News Briefs


84.51 Forms Science & Tech Team

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In a move to accelerate innovation, Kroger in-house data shop 84.51 has created a science and technology solutions team and related venture dubbed 84.51 Labs. Led by chief data and technology officer Todd James, the team will work to deliver solutions that advance how shoppers engage in the retail experience at Kroger.

Utilizing first-party customer purchase data, the team will work to drive its insights-to-activation engine and unlock the ability to scale sciences through platform engineering, according to a news release.

Former senior director at Capital One, Christina Garcia, recently joined the 84.51 leadership team as senior vice president of engineering. Garcia will be responsible for the company's software engineering, data, architecture, security teams and technical capabilities. At Capital One, she led significant portions of the cloud journey and built an engineering function for a key commercial venture.

With the goal of accelerating innovation, 84.51 Labs aims to reinvent grocery from a merchandising perspective and power decisions that impact CPG shoppers and Kroger category managers.

Led by Andrew Cron, chief scientist, SVP, science, 84.51 Labs will pursue a diversified portfolio of data science technology opportunities with a focus on business impact and scaling business teams. Labs’ leadership will work on business planning processes to develop business cases and align roadmaps for incubation and adoption, according to the release.

The structure includes:

  • Research Center: Explores a portfolio of advanced data science technology capabilities and feasible development opportunities.
  • Rapid Development: Creates new prototypes to demonstrate the value of new solutions and deploy throughout the enterprise.
  • R&D Studio:Explores the intersection of emerging technologies, data & science and customer experiences to better serve customers.

AdAdapted, WeStock Help Emerging Brands Survive


In today’s competitive environment, it can be challenging for small and emerging brands to drive purchase intent and build awareness. Only 15% of new CPG products are still around in two years' time, according to research from Nielsen.

AdAdapted, a shopping list marketing and insights platform, has partnered with WeStock, a retail sales platform that simplifies data for CPG brands, to address these challenges and help emerging brands grow distribution and ensure they stay on shelves by increasing sales.

The partnership aims to increase the availability of AdAdapted and WeStock’s tools to each of their customer bases, providing them with a more holistic approach to retail distribution and increasing sales velocities and shopper loyalty.

“Emerging brands need efficient and effective tools to grow and maintain their retail footprint through shopper engagement,” said Cameron McCarthy, co-founder and CEO, WeStock, in a news release. “Together with AdAdapted, we make it easy for businesses to get shopper endorsements to win on-shelf distribution and then to reach new consumers, gain product trials and ensure their brands succeed.”

“AdAdapted and WeStock both bring unique offerings and solutions to the table that help small and emerging brands get in front of new shoppers and drive data-driven sales,” added Mike Pedersen, co-founder and CEO, AdAdapted.


AdAdapted’s Add-to-List Tech Launches on Flipp


AdAdapted, a shopping list marketing and insights platform, has partnered with Flipp, a retail technology company, to help U.S. brands drive shopper intent and simplify the process of building digital shopping lists for shoppers.

Flipp is a shopping app for list building, circulars and deals, connecting North America’s retailers and CPG manufacturers to shoppers each week. The partnership means AdAdapted’s add-to-list technology can be utilized on the Flipp platform. AdAdapted can advertise CPG products to shoppers as they build their mobile lists on Flipp, enabling brands to reach shoppers via branded products and driving awareness, consideration, purchase intent, trial or sales.

“In this inflationary environment, shoppers are increasingly using digital pre-shopping tools to decide what to buy — digital circular readership in the U.S. is at a four-year high,” said Sam Rosenbaum, director, brand platform, Flipp, in a news release. “By partnering with AdAdapted, we’re helping brands shape purchase decisions in this incredibly high-intent context while providing a non-disruptive, relevant experience for our users.”

Beyond Flipp, AdAdapted’s exclusive network of apps includes Tasty, Our Groceries, Buy Me a Pie, BigOven, Listonic and Prepear, among others.


Brandcrush Brings Omnichannel Media Solutions to U.S.


Brandcrush, an Australia-based retail media software and omnichannel platform company, has expanded into the U.S. market to help grocery retailers and CPG brands drive growth with centralized media management.

Brandcrush offers grocery retailers a software and network across touchpoints (in-store, out-of-store and online shopper media) and a scalable platform that integrates with financial, CMS and onsite media platforms to drive an end-to-end solution.

Brandcrush offers to simplify how companies buy and sell retail media as well as monetize retailers' omnichannel media touchpoints to grow their top and bottom lines with more efficient processes, according to a news release. Brands can grow ROAS by identifying which retailers and media optimize conversion, lower customer acquisition costs and fuel product discovery.

"We're excited to align our technology with the needs of the U.S. grocery retail market, as 80% of retail media assets remain underserved by adtech," said Brandcrush CEO and co-founder Teresa Aprile in the release. "Too often, media assets are hard to book and scale, and highly inefficient, scattered across fragmented, manual formats like spreadsheets, emails, PDFs and media kits. Bringing our centralized, digital solution to U.S. grocery retailers will help brands efficiently book any form of owned media and maximize retailers' media monetization potential."

Brandcrush says its media solution drives up to 30% revenue growth opportunity by making it easier to buy and sell owned media, and in excess of 25% operational efficiency gains through tech-enabled media management.


Lowe’s CMO Exits

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Marisa Thalberg, executive vice president, chief brand and marketing officer at Lowe’s, has left the company after almost three years.

Multiple outlets reported that her departure is part of a broader reorganization, which includes cutting Thalberg’s role and moving the retailer’s marketing team under Bill Boltz, EVP of merchandising.

In a lengthy post on LinkedIn, Thalberg bid farewell to her time at Lowe’s, citing accomplishments including the launch of Lowe’s One Roof Media Network, a partnership with New York Fashion Week and major marketing campaigns.

Additionally, Lowe’s has promoted Jen Wilson, a marketing and merchandising veteran who joined the company in 2006, to SVP of enterprise brand and marketing. 


Target's Cornell Will Stay Until 2025

a man wearing a suit and tie

Target will retain its chief executive Brian Cornell (pictured) for three more years. A a new agreement will keep the current CEO at the retailer into 2025, the mass merchant revealed in a news release. With Cornell staying, Target’s board of directors eliminated its retirement policy, which was designed to initiate a discussion regarding the possible retirement of its CEO at the age of 65.

“In discussions about the company’s longer-term plans, it was important to us as a board to assure our stakeholders that [Cornell] intends to stay in his role beyond the traditional retirement age of 65. We enthusiastically support his commitment and his continued leadership, especially considering his track record and the company’s strong financial performance during his tenure,” said Monica Lozano, lead independent director of Target’s board, in the release.

Additionally, Arthur Valdez, executive vice president and chief supply chain and logistics officer, will retire from Target. He will be succeeded by Gretchen McCarthy, senior vice president, global inventory management, effective immediately. McCarthy will now report to John Mulligan, Target EVP and chief operating officer.

Valdez and McCarthy have partnered closely to ensure a smooth transition, and Valdez will continue working with the Target team in an advisory role through April 2023.