Another Supermarket for Richards

Texans’ Broadcast Branding for H.E. Butt Helps Attract Supervalu
DALLAS–The Richards Group here has picked up broadcast creative responsibilities on the estimated $5 million account of Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Supervalu grocery stores.
Richards will be responsible for new brand imaging assignments for the 3,100-unit Supervalu’s differing storefronts, including Cubs Food Stores, Save-A-Lot and Shop n’ Save groceries.
Agency account director Dale Hruby told Adweek the Dallas shop will be responsible for overseeing the supermarket chain’s first centralized branding effort in its North, Midwest and Southeast markets.
“The challenge varies from market to market,” said Hruby. “Where they are a dominant player, they want to solidify that [leadership] standing. In others, they want to at least move up to No. 2” in the short term.
Billings on Richards’ work were not disclosed. In May 1998, when the review was initially launched by the value-oriented chain, sources pegged the broadcast assignment at $3-5 million. Competitive Media Reporting shows Supervalu spent $5.4 million in 1998 expenditures.
Print advertising will remain in-house, while media buying and planning stays with Haworth Marketing & Media in Minnetonka, Minn. Hruby said previous creative assignments were doled out on a project basis to other shops.
Minneapolis consultant Claude Stevens had discussed the account with other undisclosed Midwest agencies, according to Hruby.
When contacted last week, Stevens referred all queries to the client. Supervalu marketing director Kathy Peddle did not return calls at press time.
The agency search was originally under the auspices of consultant Cricklewood Consultants, also located in Minnetonka. That company resigned its duties in June 1998, citing conflicts with potential finalists at that time.
Aiding Richards’ cause was its broadcast branding experience for San Antonio-based H.E. Butt Grocery Co. Richards is able to retain that client since Supervalu has no stores or distribution centers in HEB’s principal market of Texas.
Other units in the Supervalu family Richards will serve include Laneco, Scott’s Foods, Hornbacher’s and bigg’s Foods.–with Aaron Baar