Grocer offers its first Black Friday promotion

AP News
Posted: Nov 25, 2009 11:53 AM

The nation's largest traditional grocery chain is getting into the Black Friday shopping game.

Kroger Co. will give shoppers $10 back for every $100 worth of gift cards they buy at their stores for such retailers as Best Buy, Bass Pro Shops, Pottery Barn and Sears.

It's the first time Kroger has aimed such a promotion at Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving that's the traditional start of holiday shopping.

"If people are stopping by our stores to maybe restock after Thanksgiving, this is a good way to remind them that we can be a one-stop shopping place," spokeswoman Meghan Glynn said Wednesday.

Kroger and other grocers are looking for ways to lure some of the many people who are out shopping at malls and big-box stores on a day that's often slow for supermarkets. Kroger, Safeway Inc. and other chains have been expanding their gift card offerings and increasingly using them and other non-grocery items for promotions.

Giant retail rival Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the nation's leading grocery seller, is a top Black Friday shopping destination. It is offering steep discounts on items from televisions to children's sleepwear.

Kroger's gift-card discount continues through Dec. 13 for shoppers using Kroger loyalty cards, and also earns extra savings on gasoline at Kroger service stations.

Kroger has some 2,470 grocery stores in 31 states under two dozen local banners that include City Market, Dillons, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, and Ralphs.

Shares were up 15 cents, to $23.22, in Wednesday trading. They have traded in a 52-week range of $19.39 to $27.91.