, said the company saw a “natural synergy” with Volt.

“Our goal is to help the athlete improve through better understanding of sports nutrition,” he said. “This integration allows us to do that by putting sports nutrition education in the context of a workout.”

Smith added that Gatorade is looking to expand beyond its traditional sports drinks or energy bars, and into digital services. Gatorade, which launched the Gatorade Sports Science Institute more than three decades ago, is dipping its toes into everything from live-streaming to Snapchat games.

“As digital technology becomes more ubiquitous, it presents an opportunity to democratize access to the type of information and tools that historically have only been available to elite athletes,” he said.

Financial terms of the partnership were not disclosed.

Volt has a separate app for teams called “Volt for Teams” used by clients like the U.S. National football team, University of Washington, University of Michigan, University of Nebraska, Clemson University, Red Bull Crashed Ice Team USA, Kenya 7s Rugby, the Denver Stampede professional rugby team, the Northamptonshire Steelbacks professional cricket team, and more.

The company’s consumer app, now called “Volt Fueled by Gatorade,” launched last year and charges users $9.99 per month. Volt employs 20 people and has raised $3 million to date, including an investment from soccer star DeAndre Yedlin.

from GeekWire: https://www.geekwire.com/2018/gatorade-partners-seattle-startup-volt-will-integration-nutrition-advice-workout-app/

McDonald’s nixes cheeseburger from Happy Meal as part of larger health push

McDonald’s has made a slew of changes to its Happy Meal menu in an effort to cut back on calories, sodium, sugar and saturated fat.

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Starting this year in the US, cheeseburgers will no longer be listed as a Happy Meal choice, but will still be available upon request. The chain is also temporarily nixing chocolate milk from Happy Meals as it works on replacing the current offering with one that has less sugar. Bottled water will be added as a featured beverage choice on Happy Meal menu boards as well.

According to McDonald’s, the changes mean 100% of Happy Meal combinations in the US will be 600 calories or fewer by June of this year.

The fast-food chain’s Mighty Kid’s Meal, which is typically marketed to teenagers and pre-teens, will now offer kids-sized fries with six-piece chicken nugget meals instead of small fries, a change that McDonald’s says “decreases the calories and sodium in the fries serving by half.”

The adjustment are the latest in a string of changes McDonald’s has made over the years in an effort to make its choices for kids healthier. In 2011, it began including Apple Slices in all Happy Meals along with a reduced portion of fries. Two years later, the company stopped marketing and promoting soda as a beverage option for Happy Meals.

In December, the chain began offering a new apple juice variety with Happy Meals that it says has 45 fewer calories and half the total sugar than the prior one.

McDonald’s has been on the up and up as of late, the result of a massive turnaround strategy implemented three years ago by its chief executive Steve Easterbrook. The implementation of all-day breakfast and a revamped menu have helped the chain come back from years of sluggish sales. Last month, same-store sales at US locations climbed 4.5%.

from The Drum: http://www.thedrum.com/news/2018/02/15/mcdonald-s-nixes-cheeseburger-happy-meal-part-larger-health-push