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Front-End Focus Project Wins GMA Award

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

For further information, contact
Bill Dusek
Dechert-Hampe Consulting
555 Skokie Blvd.
Northbrook, IL 60062
847.559.0490

Front-End Focus Project Wins GMA Award

NORTHBROOK, IL, June 10, 2006 – Time Warner Retail, received the 2006 CPG Award for Innovation and Creativity from the GMA on behalf of all the “Front-End Focus” Project Collaborators, which included Masterfoods USA, The Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company and Dechert-Hampe & Company. This Award, which was presented by the GMA Associate Member Council to Time Warner on June 10, 2006, is intended to bring to light emerging industry trends and to highlight innovation and growing industry developments, especially through category retail development and collaboration with retailers and suppliers.

Dechert-Hampe was responsible for the project planning and execution of the research elements, which included retailer and consumer interviews and in-store audits. They were also responsible for the retailer and manufacturer communications, processing and analysis of retailer data, and development of study findings materials. The Front-End Focus (FEF) Study was presented to over 40 retailers and presented at numerous conferences.

Front-End merchandising is a critical element of store performance and customer satisfaction. The Front-End checkout represents the only location where the majority of shoppers visit and it is the last location a retailer has to influence additional consumer purchases.

Understanding the importance of the Front-End checkstands and the state of industry-wide merchandising practices, led Masterfoods USA (a division of Mars, Inc.), Time Warner Retail Sales & Marketing (a division of Time Warner) and the Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company to sponsor a major cross-industry initiative in concert with Dechert-Hampe & Company, an independent consulting firm.

The mission of the group was to work in partnership with retail customers and other stakeholders to improve store performance and enhance consumer satisfaction through: 1) new learning regarding consumer shopping behavior/attitudes, 2) development of benchmarks and best practices, and 3) innovative solutions to optimize in-store merchandising.

Not only did this Alliance conduct the Grocery Study, but it also conducted research in the Drug Store and C-Store channels, and is currently sponsoring an additional study focusing on Front-End Operations Management in the Grocery channel.

The key to success of all these studies has been the active cooperation of key retailer groups. In the Grocery Study, eight retailer groups agreed to participate, while the C-Store Study included five retail groups and the Drug Study included four retail groups. Representation within the channels was significant. As an example, the retailers participating in the Grocery Study represented over 5,500 stores and 20% of the U.S. Grocery Volume. The results of the Grocery Study identified a $2 billion industry-wide opportunity from improved checkstand merchandising.

For more information about the “Front-End Focus” project and the results of the research, please visit the public website at http://www.front-endfocus.com/ or contact Bill Dusek in our Chicago office at 847.559.0490

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