Gap to open its first Taiwan flagship store on March 8

Riding the momentum of global expansion, iconic U.S. apparel brand opens in Taiwan

TAIPEI, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ — Gap, the iconic American apparel brand, will officially open its first Taiwan flagship store on March 8 as part of its ongoing strategy to expand Gap’s global footprint. With plans to open about 30 Gap stores across its Greater China region, including three in Taiwan, the brand expects to have more than 100 stores by the end of fiscal 2014.

“Our Taiwan entry builds on the strong performance Gap has had in other international markets, showing how the brand resonates with customers around the world,” said Jeff Kirwan, President, Greater China, Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS). “We see Taiwan as an important milestone in our regional expansion and a market with ample opportunity for growth.”

The 1,500 square-meter, three-story Taipei flagship store is located in the landmark fashion and entertainment mall ATT4FUN. The new store offers Gap’s iconic, optimistic American style clothing and accessories for adults, kids and baby in an engaging, easy-to-shop environment.

“Gap has offered cool, modern American aesthetic clothing since 1969 and from the beginning, this brand has been about giving customers the freedom to express their individuality,” said Kirwan. “Taiwan is a dynamic market with sophisticated consumers and we’re confident that Gap’s quality and versatile style will be well received here.”

The first product sold in Gap stores was denim – the basis of casual American style and part of American culture – and it remains the foundation of the business today. Gap’s 2014 collection will celebrate its 45-year heritage with new denim bottoms in an array of indigo washes, crisp oxford tops, knit shirts and cozy layering pieces.

Gap Inc., the parent company of Gap, recently released its fourth quarter and fiscal 2013 full-year results, reporting comparable sales up 2 percent and 2013 net sales of $16.1 billion. This was the company’s second consecutive year of double-digit earnings per share growth.

About Gap
Gap is a global apparel and accessories brand focused on delivering casual, American style. The brand offers classic, iconic clothing that helps customers express their individuality through its Gap, GapKids, babyGap, GapMaternity and GapBody collections. With an optimistic point of view and belief that everyone can make their creative mark in the world, Gap embodies what it means to be bright. Founded in San Francisco in 1969 by Don and Doris Fisher, the brand has grown from one store to over 1,600 company-operated and franchise retail locations around the world. Gap brand has had stores and an online presence in mainland China since 2010 and in Hong Kong since 2011. To learn more, visit www.gap.tw, www.gap.hk or www.gap.com

About Gap Inc.
Gap Inc. is a leading global retailer offering clothing, accessories, and personal care products for men, women, children, and babies under the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime, Athleta, and Intermix brands. Fiscal year 2013 net sales were $16.1 billion. Gap Inc. products are available for purchase in more than 90 countries worldwide through about 3,100 company-operated stores, over 350 franchise stores, and e-commerce sites. For more information, please visit www.gapinc.com.

Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than those that are purely historical are forward-looking statements. Words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “project,” and similar expressions also identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding the following:

  • Gap store openings across the Greater China region, including Taiwan, in fiscal 2014; and
  • the number of Gap stores across the Greater China region by the end of fiscal 2014.

Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are important factors that could cause the company’s actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. These factors include, without limitation, the following:

  • the risk that changes in general economic conditions or consumer spending patterns could adversely impact the company’s results of operations;
  • the highly competitive nature of the company’s business internationally;
  • the risk that the company will be unsuccessful in gauging apparel trends and changing consumer preferences;
  • the risk that the company will be unsuccessful in identifying, negotiating, and securing new store locations and renewing, modifying or terminating leases for existing store locations effectively;
  • the risk that natural disasters, public health crises, political crises, or other catastrophic events could adversely affect the company’s operations and financial results;
  • the risk that acts or omissions by the company’s third-party vendors, including a failure to comply with the company’s code of vendor conduct, could have a negative impact on its reputation or operations;
  • the risk that the company will not be successful in defending various proceedings, lawsuits, disputes, claims, and audits; and
  • the risk that changes in the regulatory or administrative landscape could adversely affect the company’s financial condition, strategies, and results of operations.

Additional information regarding factors that could cause results to differ can be found in the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended February 2, 2013, as well as the company’s subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

These forward-looking statements are based on information as of March 6, 2014. The company assumes no obligation to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements even if experience or future changes make it clear that any projected results expressed or implied therein will not be realized.

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Gap launched “One Stitch Closer” program to celebrate International Women’s Day

NEW YORK, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ — On International Women’s Day, March 8th, Gap is introducing “One Stitch Closer,” a new program that extends Gap’s long-standing commitment of supporting women. At the center of the program is Gap Inc.’s P.A.C.E. (Personal Advancement & Career Enhancement) program, which will expand to provide education and training to even more of the women who make the company’s clothes. One Stitch Closer will share the stories, ideas, accomplishments and challenges of these women and other change agents, who focus on making themselves and the world better every day.

One Stitch Closer will include the release of a six-part eponymous film series by director/cinematographer Rachel Morrison featuring six exceptional women. The films are very personal and emotional portraits that will inspire viewers to do more to ensure that women have every opportunity to fulfill their dreams. Amongst others, the series features a garment worker and P.A.C.E. program participant from Indonesia, a poet and youth advocate from Los Angeles, and a 19-year-old woman who is using her passion for science and technology to better detect breast cancer. By “stitching” the individual films together into a year-long series, these personal journeys remind us that women are the very fabric that keeps the world together. Starting in early March, the films will be available for viewing at Good.is, Gap.com and youtube.com/gap.

“When a woman moves ahead, we all do,” says Seth Farbman, Gap Global Chief Marketing Officer. “This program is a small step to creating big change. By inspiring each other every day, we get one stitch closer to a brighter world.”

As a tribute on March 8th, Gap will change all logos on Gap.com and the Gap social channels to purple, the official color of International Women’s Day. Additionally, Gap will create and sell a special edition purple t-shirt featuring a quote by poet and film subject, Azure Antoinette: “The way to inspire change, is to recognize the wisdom of a woman.” Gap will donate $10,000 from the sale of this merchandise to CARE, a P.A.C.E. partner that provides implementation and training support for the program. The t-shirt will be available on Gap.com and in select U.S. stores on March 8th. Customers can learn more about One Stitch Closer, as well as the inspiring women in its film series, through the signage in Gap stores where the t-shirt is sold and by following #womeninspire on Gap social media channels.

About P.A.C.E.

In 2007, Gap Inc. launched P.A.C.E. (Personal Advancement & Career Enhancement) for the women that make our clothes. Through P.A.C.E., women gain the life skills education and technical training needed to advance at work and in life. Gap Inc. P.A.C.E. operates in seven countries and, to date, more than 25,000 women have participated in the program. In 2013, the program expanded to 24 villages throughout India and Cambodia where women could benefit from the education and training. Gap Inc. P.A.C.E. will continue to expand in 2014, including into communities in Bangladesh, Haiti, and Indonesia. To learn more, visit bewhatspossible.com/pace.

About CARE

Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside poor girls and women because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. Last year CARE worked in 84 countries and reached 83 million people around the world. To learn more, visit www.care.org.

About Gap

Gap is a global apparel and accessories brand focused on delivering casual, American style. The brand offers classic iconic clothing that helps customers express their individuality through its Gap, GapKids, babyGap, GapMaternity and GapBody collections. With an optimistic point of view and belief that everyone can make their creative mark in the world, Gap embodies what it means to be bright. Founded in San Francisco in 1969 by Donald G. Fisher and Doris F. Fisher, the brand has grown from one store to over 1,600 company-operated and franchise retail locations around the world. Gap is the namesake brand for leading global specialty retailer, Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) which includes Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime, Athleta, and Intermix. For more information, please visit www.gapinc.com.

Gap Inc.reported $929 million net sales for February

SAN FRANCISCO, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ — Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) today reported net sales for the four-week period ended March 1, 2014 were $929 million compared with net sales of $966 million for the four-week period ended March 2, 2013. Gap Inc.’s comparable sales for February 2014 were down 7 percent versus a 3 percent increase last year.

“While February was clearly a difficult month, we remain focused on executing our global priorities,” said Glenn Murphy, chairman and chief executive officer, Gap Inc.

February Comparable Sales Results 
Comparable sales by global brand for February 2014 were as follows:

  • Gap Global: negative 10 percent versus positive 2 percent last year
  • Banana Republic Global: negative 7 percent versus negative 5 percent last year
  • Old Navy Global: negative 6 percent versus positive 6 percent last year

The company noted that more than 450 stores experienced closures during February due to weather. The company also noted that February typically represents the smallest month of the first quarter. The management team continues to focus on delivering its full year goals, as outlined during last week’s quarterly earnings announcement.

In line with its strategic priorities, the company today announced the opening of its first Gap store in Taiwan. The brand expects to end fiscal year 2014 with more than 100 Gap stores across the Greater China region.

Additional insight into Gap Inc.’s sales performance is available by calling 1-800-GAP-NEWS (1-800-427-6397). International callers may call 706-902-4949. The recording will be available at approximately 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time on March 6, 2014 and available for replay until 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time on March 14, 2014.

March Sales
The company will report March sales on April 10, 2014.

Forward Looking Statements
This press release and related sales recording contain forward-looking statements within the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than those that are purely historical are forward-looking statements. Words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “project,” and similar expressions also identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding the following:

  • Gap store openings across the Greater China region by the end of fiscal 2014; and
  • the impact of the later Easter holiday timing on March and April sales results.

Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are important factors that could cause the company’s actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. These factors include, without limitation, the following:

  • the risk that changes in general economic conditions or consumer spending patterns could adversely impact the company’s results of operations;
  • the highly competitive nature of the company’s business internationally;
  • the risk that the company will be unsuccessful in gauging apparel trends and changing consumer preferences;
  • the risk that the company will be unsuccessful in identifying, negotiating, and securing new store locations and renewing, modifying or terminating leases for existing store locations effectively;
  • the risk that comparable sales and margins will experience fluctuations;
  • the risk that natural disasters, public health crises, political crises, or other catastrophic events could adversely affect the company’s operations and financial results;
  • the risk that acts or omissions by the company’s third-party vendors, including a failure to comply with the company’s code of vendor conduct, could have a negative impact on its reputation or operations;
  • the risk that the company will not be successful in defending various proceedings, lawsuits, disputes, claims, and audits; and
  • the risk that changes in the regulatory or administrative landscape could adversely affect the company’s financial condition, strategies, and results of operations.

Additional information regarding factors that could cause results to differ can be found in the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended February 2, 2013, as well as the company’s subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

These forward-looking statements are based on information as of March 6, 2014. The company assumes no obligation to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements even if experience or future changes make it clear that any projected results expressed or implied therein will not be realized.

About Gap Inc. 
Gap Inc. is a leading global retailer offering clothing, accessories, and personal care products for men, women, children, and babies under the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime, Athleta, and Intermix brands. Fiscal year 2013 net sales were $16.1 billion. Gap Inc. products are available for purchase in more than 90 countries worldwide through about 3,100 company-operated stores, over 350 franchise stores, and e-commerce sites. For more information, please visit www.gapinc.com.

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Gap Inc., Pearson Foundation, SFUSD to offer open source high school college & career curriculum

SAN FRANCISCO, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ —  Today, Gap Inc. and the Pearson Foundation, along with the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD), announced the release of a free, open source version of Plan Ahead, a high school curriculum that helps prepare students for college and careers.

Plan Ahead is a semester-long course designed to help students map out and achieve their academic, personal, and career goals. The class gives students the ability to make informed decisions about what they want out of life—and how to accomplish it.

In the fall of 2010, Gap Inc. and the Pearson Foundation launched Plan Ahead in San Francisco in partnership with SFUSD and Hirsch & Associates to fulfill a course requirement for all 9th graders. Since the launch, more than 15,000 students have taken Plan Ahead. A multi-year evaluation of the curriculum shows that students who have completed Plan Ahead demonstrate changes in attitude and knowledge toward education and careers, including:

  • 81% of students improved their knowledge of the classes needed to graduate high school and get into college
  • 78% of students improved their understanding of what it takes to succeed in college or a career
  • 74% of students had higher confidence in their own ability to achieve personal and career goals

Plan Ahead’s curriculum aligns with Common Core standards and focuses on skills assessments, career exploration, graduation requirements, 21st century skills, workplace readiness and financial literacy. The design of the curriculum also includes guest speakers and real-world experiences that help students explore multiple career options.

“Providing the Plan Ahead course to all 9th grade students is an important part of the SFUSD strategy to prepare our students for college and career,” said San Francisco Schools Superintendent Richard A. Carranza. “We are proud to have played a key role in developing and testing this powerful curricular resource.  I’m thrilled that other districts will now have access to an open source version of these materials.”

“As an employer of teens and young adults, we recognize the value of encouraging students to explore potential careers early and to better understand the skills, education, and experiences they will need to be successful in adult life and pursue their dreams,” said Bobbi Silten, SVP, Global Responsibility, Gap Inc., and President, Gap Foundation. “Plan Ahead provides students with foundational skills and knowledge about college and careers that can help them plan their futures.”

“The recent news on graduation rates is exciting, with 4 out of 5 American students completing high school,” said Pearson Foundation President and CEO Mark Nieker. “While this accomplishment should be celebrated, we need to create more public-private partnerships, such as Plan Ahead, to prepare our young people and give them the tools they need to succeed. Seeing the impact Plan Ahead has had in SFUSD, we are so pleased to partner with Gap Inc. to offer this curriculum to any educator.”

To learn more about Plan Ahead, visit www.whatsyourplana.com.

About the Pearson Foundation

The Pearson Foundation is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that aims to make a difference by promoting literacy, learning, and great teaching. The Pearson Foundation collaborates with leading businesses, nonprofits, and education experts to share good practice; foster innovation; and find workable solutions to the educational disadvantages facing young people and adults across the globe. More information on the Pearson Foundation can be found at www.pearsonfoundation.org.

About Gap Inc. 

Gap Inc. is a leading global specialty retailer offering clothing, accessories and personal care products for men, women, children and babies under the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime, Athleta, and Intermix brands. For more than 40 years, Gap Inc. has supported communities where we live and work through grants, in-kind donations, community outreach and employee volunteer programs. Gap Inc. strives to make a long-term impact in communities by focusing on creating opportunities for underserved youth and women through innovative social solutions. For more information on Gap Inc. community investment, please visit www.bewhatspossible.com.

BRC-NIELSEN SHOP PRICE INDEX FEBRUARY 2014: the deepest level of deflation since the series began in December 2006

LONDON, UK,  2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ — Overall shop prices reported deflation for the tenth consecutive month in February, accelerating to 1.4% from 1.0% in January. This is the deepest level of deflation since the series began in December 2006. Food inflation slowed to 1.1% from 1.5% in January – the lowest ever recorded. Non-food reported annual deflation of 3.0% in February from 2.7% in January – the lowest ever recorded.

Helen Dickinson, British Retail Consortium Director General, said: “This is the fastest fall seen in prices which are 1.4 per cent down overall in February. It is also the longest sustained period of price decreases we have witnessed, now ten months in a row. There are especially good deals available at the moment in clothing, electricals, books and stationery.

“Hard-pressed families watching their budgets will also be helped by the lowest level of food inflation we’ve recorded, up just 1.1 per cent in February. In contrast to other household bills, the price of the weekly food shop is rising at a much slower pace. Many of the larger food retailers have been looking closely at their investment in promotions and price cuts, suggesting competition could intensify further. This should mean consumer price inflation remains at low levels in the coming months. It is clear that retailers’ hard work to keep prices low for UK consumers is having considerable success.”

Mike Watkins, Head of Retailer and Business Insight, Nielsen, said: “We have seen further falls in the Shop Price Index at the start of 2014 in particular in food. This is reflective of a challenging trading environment due to weather and weak demand, but also more favourable global supply conditions during the second part of 2013. Looking ahead, we still anticipate shop prices to remain below CPI for the immediate future.”

An in-depth version of this report is available to  BRC retail members, and subscribers to our  Business Information Services.

 Click here to contact the BRC regarding membership or a subscription to our Business Information

 

Homebase and Leo Burnett unveiled brand new campaign to help “Make your house your home”

Milton Keynes, UK,  2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ — Homebase has unveiled a brand new campaign that brings to life the universal truth that your house is not a home until you’ve made it your own.

Working with Leo Burnett, Homebase has packed away the iconic shipping containers and famous ‘whistling’ for a new concept that’s all about personalising your home.

Launching with two 40 second ads, it shows a family transforming their uninspired home and garden, by revealing and then selecting Homebase products that match their tastes.

By stripping tired and dull wallpaper to uncover bright and stylish walls, the family inject colour and pattern to create a home that better reflects their personalities.

The concept is summed up in the new endline ‘Make Your House Your Home’ – a twist on the famous and long running ‘Make a House a Home’.

The garden can also be a great place to add your own style and the TV ad brings this to life in a lively and buoyant way by showing brightly coloured flowers ‘popping up’ as the family pull up weeds.

Jo Kenrick, Homebase Marketing Director said: “Our homes are really special and personal places that reflect our lives. We understand that our customers want to make their homes their own, no matter how big or small the project, and create somewhere they can enjoy with their family and friends.”

“Helping everyone live in a home they love is at the heart of everything we do at Homebase and we hope the new TV advert, along with our great range of products and services in store, will inspire customers to make their house a home.”

The TV campaign also includes new music by Professor Bobo and Bosko Slim. The campaign breaks on Wednesday 5 March, with an exclusive preview for Homebase Facebook fans and media via @Homebase_PR.

ENDS

Note to News Editors: For more information contact, Media Relations:

0845 120 4365 / media.relations@homebase.co.uk

For all the latest news and images visit www.homeretailgroup.com/news-and-media

Follow us @Homebase_PR

About Homebase

Homebase is a leading home enhancement retailer selling around 38,000 products for the home and garden.  It has 333 large, out-of-town stores throughout the UK and Republic of Ireland serving around 60 million customers a year, and a growing internet offering at www.homebase.co.uk. In the financial year to February 2013, Homebase sales were £1.4 billion and it employed some 18,000 people across the business.

Homebase is part of Home RetailGroup, the UK’s leading home and general merchandise retailer.

Creative Credits:

  • Creative agency: Leo Burnett
  • Client:  Jo Kenrick, Marketing Director, Homebase
  • Copywriter: Laurie Smith
  • Art director: Steve Robertson
  • Creative Directors: Rik Brown, Jon Fox
  • Executive Creative Director: Justin Tindall
  • Agency Producer: Bruce Macrae
  • Planners (creative agency): Matthew Watts
  • Account Team: Darren Thomas, Gary Simmons, Victoria Reiz, Dan Gilroy
  • Media agency: Mindshare
  • Planner (media agency): Mark Baschnonga
  • Production Company: Academy Films
  • Director: ConkerCo
  • Editor: Nik Hindson
  • Post-production: Electric Theatre Collective
  • Audio post-production: Soho Square Studios
  • Exposure: TV, Online, Instore

 

The latest range of Kardashian Kollection Jewellery now available at Argos and Argos.co.uk

Milton Keynes, UK, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ —  Get stylish this spring with the latest range of Kardashian Kollection Jewellery from Kourtney, Kim and Khloé Kardashian available now at Argos and Argos.co.uk.

Featuring six necklaces, three bracelets and five pairs of earrings with sleek lines and timeless style, there is no doubt that this extended range will be a huge hit with their UK fans.

Kourtney Kardashian said, “This season we kept our logo pieces classic and simple so that you can team them with your existing jewellery to create your own unique look.”

With 16 stunning new pieces, fans can expect to find designs which echo the Kardashians’ personal style, with new elements like the ‘Evil Eye’ symbol as well as classic pieces that incorporate the signature logo.

“The traditional ‘Evil Eye’ is a symbol of protection, and my friends, my sisters and I have all worn ‘Evil Eye’ jewellery for years so we wanted to incorporate some of these symbolic pieces into our February collection for our UK fans” Said Kim Kardashian.

Khloé Kardashian added, ‘’It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the hoops! I love how versatile they are and how they add instant glamour to even a simple daytime look. If you’re like me, you’ll love our oversized KK logo gold hoops. Keep the look a little more subtle by wearing your hair down so the earrings glimmer through your hair, or slick your hair up for a really dramatic look’’.

Alice Rigby, Jewellery Buyer for Argos said, “The Kardashians are famous for their style and have unparalleled knowledge of the latest trends. These new additions to the spring collection reflect their passion for travel as well as their love of bold pieces, with intricate detailing. Argos is proud to be exclusively stocking the full Kardashian Kollection range for UK fans to enjoy.”

The Kardashian Kollection SS’14 range is priced from £12 to £45. Further items will be added to the Kardashian Kollection Jewellery ranges later this season.

 

-ENDS-

Notes to Editors:
For more information, please contact the Argos Press Office on 0845 120 4365 or email: media.relations@argos.co.uk.  Follow us on Twitter at @argos_PR.

 

About Argos
Argos is a leading UK digital retailer, offering around 40,000 products through www.argos.co.uk, its growing mobile channels, stores and over the telephone.

Argos continues to be the UK’s largest high street retailer online with 635 million website and app visits in the 12 months to February 2013.  Argos serves around 124 million customers a year through its network of around 735 stores.

In the financial year to February 2013, Argos sales were £3.9 billion and it employed some 30,000 people across the business.

Argos is part of Home Retail Group, the UK’s leading home and general merchandise retailer.

 

ABOUT JUPI CORPORATION:
Established in 1996 by Australian fashion designer Bruno Schiavi, Jupi Corporation has become a major global supplier of retail products for men, women and children including RTW, lingerie, underwear, shapewear, accessories, swimwear, outerwear, sleepwear and footwear. Jupi Corporation also specializes in full service brand building and is devoted to providing integrated product solutions by offering a result-focused model from strategy to execution, from initial concept through to global distribution and marketing of products.

Jupi’s branded products, as well as private label programs, are distributed throughout the Europe,  Australia / New Zealand, The United States, Canada, The Middle East, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, and Brazil.

Marks & Spencer (M&S) and S Group announced new franchise partnership for Finland

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ —  Marks & Spencer (M&S), the iconic British retailer, and S Group, the leading retailer in Finland, have today announced a new franchise partnership to operate Marks & Spencer stores and customer website in Finland. The plans will see S Group open seven Marks & Spencer stores by 2016.

Trading from 3,000 square metres, the first Marks & Spencer store will be located within the Sokos department store in Helsinki and will open to customers in early October 2014. This will be shortly followed by the opening of two 1,600 square metre stores located in Sokos department store in Jyvaskyla and in Goodman shopping centre in Hameenlinna later that month. The new ‘store in store’ concept, will feature Marks & Spencer’s signature store design with its own entrance, inspiring windows and visual merchandise displays, changing rooms and till points.

During spring 2015, S Group will open three further Marks & Spencer stores in Tampere, Lappeenranta and Lahti. The seventh Marks & Spencer will be opened in Pori during Autumn 2015. In addition, S Group will launch a Marks & Spencer online store in Spring 2015 – the fully localised website will be in Finnish, trading in Euros and serving customers across Finland.

The new partnership is part of Marks & Spencer’s ‘clicks and bricks’ strategy for Finland across e-commerce and stores and is in line with its plans to become a leading international, multi-channel retailer by 2015. To do this, Marks & Spencer’s international strategy is focused on working closely with leading franchise partners like S Group to build its presence in key shopping locations abroad, as well as its growing its reach online. For S Group, the partnership is a part of the company’s aim to strengthen its general merchandise trade to meet the changing needs of its customers. S Group plans to do this by developing both its own chain concepts as well as forming partnerships with strong international brands such as Marks & Spencer.

The new stores will offer customers in Finland access to Marks & Spencer’s extensive range of exceptional quality, stylish fashions across womenswear, menswear and lingerie – as well as accessories, footwear and sleepwear.

Francois Smeyers, Regional Director for Europe at Marks & Spencer, said: “Growing our business with leading franchise partners like S Group is an important part of our international, multi-channel growth strategy. With a leading presence at key shopping locations across Finland and unrivalled local knowledge, S Group is the ideal partner for us to open our new website and stores across the country. Marks & Spencer is a brand that’s synonymous with British quality, style and value and we’re very excited to be returning to Finland with the best of our clothing products later this year.”

Jorma Vehviläinen, Executive Vice President at SOK, said: “Cooperation with Marks & Spencer will strengthen the clothing selection of S Group and be welcomed by our cooperative members. Marks & Spencer has a strong heritage for offering exceptional quality and we are confident that its clothing and food products will be well-received by our customers.”

For further information, please contact:

Emma Johnson
M&S International Corporate PR Manager
+44 (0) 208 718 1980

Jorma Vehviläinen
Executive Vice President, SOK
+358 (0)10 76 80608

Ticket registration for the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix opens

LONDON, 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ —  Ticket registration for the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix opens as British Athletics confirm that double world and Olympic champion Mo Farah (coach: Alberto Salazar) and world 400m champion Christine Ohuruogu (Lloyd Cowan) will compete at the event to be held at Hampden Park on 11-12 July 2014.

The British duo will head to Hampden Park for a weekend of world-class athletics and demand for tickets will be high. Sports fans can register for tickets from 5-19 March via www.britishathletics.org.uk

Farah will make his first track appearance since his 5,000m and 10,000m triumph in Moscow and he is excited about getting back out in front of a home crowd at the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix.

Mo Farah said: “Glasgow will be one of my first track appearances in front of a home crowd in 2014, and having produced my best in front of the British public in London, I’m really looking forward to getting back out there and taking in the home support. Nothing in the world can compare to a British crowd and I will be doing everything I can to get the Hampden crowd going.

Ohuruogu, who broke the British record on her way to claim the world 400m crown in the Russian capital, will be making her first appearance in the city since 2006 after starring at the annual International Match at its previous home, Kelvin Hall.

“It is a real privilege to be competing at the first ever athletics event at Hampden. To have potentially 30,000 there in July, it’s going to be an amazing atmosphere for both athletes and spectators,” said Ohuruogu.

Tara Hewitt, Sainsbury’s Head of Sponsorship said: “We can’t wait to host some of the world’s greatest athletes in Glasgow ahead of such a big year of sport for the city.

The Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix, the first UK IAAF meeting outside of England in a number of years, will provide a fantastic stage to witness both household names and future stars as they strive for their personal bests.”

British Athletics’ Chief Executive Niels de Vos added: “Mo and Christine are two of the greatest ever British athletes and we are delighted that they will be taking part in the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix this summer.

“They will be joined by a host of other Olympic and world champions. Athletes love competing in the UK knowing that they will get incredible support and a fantastic atmosphere in Glasgow.

“I’d urge everyone to ensure they register their interest on the British Athletics website. Last year for the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games, the number of people registering outweighed the number of tickets available, which meant that they never went on public sale.

“With Commonwealth Games tickets heavily oversubscribed, we fully expect the same situation to occur again, so it is vital to register to be in with a chance of seeing the world’s best at the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix.

To register for the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Grand Prix, please visit www.britishathletics.org.uk

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Publix’s sales for Q4-2013 were $7.4 billion, 5.3 percent increase YoY

LAKELAND, Fla., 2014-3-7 — /EPR Retail News/ — Publix’s sales for the fourth quarter of 2013, were $7.4 billion, a 5.3 percent increase from last year’s $7.0 billion. Comparable-store sales for the fourth quarter of 2013 increased 4.3 percent.

Net earnings for the fourth quarter of 2013 were $422.0 million, compared to $392.8 million in 2012, an increase of 7.4 percent. Earnings per share for the fourth quarter increased to $0.54 for 2013, up from $0.50 per share in 2012.

Publix’s sales for the fiscal year ended Dec. 28, 2013, were $28.9 billion, a 5.2 percent increase from last year’s $27.5 billion. Comparable-store sales for 2013 increased 3.6 percent.

Net earnings for 2013, were $1.7 billion, a 6.6 percent increase from last year’s $1.6 billion. Earnings per share increased to $2.12 for 2013, up from $1.98 per share in 2012.

These amounts are based on audited reports that will be filed today with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and made available on the company’s website at www.publix.com/stock.

Effective March 1, 2014, Publix’s stock price increased from $30.00 per share to $30.15 per share. Publix stock is not publicly traded and is made available for sale only to current Publix associates and members of its board of directors. “I’m pleased our operating performance resulted in another increase in our stock price,” said Publix CEO Ed Crenshaw. “Our associates — the owners of Publix — deserve the credit for this achievement.“

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