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Trading-up test at Family Dollar

Matthews, N.C. – Looking to attract customers at somewhat higher income brackets than its typically modest clientele, Family Dollar will roll out about 200 new stores featuring a more polished concept in January.

These units, said chairman and ceo Howard Levine, will feature better fixtures and new signage, among other things. “They’ll get the best we have to offer in this concept,” he said during the company’s presentation at the JPMorgan Consumer & Retail Conference yesterday afternoon.

The 6,300-unit deep discount chain is testing the prototype now – one in a low-income area and another in a more moderate income region.

“This is not something we can be too excited about yet, but what this tells you is how our management team is working to improve upon the shopping environment and shopability of our stores,” he explained. “I think this [new store concept] is very compelling in a better income area. Everybody likes to get a good value on their merchandise…and this will compete nicely not just with other dollar stores but other convenience retailers.”