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    CSNews Honors 2015 Category Captains

    Ten companies recognized for leadership in c-store category management.

    By Don Longo, Convenience Store News

    JERSEY CITY, N.J. — Ten convenience store industry suppliers and distributors are being recognized as category leaders in the 2015 Convenience Store News Category Captains awards program.

    Today’s hyper-competitive retail environment has brought new interest to category management and category captaincy among both convenience store retailers and their product suppliers and distributors. A “Category Captain” is a supplier that has won the retailer’s trust to help manage and grow an entire product category’s sales and profits, not just the supplier’s own product line.

    Research shows the average shopper spends only three minutes in a convenience store. In fact, consumers’ attention span is getting shorter. A recent study reported that people have an average attention span of 8 seconds, down from 12 seconds in 2000. This means retailers must be laser-focused in their category management skills. With the aid of leading vendors — a.k.a. Category Captains — they must take advantage of every opportunity to improve asset utilization, customer loyalty, gross margins and volume.

    Now in its second year, the CSNews Category Captains awards program recognizes companies for their category management prowess, demonstrated through their partnerships with convenience store retailers, and highlights their most innovative partnering programs with c-store retailers.

    From foodservice to packaged beverages, this year’s Category Captains demonstrate their understanding of retailers’ needs to address shopper demands and the execution of solutions. Dissecting categories and digging deep into SKU management is the key to cultivating a flourishing customer base. 

    The 2015 Category Captains are:

    Alternative Snacks: Kellogg’s Specialty Channels

    Beer/Malt Beverages: Anheuser-Busch

    Candy: The Hershey Co.

    Foodservice/Full Program: McLane Co. Foodservice

    Foodservice/Prepared Food: AdvancePierre Foods

    Health & Beauty Care: Lil’ Drug Store Products

    Other Tobacco Products: Swisher International

    Packaged Beverages: The Coca-Cola Co.

    Packaged Sweet Snacks: McKee Foods Corp.

    Wine & Liquor: E&.J. Gallo Winery

    All entries were judged based on the information supplied by participating companies.

    For more on the winners, look in the August issue of Convenience Store News.


    By Don Longo, Convenience Store News
    • About Don Longo Don Longo is editorial director of EnsembleIQ's Convenience Store News. He has covered retailing for more than 30 years as a reporter, editor and publisher. Previously, he spearheaded the editorial efforts at a variety of business publications focused on mass, drug, grocery and specialty store retailing. Convenience Store News won American Business Media’s Jesse H. Neal Award for Best Issue of the Year in 2008 and 2012. Longo has won numerous other editorial awards over his career and is frequently quoted in the national and local news media on the subjects of retailing and consumer trends.

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