New assortments of holiday videos are making their debut in many chains this fourth quarter.
Having carried the same product lines for several seasons, some video buyers told SN they were looking for something different this year. The retailers still expect the older products from Family Home Entertainment, Van Nuys, Calif., and Buena Vista Home Video, Burbank, Calif., to sell, but new assortments will attract additional customers. Among the new players are MGM/UA Home Video, Santa Monica, Calif., and Warner Home Video, Burbank, Calif., with a shipper combining both studios' products, and a speed table offered to key accounts by distributor ETD Entertainment Merchandising, Houston, with a customized selection. "We had the FHE and Disney [holiday videos] last year, and they are offering basically the same mix again," said Sharon Stagner, merchandising coordinator at Seaway Food Town, Maumee, Ohio. "So rather than duplicate what we did last year, we thought we'd bring in the Warner-MGM holiday assortment. We are hoping that we get a good sell-through on it." Food Giant Supermarkets, Sikeston, Mo., is going with the ETD speed table, said Tim Harrison, video supervisor. "It has a long line of multiprice-pointed, multi-titled Christmas products. It takes some of the headache out of buying," he said. The retailer is going to put the speed table in its four freestanding stores, and will have it exclusively in those areas, he said. There are four copies each of 75 titles in the 300-piece assortment. Price points range from $9.95 to $19.95, said Harrison. "It covers all the studios and has a lot of variety, so we don't have to go searching through the various suppliers," he said. Dierbergs Markets, Chesterfield, Mo., also is picking up the ETD program, said Greg Davies, director of video operations. "It's a good selection of different holiday titles that we are going to have all during the Christmas season," he said. Bringing in the speed table allows the retailer to tap into the distributor's product expertise, said Davies. "They've got computer numbers on what is actually moving," he said. Overall, "we are expecting a real big fourth quarter. We are really excited about it," Davies said. A holiday assortment from franchisor Grocer's Video, Olathe, Kan., will help build impulse sales for the Boogaart Retail division of Fleming Cos./Scrivner Group, Concordia, Kan. "The program includes Christmas titles and some past popular hits that have just come out at a sell-through price," said Matt Dillon, video director. Some older titles like "Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol" and "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" will supplement sales of the FHE and Disney assortments for Bel Air Markets, Sacramento, Calif., said Rick Ang, director of video operations. "It will do really well because our sell-through business has just gone crazy this year," he said. Sales of tapes to collectors are growing especially fast, he said. The retailer will offer the holiday titles as impulse items and not promote them otherwise, said Ang. "We'll probably run an ad prior to Thanksgiving inviting consumers to come in and look at our wide selection, but I don't think we will feature any one title in particular," he said. Harp's Food Stores, Springdale, Ark., will have some holiday videos because "you have to carry them for sell-through," said Carl Johnson, video specialist. "There are still people who don't own them, or if they do own them, the kids have worn them out," he said. The retailer will carry the Disney and FHE lines, he said. "We will probably do an entire Christmas display [including the videos and other products] in our larger stores," said Johnson.