H&M awarded an A grade for its climate performance at The CDP Climate Performance Leadership Index 2014

Stockholm, Sweden, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — H&M is recognized for its actions to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate the business risks of climate change. The company is awarded an A grade for its climate performance at The CDP Climate Performance Leadership Index 2014.

According to CDP, H&M earns its position thanks to a superior approach to climate change mitigation. The CDP Climate Performance Leadership Index is a global ranking of corporate efforts to mitigate climate change. Nearly 2,000 listed companies have been ranked according to its scoring methodology.

– Global greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise and we face steep financial risk if we do not mitigate them. For this reason we congratulate those businesses that have achieved a position on The A List. These companies are responding to market demand for environmental accountability and at the same time are making progress towards the realization of sustainable economies, says Paul Simpson, chief executive officer of CDP.

The companies on the A List are characterized by the CDP as “climate performance leaders;” that their actions help to illustrate that a low carbon future does not mean low profit.

GLOBAL MEDIA INQUIRIES

Only for media representatives
Phone: +46 8 796 53 00
Email: mediarelations@hm.com

Please note the contact details above are only for media representatives. For other enquiries contact H&M’s switchboard on +46 8 796 55 00.

Carrefour Brazil opened its first retail outlet under the Supeco banner

São Paulo, Brazil, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — On 9 October, Carrefour Brazil opened its first retail outlet under the Supeco banner in the country. The store is located in Sorocaba, in São Paulo.

Under the management of Atacadão, this new format is geared towards everyday products and was especially created to serve small businesses and professionals (such as bakers and pizzerias), as well as retail consumers within a 3 to 5 km radius of large urban areas. The concept focuses on low prices, convenience and high-speed service to help it stand out from its rivals in the eyes of its customers.

Supeco’s opening is another important step in the company’s growth strategy in Brazil. The start of its trading today – together with the recent launch of the local Carrefour Express banner – completes the Carrefour Group’s multiformat presence in the country, which now includes all of the models that the company operates at international level.

Supeco is a wholesale banner that Carrefour launched in Spain two years ago. Its launch is consistent with the Group’s multi-format development strategy. The banner currently has around 10 retail outlets in Europe.

As far as goods and services are concerned, Supeco offers the traditional categories of everyday products, with the emphasis mainly on key brands and alternatives at affordable prices which still offer good value for money. All in all, each retail outlet will stock nearly 2500 items over sales areas ranging from 1500 m² to 3000 m². They will have 6 to 10 checkouts, depending on the characteristics of the region where each Supeco outlet is located.

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Carrefour Brazil opened its first retail outlet under the Supeco banner

Carrefour Brazil opened its first retail outlet under the Supeco banner

Carrefour wins the 2014 Anti-Gaspi Prize in the “Distribution” category for its efforts in tackling food waste

On 16 October 2014, Noël Prioux, Executive Director of Carrefour France, was presented with the 2014 “Anti-Gaspi” prize by Stéphane Le Foll, France’s Minister for Food, Agriculture and Forestry Affairs. This prize, awarded on the second national anti-food waste day, is recognition of Carrefour’s efforts.

PARIS, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Carrefour won the 2014 Anti-Gaspi Prize in the “Distribution” category. The award was presented to the retailer in recognition of all of its efforts in tackling food waste. The prize, given as part of the Pacte National de Lutte contre le Gaspillage Alimentaire (national pact to combat food waste), which was introduced in 2013 and of which Carrefour is a signatory, was presented by a jury made up of a number of economic stakeholders, including the ANIA (France’s national association of food industries) and the ADEME (France’s environment and energy management agency).

This prize is recognition of the initiatives that form part of the retailer’s anti-food waste plan:

Anti-waste experts
A team of 16 anti-waste experts combs through Carrefour’s hypermarkets and supermarkets, looking for areas in which improvements might be made and providing employees with the support they need in order to introduce them. And thanks to these initiatives and good practices, these experts helped reduce food waste by more than 10% in Carrefour’s stores over a 12-month period.

Food aid donations to associations
All of Carrefour’s consolidated stores have entered into a formal relationship with one or several local associations so that collections can be made every morning. In 2013, the retailer donated the equivalent of 68 million meals to food aid organisations and welfare groceries, including the Restos du Cœur, the Secours Populaire, the Red Cross and the Food Banks – to which Carrefour is the biggest private donor.

And the Carrefour Foundation provides these associations with support, particularly in terms of logistics, giving them the equipment they need for transporting and storing foodstuffs – 160 refrigerated vehicles were financed, together with 30 cold rooms in 2013.

Customer awareness-raising
Carrefour has set up a special website all about combating food waste in order to raise its customers’ awareness as well. The site offers a number of anti-waste tips, including recipes “for reusing leftovers so nothing gets thrown away”, and a great deal of advice for getting into the right habits at home and while out shopping at Carrefour.

www.anti-gaspillage.carrefour.fr

Starbucks district managers tasted the first crop of coffee from Starbucks Costa Rica Farm at Starbucks leadership conference in Seattle

SEATTLE, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Days start early for Victor Trejos.

Each weekday morning, he rises well before dawn at his home in Costa Rica’s capital city of San José and drives 15 miles into the hillside. By 6:00 a.m., his pickup truck rumbles down the narrow road to a coffee farm, where the day is already in full swing, with a team of more than 30 Starbucks partners (employees) weeding, replanting, fertilizing, and pruning.

Trejos is the general manager of Hacienda Alcasia, a coffee farm resting on the slope of the still-active Poas volcano.  In its entirety, it spans more than 370 city blocks and is the first coffee farm Starbucks has owned in its more than 40-year history.

“Hacienda Alcasia has been a working coffee farm for generations, managed by a single family since 1970,” Trejos said. “The volcanic soil is rich in nutrients, and over its history has supplied high-quality coffee to Starbucks.”

Today, under the ownership of Starbucks, Trejos and his team have been working to transform the property into an agronomy research and development center. Its varied elevation makes it an ideal place to learn more about sustainable farming practices in different climates.

While Starbucks intentionally limited any significant investments on the farm so that it could function as a typical Central American coffee farm, they did prioritize one key element – a nursery. Led by Starbucks head agronomist Carlos Mario, thousands of seedlings are being grown to test new coffee varietals that improve disease resistance, quality and yield.

“The work at Hacienda Alsacia is helping us gain a better understanding of the challenges facing coffee farmers throughout our supply chain from environmental factors to the overall costs of running a working farm,” said Craig Russell, Starbucks executive vice president of Global Coffee. “To be a part of its first harvest is a special moment for me and a historic one for our company.”

More than 300,000 pounds of coffee were harvested in the farm’s first year under the guidance of Starbucks (Starbucks purchased 396 million pounds of green coffee in fiscal year 2013).  2,100 Starbucks district managers had the opportunity to taste this partner-exclusive “first crop” coffee during a Starbucks leadership conference in Seattle.

“I have been working in coffee for 20 years, but this harvest was different,” said Trejos. “It was very exciting to see all of our hard work come through with this very high-quality cup of coffee.”

See how work on Hacienda Alsacia has progressed since Starbucks purchased the farm in 2013.

About Starbucks Approach to Ethical Sourcing
Starbucks is committed to creating a better future for farmers and farmer livelihoods with integrated programs that help ensure a long-term supply of high-quality coffee, social investments that support coffee-growing communities, and investments in research and development.

In total, Starbucks has invested more than $70 million in collaborative farmer programs and activities, which includes C.A.F.E. (Coffee and Farmer Equity) Practices, Starbucks industry-leading ethical sourcing model developed in partnership with Conservation International which ensures coffee quality while promoting social, environmental and economic standards.

Starbucks has worked directly with farmers for more than ten years through its farmer support centers, which now operate in Costa Rica, Rwanda, Tanzania, Colombia and China. The company also provides farmers access to farmer loans to help cooperatives manage risk and strengthen their business, and works with Conservation International. Starbucks is also investing in farmers and their communities through its farmer loan program, and helping farmers plant or save shade trees in Indonesia, Mexico and Brazil.

Find details about the company’s  approach to ethical sourcing in the Starbucks Global Responsibility Report.

For more information on this news release, contact newstips@starbucks.com.

Starbucks Corporation to release its fourth quarter and fiscal year end 2014 financial results after the market close on October 30, 2014

SEATTLE, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ: SBUX) plans to release its fourth quarter and fiscal year end 2014 financial results after the market close on Thursday, October 30, 2014, with a conference call to follow at 2:00 p.m. PT. The conference call will be webcast and can be accessed on the company’s website:http://investor.starbucks.com. A replay of the webcast will be available on the company’s website until end of day Thursday, November 27, 2014.

About Starbucks
Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting high-quality arabica coffee. Today, with stores around the globe, the company is the premier roaster and retailer of specialty coffee in the world. Through our unwavering commitment to excellence and our guiding principles, we bring the unique Starbucks Experience to life for every customer through every cup. To share in the experience please visit us in our stores, online at Starbucks.com and through the Starbucks Newsroom.

Starbucks Contact, Investor Relations:

JoAnn DeGrande
206-318-7118
investorrelations@starbucks.com

Starbucks Contact, Media:

Alisha Damodaran
206-318-7100
press@starbucks.com

For more information on this news release, contact us.

Kesko listed in the Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index for the fourth consecutive time

Helsinki, Finland, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Kesko has received recognition for its climate change reporting and is now included in the Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index for the fourth consecutive time. Kesko improved its score to 99 points. Kesko’s and K-stores’ determined climate work is based on the long-term commitments and energy efficiency objectives of Kesko’s responsibility programme.

The Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) is based on Nordic listed companies’ responses to an extensive inquiry on their greenhouse gas emissions, emission reduction targets, and the risks and opportunities associated with climate change.

High scores indicate good data management and an understanding of climate change issues related to the company. Kesko is at the top of the index for the fourth consecutive time and improved its score to 99 points (on the scale of 0-100).

“It is great that in hard competition we are able to further improve our level in global comparisons. The Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index gives important information on companies’ actions on climate change mitigation to different stakeholders. The improvement of energy efficiency provides significant benefit to our business operations, partners and customers,” says Kesko’s President and CEO Matti Halmesmäki.
Energy efficiency in retail stores and transportation

Kesko’s responsibility programme contains both short-term and long-term objectives up to 2020 for Kesko’s and the whole K-Group’s operations. The mitigation of climate change is one of the key objectives of the responsibility programme.

Kesko has signed the trading sector energy efficiency agreement and committed to improving its annual energy efficiency by 65 GWh by the end of 2016 through various actions. By the end of 2013, Kesko had improved its energy efficiency by 58.9 GWh and achieved 91% of the objective.

Stores’ energy-efficient solutions, such as lids and doors of refrigeration equipment, recovery of condensation heat, refrigeration units using carbon dioxide, and adjustable and directional lighting, generate significant energy savings. In Keslog’s transportation, energy consumption is reduced with the economical driving style, route planning and two-tier trailers.

The Veturi shopping centre in Kouvola was awarded a BREEAM Very Good environmental certificate in autumn 2013. The Kodin1 department store for interior decoration and home goods, which was completed in Raisio in spring 2013, is the first passive commercial building in the Nordic countries.

Further information available from Matti Kalervo, Kesko’s Vice President, Corporate Responsibility, tel. +358 50 306 4081.

More information about Kesko’s responsibility work and its results:
http://corporateresponsibility2013.kesko.fi .

Kesko in sustainability indices:
http://www.kesko.fi/en/Investors/Share-information/Equity-indices/Sustainability-indices/

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. Our stores offer quality to the daily lives of consumers.

The Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index comprises 189 companies and the index is a central part of CDP’s (www.cdp.net) annual Nordic 260 report.

Argos joins forces with Bose

Milton Keynes, UK, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Today Argos, the leading online high-street retailer, announced that it has joined forces with Bose, the audio specialists. Bose fans can head in store or to the dedicated online shop (via www.argos.co.uk) and purchase the selected range of Bose speakers and headphones.

Customers will be able to purchase the latest Bose headphones, Bluetooth speakers, docking stations and the newly updated SoundTouchTM range ready for streaming music over their Wi-Fi network.

This announcement comes as Argos launches a multi-million pound advertising campaign in the biggest strategy change in its 40-year-plus history. The ground-breaking ‘GET SET GO ARGOS’ campaign highlights the wide range of brands shoppers might not expect to find at Argos and signals its shift to become a digital retail leader.

Key Brands Buying Manager at Argos, Fay Williams, said: “Music sounds so much better when listened to through premium audio systems, home cinema systems and quality headphones. That’s why the addition of the iconic Bose brand to our extensive range of audio technology is exciting news for our music fans. Offering must-have brands that our customers demand is really important to us.”

Phil Carpenter, UK Managing Director at Bose, said “Our aim is to bring quality sounds to as wide an audience as possible and we believe that through our partnership with Argos we will increase our potential reach in the market whilst maintaining the uniqueness of our brand.”

Bose joins a growing list of highly respected audio brands newly available at Argos, including Marley, Denon, AKG, Audio Technica and Marshall.

The selected Bose range will be available1 to buy at argos.co.uk, via the Argos apps or from stores across the UK and Republic of Ireland. Customers can benefit from the ease of checking stock availability at their local store online and reserving it for collection as soon as they need it from one of more than 730 stores across the UK.

-ENDS-

Notes to Editors:

1. There are a few products in specific colourways, such as SoundTrue In-ear Headphones in white and cranberry, which are currently available online only

The dedicated online shop for Bose at Argos is available at: www.argos.co.uk/static/ArgosPromo3/includeName/bose-home.htm

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 43,000 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 around 123m customer transactions a year through its stores and 738 million website and app visits in the 12 months to February 2014.  Customers can take advantage of Argos’ convenient Check & Reserve service available through its network of 734 stores across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

In the financial year to February 2014, Argos sales were £4.1 billion and it employed some 29,000 people across the business.

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

About Bose Corporation
Bose Corporation was founded in 1964 by Dr. Amar G. Bose, then a professor of electrical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 2014, Bose celebrates its 50th anniversary as the most respected name in sound. The company remains driven by its founding principles, investing in long-term research with one fundamental goal: to develop new technologies with real customer benefits. Bose® innovations have spanned decades and industries, creating and transforming categories in audio and beyond. Bose products for the home, in the car, on the go and in public spaces have become iconic. From the company’s home entertainment systems and Wave® music systems, to noise cancelling and audio headphones, digital music systems, Bluetooth® speakers and professional solutions, Bose has changed the way people listen to music.

Bose Corporation is privately held. The company’s spirit of invention, passion for excellence, and commitment to extraordinary customer experiences can be found around the world – everywhere Bose does business.

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SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker £169.95 (left), SoundTrue Headphones £149.95 (centre), SoundLink Bluetooth Speaker III £259.95 (right) - See more at: http://www.homeretailgroup.com/news-and-media/news.aspx?&article=6490#sthash.HKAmFNFF.dpuf

SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker £169.95 (left), SoundTrue Headphones £149.95 (centre), SoundLink Bluetooth Speaker III £259.95 (right) – See more at: http://www.homeretailgroup.com/news-and-media/news.aspx?&article=6490#sthash.HKAmFNFF.dpuf

 

Argos reveals new staff uniforms to reflect the growing role of technology in the store environment

Milton Keynes, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Staff in Argos stores across the UK and Republic of Ireland will be wearing new uniforms this autumn to reflect the growing role of technology in the store environment, as the retailer unveils a whole new brand identity to support its plans to become a digital retail leader.

Argos canvassed more than 1,000 workers across 734 of its stores, who said they wanted a sporty, young and modern look to replace the traditional, more formal red shirt and blouse and plain trousers and skirt.

The change comes as Argos has this month unveiled a new advertising campaign – ‘GET SET GO ARGOS’ – which uses energy, colour and excitement, to highlight the top brands and great new services customers can experience at Argos this year.

Greater focus is being placed on store staff using technology to help customers select the right product. In more than 700 Argos stores, including Argos’ growing number of digital stores, workers will have tablets to advise customers using detailed product knowledge, videos and customer reviews.

Predominantly a black polo shirt and soft shell jacket with a white logo, supported by red and grey secondary colours, the new outfit has specially-designed features that make it fit for purpose for the fast-paced, changing nature of retail. Staff across the store, including store managers, will sport the new look to reinforce a team approach when serving customers.

New uniform features include:

  • Loops on the side of the polo shirt and battery pack holder on trousers to accommodate the technology headsets team members wear to pick and put away stock in the stock room.
  • Pen pockets on the trousers so staff are ready to make notes easily when serving customers, answering the phone and in the stock room.
  • Lighter fabric to ventilate the body in a fast-paced tech environment

Store delivery drivers will also wear the new uniform and will have the choice of wearing trousers, shorts, waterproof jackets, baseball caps or beanie hats – ensuring they’re comfortable in all conditions.

Sonia Astill, HR Director for Argos, said: “Uniforms play an increasingly important role for Argos as we shift our focus to putting more store colleagues on the shop floor to engage with customers.

“This includes helping them to make the right purchase and using technology to show them the different ways they can get their items, such as paying online for Fast Track collection in-store.

“We’ve really listened to our people, and they have shown great energy and enthusiasm in offering their input into what the new Argos uniform should look like. They’ve really come up trumps.

“We wanted a vibrant and modern uniform that our people feel comfortable in and are proud to wear, and one that supports the ‘new Argos’ that shoppers will be seeing around the UK.”

James Saunders, Managing Director at Simon Jersey which supplied the uniforms, added: “It is great to work with a customer that is as passionate about its team uniform as we are. Argos challenged us to turn its vision into reality and by working collaboratively we have created a great look, within a tight timeframe, that really supports the Argos of the future.”

The new uniform will be trialled by 4,500 Argos employees in around 100 stores from October, with other stores receiving modifications to the current uniform.

The new uniforms are part of a larger brand relaunch at Argos that also includes a whole new TV and press advertising campaign, redesigned carrier bags, updated point of sale material, and a change of vehicle livery.

-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 43,000 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 around 123m customer transactions a year through its stores and 738 million website and app visits in the 12 months to February 2014.  Customers can take advantage of Argos’ convenient Check & Reserve service available through its network of 734 stores across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

In the financial year to February 2014, Argos sales were £4.1 billion and it employed some 29,000 people across the business.

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

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Argos reveals new staff uniforms to reflect the growing role of technology in the store environment

Argos reveals new staff uniforms to reflect the growing role of technology in the store environment

Argos launches fleet of newly branded trucks sporting the new brand colours and designs

Milton Keynes, 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Leading online retailer Argos has announced the launch of a fleet of newly branded trucks. The 76 vehicles, all sporting the new brand colours and designs announced this week, will take to the road this autumn.

Part of Argos’ new multi-million pound advertising campaign, which will bring to life its ongoing drive to become a digital retail leader, the vehicles will carry the new strapline ‘GET SET GO ARGOS’ and feature vibrant colour explosions against a clean, white backdrop. The campaign is the biggest strategic change in its 40-year-plus history.

David Landy, Fleet Manager for Argos, said: “Our vehicles travel all over the country, seven days a week, delivering a range of 43,000 products to our 734 stores and direct to the doorstep, allowing customers to shop how and when they want. They will be seen and recognised by everyone, so it’s exciting to be part of the new campaign and the fantastic new Argos we are creating.”

The newly branded fleet comprises of 71 Mercedes-Benz Actros tractor units and five Scania natural gas-powered trucks. The Scania trucks are designed to run completely on gas and provide carbon dioxide reductions of up to 70 per cent when run on pure biogas, as well as being extremely quiet.

The New Actros units, which will support Argos’ existing fleet of 400 tractors and 1000 trailers, are all powered by Euro VI 290 kW (400 hp) straight-six engines coupled to the Mercedes PowerShift 3 automated transmission. All feature the 2.3 metre wide ClassicSpace sleeper cab, which offers high levels of safety and comfort.

Helping maximise the new fleets’ efficiency, all 71 vehicles are equipped with Hatcher Components’ unique Active Freddie air management system. This ignition sparked cab top spoiler automatically adjusts to match the height of the trailer, minimising fuel consumption.

James Colbourne, Head of Strategic Accounts – Trucks, Mercedes-Benz UK Ltd, said:“Working with Argos on their latest Euro VI vehicles has been an incredibly interesting and positive experience. Argos has a new fleet that will provide a robust and reliable partner for many years to come.

“The new livery is sure to strike a chord and complement Argos’ strong brand image.”

The multi-million pound advertising campaign will start on October 14 and spans out-of-home, digital, social media, print, radio and in-store channels. The new brand identity will extend to: Argos’ websites and apps; stores, with updated point of sale, redesigned carrier bags and new uniforms; as well as the new vehicles.

 

-ENDS-

Notes to Editors:

For more information and images, 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 43,000 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 around 123m customer transactions a year and 738 million website and app visits in the 12 months to February 2014.  Customers can take advantage of Argos’ convenient Check & Reserve service available through its network of 734 stores across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

In the financial year to February 2014, Argos sales were £4.1 billion and it employed some 29,000 people across the business.

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

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Argos launches fleet of newly branded trucks sporting the new brand colours and designs

Argos launches fleet of newly branded trucks sporting the new brand colours and designs

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. presents its capital expenditure plans for the next fiscal year ending Jan. 31, 2016

  • Investments in e-commerce and digital initiatives are expected to range between $1.2 and $1.5 billion in fiscal year 2016, up from approximately $1.0 billion, estimated for this year.
  • The company will add between 26 and 30 million net retail square feet worldwide next year, a decrease from this year’s anticipated 32 to 34 million square feet, due to a moderation of large format store growth and accelerated e-commerce investments.
  • The company’s updated guidance for capital expenditures in its current fiscal year of $12.5 to $13.0 billion compares to its forecast of $12.4 to $13.4 billion provided in February 2014.
  • Capital investments will range between $11.6 and $12.9 billion for fiscal year 2016, including a stepped up commitment for e-commerce. This is below the updated range for fiscal year 2015 of $12.5 to $13.0 billion, due to the change in mix of spending toward more digital growth and a moderation of physical store growth.
  • The company also expects fiscal year 2016 net sales growth to range between 2 and 4 percent, which translates into approximately $10 to $20 billion in net sales.

BENTONVILLE, Ark., 2014-10-16— /EPR Retail News/ — Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) today presented its capital expenditure plans for the next fiscal year ending Jan. 31, 2016 at its 21st annual meeting for the investment community. Total capital spending for fiscal year 2016 is projected to range between $11.6 and $12.9 billion, including approximately $1.2 to $1.5 billion for e-commerce and digital initiatives.

“This is an exciting time for Walmart, as there are so many new ways to serve customers.  Exceeding customer expectations has always been our goal, and we have short-and long-term opportunities to do that even better,” said Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. President and CEO Doug McMillon.  “We’ll change the mix of our capital spend next year to provide greater access, while continuing to focus on price leadership, service, and a broad assortment. We’ll give customers the choices they want and need in ways that only Walmart can.”

The company also indicated that as a result of a tougher sales environment than it anticipated a year ago, it now expects to grow net sales for the current fiscal year between 2 and 3 percent on last year’s $473.1 billion. The company indicated in February that it expected net sales growth to be at the low end of its guidance provided last October of 3 to 5 percent.

Charles Holley, Walmart’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, outlined the company’s financial priorities for growth and detailed the investment and expansion plans for fiscal year 2016.

“Our business and customers continue to evolve and so will the way we deploy capital. We will invest more heavily in e-commerce initiatives, while temporarily moderating our global physical growth, particularly larger stores,” Holley explained. “We are focused on creating an endless aisle and appealing to our customers’ changing needs.”

Holley also discussed the financial performance of the company’s e-commerce business and provided more insight into certain financial metrics.

“Globally, we expect to finish this year with approximately $12.5 billion in e-commerce sales,” said Holley.  “Looking forward we expect an increase in global e-commerce sales of around 25 percent in fiscal year 2016, and we anticipate growth over the three-year period from fiscal years 2016 through 2018 to average 30 to 40 percent.

“The greatest investment of capital and in operating loss for our e-commerce operations will come over the next 18 to 24 months, and then we would expect to see that investment start to moderate in fiscal 2018,” Holley added.

The company expects net sales to increase by 2 to 4 percent next year.

“This translates into approximately $10 to $20 billion of net sales growth,” Holley said. “Operating expenses will grow at a rate somewhat faster than sales growth and operating income will be flat to slightly down, given our investments in technology, e-commerce and digital.”

Capital expenditure details for fiscal year 2016

Projected capital expenditures are as follows and exclude the impact of future acquisitions, if any:

Capital Expenditure Detail(US$ billions)
Segment FY 14 Actual FY 15 Guidance (Feb.) FY 15 Guidance (Oct.) FY 16 Projected
Walmart U.S. $6.4 $6.4 – 6.9 $6.6 – 6.8 $6.1 – 6.6
Walmart International $4.4 $4.0 – 4.5 $3.8 – 4.1 $3.7 – 4.2
Sam’s Club $1.1 ~$1.0 ~$0.9 ~$0.8
Total segments $11.9 ~$11.4 – 12.4 ~$11.3 – 11.8 ~$10.6 – 11.6
Corporate & support $1.2 ~$1.0 ~$1.2 $1.0 – $1.3
Total $13.1 ~$12.4 – 13.4 ~$12.5– 13.0 ~$11.6 – 12.9

The capital expenditures listed below provide the breakdown between the company’s physical, e-commerce and digital initiatives provided above.

Capital Expenditure Detail(US$ billions)
FY 14
Actual
FY 15
Guidance (Feb.)
FY 15
Guidance (Oct.)
FY 16
Projected
Physical $12.7 ~$11.6 – 12.6 $11.5 – 12.0 ~$10.4 – $11.4
E-commerce & digital $0.4 ~$0.8 ~$1.0 ~$1.2 – 1.5

Holley also discussed the importance of the increased investment in e-commerce.

“We expect capital investments in e-commerce worldwide to be between $1.2 and $1.5 billion next year,” Holley explained, “and these investments will include technology, infrastructure and other areas to support e-commerce and digital initiatives to serve customers.”

In fiscal year 2016, the company plans to add between 26 and 30 million net retail square feet, reflecting moderation of new store openings across its segments.  Net retail square footage growth (excluding future acquisitions, if any) is projected as follows:

Net Retail Square Footage Growth(in millions)
Segment FY 14
Actual
FY 15
Guidance (Feb.)
FY 15
Guidance (Oct.)
FY 16 Projected
Walmart U.S. 18.4 ~21 – 23 ~21 – 22 ~15 – 16
Walmart International 12.5 ~12 – 14 ~9 – 10 ~10 – 13
Sam’s Club 1.7 ~2 ~2 ~1
Total 32.6 ~35 – 39 ~32 – 34 ~26 – 30

Actual and projected Walmart U.S. units include new stores and conversions. Given the conversion of Walmart discount stores to supercenters, the total number of supercenter units will continue to increase, as the number of discount stores declines. Actual and projected Sam’s Club units include new stores, expansions and relocations. Unit growth in the United States is projected as follows:

Total U.S. Unit Growth(Gross)
Segment FY 14
Actual
FY 15
Guidance (Feb.)
FY 15
Guidance (Oct.)
FY 16 Projected
Supercenters* 130 ~115 ~120 ~60 – 70
Small format stores** 121 ~270 – 300 ~ 240 ~200 – 220
Total Walmart U.S. 251 ~385 – 415 ~360 ~260 – 290
Sam’s Club 20 ~17– 22 ~20 ~9  – 12
Total 271 ~402 – 437 ~380 ~269 – 302

*Existing supercenters average approximately 179K square feet.
** Existing Neighborhood Markets and rebranded Walmart Express stores range between 12K and 66K square feet.

Walmart U.S. details
In February 2014, Walmart U.S. increased its original fiscal 2015 projected capital investment by $600 million to a range of $6.4 to $6.9 billion due to an acceleration of approximately 150 small format openings. However, as a result of the timing of certain planned small format openings, Walmart U.S. now expects to open approximately 240 small format units in fiscal 2015, and carry over approximately 20 units into fiscal 2016.

The company also indicated that during the testing of its Walmart Express format, the analysis showed customers rely on these stores for a variety of reasons, including grocery fill-in trips, last-minute dinner plans and picking up prescriptions. These patterns closely align with how customers also shop the Neighborhood Market format, which has become a recognizable brand that customers identify as a high quality, local grocery store. Therefore, the company will rebrand Walmart Express as Neighborhood Market and will utilize this brand for all small format stores, regardless of square footage.

“We know that our supercenters are an important format for the stock-up trip, but we want to be thoughtful about our investment, ensuring that we align the space to evolving customer needs,” said Walmart U.S. President and CEO Greg Foran.  “To do this, we will moderate supercenter growth in fiscal 2016.  Our investment in Neighborhood Markets will go forward because they continue to show strong results across the box and they provide our customers with convenient access to grocery, pharmacy services, and other quick-trip needs.”

Fiscal year 2016 capital investments are projected to range between $6.1 and $6.6 billion.  The forecast includes new stores, remodels, conversions, relocations, logistics, e-commerce and technology infrastructure, and reflects the additions of new units that will expand Walmart U.S.’s retail space by approximately 15 to 16 million net retail square feet. The company expects to open between 60 and 70 supercenters and 200 to 220 Neighborhood Markets.

Sam’s Club details
Sam’s Club will spend approximately $0.9 billion to open about 20 clubs this year, including relocations and expansions.  Sam’s Club is also remodeling approximately 55-60 clubs this year.

“Our new clubs continue to perform well.  Starting in the third quarter of this year, our new clubs incorporate several layout improvements, including an expanded fresh area and a combined health and wellness solutions center.  These updates enhance the member shopping experience, and drive stronger sales and leverage labor efficiencies,” said Sam’s Club President and CEO Rosalind Brewer.

During fiscal year 2016, Sam’s Club will open approximately 9 to 12 clubs, including relocations and expansions.  Remodeling is slated for between 60 and 65 clubs.  Sam’s Club is projecting a reduction in capital expenditures to approximately $0.8 billion from its revised fiscal 2015 estimate of $0.9 billion. Sam’s Club will continue to invest in membership and merchandise capabilities.

“We are reducing the number of new club openings for next year and accelerating technology initiatives that integrate our physical locations with our digital capabilities,” Brewer explained.

Walmart International details
In February 2014, Walmart International indicated that it expected capital expenditures to range between $4.0 and $4.5 billion and for net square footage to range between 12 and 14 million square feet for fiscal year 2015.  As a result of fewer new store openings in several key markets around the world, it now expects fiscal 2015 capital expenditures and net square footage additions to range between $3.8 and $4.1 billion and 9 to 10 million square feet, respectively.

Walmart International will continue to invest in organic growth across its markets next year. Capital expenditures are expected to range between $3.7 and $4.2 billion. New store openings in fiscal 2016 are expected to add between 10 and 13 million square feet.

“Our capital guidance for fiscal year 2016 reflects the actions we are taking to build a platform for sustainable growth in our five largest markets around the world,” said Walmart International President and CEO David Cheesewright. “We are managing our portfolio to be a best-in-class operator through innovation, making compliance a competitive advantage and winning with an e-commerce strategy that offers a unique shopping experience for our customers across all channels.”

Global eCommerce details
Walmart Global eCommerce President and CEO Neil Ashe outlined the progress made during the past year on the company’s e-commerce strategy.

“We are delivering best in class e-commerce capabilities that we are combining with the assets of the world’s largest retailer to engage with customers in new ways.  We have delivered the core components of our new global technology platform.  We are expanding our next generation fulfillment network to reach our customers fast and efficiently, and we’re building new data capabilities to enhance our customer experience” said Ashe.

Ashe announced that next year Walmart will build new online fulfillment centers in Georgia and Pennsylvania, each over 1 million square feet. These centers will be part of its next generation fulfillment network that includes dedicated online fulfillment centers, shared distribution centers, and ship-from-store locations that are all tied together by one of the biggest and most efficient transportation networks in the country.  Walmart will also add new fulfillment centers in Brazil and China.

The company plans to spend capital of approximately $1.0 billion for e-commerce and digital initiatives this fiscal year and between $1.2 and $1.5 billion next year.

About Walmart
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better — anytime and anywhere — in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices.  Each week, more than 250 million customers and members visit our 11,100 stores under 71 banners in 27 countries and e-commerce websites in 11 countries.  With fiscal year 2014 sales of over $473 billion, Walmart employs approximately 2 million associates worldwide.  Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity.  Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://corporate.walmart.com on Facebook at http://facebook.com/walmart and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart.

Cautionary statement regarding forward-looking statements
This release contains certain forward-looking statements that are intended to enjoy the safe harbor protections of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended.  These forward-looking statements include statements regarding the forecasts of Walmart’s management of:

  • the capital expenditures to be made in fiscal year 2015 and fiscal year 2016 by Walmart in total, by each of its operating segments, by its operating segments in total, for global physical growth, for e-commerce and digital initiatives and for corporate and support;
  • the net retail square footage growth of Walmart for fiscal year 2015 and fiscal year 2016 in total and of each of its operating segments;
  • the total U.S. unit growth, the total unit growth of Walmart’s Walmart U.S. operating segment, the growth in supercenters and Neighborhood Market units within the Walmart U.S. operating segment and the total growth in units within Walmart’s Sam’s Club operating segment in fiscal year 2015 and fiscal year 2016; and
  • the percentage increase in Walmart’s total net sales in fiscal year 2015 and fiscal year 2016 and the dollar amount of net sales growth in fiscal year 2016.

These forward-looking statements also include statements regarding management’s expectations, estimates and projections relating to:

  • Walmart accelerating its investment in e-commerce while moderating growth in large format stores;
  • changing the mix of capital expenditures made by Walmart in the future from the mix of capital expenditures in the past;
  • the way Walmart deploys capital continuing to evolve;
  • Walmart investing more heavily in e-commerce initiatives in the future while temporarily moderating global physical growth, particularly larger stores;
  • the growth of Walmart’s e-commerce sales in fiscal year 2016 and for the three-year period of fiscal years 2016 through 2018;
  • the amount of Walmart’s e-commerce sales in fiscal year 2015;
  • the company’s greatest investment of capital and in operating loss for the company’s e-commerce operations coming over the next 18 to 24 months and that investment starting to moderate in fiscal year 2018;
  • the company’s operating expenses growing at a rate somewhat faster than sales growth in fiscal year 2016;
  • the company’s operating income being flat to slightly down in fiscal year 2016;
  • the number of supercenters of the Walmart U.S. operating segment continuing to increase while the number of discount stores will continue to decrease as a result of conversions of discount stores into supercenters;
  • the number of new small format stores to be opened by the Walmart U.S. operating segment in fiscal year 2015;
  • the moderation of growth of the number of supercenters in the Walmart U.S. operating segment in fiscal year 2016;
  • the Walmart U.S. operating segment’s investment in Neighborhood Market units continuing to go forward;
  • the number of Sam’s Club units to be remodeled by the Sam’s Club operating segment in fiscal year 2015 and fiscal year 2016;
  • the Sam’s Club operating segment continuing to invest in membership and merchandise capabilities;
  • the Walmart International operating segment continuing to invest in organic growth in fiscal year 2016;
  • Walmart building and adding new e-commerce fulfillment centers; and
  • certain assumptions on which certain of such forward-looking statements are based.

Such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future results and subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, domestically and internationally, including:

  • general economic conditions, including the overall sales environment in, economic conditions affecting, and business trends in, the specific markets in which the company operates;
  • competitive initiatives of other retailers and other competitive pressures;
  • the amount of inflation or deflation that occurs, both generally and in certain product categories;
  • consumer confidence, disposable income, needs, credit availability, spending levels, spending patterns and debt levels;
  • alignment of Walmart’s stores with customer needs;
  • changes in the level of public assistance payments;
  • customer acceptance of new initiatives and programs of the company and its operating segments;
  • consumer acceptance and use of Walmart’s various e-commerce websites;
  • customer traffic in Walmart’s stores and clubs and on Walmart’s e-commerce websites and average ticket size;
  • consumer acceptance of Walmart’s product offerings;
  • consumer acceptance of the company’s stores and merchandise in the markets in which new units are opened;
  • consumer shopping patterns in the markets in which the small store expansion of the Walmart U.S. operating segment occurs;
  • disruption in the seasonal buying patterns in one or more of the markets in which Walmart operates;
  • consumer demand for certain merchandise;
  • geo-political conditions and events;
  • weather conditions and events and their effects;
  • catastrophic events and natural disasters and their effects;
  • public health emergencies, civil unrest and disturbances and terrorist attacks and their effects;
  • the retail selling prices of gasoline and diesel fuel;
  • disruption of Walmart’s supply chain, including transport of goods from foreign suppliers;
  • trade restrictions;
  • the availability and cost of appropriate locations for new and relocated stores, clubs and other facilities;
  • local real estate, zoning, land use and other laws, ordinances, legal restrictions and initiatives that impose limitations on the company’s ability to build, relocate or expand stores in certain locations;
  • delays in the construction or opening of new, expanded or relocated units planned to be opened by certain dates;
  • availability of persons with the necessary skills and abilities necessary to meet Walmart’s needs for managing and staffing new units and conducting their operations;
  • availability of necessary utilities for new units;
  • availability of skilled construction labor in areas in which new units are proposed to be constructed or in which existing units are to be relocated, expanded or remodeled;
  • conditions and events affecting domestic and global financial and capital markets;
  • the unanticipated need to change Walmart’s objectives and plans; and
  • other risks.

Walmart discusses certain of these matters more fully in its filings with the SEC, including its most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K (in which Walmart also discusses certain risk factors that may affect its operations and its results of operations), and the forward-looking statements in this release should be considered in conjunction with that Annual Report on Form 10-K, and together with all of Walmart’s other filings made with the SEC through the date of this release, including its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K.  We urge you to consider all of these risks, uncertainties and other factors carefully in evaluating the forward-looking statements appearing in this release.  Because of these risks, uncertainties, factors, changes in facts, assumptions not being realized or other circumstances, Walmart’s actual results may differ materially from anticipated results expressed or implied in these forward-looking statements.  The forward-looking statements appearing in this release are made on and as of the date of this release, and Walmart undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.