Something You Should Know About Protect Foot – Shoe Care

The reputation of Dr. Fabricant's Foot Health Products Inc. for treatment-specific premium foot care products can only be enhanced by its pending acquisition.

The proposed purchase of the company by Toronto-based Moneysworth & Best Inc. which operates the largest shoe repair chain in North America and markets its own brand of quality shoe care accessories in stores throughout the continent, should elevate Dr. Fabricant's to new heights.

Moneysworth & Best will keep Dr. Fabricant's Long Island-based management team intact while looking to introduce its shoe care products in mass retail outlets that already feature the Dr. Fabricant's line. Moneysworth & Best also plans to open stores in the United States that will carry Dr. Fabricant's products as well as its own line, further raising the profile of both brands.

For its part Dr. Fabricant's is coming off a year in which it extended its distribution into American retail outlets including the key account of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. The company had significant movement with its spinner rack, which for many retailers can create selling space out of "dead air.

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"The four-sided spinner attaches to a standard in the foot care section without deleting a single established SKU. It has two arms that twist until they are secure and are adjustable for the appropriate depth to match the depth of the shelving in the section. The rack will not interfere with consumers walking down the aisle nor will it block products on either side of the peg wall. Retailers using the spinner, which allows the addition of 12 to 20 SKUs without a planogram change, include Eckerd Corp.

The rack is available in 35- and 40-inch sizes, each with a header that can hold a supply of Dr. Fabricant's "take-one" informational brochures. Each brochure contains $2.25 in coupons for discounts on Dr. Fabricant's products.

"It's a very successful method of allowing retailers to offer new, innovative products to their customers and provide a choice in foot care products to help stimulate retail sales activity," says Dr. Fabricant's vice president of sales and marketing Marty Cohen.

Another recent highlight for the company was a strong launch in Canada, where the line is on spinner racks in Pharma Plus Drugmarts Ltd. and in-line at London Drugs Ltd. in western Canada. In just six months on the market north of the border the line has achieved stellar sales, says Cohen.

Dr. Fabricant's is also partnering with chain drug retailers by presenting in-store foot care clinics. In Toronto last month chairman Dr. B. Robert Fabricant, the podiatrist and company founder who designs all the products, led a foot care clinic at Pharma Plus outlets on consecutive days. Promoted by in-store handouts, bag stuffers, window and in-store posters as well as in circulars, the clinics drew over 300 people.

More clinics are slated for London Drugs, he notes, calling the events an exciting opportunity to introduce the line. "They've helped establish our brand and products as a viable alternative." he adds.

On the new product front, Dr. Fabricant's will launch a SportsAir insole at the National Association of Chain Drug Stores Marketplace Conference. The product differs from replacement sports insoles for sneakers by being suitable for insertion in athletic footwear ranging from running shoes to in-line skates, and appropriate for all sporting activities, says Cohen.

"The typical consumer is spending $100, $120 on jogging shoes, tennis sneakers or in-line skates. He or she is not ripping out that insole to put in a $10 replacement," comments Cohen.

The patent-pending SportsAir provides superior arch support to improve athletes' balance as well as using AirHeel technology that gives extra cushioning at a critical point of impact.

Information Resources Inc. numbers show the insole category undeveloped relative to the 300 million plus pairs of athletic shoes sold annually, he notes.

"The number of replacement sports insoles that are sold is infinitesimal compared to the total audience that could be reached," he says.Dr. Fabricant's Foot Health Products

Thomes Buller

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