ALA Executive Briefing
May. 25, 2012

Defense contractors eye cuts to jobs, plants
The Washington Times
Defense contractors already are preparing for the layoffs and plant closures that will occur if Congress fails to reach a deal on the federal deficit this year, triggering $600 billion in automatic Pentagon spending cuts. "We are running towards a cliff, all telling each other like lemmings that somehow this isn't going to happen," said Marion C. Blakey, president and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association. "But the cliff is coming up."More

Mental illness is the leading cause of hospitalization for active-duty troops
The Defense and Veterans Affairs departments have spent almost $2 billion since 2001 to buy drugs to treat mental illness and post-traumatic stress disorder despite growing evidence some of those drugs exacerbate PTSD symptoms, a Nextgov investigation shows. In addition, military research recently released highlighted that Defense faces what one Army clinician called an epidemic of mental illness.More

Hampton VA hospital to be test bed for medical-record sharing
Newport News Daily Press
The Obama administration has selected the Hampton VA Medical Center and a site in San Antonio as launch points for a massive medical record-sharing program between the departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense.More

Leader vows to protect forces
Tampa Tribune via Current Mil-Tech News
Special operations forces were the first troops on the ground in Afghanistan after the Sept. 11 attacks. They have been there ever since and have been deployed to dozens of countries in a multitude of high-profile, high-danger situations — including the killing of Osama bin Laden and the rescue of hostages held by Somali pirates.More

As the Army downsizes, soldiers eye transition
Newport News Daily Press
The Army trained Roxanne Johnson to drive a forklift, but now she's planning for life in the civilian world as a registered nurse. Was Army training a waste of time? Not in the least, she said. "You learn a lot of discipline," said the 20-year-old Utah native, now based at Fort Eustis. "You really learn who you are. Because I've been in the Army, I've learned that I am outgoing, I am quick to learn and I love learning new things."More

Largest supermarket chains contract — fresh formats grow
Supermarket News
Safeway, Kroger Co. and Supervalu closed dozens more traditional stores than they opened last year, according to documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, continuing a trend that has seen them collectively shed hundreds of locations in recent years. At the same time, operators at both the high and low end — including Supervalu's Save-A-Lot discount banner — have continued adding new stores and remain committed to aggressive expansion.More

Kraft Singles, Weber team for better summer grilling
Progressive Grocer
Since a national survey from Kraft Singles found that cleaning the grill tops the list of hated household chores, the brand has joined forces with Weber-Stephen Products LLC, the world's leading manufacturer of outdoor gas and charcoal grills. "The perfect grilling experience really comes down to timing," explained Kevin Kolman, grilling expert at Palatine, Ill.-based Weber. "Something as simple as when you put the cheese on your burger, for example, can mean the difference between a quick cleanup or a daunting mess."More

Survey ranks customers' favorite grocery shopping destinations
Chain Store Age
Giant-Landover and ShopRite are shoppers' two favorite supermarkets, according to results of a survey recently released. Shoppers ranked the deli, butcher and baker as the most important departments, and considered high-quality produce more important than high-quality meat, with long wait times in the checkout lines causing the most dissatisfaction.More

Getting into the mind of the male grocery shopper
Coeur d'Alene Press
Grocery stores are not just for ladies anymore. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 41 percent of meals made at home are prepared by men and more and more men are taking over as the primary household grocery shoppers. Long gone are the days of June Cleaver as the primary customers for grocery stores. Men are increasingly taking over food shopping and becoming responsible for their families nutritional intake. In 2011, 30-50 percent of men were the primary grocery shoppers for their households.More

Albertsons Market customers learn to grill on the go
Progressive Grocer
Albertsons Market has implemented a unique in-store program that will allow customers to scan a QR code using their smartphones to get access to recipes with tips for grilling the best Steakhouse Choice cuts of meat.More

Survey: 80 percent of consumers actively looking for rebates
Chain Store Age
Ninety-five percent of consumers are interested in products that come with rebates and 80 percent of consumers actively seek out rebate, according to an annual consumer survey by Parago, the largest rebate provider in the United States. More

Nordstrom in fashion with social media, mobile tech
U.S. News & World Report
Selected by U.S. News as one of America's Most Connected Companies for its use of technology to expand shopping options, Nordstrom has been aggressive about snapping up promising Internet ventures to diversify its business and experiment with new retail platforms. Its social media strategy extends well beyond Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to an array of buzz-generating fashion and photo-sharing sites. Recognizing that its customers always want to stay connected, the company introduced complimentary Wi-Fi in its high-end department stores in 2010.More

4 ways retailers can fight showrooming
Mobile Commerce Daily
The use of smartphones is proliferating at a rapid pace. In turn, showrooming — the practice of researching merchandise in a retail store and then purchasing it elsewhere — is also increasingly common. It is, understandably, a thorn in the retailer's side.More

Fuel prices trump unemployment as risk to retailers
Worries about fuel prices are trumping concerns about unemployment for U.S. retailers, according to a BDO USA study. Unemployment had been a larger retailer concern since 2009. More

Coty withdraws Avon bid
The Wall Street Journal
Coty Inc. recently withdrew its $10.7 billion offer for Avon Products Inc., concluding its high-profile effort to take over a struggling larger rival. Fragrance maker Coty said in a letter to Avon's board it was moving on to pursue other opportunities, after Coty said the door-to-door beauty seller didn't explain to Coty why it was taking more time to respond to its proposal. (Subscription required.)More

Golf Town to buy Golfsmith for $97 million in US move
Bloomberg Businessweek
Golf Town, the Canadian golf retailer owned by Omers Private Equity Inc., agreed to buy Golfsmith International Holdings Inc. for about $97 million to expand in the U.S. The cash transaction may be completed in the third quarter, the companies recently said in a statement. The price of $6.10 a share is 30 percent higher than Austin, Texas-based Golfsmith's closing price on May 11. More

Best Buy chairman to resign after probe
The Wall Street Journal
Best Buy Co. founder Richard Schulze will step down as chairman next month after an internal probe found that he didn't alert other directors that his handpicked successor as chief executive, Brian Dunn, was allegedly having an inappropriate relationship with a female employee. (Subscription required.)More

US retail sales cool after warm-weather spree
Retail sales rose in April at the slowest pace of the year as Americans took a break from a shopping spree induced by unseasonably warm weather in prior months and an earlier Easter holiday. The 0.1 percent gain followed a 0.7 percent increase in March, Commerce Department figures recently showed in Washington. The April advance matched the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey. More

Staples' successful, uncomplicated strategy
A Forbes contributor reports that "the majority of analysts (66.7 percent) rate Staples as a buy. This compares favorably to the analyst ratings of its nearest eight competitors, which average 34.5 percent buys."More

With smartphone-assisted shopping, how you shop depends on where you shop
Recently, Nielsen put hard numbers to how consumers like to shop with their smartphones, backing up trends we already suspected to be the case. In particular, the new report examines how consumers use their phones when shopping out there in the real world — using phones to compare prices, scan barcodes and even redeem coupons. Not surprisingly, how you use your phone has a lot to do with where you're shopping and what you're shopping for, says Nielsen.More

Sam's Club to launch online pet care portal
Retailing Today
Sam's Club has signed a deal with Triad Retail Media to provide pet care information on its website, Triad said. The companies are launching Pet Central on and are partnering with Louise Murray, author of the book "Vet Confidential: An Insider's Guide to Protecting Your Pet's Health" and head of the ASPCA's Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York, to develop social media content focus on caring for pets.More

7-Eleven on its way to a record growth year
Convenience Store News
7-Eleven Inc. is on track to have a record growth year with plans on the drawing board to add more units than it did in 2011 — a number that came in at 4,600 stores worldwide. Approximately 600 additional stores were built, acquired or transitioned from another business to the 7-Eleven banner in the United States and Canada alone in 2011. The convenience store retailer plans to surpass that stat by adding at least 630 new stores to its portfolios in those two countries by the end of the year.More

NRF launches 60-Day campaign for sales tax fairness
Retail's BIG Blog
Recently, the National Retail Federation launched a 60-day effort to convince Congress to take action on sales tax fairness. As retailers are all-too-well aware, online merchants are not required to collect sales tax on the majority of their sales, giving them a significant price advantage over local retailers. Unfortunately, lawmakers and the public aren't as attuned to this issue as those who are in the industry. More

Strong Wal-Mart profit trumps bribery probe concerns
Wal-Mart Stores Inc's profit and sales surpassed expectations as more people shopped at its established U.S. stores and spent more, pushing shares up more than 4 percent despite ongoing internal and government probes into possible bribery. More

Survey: 40 percent of smartphone owners redeem coupons on mobile devices
Drug Store News
Among 3,312 U.S. adults ages 18 years and older surveyed by Harris Interactive on behalf of CouponCabin, 40 percent of smartphone users said they have redeemed a coupon on their mobile device. When it came to frequency, nearly one-third (29 percent) of smartphone users searched for coupons on their device at least once a month, with 40 percent of U.S. adults ages 18 to 34 years doing the same.More

Retailers rethink stores to fight online competition
Reuters via TODAY News
U.S. retailers believe this life left in their brick-and-mortar stores and they're trying new ways of making them more inviting by pampering customers — both the two- and four-legged kinds. PetSmart Inc, for instance, will offer overnight dog accommodations at more stores. Macy's Inc is offering a "virtual concierge" kiosk and handbag maker Coach Inc is opening up dozens more men's sections this year.More

Save the date!

June 25: ALA New York Chapter Golf Event
Click here for registration form and directions.More

Commanders Cup Golf outing images

Click here to view the 2012 Golf Tournament slideshow presentation online.More

Scholarship award ceremony in memory of Murry Greenwald

Fisher House Foundation sponsored the Scholarships for Military Children recipient at Billy Mitchel Field, Garden City, New York in memory of Murry Greenwald. The commissary store director has scheduled the ceremony to award the scholarship to recipient Connor Gray for Wednesday, June 27, at 11:30 a.m. at the Billy Mitchel Field Commissary. Jim Weiskopf will represent Fisher House Foundation, and many from the staff of Exchange and Commissary News plan to attend. Other ALA members or friends of Murry's are also welcome to attend the ceremony.More

exchange council

ALA Exchange E-Blast week 5/25/12

AAFES Sales Flyers: Special Sales Flyers

See what else is going on at your Exchange! Additional promotions and limited time savings events can be found in this section. Click here for ALA Business Resource Guide

Chapter Announcement:

June 25: ALA New York Chapter Golf Event
Click here for registration form and directions.

Save the dates:

June 19, 2012 — Congressional Caucus, House Office Building Washington, D.C.
Sponsorship for the June 19 Caucus still open! Contact:

August 20–23, 2012 — Hawaii Conference & Food Show, Hawaii Prince Hotel, Honolulu

Oct. 1-3, 2012 — 65th Annual Convention, OMNI Shoreham Hotel, Washington, D.C.

Go to:, sign in and CHECK OUT the information.


Corporate Partnerships overview

The U.S. Army Family and MWR's Corporate Partnerships division assists corporations interested in targeting the military market by offering an array of sponsorship and advertising opportunities that deliver a measurable return on investment for clients. The Corporate Partnerships Division partners with marketing agencies, brand managers and entertainment properties to bring exciting promotions and events to more than 100 Army installations and more than 3.7 million soldiers, family members, civilians and retirees around the world.

The Family and MWR Corporate Partnership Division can customize an advertising or sponsorship package to achieve your corporation's goals and objectives. Packages may include visual identification on event/promotional collateral, sponsor acknowledgements through press releases, radio and cable television; event hospitality; and onsite activation which provide product/service tie-ins, displays, demonstrations, promotional giveaways and sampling opportunities. Join the ranks and associate your brand with the strength of the U.S. Army.

Benefits to Partnering with MWR
Increase your corporation's awareness, sales and ROI by targeting the viable military market. Reach the military market through sponsorship of our flagship entertainment properties (Army Concert Tour, U.S. Army Soldier Show and Operation Rising Star), customized marketing promotions, film and DVD releases, video game tournaments and advertising opportunities on Army installations. Thank you for visiting Corporate Partnerships Website! For latest News and Information click here. More

Chandler breaks biscuits with World Class Athlete Program soldiers
U.S. Army
Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond Chandler III recently gained insights into Olympic training from Installation Management Command soldiers in the U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program. At first, the Army's most senior enlisted soldier had to ask soldier-athletes to join him across the main table at Wolf Dining Facility for breakfast on May 4. "Lester, you didn't think you were going to be doing this, did you?" Chandler asked Spc. Justin Lester as he settled in with his tray. "No, not at all, sergeant major," said the second-year soldier, with a grin. Within minutes, however, they were getting along like best friends. More

Military families get free passes to national parks
U.S. Army MWR
From Alcatraz Island to Zion National Park, soldiers and their families can visit more than 2,000 national parks, wildlife refuges, national forests and other public lands around the nation this year, without paying entry fees. Beginning Armed Forces Day, May 19, active-duty and activated Guard and Reserve service members can pick up the new military version of the "America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Annual Pass."More