MINNEAPOLIS -- Supervalu here has launched its first corporate point-of-sale activation prepaid phone-card program for its supermarkets and corporate stores.
Installation is slated to begin next month at Supervalu's 3,500 affiliated retailers and some 500 corporate supermarkets, said Lanny Hoffmeyer, corporate director of general merchandise.
"The supermarket industry has only scratched the surface of the $4 billion prepaid phone card industry, and we are only at the early stages of what the potential is going to be," Hoffmeyer said. The POS-activated prepaid-card program is supplied by Qwest Communications, Arlington, Va.
"With POS activation retailers benefit by not having to carry any inventory of live cards or pay for batch activated live cards in advance, which can be a security problem, " said Hoffmeyer.
"Anytime you have you have live phone cards, you are susceptible to shrink," he noted. But with POS activation, he said, "you can build prepaid card sales and improve net profit from the savings realized from the shrink factor that's no longer there."
POS activation also allows the retailer to openly display phone cards throughout the store, giving greater exposure to new customers, the wholesaler stated.
Hoffmeyer said prepaid phone cards can be J-hooked and clip-stripped at high traffic points like the pharmacy department, teen health and beauty care and the greeting card aisle.