NORTHLAKE, Ill. -- Shurfine International here begins a rollout today of a private-label prepaid telephone card to its 4,000 affiliated grocery stores.
The telecards, titled "Long Distance To Go," will be promoted with posters, shelf danglers and register signs throughout the Shurfine co-op supermarket network, Paul "Tuck" Jasper, Shurfine president and chief executive officer, told SN. Sales of the card will provide retailers with 38% profits. Shurfine plans to extend the rollout to convenience and drug store accounts next month.
"It's a comprehensive package with a lot of advertising support. We're buying it [cards] in volume and retailers are getting a very good cost on the product," Jasper said. The phone card packaging is in the shape of a dollar bill and fits neatly into cash register drawers for security, he said. The cards are sold in 30-, 60- and 150-minute installments and retail for $10, $20 and $50, respectively. Racecar-themed versions of the cards will debut in about four months to enhance their value as a collectible, Jasper said. Those cards also will come with an 800 number so consumers can place orders for official racing gear. Point-of-purchase displays will highlight the 800 number.
The program, which uses U.S. Long Distance Corp., San Antonio, as the long-distance carrier, was created and sold by Co-Options, Stamford, Conn.