Safeway hires Life for media work

Supermarket retailer Safeway has appointed Life Communications to handle local media relations for its 12 stores in Northern Ireland.

Supermarket retailer Safeway has appointed Life Communications to

handle local media relations for its 12 stores in Northern Ireland.



The Belfast agency was appointed after a five-way pitch on a one-year

contract.



Life managing director Darlene McCormick will lead the account,

reporting to Safeway corporate communications controller Emma Mason.



Last month the supermarket announced a 31 per cent year on year fall in

pre-tax profit to pounds 236 million. After abandoning its ABC loyalty

card, the retailer’s new strategy is based on weekly, local promotions

across all its UK stores.



Mason said that Life’s key job would be to build the Safeway brand in

Northern Ireland. Safeway moved into the province three years ago,

acquiring outlets from the Wellworth retail chain. Now Safeway has the

second-largest market share in Northern Ireland, after Tesco.



Mason added that the province’s retail market, while different to

England, is similar to Scotland. ’Local and regional PR is incredibly

important,’ Mason said. ’The market is very value-led. Life are quite

sales-led.’



Before founding Life three years ago, McCormick worked for

Fleishman-Hillard as part of a team handling retail chain Super Value’s

takeover of other Wellworth stores.



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