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Home   About   Membership   Meetings   Government Affairs   Members Only Jan. 29, 2010
Executive Briefing
President's Message
Greetings from Louisville and the 2010 Soldiers Family Action Plan Symposium:

I decided to head down to Louisville, Ky., this week to delve into the world of Army MWR and get a glimpse at its "State of Affairs." First, I learned they have a superior leadership team starting with LTG Rick Lynch, IMCOM Commanding General. LTG Lynch kicked off the Symposium with a spirited view of family readiness from the perspective of a combat commander. His passion and transparency about the issues facing the Army MWR programs can not help but to motivate and produce results. One issue he wanted to quickly defuse is the funding profile of the Army MWR programs. He stated clearly that the Army Family Covenant and its agreed upon levels of support is fully funded at a "green" level of performance. That is not to say there is not some opportunity for fiscal improvement. LTG Lynch has a team of professionals traveling around to various installations showing them where they can "save." Kind of like the IG, "Hi, we are here to help!" I used to always view the IG as that group of masked individuals that would ride down from the hills after a battle and stick pitch forks in the wounded. I am sure that has changed. LTG Lynch was clear about the importance of family wellness to family readiness and ultimately troop performance. Of equal energy was MG Jones, the Commanding General of FMWRC and I could not not mention the rock solid executive behind it all in Rich Gorman in the role of COO.

What did I learn? This business model is about as complicated as they get. Every area has their own target audience and desired interface with industry. There is no one single event that could ever meet the education and product exposure needs of this diverse group of service providers. I also learned that there is a huge opportunity for collaboration between the commissary, exchange and MWR activities because they all focus on the same customers and they all desire the same outcome. The Army has a Force Generation Model (ARFORGEN) that tracks the life cycle of a unit through deployment to return to dwell to retraining to ready to deploy and then finally back to a deployed state and to their credit they attempt to capture the family programs that need to be highlighted at each stage of the model. No where is there a mention of the commissary or exchange in support of these important family programs. If there is a role for the ALA to play in the MWR arena it may be to facilitate this modeling in an environment that could drive win-win-win solutions for an installation and the military families.

Patrick B. Nixon
President, ALA

FiXs Issuance at AFCEA West Show

ORC will be issuing the three year FiXs credentials at the AFCEA West show on February 2 and 3 in the San Diego convention center Room 13. If you or your colleague needs a FiXs credential and your company is already a FiXs member, please have them contact as soon as possible so that we can get their information processed in time.

ALA Events Open to Non-Members

Dear Prospective Member,

This year the ALA is offering a unique partnership opportunity to attract new members and demonstrate the benefits of the association. We are allowing non-member companies to attend one of our key business meetings held between now and the end of June with the payment of the registration fee and an additional premium(1) that will be applied to the 2010/2011 membership dues if the company applies for membership prior to July 1, 2010(2). The meetings include:

2010 Exchange Roundtable, March 15-17, in Norfolk, Va. This segment of the military market represents nearly $14 billion in sales from a mass merchandise type format to gas stations and Convenience stores. Meeting includes key updates and topic specific breakout sessions providing insight into this $14 billion business channel.

2010 DeCA/ALA Worldwide Partnership Summit and Training Event, June 7-11, Atlanta, Ga. This meeting will be attended by all DeCA store directors world wide along with all key decision makers in the agency. Business base is over $6 billion in a supermarket like assortment with the opportunity for world wide distribution and sales. Includes an opportunity to learn how to do business with the government and develop your business approach.

2010 ALA Congressional Caucus, June 15 in Washington, D.C. The ALA is the recognized advocate in the nation's capitol when addressing issues impacting the military resale channel. This Capitol Hill symposium is attended by all of the senior members of military resale and focuses on the key issues facing the military business channel. Topic specific presentations are made by subject matter experts along with timely presentations from key members of Congress and the Administration. This day long event includes a "power" reception in the evening with members of congress and their staffs.

This presents a great opportunity to learn about this great business opportunity, experience the partnership opportunities membership in the association provides and see the impact the association has on Capitol Hill. The ALA has been supporting world class quality of life for our troops and their families through strong resale benefits for over 90 years. The staff of the association consists of senior executives with demonstrated records of performance. This is your opportunity to join us. For additional information about the specific agendas and registration for these meetings or any other information you need about the association, please visit our Web site at  I look forward to seeing you at one of our events.


Patrick B. Nixon
President, ALA

2010 Exchange Roundtable

March 15-17, 2010
Norfolk Waterside Marriott
Norfolk, VA

Delivering the Benefit in 2010 and Beyond
Online Registration is now open!

Register by Jan. 31 to receive the Early Bird Rate, and don't forget to make your hotel reservations! The headquarters hotel is the Norfolk Waterside Marriott. You will find detailed hotel information, as well as a link to the hotel Web site (to make your reservations online) on our Web site.

A preliminary agenda is also posted to our Web site.

Highlights include:
  • Updates from the Chief Merchandisers of each of the services
  • Col. Matthew H. Molloy, USAF
  • Breakout sessions from each of the services focused on the following areas: Consumables, Hardlines, Marketing, PAR/Replenishment and/or Other Topics
CLICK HERE to register now!

Washington Update

Military budget impact unclear for Guam
Pacific Daily News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Boots on the ground will trump jets in the air or boats in the water in the Pentagon's forward-looking, four-year plan due out Monday alongside the 2011 defense budget. More

Japanese PM vows to rethink U.S. base deal
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama pledged to "start from scratch" in re-examining a key military deal with Washington on relocating U.S. troops. More

Analysts: Defense budget likely to receive increased scrutiny
Government Executive    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Despite the Obama administration's plans to shield national security accounts from a three-year spending freeze, budget analysts argued that any long-term efforts to bring down the federal deficit ultimately will require taking a hard look at the Pentagon's massive budget. More

Pentagon budget seeks to kill seven arms programs
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Pentagon's fiscal 2011 budget continues the Obama administration's drive to get "the most bang for the buck" by terminating seven major weapons programs and shifting resources to focus on emerging threats. More

Commissary News

Supermarkets take stock of their 2010 risks
The Keene Sentinel    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Supermarket chains, ground down by a year of price wars aimed at keeping hard-pressed customers, are starting 2010 wondering how much longer they can go without further harming their share prices. More

New recyclable poultry packaging packs a powerful climate punch
Packaging Digest    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Global Green USA, Mountaire Farms, and Interstate Container announced completion of the conversion of the largest poultry plant in the U.S. to recyclable, wax-alternative boxes, thereby reducing costs and environmental impact, and assisting its customers in cost-effectively meeting their environmental goals. More

The lost art of the loss leader
Retail Customer Experience    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Years ago, some grocery stores used loss leaders to attract buyers. Once buyers were in the store they would typically buy enough related offerings, with higher margins, to more than offset the loss on the loss leader. Today they're discounting everything during our peak selling seasons. More

2,880,000 pounds of beef and sausage recalled since November 2009
Food Poison Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Daniele International, Inc., food companies have recalled at least 2,880,000 pounds of meat products since November 2009 due to contamination by E. coli or Salmonella. More

Marvin's Food Stores adds digital shopper planning to their Web site
Grocery Retail Online    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Marvin's Food Stores has announced the addition of Grocery Shopping Network's digital shopper planning platform to the Web site for their 21 stores located in Arkansas, Kansas, and Oklahoma. The new Web site for Marvin's Food Stores will have applications designed to save their shoppers time and money by assisting in pre-shopping planning. More

Safeway gets seafood help from FishWise
Retailing Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Safeway announced it will join forces with FishWise - a non-profit organization focused on improving the sustainability and financial performance of seafood retailers, distributors, and producers - to develop and implement a more comprehensive sustainable seafood policy. More

New-look grocery: Changes await Ukrop's patrons
Richmond Times Dispatch    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Walking into the Martin's Food Market is not unlike the experience of a Ukrop's grocery store. More

Grocers Supply acquires K Enterprises assets
CSP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Grocers Supply Co. Inc., an Indianapolis-based wholesale distributor of grocery products, has purchased the assets of K Enterprises in Danville, Ind., according to a report by The Indianapolis Business Journal. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. More

Exchange News

Costco honored for sustainability efforts
Retailing Today    Share    Share on
FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article, an organization which manages sustainability practices within the food and grocery retail sector, has named Costco as the 2009 Sustainable Grocer of the Year. More

Why shopping may never be the same again
U.S. News & World Report    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A façade of calm may be returning to the consumer landscape as a thrashing recession finally subsides. But behind the cheerful window displays are deeply worried retail executives who fear that shopping may never be the same again. More

EventPORT "Branding" from WeatherPort
Attractive, versatile, easy to erect, our EventPORT line is designed to meet the needs of the company or individual hosting events, forums or gatherings in outdoor spaces. Call a WeatherPORT representative today to discuss the benefits of owning a durable EventPORT structure. More info

Retailers try new survival strategies for 2010
USA Today    Share    Share on
FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The recession pushed shoppers to pick necessities over discretionary items, discounts over luxury. But retailers hope to shift such behavioral changes further in coming months, affecting what consumers will buy, pay and experience at stores. More

Five hot concepts from NRF's big show retailers can't ignore
Retail Touch Points    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The retail industry has some game-changing trends emerging right now - mobile, social, omni-shopper, automated upsells and pricing differentiation - to name a few. With online spending outpacing brick and mortar in fourth quarter 2009, it's clear that the in-store experience is not the only place to emphasize customer touch points. More

Moleskine Ruled Notebook
This reliable travel companion has a cardboard bound cover with rounded corners, acid free paper, a bookmark, an elastic closure and an expandable inner pocket that contains the Moleskine history. MORE

Kohl's achieves 100 percent green power
Retailing Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Kohl's Department Stores announced that the company has purchased enough green power to meet 100 percent of its purchased electricity use with an annual green power purchase of nearly 1.4 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh). More

Stores within bigger stores seem to pump up sales
Sacramento Bee    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
It seems almost counterproductive. A grocery store with shelves of coffee for sale offers a Peet's Coffee & Tea stand selling fresh-brewed java and coffee beans. A department store with yards of makeup counters installs a ministore selling handmade soap and natural cosmetics. Turns out, the more the merrier. More

Restaurants to rebound amid economic recovery in 2010
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The restaurant industry is expected to report slightly higher sales in 2010, benefiting from the gradual economic recovery, according to the National Restaurant Association's forecast. More

Wal-Mart cuts 11,200 jobs
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The discount retailer said it will cut 11,200 jobs at its Sams Club warehouses, or 10 percent of Sam's Club's total workforce, after Wal-Mart appointed Shopper Events, a third-party marketing company, to run in-club product sampling and demonstrations for the company. More

Washington Update

First Lady: More funding for military families
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
First lady Michelle Obama delivered a promise of more federal money dedicated to supporting military families - the first tangible results of her many visits to bases and hospitals, as well as conversations with veterans and their loved ones in 2009. More

Silent Warriors - extreme fitness with the Navy SEALs
MSNBC    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Well, you know the Navy SEALs have this almost mythical, James Bond-like reputation. They pride themselves on keeping a low profile, but over the last six months, we were given amazing access to active SEALs and their training bases. We wanted to find out what makes these guys tick. A look at their pursuit of extreme fitness, and suffice it to say, SEAL training is not for the faint of heart. More

The following commissary items were posted to the ALA Web site as noon, 28 January 2010:
  • DP #3, Update 2
  • DP #5 Promotion and Shipper Quantities
  • Easter Update #4
  • 10-32, Vendor Promotion Price Locking (VPPL) Project
  • 10-33, 2010 Promotion Calendar update
  • 10-34, Store Reset Dates – MacDill
  • 10-34, Store Reset Date – North Island NAS
  • 10-36, Store Reset Date – Miramar
  • 10-37, Store Reset Date – Sheppard
  • 10-38, Store Reset Date – San Onofre
  • 10-39, Adult Nutrition/Diet Supplements
  • 10-40, Can Soup Category Review
  • Commissary Council Operating Systems sub-committee update
  • Guard & Reserve On-Site Sale Schedule for East & West as of 22 Jan 10
  • Dec 09 versus Dec 08 Region Sales Comparison
  • FY10 Sales and customers by department by store by month & YTD through Dec 09
  • Adds/Changes/Deletes for week 10-3, Corrected Copy
  • Adds/Deletes/Changes fir week 10-4 and a corrected copy
  • 11-10, It's bread baking season
  • 12-10, Deadline for 2010 Scholarship for Military Children fast approaching

AAFES continues to install the AAFES Radio network (EXRN) music and announcements in the Army and Air Force DeCA commissaries. There are over 40 operational and another 40 that are a work in progress. Besides the capability of the Commissaries using EXRN for their announcements, AAFES also offered announcements to all of the MWR facilities. This means that announcements for the Exchange, Commissary, and MWR now play in both the Exchange and the Commissary. The Army and Air Force customers are the winners in this communication partnership!

Thank You

The Army Training Expo was held in Louisville, Ky., this week and ALA provided two excellent speakers, Mr. Brian O'Rouke and Dr. James Sallis who spoke in four sessions. Our thanks go out to the sponsors: Brown-Forman Beverages, Coca Cola, Gino Morena Enterprises, General Nutrition Center, Unilever, and Patriot Retail Services for making ALA participation possible.


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Executive Briefing
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