CBRE Group: Martin Samworth appointed CEO EMEA and Daniel Queenan CEO APAC

Los Angeles, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG) today announced the appointment of Martin Samworth as Chief Executive Officer of its Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region and of Daniel Queenan as Chief Executive Officer of its Asia Pacific (APAC) region.  The appointments are effective immediately.

Mr. Samworth previously served as Managing Director, EMEA, where he oversaw operational management of the region. He will continue to report to Michael Strong, Executive Chairman, EMEA, who retains overall responsibility for the region.

Mr. Queenan previously served as Chief Operating Officer, APAC, where he shared responsibility for managing the region’s day-to-day operations with Robert Blain, Executive Chairman, APAC.  In his new role, Mr. Queenan will oversee operational management of APAC while Mr. Blain will retain overall responsibility for the region. Mr. Queenan will continue to report to Mr. Blain in respect of his APAC responsibilities.  In addition, Mr. Queenan continues to serve as Chief Executive Officer of CBRE’s development services subsidiary, Trammell Crow Company, a role in which he reports to Bob Sulentic, President and Chief Executive Officer of CBRE.

“These are well-deserved promotions for Martin and Danny,” said Mike Lafitte, Chief Operating Officer of CBRE. “They are very talented executives who are highly regarded by our people in their regions and around the world.  They are also strong leaders who, working in partnership with Mike Strong and Rob Blain in their respective regions, have put us on a path toward further growth, outstanding client service and operational excellence.”

About CBRE Group, Inc.
CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Los Angeles, is the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm (in terms of 2013 revenue).  The Company has approximately 44,000 employees (excluding affiliates), and serves real estate owners, investors and occupiers through approximately 350 offices (excluding affiliates) worldwide. CBRE offers strategic advice and execution for property sales and leasing; corporate services; property, facilities and project management; mortgage banking; appraisal and valuation; development services; investment management; and research and consulting. Please visit our website at www.cbre.com.

For Further Information:

Steve Iaco
Director, Sr. Managing
T +1 212 9846535

Robert Mcgrath
Director, Sr
T +1 212 9848267

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CBL & Associates Properties announced The Cheesecake Factory® and H&M are coming to Fayette Mall in Lexington, KY

CBL Announces Anchor Redevelopment Plans

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn., 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. (NYSE: CBL), today announcedThe Cheesecake Factory® and H&M are coming to Fayette Mall in Lexington, KY, as part of the redevelopment of the former Sears location. Designed to significantly enhance the offerings at the shopping center, the plans include redeveloping the former Sears store and expanding the mall entrance to create 115,000-square-feet of new retail space for a mix of fashion stores, home furnishings and fine dining options in the heart of the shopping center. The Cheesecake Factory and H&M are the first of many premier stores to be announced as part of the redevelopment, which has begun construction and is expected to be completed this fall.

“We are excited to bring both The Cheesecake Factory and H&M to Lexington to further solidify Fayette Mall’s status as one of the premier shopping destinations in Lexington and the region,” said Stephen Lebovitz, president and chief executive officer, CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. “The Cheesecake Factory will provide the Lexington area a quality dining experience they won’t soon forget. Additionally, H&M is an international fashion leader that will bring its fashion-forward styles for men and women to Fayette Mall.”

“For more than 35 years, The Cheesecake Factory has been known for creating delicious, memorable experiences for millions of guests around the country, and we’re excited about coming to Lexington,” said David Overton, Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated. “We look forward to opening our doors at Fayette Mall later this year.”

H&M will open a two-level, 23,000-square-foot store adjacent to the new mall entrance. Additional stores and restaurants that are coming to Fayette Mall include Brighton, Clarks footwear, Jos. A. Bank, Michael Kors and Newk’s Eatery, with more top retailers to be announced as the project progresses.

Fayette Mall is a 1.4 million square-foot super regional shopping center featuring more than 150 specialty stores and eateries and is anchored by Dillard’s, Macy’s, JCPenney and Dick’s Sporting Goods. Recent additions to the mall include Forever 21, francesca’s, J.Jill, and Pandora. For more information visit ShopFayette-Mall.com or facebook.com/FayetteMall.

Businesses interested in obtaining leasing information about Fayette Mall should contact Travis Farren, Regional Director of Leasing, by telephone at 423.490.8360 or by email: travis_farren@cblproperties.com.

About The Cheesecake Factory
The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated created the upscale casual dining segment in 1978 with the introduction of its namesake concept. The Company operates 181 full-service, casual dining restaurants throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico, including 169 restaurants under The Cheesecake Factory® mark; 11 restaurants under the Grand Lux Cafe® mark; and one restaurant under the RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen® mark. Internationally, four The Cheesecake Factory restaurants operate under a licensing agreement. The Company also operates two bakery production facilities in Calabasas Hills, CA and Rocky Mount, NC that produce over 70 varieties of quality cheesecakes and other baked products. In 2014, the Company was named to Fortune magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list. To learn more about the Company, visit www.thecheesecakefactory.com.

About CBL & Associates Properties, Inc.
CBL is one of the largest and most active owners and developers of malls and shopping centers in the United States. CBL owns, holds interests in or manages 150 properties, including 91 regional malls/open-air centers. The properties are located in 29 states and total 86.1 million square feet including 5.6 million square feet of non-owned shopping centers managed for third parties. Headquartered in Chattanooga, TN, CBL has regional offices in Boston (Waltham), MA, Dallas (Irving), TX, and St. Louis, MO. Additional information can be found at cblproperties.com.

CBL contact: Dan Summerlin, Director of Corporate Relations, 423.490.8315, dan_summerlin@cblproperties.com

Fayette Mall contact: Sandy Heymann, Regional Director of Marketing, 859.272.3495, sandra_heymann@cblproperties.com

The Cheesecake Factory contact: Susan Pasarow / Anna Whitlow / Jenny Burke / Suzanne Davis, Murphy Obrien Public Relations, 818.871.3038, cheesecake@murphyobrien.com

Wesfarmers accepts Insurance Australia Group’s proposed acquisition of the Australian underwriting operations of its Insurance division

Perth, Australia, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Wesfarmers today announced it had received confirmation from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) that it will not oppose Insurance Australia Group’s proposed acquisition of the Australian underwriting operations of Wesfarmers’ Insurance division.

Wesfarmers Managing Director Richard Goyder said he was pleased that a key transaction milestone had been achieved.

“Wesfarmers welcomes the ACCC’s announcement regarding Insurance Australia Group’s acquisition of our Australian underwriting operations. This represents an important step in the sale process which we believe is in the best interests of our shareholders, while offering the customers of our underwriting businesses the opportunity to become part of an established leading insurance organisation”, Mr Goyder said.

The sale is subject to a number of conditions precedent which continue to be progressed, including obtaining approvals from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority, the Federal Treasurer, New Zealand Commerce Commission and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand. The Overseas Investment Office in New Zealand granted consent earlier this month.

Wesfarmers expects completion of the transaction, subject to regulatory approval, in the second quarter of the 2014 calendar year.

For further information: Media
Cathy Bolt
Media & External Affairs Manager
+61 8 9327 4423 or +61 417 813 804

Investors
Mark Scatena
General Manager, Investor Relations & Planning
+61 8 9327 4416 or +61 439 979 398

Foodstuffs’ first grocery store Four Square to give away 400 reusable bags to local Waiheke shoppers

Waiheke, New Zealand, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Four Square got behind Plastic-Free Friday by giving out 400 reusable bags to local Waiheke shoppers.

Plastic Free Friday is part of the BYO Bag initiative started by Debbie Lyttle last year to educate the community on plastic pollution and the harm plastic bags, in particular, have on marine life.

“Around one billion bags from all over New Zealand go to the tip every year and 10 percent of plastic ends up in the sea,” said Debbie.

“BYO Bag is feeling very proud of our community.  It seemed everyone was taking part, including the visitors to the island. Oneroa was full of people strolling in the sun and shopping with their new reusable bags.”

Co-founder Jennifer Fountain was thrilled that 80-90 percent of people were bringing reusable bags, some of which dated back many years showing that people own bags but just need a push to continue using them.

“People really do not seem opposed to reusable shopping bags, they just need some assistance to remember them and keep using them. Plastic-Free Friday was a big help with that. We found most people felt really good about avoiding single-use disposable plastic,” said Jennifer.

Four Square Oneroa owner, Tim Baker was overwhelmed by the response to the reusable bags.

“It was fantastic to see such a high number of shoppers saying no to plastic bags and using one of our reusable bags, or bringing their own instead. We hope to see shopper’s continuing to use the reusable bags and do their bit to protect our environment.”

Foodstuffs is committed to sustainability and a key part of its Sustainable Packing Strategy is to promote reusable bags in store. All stores have reusable bags at the checkouts for customers to purchase.

As well as giving out 400 bags on Waiheke’s Plastic Free Friday, Foodstuffs also gave away thousands of reusable bags when PAK’nSAVE Blenheim opened last year.

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SM Investments Corporation expanded code of ethics to keep pace with emerging trends in the region

Manila, Philippines, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — SM Investments Corporation (SM) has approved an expanded code of ethics, further strengthening its corporate governance standards to keep pace with emerging trends in the region.

The revised code is a more comprehensive guide on how the company should deal with stakeholders, from investors, creditors, customers and employees to contractors, regulators, suppliers and the general public.

Salient provisions added pertain to policies on accountability, integrity and vigilance and non-discriminatory practices as well as enhanced provisions pertaining to conflicts of interest and avoidance thereof. The expanded form aims to strengthen the company’s defenses against potential wrongdoing and to enhance confidentiality and privacy protections.

“The code is very specific about the mere appearance of conflict of interest. The core principle is to ensure that the underlying ethical culture runs across all core business units of the Group and that they are always aligned with best practice,” said Jose T. Sio, SM  executive vice president and chief finance officer.

“The expanded code of ethics provides a broader framework to ensure we cover all areas of engagement with all our stakeholders,” Gil L. Gonzales, SM Vice President for Corporate Governance and Risk Management said.

However, the expanded code is not all about restrictions and consequences. A big part of the code is devoted to resolving governance-related issues in a fair, just and expeditious manner.

“After all, the ultimate goal of a code of ethics is to make things better for everyone concerned,” Sio said.

“We believe an ethical business environment makes good business sense,” he said. “We embed our code of ethics in everything we do, in the way we think, speak and execute things. It’s our way of fulfilling our responsibility to all who have been part of SM’s journey.”

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Contact:
Marie Therese Necio
Vice President – Corporate Communications
SM Investments Corporation
E: therese.necio@sminvestments.com
T: +632 857 0224
www.sminvestments.com

Aktia customers to receive K-Plussa points from the service fee when withdrawing cash in K-food stores

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kesko and Aktia have entered a cooperation agreement by which the bank’s customers will receive additional K-Plussa points from the service fee when withdrawing cash in K-food stores. The cooperation begins on 1 April. It is possible to withdraw cash with all Finnish debit cards in more than 700 K-food stores.

From the beginning of April, Aktia’s customers will receive 100 additional K-Plussa points for using the cashback service by showing their K-Plussa card when withdrawing cash. The value of the benefit corresponds to the service fee of 50 cents.

“We want to offer our customers an easy and inexpensive way of withdrawing cash. The wide network and long opening hours of K-food stores are an excellent complement to the current cash service options available to our customers. The service and additional K-Plussa points will be available to some 150,000 Aktia card customers,” says Senior Vice President Taru Narvanmaa from Aktia Bank.

K-food stores offer cash withdrawal service in over 700 K-food stores around Finland. When paying with a debit card, customers can withdraw up to €200 of cash. No minimum limit has been set for withdrawals. The ‘Osta&Nosta’ service was expanded to cover all Finland during the summer 2013. The service brings cash withdrawal even to locations where it would otherwise not be available or the distance to the nearest ATM is long. Customers have received the cash withdrawal service well.

“The service makes everyday life easier, since you can withdraw cash conveniently while doing your grocery shopping, and cash is available whenever the stores are open. We welcome Aktia customers to use the service,” says Vice President Eija Jantunen from Kesko.

An image of the ‘Osta&Nosta’ logo: http://aineistopankki.kesko.fi/kesko_en

Further information:
Eija Jantunen, Vice President, Finance & Accounting Services, Kesko Corporation, tel. +358 10 532 2500
Juha Andelin, Development Manager, Kesko Corporation, tel. +358 10 532 7360Taru Narvanmaa,Deputy Managing Director, Aktia Bank plc, tel. +358 50 590 9398
Teemu Korte, Director, Aktia Bank plc, tel. +358 40 502 8111

Kesko (www.kesko.fi) is one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World. We are a retail specialist whose chains have about 2,000 stores in the Nordic and Baltic countries, Russia, and Belarus. There are 3.9 million Finnish K-Plussa cardholders in 2.3 million households.

Aktia Group (www.aktia.fi) offers its customers individual solutions from a wide selection of banking, insurance and real estate services. Aktia operates in the coastal areas of Finland and in centers of growth inland. Aktia has some 300,000 customers and some 1,000 staff providing them service in branch offices, on the internet and on the phone. Aktia shares are listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki Ltd.

Sainsbury’s newly opened Convenience Training College in Brixton to train team leaders and store managers

Brixton, UK, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Sainsbury’s has today marked the opening of a trailblazing new facility in London, which will run 2,000 training courses in the first year alone for its management teams in Local convenience stores.

The new Convenience Training College is based in Brixton and will train team leaders and store managers in a range of technical and behavioural skills. Over the next four years, Sainsbury’s has over 3,000 team leader and management positions in the pipeline to power the growth of convenience stores in Greater London.

Sainsbury’s is the only supermarket to open a facility of this kind, purely dedicated to leadership training. The news comes after a recent recruitment campaign in London to find 500 team leaders and 200 managers for its convenience stores, with 60 new stores due to open in London and the South East over the next year. There are currently 185 convenience stores in Greater London, employing over 6,000 people.

Director of Convenience for Sainsbury’s, Simon Twigger, said: “Our stores in London employ thousands of people, and this will only increase over the next few years. As a major employer, Sainsbury’s is always looking for new ways to give our colleagues the opportunity to train and develop with us – so the new Training College will not only benefit our convenience store growth, but it will give our managers the expertise and theoretical knowledge about what it means to be a leader in retail.

“Running a store is like running your own business, so being a good store manager is about knowing your customers, your community and your colleagues. This new training facility will now boost and support those skills with detailed management expertise, to go even further to help our colleagues run our stores and power our convenience growth in the Capital.”

The College has six training rooms and will be run by ‘Convenience Capability Trainers’, to ensure that everyone has the right skills for the job. It complements Sainsbury’s existing and established training facilities – the six Food Colleges and one Bakery College. The six Colleges are located at Murrayfield, Bradford, Oldbury, London Colney, Calcot, Hempstead Valley and Wellingborough.

Karen Skipper, a store manager in training from Wimbledon Broadway, will be one of the first candidates to use the College. She said: “I’m really looking forward to being one of the first through the door at the College. Having the space to focus and develop while you’re training in store is really important, and it will be great to share experiences with peers so we can continue to give our customers a great service.”

In November last year, Sainsbury’s was awarded a ‘Gold’ accreditation by industry body Investors in People for the second consecutive time. Sainsbury’s is still the first and only supermarket that’s been recognised in this way for developing, supporting and motivating their colleagues.

Notes to editors

  • For more information and to apply, visit the Sainsbury’s jobs website: http://sainsburys.jobs/
  • Over the next financial year, Sainsbury’s look to recruit 500 team leaders, 100 store managers and 100 deputy managers
  • Sainsbury’s opened its first convenience store in 1998 in Hammersmith
  • There are over 47,000 convenience stores in UK (IGD)
  • The value of UK convenience sector is £35.6bn rising to £46.2bn by 2018 (IGD)
  • The convenience market generated total sales of £35.6bn in the 12 months to April 2013. This equates to a 4.9% year on year increase (IGD)
  • Sainsbury’s employ 157,000 people across the UK in supermarkets, convenience stores, depots and offices
  • Sainsbury’s will create around 6,000 job opportunities across the UK in the next year
  • Sainsbury’s is the only UK food retailer to be given a ‘Gold’ accreditation by Investors in People for the second consecutive time, recognising how colleagues are engaged in the business and given training opportunities
  • There is training for development and growth through the retailers established ‘You Can Be’ initiative, helping people progress with practical training. Sainsbury’s colleagues can also get externally accredited City and Guilds training at one of Sainsbury’s Food Colleges

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Sainsbury’s newly opened Convenience Training College in Brixton to train team leaders and store managers

Sainsbury’s newly opened Convenience Training College in Brixton to train team leaders and store managers

First British strawberries of the season now available in Sainsbury’s stores

This week sees the first British strawberries of the season land in Sainsbury’s stores.

LONDON, 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Reaching shelves much earlier than in previous years (10 days earlier than last year’s crop), these Taste the Difference strawberries are quite literally a Dream – a variety exclusive to Sainsbury’s which is sweet and aromatic with a delightfully juicy flesh.

Grown in the New Forest, the location is ideal for the sweetest, earliest strawberries and the farm experiments with innovative growing techniques such as using garlic which disorientates prying insects with its odour to achieve the best strawberries possible.

It only takes around 24 hours from the point at which the Dream strawberries are picked in the New Forest to them being available to buy on the shelf at Sainsbury’s, ensuring maximum freshness and quality for customers.

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First British strawberries of the season now available in Sainsbury’s stores

First British strawberries of the season now available in Sainsbury’s stores

Rite Aid Corporation to release financial results for its Fiscal 2014 Fourth Quarter on April 10, 2014

CAMP HILL, Pa., 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE: RAD) said today that it will release financial results for its Fiscal 2014 Fourth Quarter, which ended March 1, 2014, on Thursday, April 10, 2014. The company will hold an analyst call at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time (5:30 a.m. Pacific Time) with remarks by Rite Aid’s management team. The call will be broadcast via the Internet and can be accessed through the websites www.riteaid.com and www.StreetEvents.com.

A playback of the call will be available on the Internet at www.riteaid.com and www.StreetEvents.com starting at 12 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time Thursday, April 10. The playback will be available on both sites until the company’s next conference call.

A playback of the call will also be available by telephone beginning at 12 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on April 10, 2014 and ending at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on April 12, 2014. The playback number is (855) 859-2056 from within the U.S. and Canada or (404) 537-3406 from outside the U.S. and Canada with the eight-digit reservation number 17821795.

Rite Aid is one of the nation’s leading drugstore chains with nearly 4,600 stores in 31 states and the District of Columbia with fiscal 2013 annual revenues of $25.4 billion. Information about Rite Aid, including corporate background and press releases, is available through Rite Aid’s website at www.riteaid.com.

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Contact:

Investors: 0 0 717-975-3710, Matt Schroeder 717-214-8867 or investor@riteaid.com

Media: Susan Henderson 717-730-7766

Rite Aid Corporation appoints Dedra N. Castle as Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer

CAMP HILL, Pa., 2014-3-26 — /EPR Retail News/ — Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE: RAD) today announced that Dedra N. Castle, a highly experienced human resources executive, is joining Rite Aid as Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer.

In this position, Castle will be responsible for all aspects of human resources, including training, recruitment, talent management, compensation and benefits, labor relations, leadership development and diversity. She will report to Rite Aid’s Chairman and CEO John Standley.

“Dedra is a dynamic, seasoned human resources professional with a proven track record of success,” said Standley. “I am confident she will bring outstanding leadership to our organization of nearly 90,000 Rite Aid associates as we work together to continue to successfully grow our business and achieve long-term success.”

Castle is an accomplished leader with more than 19 years of experience in human resource management. In 2012, Castle became a founding member and managing partner of Castle Partners, LLC, a human resources management services firm; and Level Mediation, LLC, a multi-state mediation firm.

Before this, Castle worked for the Sam Club’s Division of Walmart Stores, Inc., where she most recently led the corporate human resources function and was the Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer. While at Sam’s Club, she also served as vice president of its People Division where she was responsible for field human resources for the 110,000 associates in nearly 600 Sam’s Clubs nationwide. Prior to Sam’s Club, she held senior human resources positions at Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., and Auto Zone Stores, Inc. Earlier in her career, she was employed by the Department of Defense, where she managed the civil service employment function for Marine Corps Air Stations El Toro and Miramar in Southern California as each restructured under Base Realignment and Closure.

Castle earned a bachelor of business administration degree from National University in San Diego. She also was awarded a master’s certificate in Advanced Conflict Resolution and Analysis from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. She is an active member of the Society for Human Resource Management.

Rite Aid Corporation is one of the nation’s leading drugstore chains with nearly 4,600 stores in 31 states and the District of Columbia and fiscal 2013 annual revenues of $25.4 billion. Information about Rite Aid, including corporate background and press releases, is available through the company’s website at www.riteaid.com.

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Contact:

Investors: 0 0 717-975-3710, Matt Schroeder 717-214-8867 or investor@riteaid.com

Media: Susan Henderson 717-730-7766