NEW YORK (12/9/09)–CBX, the strategic branding, retail design, and consultancy agency based here, today announced that one of the locations it designed for Freson Market, Ltd. was the 2009 Silver recipient of the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers (CFIG’s) prestigious Canadian Independent Grocer of the Year Award, in the Small Surface category.
The Canadian Independent Grocer of the Year is the most prestigious CFIG award. From coast-to-coast, Canadian independent grocers vie for this title in the Large, Medium, Small Surface, and Specialty categories. Each of the competing stores is visited personally by a respected retail management expert, who evaluates the locations based on retailing excellence and innovation, store team performance, customer service, space usage, freshness and cleanliness. Once regional finalists are determined, the stores with the most points are audited once again and finalists go on to compete at the national level. Awards are then presented to the best Large, Medium and Small Surface grocers, as well as Specialty Store, in the Gold, Silver and Bronze levels.
The award for Freson’s store in Valleyview, Alberta was presented in late October at Grocery Innovations Canada 2009, Canada’s premier grocery exposition and conference, in front of an audience of over 500 grocery industry professionals. “Independent grocers continually raise the bar for innovative retailing. CFIG is proud to showcase the leadership and commitment to excellence that these retailers possess,” said John F.T. Scott, President and CEO of CFIG, who presented the awards along with Dave Delchiaro, Chair of the group’s Board of Directors.
Freson’s 12,500-square-foot Valleyview store underwent an expansion and renovation that was completed in June 2009. The project was based on an old-world inspired prototype design created by CBX that updated the store’s interior, exterior, graphics and departmental layout. The privately held supermarket chain is in the process of rolling out its new look to the 15 locations it operates throughout Alberta. Founded in 1955, the Peace River-based family-owned company is known for good value, customer service and community involvement.
Though located mainly in rural Alberta towns, Freson stores are increasingly facing competition from larger chains and multi-nationals, explained Joseph Bona, president of CBX’s retail division. “But from a strategic standpoint, none of Freson’s competitors could touch the Lovsin family’s history in the markets they serve,” he said. “That became a significant point of differentiation we sought to highlight in the design. What’s interesting is that Frank Lovsin actually worked in many of the Freson stores, establishing a personal relationship with community members and knowing many of his customers on a first-name basis. Our objective was to capitalize on that heritage by making sure customers could sense the family’s presence in their local store. This prestigious award, which examined all phases of the Valleyview store’s operations, underscores Freson’s strong connection with its customers.”
About The Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers (CFIG)
CFIG is a non-profit trade association founded in 1962, which continues to be a collaborative community, equipping and enabling independent, franchised and specialty grocers for sustainable success. Representing over 4000 grocery retailers from every part of Canada, CFIG is a strong and united voice for independent grocers, providing programs for operational excellence, facilitating educational and training programs and fostering enabling-relationships among retailers and suppliers. CFIG is a respected organization that speaks confidently for its retail members to industry, government, and the consumer.
About Freson Market, Ltd.
Freson Market Ltd. is the largest single-owned chain of IGA grocery stores in the province of Alberta. The company currently operates 15 stores while employing more than 950 full-time and part-time staff across Alberta. With a tradition deeply rooted in family and community, the Freson Market family brand has been proudly serving Alberta since 1955. Since its humble beginnings, Freson Market has been committed to fresh food, fresh value and top-notch customer service.