Mars takes out 7-Eleven’s Initiative Award for promotional creativity and strategic collaboration

Posted by Isobel Drake on 8th September 2008

7-Eleven, Inc. last week named Mars Snackfood as the recipient of its US Retailer Initiative Award for 2007. The annual honour recognises a “top supplier and partner who excels at supporting 7-Eleven stores in meeting their customers’ changing needs through team merchandising, demand-chain solutions, cost of goods, category management, and creativity in advertising and promotional programs”.

The collaboration between retailer and manufacturer is often vital to success and Mars and 7-Eleven found co-marketing and teamwork were the hallmarks of last year’s profitable relationship. “Mars was chosen for delivering exceptional value and satisfaction to 7-Eleven’s customers through the introduction of First, Best and Only products and promotions aligned with our business strategy,” said Joe DePinto, 7-Eleven president and CEO.

Examples of a First, Best and Only offering were the Cheeseburger and Bacon & Egg-flavored COMBOS snacks, introduced and tested exclusively at 7-Eleven stores to satisfy customers’ breakfast, lunch and snacking needs. The test benefited both 7-Eleven and Mars in terms of sales and provided insights about the product, brand and category.

“Mars has been a strategic partner of 7-Eleven’s and worked with us throughout the year to develop consumer events to build awareness of 7-Eleven and Mars products,” Mr DePinto added.

Mars was delighted to receive the recognition from the convenience store giant and hopes the relationship with 7-Eleven will continue to flourish in coming years. “We are honored that 7-Eleven selected Mars Snackfood US for this prestigious award,” said Todd Lachman, president of Mars Snackfood US. “Collaboration is the key to any partnership, and we are proud of the relationship we’ve formed with 7-Eleven.”

This is the seventh year 7-Eleven has presented its Retailer Initiative award, with Mars joining the honour roll of prominent food and beverage companies. Past winners include Miller Brewing Company, The Hershey Company, Nestlé Waters North America and Anheuser-Busch.

Candidates were nominated by 7-Eleven’s merchandising and operations personnel and judged on 2007 business activities. The award recipient was chosen by the 7-Eleven Awards Committee, composed of the company’s senior executives.