SHEBOYGAN, Wis. -- Fresh Brands, here, said its growth plans for 2002 include opening new stores and remodeling existing ones, as well as replacing and expanding the company's information technology.
discussion of growth plans arose from the company's 2002 annual report.
In the report, Elwood F. Winn, Fresh Brands' president and chief executive officer, said, "We have a successful business model with our Piggly Wiggly brand. Our strategy is to leverage our proven expertise in loyalty marketing -- a competency that truly sets us apart from other supermarket retailers -- and the merchandising and procurement experience that we have developed through Piggly Wiggly, with additional brands in other markets."
Projects currently in progress, according to the report, include a new corporate store in Kenosha, Wis. This store will be modeled after the company's new flagship store, which opened last year in Sheboygan. That store features a circular motif with curved walls and ceilings, and skylights for natural lighting.
Other projects include franchise replacement stores in Howard and West Bend, Wis. The company also said it plans this year to complete the expansion of franchise stores in Waunakee and Mequon, Wis., along with the opening of a new market franchise store in Oostburg, Wis. Earlier this year, the company completed a new corporate replacement store in Zion, Ill.
Meanwhile, Fresh Brands initiated a three-year, $15 million project to replace and expand its information technology system.
The first two phases, which involve the core infrastructure and the systems relating to the company's wholesale operations, are currently in progress.
The next two phases, which include promotional card marketing, retail pricing, human resources and financial reporting, are scheduled to begin later in the year.