Foodstuffs North Island Limited announces the refurbishment of PAK’nSAVE Pukekohe due to commence in late June

Auckland, New Zealand, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — Foodstuffs North Island Limited is pleased to announce the refurbishment of PAK’nSAVE Pukekohe, on the corner of Queen and Harris Streets, Pukekohe. The refurbishment is due to commence on site in late June.

Foodstuffs North Island Limited is pleased to announce the refurbishment of PAK’nSAVE Pukekohe, on the corner of Queen and Harris Streets, Pukekohe. The refurbishment is due to commence on site in late June.

“The refurbishment of PAK’nSAVE Pukekohe is a very exciting project for us,” says Angela Bull, Foodstuffs North Island General Manager Property Development. “The renovation will enhance the customer’s experience as we modernise the store exterior and give the store interior a refresh, so that customers will really see the difference as they enter the store. The refurbishment ensures our customers get a modern grocery shopping experience with the PAK’nSAVE pricing our customers expect.”

PAK’nSAVE Pukekohe will be open throughout the refurbishment and PAK’nSAVE staff will make sure customers can do all their shopping in a safe and convenient environment.

Nigel Ollett, owner operator of PAK’nSAVE Pukekohe, is excited about the new look store. “I’m really looking forward to giving the store a facelift so that we continue to provide our customers with a PAK’nSAVE that meets their shopping needs.”

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Commissary’s Phyllis Black and Donna Chew chosen by Progressive Grocer magazine as two of the Top Women in Grocery for 2014

FORT LEE, Va., 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — Phyllis Black, store director at Cherry Point Commissary, N.C., and Donna Chew, assistant store director at McGuire Commissary, Lakehurst, N.J., have been chosen by Progressive Grocer magazine as two of the Top Women in Grocery for 2014.

“Phyllis and Donna have long been shining stars in our business,” said Joseph H. Jeu, DeCA director and CEO. “Their leadership, creativity, hard work and mentoring activities reflect well on DeCA and the grocery business at large. I’m so proud of their accomplishments.”

For eight years, Progressive Grocer’s awards program has honored the integral role women play across all areas of the dynamic retail food industry.

This year, Black and Chew were selected in the senior-level executive category. This is only the second year DeCA employees have been chosen; last year, Joyce Chandler, who retired as chief of DeCA’s perishable division, was selected, also as a senior-level executive.

“I am so excited to be among the elite group of women chosen to receive this award,” said Black. “I have never strived for personal recognition and have been satisfied to have any store I have ever been assigned to receive recognition for the team efforts that the employees display on a daily basis. The employees who have worked alongside me have contributed a great deal to my receiving this award. I would not have been as successful without the support I have received from all of them over the years.”

“I’m humbled and thankful to be selected for such a prestigious award,” said Chew. “It honestly is a privilege to serve my community of deserving military patrons, and I feel very fortunate to be recognized for doing the job I love. I have a great team that supports me and a dedicated, inspiring mentor who constantly challenges me to grow in an atmosphere that allows me to do what I love for the most deserving customers in the world.”

Black, Chew and the other recipients are featured in Progressive Grocer’s June 2014 issue. Progressive Grocer will host a gala awards celebration for the recipients this fall.

NOTE: For photos of Phyllis Black and Donna Chew, go to our Flickr page.

About DeCA: The Defense Commissary Agency operates a worldwide chain of commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment. Authorized patrons purchase items at cost plus a 5–percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones. Shoppers save an average of more than 30 percent on their purchases compared to commercial prices – savings amounting to thousands of dollars annually. A core military family support element, and a valued part of military pay and benefits, commissaries contribute to family readiness, enhance the quality of life for America’s military and their families, and help recruit and retain the best and brightest men and women to serve their country.

Media Contact:
Kevin L. Robinson
(804) 734-8000, Ext. 4-8773

Kesko Group reports €797.1 million sales in May 2014, excluding VAT

Kesko Group’s sales, excluding VAT, in May 2014 totalled €797.1 million, down 5.9%.

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — In Kesko’s food trade, sales in May were €358.0 million, a decrease of 7.4% compared to the previous year. The number of delivery days in May was one less than in the previous year.

In the home and speciality goods trade, sales in May were €101.1 million, a decrease of 9.6%. Consumer demand remained weak and sales declined particularly in the department store trade.

In the building and home improvement trade, sales in May were €253.5 million, a decrease of 3.3%. In terms of local currencies, sales increased by 1.0%. Sales in Finland decreased by 2.1%. Sales abroad decreased by 4.3% in euros, but increased by 3.5% in local currencies.

In the car and machinery trade, sales in May were €99.7 million, a decrease of 2.7%. VV-Auto’s sales in May were €70.8 million, up 1.4%. Konekesko’s sales in May were €29.0 million, a decrease of 11.0% from the previous year.

Kesko Group sales in euros, excluding VAT, in May 2014:

May 2014 1.1. – 31.05.2014
€ million Change, % € million Change, %
Food trade, total 358.0 -7.4 1,761.7 -1.6
Home and speciality goods trade, total 101.1 -9.6 510.1 -10.4
Building and home improvement trade, Finland 113.2 -2.1 536.6 0.5
Building and home improvement trade, other countries 140.3 -4.3 563.2 1.9
Building and home improvement trade, total 253.5 -3.3 1,099.8 1.2
Car and machinery trade, total 99.7 -2.7 476.7 2.7
Common operations and eliminations -15.2 -72.4
Grand total 797.1 -5.9 3,776.0 -1.7
Finland, total 635.5 -6.7 3,113.1 -3.1
Other countries, total 161.6 -2.8 662.9 5.7
Grand total 797.1 -5.9 3,776.0 -1.7

Change, % indicates the change over the corresponding period of the previous year.

In May 2014, the number of selling days in Kesko’s wholesale in Finland was 20, which was one less than in the previous year. The total number of selling days in January-May was two less than in the previous year. The number of retail selling days in May was 28, which was one more than in the previous year. The total number of retail selling days in January-May was one more than in the previous year.

Kesko releases advance information on the K-Group’s retail sales quarterly, in connection with interim reports.

Further information is available from Vice President, Group Controller Eva Kaukinen, tel. +358 105 322 338.

Kesko Corporation

Merja Haverinen
Vice President, Group Communications

Main news media

Kesko to improve Anttila’s profitability

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — Anttila Oy’s operations will be adjusted on account of weakened sales and the changed market situation. As a result of the employee co-operation negotiations started in April, the decision has been taken to close fourKodin1 department stores for interior decoration and home goods. The department stores to be closed are Helsinki Ruoholahti, Kuopio Kolmisoppi, Lappeenranta and Tampere Lielahti. Staff reductions in the department stores to be closed, other Kodin1 department stores as well as in the centralised and logistics operations total around 200 full-time employees.

The employee co-operation negotiations taken place to improve profitability concerned a total of around 1,350 persons, and at the start of the negotiations the estimated need for reduction was at most 220 full-time employees.

Activities to improve the profitability of Anttila’s business operations will continue as announced previously.

Kesko has announced its plans to improve Anttila’s profitability in the financial statements release for 2013 (stock exchange release on 4 February 2014) and in the stock exchange release on 31 March 2014.

Further information:
Senior Vice President Minna Kurunsaari, home and speciality goods trade, Kesko Corporation, tel. +358 10 53 40240
President Antti Ollila, K-citymarket Oy and Anttila Oy, tel. +358 10 53 40240

Save the Children, Breakthrough and Pratham and the IKEA Foundation unveiled $9.4 million program to protect 790,000 children living in cotton communities in India

Save the Children, IKEA Foundation Announce Plans to Reach a Further 790,000 Children At-Risk of Child Labour in India’s Cotton Communities.

New Delhi, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — On World Day Against Child Labor, Save the Children, its partners Breakthrough and Pratham, and the IKEA Foundation unveiled a $9.4 million* (Є7million) program to protect 790,000 children living in cotton communities in India. It’s estimated that there are currently around 12.6 million child laborers in India and today’s announcement is the second phase of a long-term program which aims to keep children out of cotton fields, and in classrooms where they can learn, play, grow and develop and be children.

During the second phase, Save the Children, Pratham and Breakthrough will work with panchayat leaders, farmers, teachers, families and Indian state officials in Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan, to provide children with access to quality education, improve teacher training, develop local child protection committees and school management committees and tackle issues like gender based discrimination.

An independent research study in 2008 revealed that prosperous Punjab has a large number of children working in the agriculture sector with an estimated 25% of them in cotton picking. Rajasthan and Haryana are not far behind, with 23% and 16% of cotton picking labor being children.

Building on success
The expanded program will build on the successes of Phase One which was started in 2009 in more than 1,800 villages in the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat. The major accomplishments of Phase One include:

• more than 600,000 children directly reached through education and child protection programs
• over 150,000 children moved out of child labor and into classrooms
• more than 10,000 migrant children moved back into their home communities
• improved school enrollment rates in participating villages (see Fact Sheet)
• nearly 2,000 teachers trained (see Fact Sheet)
• 1,866 Anganwadi (health, education) workers trained in teaching practices, giving each village in the program a skilled community worker

Improving the situation for girls
This initiative will aim to tackle the deep rooted issue of gender based discrimination which starts even before birth. One of the areas of critical concern is of the declining child sex ratio in the states of Punjab and Haryana which are the lowest in the country – with figures of 834 and 846 per 1000 male children (as per 2011 census), respectively. This initiative will help protect girls from these circumstances by establishing community groups that will champion girls’ rights and awareness of gender based discrimination and ensuring girl’s education.

Better protections for migrant families
Migration of child workers is a major issue in the state of Rajasthan, with children leaving their homes to work in nearby cotton regions. Based on a successful model pioneered in Phase One, an inter-state migration network will be set up to identify migrant child workers and help them move back to their families, homes and communities.

“We know there is no quick-fix solution to ending child labor, but long–term approaches can yield impressive results,’’ Per Heggenes, CEO of IKEA Foundation explains. “The IKEA Foundation, with our partners, has been tackling this issue in India for nearly a decade. This new phase reinforces our long-term commitment and our desire to help millions more children out of child labor and back into the classrooms.”

Thomas Chandy, Save the Children’s CEO in India proudly stated “IKEA Foundation has been an invaluable partner to Save the Children to achieve immediate and lasting change in the lives of the most marginalized children. The expansion of the partnership means that many more children will attain the right to education, protection and development across India.”

*US dollar conversion $1.35 = one euro

About IKEA Foundation
The IKEA Foundation aims to improve opportunities for children and youth in the world’s poorest communities by funding holistic, long-term programs that can create substantial, lasting change. The Foundation works with strong strategic partners applying innovative approaches to achieve large-scale results in four fundamental areas of a child’s life: a place to call home; a healthy start in life; a quality education; and sustainable family income. Currently-funded programmes benefit an estimated 100 million children. Learn more at

About Save the Children
Save the Children is the world’s leading independent organization for children. We are 30 national organizations working together to deliver programs in more than 120 countries around the world. Our vision is a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation. Our mission is to inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children, and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives.

Media contacts: 
Save the Children
Devendra Tak,
National Manager – Media and Communication
Email: Mob: +91-9811168488

IKEA Foundation
Chris Williams
Communications Manager
Mob: +31 650 21 10 61

Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation awarded more than $2.4 million to 597 schools in 47 states

Grants provide funding for nearly 600 projects benefiting K-12 public education

MOORESVILLE, N.C., 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation has awarded more than $2.4 million in Lowe’s Toolbox for Education® grants to 597 schools in 47 states during the program’s spring 2014 grant cycle. The grants will fund school-improvement projects benefiting K-12 public education. Lowe’s awarded nearly $4 million in grants to 940 schools in 2013.

“The Lowe’s Toolbox for Education program has benefited more than five million schoolchildren since its inception,” said Maureen Ausura, chairwoman of the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation. “With the support of Lowe’s Heroes employee volunteers, Lowe’s is committed to continuing to improve the educational environment for students across the country.”

The spring 2014 Toolbox for Education grants will fund public school projects, including technology and safety improvements, library renovations, walking trails and outdoor learning environments. Since its inception in 2006, Lowe’s Toolbox for Education has provided more than $40 million in grants to 8,500 schools. Grants are available to K-12 public schools in the United States for a wide range of improvement projects. Large schools and school districts are eligible to receive Toolbox grants up to $100,000.

“Our school is very thankful for the chance to make some much-needed improvements to our gym,” said Jennifer Green, physical education teacher at Harvey Jones Elementary, recipient of a $15,000 grant in Springdale, Arizona. “Lowe’s has given us an opportunity to help our current students as well as our future students.”

Lowe’s spring Toolbox for Education grant recipients include: 

  • Harvey Jones Elementary School: A $15,000 grant will enable the school to renovate its gymnasium for the first time in more than 20 years. The grant will fund new flooring and mats to cover the walls. These renovations will make the gym safer for students.
  • Highland High School, Monterey, Virginia: Highland High School received a $25,000 Lowe’s Toolbox for Education grant to install new energy-efficient windows. After 50 years of use, the condition of the current windows has led to increased heating and cooling expenses. The new windows will help decrease the school’s operating costs.
  • Webster Stanley Elementary School, Oshkosh, Wisconsin: A $5,000 grant will help the school create an accessible playground and a safer place for all children to play. The funds will be used to purchase a roller slide that can be used by children with physical limitations.
  • Edison Elementary School, Centralia, Washington: Edison Elementary School was awarded a $5,000 grant to build an outdoor classroom. The school will purchase new tables, seating for reading and writing, trees and a rain barrel system.

To view the complete list of grant winners and learn more about Lowe’s Toolbox for Education grants, The fall 2014 grant cycle will open on Aug. 1.

Lowe’s, a FORTUNE® 100 home improvement company, has a 50-year legacy of supporting the communities it serves through programs that focus on K-12 public education and community improvement projects.  Since 2007, Lowe’s and the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation together have contributed nearly $200 million to these efforts, and for more than two decades Lowe’s Heroes employee volunteers have donated their time to make our communities better places to live. To learn more, visit and

Paris Flowe
Lowe’s Companies, Inc.
(704) 758-3546<


Steve Salazar
Lowe’s Companies, Inc.
(704) 758-4345


Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation awarded more than $2.4 million to 597 schools in 47 states

Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation awarded more than $2.4 million to 597 schools in 47 states


Zaandam, the Netherlands, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — Ahold has repurchased 2,465,000 Ahold common shares in the period from June 9, 2014 up to and including June 13, 2014.

The shares were repurchased at an average price of € 13.4159 per share for a total consideration of € 33.07 million. These repurchases were made as part of the € 500 million share buyback program announced on February 28, 2013 as increased by € 1.5 billion to a total amount of € 2 billion announced on June 4, 2013.

The total number of shares repurchased under this program to date is 113,830,113 common shares for a total consideration of € 1,474.44 million.

During the share buyback program, Ahold publishes a press release every Monday with a weekly update. Click here to view all the relevant information of these these weekly updates. Separate weekly press releases are available upon request. Please send an email to if you would like to receive one or more of these weekly releases.


US Foods plans to open distribution center in Seabrook, N.H. to better serve its customers throughout the New England area

Rosemont, Ill., 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — US Foods today announced it plans to open a distribution center in Seabrook, N.H. to better serve its customers throughout the New England area.

The company currently services this customer base from its facility in Peabody, Mass. While the Peabody facility is approximately 188,000 square feet, the new facility will offer more than 500,000 square feet of space, including additional dry and cold storage and fleet fueling and maintenance areas.

“This new building will allow us to better serve our more than 2,000 customers throughout New England and operate from a more efficient and modern facility which will benefit the company, its customers and the nearly 300 employees in the Boston Division,” said John Glynn, president, Boston Division, US Foods.

The company has partnered with the ESI Group to execute the renovation of the new facility to ensure it operates as efficiently as possible. Construction is expected to begin at the end of June and the company aims to move its operations into the new building in the first quarter of 2015.

“I want to thank Seabrook Town Manager Bill Manzi and his staff, as well as Michael Bergeron from the State of New Hampshire for welcoming US Foods to Seabrook,” said Sandy Raine, vice president of corporate real estate, US Foods. “Working with this group has been a pleasure and has reaffirmed how proud we are to be joining this business community.”

Seabrook has a population of approximately 9,000 and is home to more than 250 industrial, commercial and retail businesses. It houses New Hampshire’s only nuclear power plant and has miles of beautiful seacoast with clean beaches and an active harbor with a thriving business sector.

“We are thrilled US Foods has selected Seabrook as the hub of its New England operations,” said Bill Manzi, Seabrook town manager. “We look forward to partnering with them on a major economic development project that will bring quality jobs and much needed tax revenue to the Town of Seabrook.”

About US Foods
As one of America’s great food companies and leading distributors, US Foods is Keeping Kitchens Cooking™ and making life easier for customers, including independent and multi-unit restaurants, healthcare and hospitality entities, government and educational institutions. With approximately $22 billion in annual revenue, the company offers more than 350,000 products, including high-quality, exclusive brands such as the innovative Chef’s Line®, a time-saving, chef-inspired line of scratch-quality products, and Rykoff Sexton®, a premium line of specialty ingredients sourced from around the world. The company proudly employs approximately 25,000 people in more than 60 locations nationwide. US Foods is headquartered in Rosemont, Ill., and jointly owned by affiliates of Clayton, Dubilier & Rice LLC and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P. Discover more at

Lisa Lecas, Manager
Corporate Communications, US Foods
Office: 847-720-8243

NACS welcomes Youli Zhang as accounting manager

​ALEXANDRIA, VA, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — Youli Zhang, CPA, has joined NACS as an accounting manager. Before coming to NACS, Zhang was an accountant at B’nai B’rith International. She also was bookkeeper at Phi Beta Delta in Washington, D.C. Before coming to the United States, Zhang worked as accounting manager at the China Construction Bank for several years.

Zhang earned a B.S. in computer science (with honors) as well as an associate’s degree in monetary banking, both from Yunnan University in China. She also has a master of accountancy from The George Washington University.


Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS ( is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 151,000 stores across the country, posted $696 billion in total sales in 2013, of which $491 billion were motor fuels sales. NACS has 2,100 retail and 1,600 supplier member companies, which do business in nearly 50 countries.

NACS names Caroline Quat as grassroots coordinator

ALEXANDRIA, VA, 2014-6-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — Caroline Quat has joined NACS as grassroots coordinator. Before coming to NACS, Quat worked in TheHome Depot’s government relations department, assisting the vice president of government relations and coordinating political action committee (PAC) activities. She also held internships with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Winding Creek Group and Catalist, LLC.Quat graduated cum laude with a B.A. in political science and political communications from The George Washington University and has a M.A. in media and public affairs, also from The George Washington University.


Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS ( is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 151,000 stores across the country, posted $696 billion in total sales in 2013, of which $491 billion were motor fuels sales. NACS has 2,100 retail and 1,600 supplier member companies, which do business in nearly 50 countries.