DALLAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- In its first foray into global merchandising, 7-Eleven, Inc. (SEI) in the U.S. and Seven-Eleven Japan (SEJ) are jointly introducing two proprietary wines – a Chardonnay and a Cabernet Sauvignon – today under the Yosemite Road label. These are California wines produced by The Wine Group exclusively for 7-Eleven® stores and its parent company, Seven & i Holdings Co., Ltd. of Tokyo.
Also participating in the launch and carrying the new beverages are Ito-Yokado super- and hyper-markets, York Benimaru supermarkets in northern Japan, Shell Garden upscale grocery stores, Denny's family restaurants, Seibu and Sogo department stores, retail outlets that, along with SEI and SEJ, are subsidiaries of Seven & i, a $57.6 billion corporation. Seven & i has annual wines sales of $127 million, and SEI's yearly wine sales are $46 million.
After researching the most frequently purchased products at their stores, the merchandising counterparts under the Seven & i umbrella selected wine to inaugurate its global product development and procurement plan. Value-priced wines, those under $5, have been gaining in popularity and enjoying double-digit sales growth at 7-Eleven stores as consumers continue to search for value in their purchasing decisions.
Available in the companies' collective 15,000 convenience, department and grocery stores, the introduction of the two California wines is the culmination of a collaborative, global merchandising effort for the world's largest convenience retailer. The same-day launch marks the first global product designed and developed exclusively for Seven & i stores. Taking their experience and knowledge of product development to a new level, the companies' international plan reduces provides a very reasonable sales tag for the consumer. Suggested retail price for a standard 750 milliliter bottle is $3.99 in the U.S. ($4.99 in Florida because of state taxes) and 598 yen in Japan.
"The development and production of Yosemite Road wines was a global team effort and is just the beginning," said Kevin Elliott, 7-Eleven senior vice president of merchandising and logistics. "By using our collective purchasing power to negotiate product exclusivity and pricing, we can meet customer demand for quality and value, as well as differentiate our brand from the competition."
The around-the-world venture began in earnest this year with a series of video conferences followed by multiple trips to California's wine country. Leveraging its sheer scale and sourcing capabilities, 7-Eleven approached The Wine Group, the world's third-largest wine producer, with the mission to craft two quality, affordably priced varietal wines.
Experienced, award-winning wine-makers John Willumson and Jim McDonald were tapped for the task. The winning vintners created a Chardonnay, described as fresh and zesty with notes of apricot, peach and honey, and a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon with juicy plum overtones. Both are well balanced, offered at an affordable price and can be enjoyed anytime of the year.
Yosemite Road is currently a limited-edition wine that will be available while supplies last.
7 Eleven, Inc. is the premier name and largest chain in the convenience retailing industry. Based in Dallas, Texas, 7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses some 7,850 7-Eleven® stores in North America. Globally, 7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses more than 36,600 stores in 15 countries. During 2008, 7-Eleven stores worldwide generated total sales of more than $53.7 billion. 7-Eleven has been honored by a number of companies and organizations recently. Accolades include: #3 in Forbes magazine's Top 20 Franchises to Start, #3 among Top 100 Global Franchises by Franchise Direct, #3 in Store Growth by Convenience Store News, #2 in Franchise Times Top 200 Franchise Companies and #29 among Top 100 Chains in Food Service. In addition, Hispanic Magazine's named 7-Eleven in its Hispanic Corporate Top 100 Companies that provide the most opportunities to Hispanics. 7-Eleven is franchising its stores in the U.S., and is expanding through organic growth, acquisitions, and its Business Conversion Program.