Technology File

IN-STORE KIOSKS TO ALLOW INTERNET ACCESS Toronto-based Systech Retail Systems has launched three in-store kiosk applications the company says will save consumers time and allow them controlled access to the Internet. The applications allow retailers to customize Internet access and display...

IN-STORE KIOSKS TO ALLOW INTERNET ACCESS

Toronto-based Systech Retail Systems has launched three in-store kiosk applications the company says will save consumers time and allow them controlled access to the Internet. The applications allow retailers to customize Internet access and display advertising on the screen at all times. Consumers will be able to send e-mail, print electronic shopping lists, withdraw cash, purchase event tickets or win prizes and gifts. They can even use the kiosks to swipe their frequent buyer card in order to view or print a list of the incentives to which they are entitled.

PIVOTAL SOLUTION TO ENHANCE CUSTOMER CARE

Pivotal Corp. of Vancouver has inked a deal with Vancouver-based ServicePlus Corp. that will provide integrated Web, wireless and Windows service and support capabilities for the companies’ customers. The collaborative solution will offer companies the ability to manage the entire customer relationship life cycle from the initial point of contact with sales and support through field and depot service. The software is designed to increase customer care levels by arming service and support personnel with integrated, up-to-the-minute customer information.

SOFTWARE ANALYZES CUSTOMER DATA TO SUPPORT DECISION-MAKING

A Montreal-based company has integrated its software with that of a company in San Jose, Calif., that the two say will allow users to analyze customer information collected through the Internet and traditional marketing, sales and service channels. Visionyze.com and Clarify Inc. say their integrated offering can help improve fact-based decision-making. Clients can use point-and-click technology to analyze customer data gathered and integrated from different points of customer interaction.

IBM LAUNCHES DATA MANAGEMENT SOLUTION

Markham, Ont.-based IBM Canada has unveiled the IBM Content Manager to help companies manage the ever-increasing amount of digital information now facing organizations. According to Big Blue, the content management market is expected to exceed $10 billion by 2004. IBM’s Content Manager solution involves the collection, management and electronic distribution of all forms of business information – including e-mails, audio, video and images – and linking it to core business processes. It is designed to help clients integrate, leverage and share all forms of digital content for increased productivity, operational efficiencies and competitive advantage.

Kraft Heinz beats the street, but reports slight sales slide

The company's Q2 net sales, while down slightly, reveal continued demand for snacks and pre-packaged meals.
Kraft Heinz

Kraft Heinz is reporting earnings of 78 cents a share, beating Wall Street’s estimate of 72 cents a share, thanks to continued demand for snacks and pre-packaged meals. However, the company also reported a net sales decline of 0.5% compared with the same period last year, to $6.6 billion, according to its latest Q2 earnings report, released Tuesday.

The company experienced a favourable 2.3 percentage point impact from currency and a negative 0.7 percentage point impact from its February divestiture of Hormel Foods – including the Planters peanut brand – which closed in the second quarter of 2021.

Its cheese divestiture – which included the sale of its natural cheese division to Lactalis – is expected to close in the second half of 2021, says Kraft Heinz Global CEO Miguel Patricio in this morning’s conference call.

Adjusted EBITDA slumped 5.2% versus the year-ago period to $1.7 billion and increased 6.6% versus the comparable 2019 period. Higher transportation and inflation-related goods costs continue to affect the company’s bottom line.

Kraft Heinz’ organic net sales declined 3.6% in Canada over the last three months compared with a comparable period last year, this as total net sales rose 8.8% year over year. 

However, its overall organic net sales slipped 2.1% compared with 2020 figures. This includes the negative impact stemming from exiting its McCafé licensing agreement. However, this decline was partly offset, Kraft Heinz reports, by “partial recovery in foodservice channels and retail consumption trends.”

“Food service is recovering, and recovering fast,” Patricio stressed in today’s earnings call. He said “the bet to support QSR” early in the pandemic, with individual packets of ketchups and sauces, is paying off.

Channel trends are still normalizing, he warns, and it’s too early to see how at home or away from home, will net out. “We have big ambitions for away from home business,” he said. Consumers continue to evolve how they eat, with Patricio saying that Kraft Heinz is collaborating with a popular DTC brand for its Philadelphia cream cheese.

Accrued marketing costs, the company reports, rose to $968 million from $946 million in December 2020.

“We are investing more in our brands, and better as well, building a much more creative company,” Patricio reported.

Kraft Heinz is also strengthening and diversifying its media presence, he said, driving repeat rates for those discovering and rediscovering the brand. Patricio added that the company is continuing to drive its transformation program forward, modernizing its brands and better connecting with its consumers.