WASHINGTON, DC — August 21, 2002 — Showcasing new concepts in business to consumer marketing and the mindset of today’s supermarket shopper, three food industry groups are joining together to present the 2002 Global Electronic Marketing (GEMCON) Conference, October 16-18.

The annual event, sponsored by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA) and Retail Systems Consulting (RSC), will be held at the Pointe South Mountain Resort in Phoenix, Arizona.

“The food retail industry continues to experience significant change, driven largely by technological advances and shifting demographics,” notes Stacy Fitzgerald-Redd, manager of educational programs at FMI. “GEMCON provides a valuable opportunity for retailers and wholesalers to share ideas and to work together to respond to the changing demands of the industry."

Key conference topics include:

  • Collaborative CRM between retailers and manufacturers for greater consumer impact.

  • Frequent shopper data and its relevance to category management.

  • Linking payments and loyalty rewards.

  • Managing customer relationships in a self-service world.

  • New product introduction as a retail loyalty rewards strategy.

  • Smart Card-based programs and how they can enhance loyalty program management and maintenance.

In addition to the education program, the conference includes several breakout sessions, an exhibit area featuring leading-edge electronic marketing vendors, and networking social events.

Carlene Thissen, president of RSC and founder of GEMCON, said, "The vendor exhibits and networking are two big reasons people have come to GEMCON, year after year."

“This conference offers GMA and FMI members a way to stay connected to their trading partners and the consumer,” said Tyler Cluverius, manager of industry affairs at GMA. “Every attendee will find something applicable to their business whether the knowledge is gained from the practical case studies or the cutting edge products and solutions from our exhibitors.”

To register ($795 FMI and GMA members; $895 associate members; $995 nonmembers), or for more information, visit the FMI Web site (www.fmi.org/events) or the GMA Web site(www.gmabrands.com), or contact Stacy Fitzgerald-Redd at 202-220-0736 or Tyler Cluverius at 202-337-9400.