Safeway Sees Fewer Promotions, More ‘Everyday Value’

While Safeway will continue to offer promotional pricing, “over the next two years we will be less promotional and provide better everyday value, which is what our cost reduction and process improvement programs are designed to accomplish,” Steve Burd, chairman, president and chief executive officer of the Pleasanton, Calif.-based chain, said yesterday at the Bank of America Consumer Conference.

NEW YORK — While Safeway will continue to offer promotional pricing, “over the next two years we will be less promotional and provide better everyday value, which is what our cost reduction and process improvement programs are designed to accomplish,” Steve Burd, chairman, president and chief executive officer of the Pleasanton, Calif.-based chain, said yesterday at the Bank of America Consumer Conference here. “Promotions do bring in traffic, but we think, longer-term, we want to be less promotional and have a better everyday value, which has been our stated objective since we launched the lifestyle strategy in 2003, so you will see us increasingly invest in everyday price.” In response to a question, Burd said each of Tesco’s Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets that opens within 1.5 miles of a Safeway location has just 10% of the impact of a conventional store opening. “So if they built 200 stores, it would have the impact of 20 conventional stores coming into our market — and we had 23 [competitive openings] in Phoenix during the first quarter alone.”

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