SRC-KPMG: Scottish retail sales decreased by 2.4% in Oct 2015 vs the same month last year

  • In October 2015, total Scottish sales decreased by 2.4% compared with October 2014, when they had declined by 1.2%. Like-for-like sales decreased by 2.8% on last October, when they had decreased by 2.7%. Adjusted for deflation measured by the BRC-Nielsen Shop Price Index (SPI), total Scottish sales decreased by 0.6%.
  • Total Food sales were 3.2% down on October 2014, when they had decreased 2.7%. Adjusted for the estimated effect of online sales in Scotland, total Non-Food sales decreased by 0.3% over a rise of 2.1% in to October 2014. The October 2014 growth is the fastest growth over the last 13 months.
  • Three-month average total Non-Food sales growth was 0.5% (online adjusted) in Scotland against a growth of 2.9% in the UK, a 0.3 percentage point narrowing of the gap seen in September.

LONDON, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — David Lonsdale, Director of the Scottish Retail Consortium, said: “This rather pallid set of results paints a disappointing October overall for Scotland’s retailers, with total retail sales edging down again once falling shop prices are taken into account.

“Grocery sales were sluggish, albeit marginally ahead of the average over the past three months. Retail sales of non-food items nudged down a touch even when adjusted to include the contribution of online. Indeed the only category to report an increase was clothing and footwear, and only once the impact of internet sales was taken into account. Halloween related items however such as kids fancy dress clothing did prove popular.

“It could be that shoppers are simply holding out for even better deals in the run up to Christmas, perhaps with an eye towards potential online discounting at the end of this month, despite the fact that shop prices are already at record lows.

“With the spotlight on the Autumn Statement and the Scottish Budget over the next few weeks, retailers will be hoping for measures which put money in peoples’ pockets and which encourage them to invest and grow.”

David McCorquodale, Head of Retail at KPMG, said: “Sluggish Scottish sales serve a sobering reminder of the frailty of the economic recovery when reflected in the discretionary spending of households. There is no doubt the declines in Scottish retail sales in October, when measured against a relatively weak month last year, are disappointing for retailers when set against mainly dry weather and temperatures only marginally warmer than average.

“It wasn’t cold enough for coats or boots, and with consumers perhaps waiting for heavy promotions, retailers were left pushing themed products for Halloween.

“The next few weeks are vital for retailers and, with the tactics around Black Friday and the run up to Christmas beginning to unfold, it will be interesting to see how much margin needs given up to drive sales volumes.”

British Retail Consortium, 21 Dartmouth Street, Westminster, London, SW1H 9BP. 020 7854 8900. info@brc.org.uk.

SOURCE: British Retail Consortium

RILA applauds state attorneys general’s letter to America’s largest banks and card networks urging the adoption of chip and PIN technology

Arlington , VA, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — ​​​The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) issued the following statement after nine state attorneys general sent a letter to the CEOs of America’s largest banks and card networks urging the adoption of chip and PIN technology in the United States. In the letter, state AGs rebut a number of misleading arguments and excuses that banks and card networks have made in recent months regarding their unwillingness to implement Chip and PIN.

Brian Dodge, RILA’s executive vice president for communications & strategic initiatives, echoed the arguments made by the nation’s leading consumer protection advocates and urged all law enforcement officials concerned with fighting card fraud to join the chorus of elected officials and policymakers demanding that America’s credit card issuers implement Chip and PIN.

“The two-factor authentication offered by Chip and PIN is the gold standard in nearly every other industrialized nation in the world.  There simply is no honest explanation for banks to refuse to provide American’s with the same credit card security offered in Canada and Europe.

“Chip and PIN is the best available technology for widespread use today, and it’s time for banks and card networks to meet the investment being made by retailers to install new payment terminals with credit cards that are proven to prevent all forms of fraud.”

The letter from state AGs comes on the heels of comments made by FBI director James Comey and Federal Reserve Board Governor Jerome Powell in support of moving beyond signatures to secure American card payments.

FBI Director James Comey: “The experts at the FBI would say that PIN and chip is more secure than [chip] and signature.” [Source]

Federal Reserve Board Governor Jerome Powell: “The deployment of EMV chip cards in the United States represents an important step forward. But we should not stop there,” he said. “New approaches to authentication increasingly offer greater assurance and protection. Given the current technologies that we have at our disposal, we should assess the continued use of signatures as a means of authenticating card transactions.” [Source]

RILA is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.

###

Jason Brewer
Senior Vice President, Communications & Advocacy
Phone: 703-600-2050
Email: jason.brewer@rila.org

SOURCE: Retail Industry Leaders Association

DDR Corp. determines final conversion price for its 1.75% Convertible Notes due 2040

BEACHWOOD, Ohio, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — DDR Corp. (NYSE: DDR) today announced that it has determined the final conversion price for its 1.75% Convertible Notes due 2040 (the “notes”). As previously announced, the notes became convertible on October 6, 2015 when DDR issued its notice of redemption with respect to the notes (as described below).  The notes became convertible at a conversion price consisting of cash up to the aggregate principal amount of the notes converted (the “Base Conversion Price”), and common shares (or cash in lieu of fractional shares) in respect of the remainder, if any, of DDR’s conversion obligation in excess of the aggregate principal amount of the notes being converted (the “Premium,” and, together with the Base Conversion Price, the “Conversion Price”). The Premium was to be calculated by reference to the current applicable conversion rate (69.2170 common shares per $1,000 principal amount of the notes (the “Conversion Rate”)) and the daily volume-weighted average price per share of DDR’s common shares for each trading day during the period fromOctober 7, 2015 through the close of the market on November 17, 2015.

The final Conversion Price per $1,000 principal amount of the notes consists of the Base Conversion Price and a Premium of 9.0311 common shares.  Holders of the notes have until 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on November 18, 2015, to elect to convert their notes. DDR expects to pay the Conversion Price to holders that convert their notes on or about November 19, 2015.

As previously announced, DDR will redeem, on November 20, 2015, any and all notes that remain outstanding and that are not converted as described above. The redemption price will be $1,000 in cash per $1,000 principal amount of the notes to be redeemed plus unpaid interest accrued thereon to, but excluding, such date.

DDR has filed a Tender Offer Statement on Schedule TO with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) and has made available to holders of the notes, through the Depository Trust Company, documents specifying the terms, conditions and procedures for converting their notes. Holders of the notes are encouraged to read these documents carefully before deciding to convert their notes because these documents contain important information regarding these transactions. Holders of the notes and other interested parties may obtain a free copy of these statements and other relevant documents at the SEC’s website,http://www.sec.gov, or from DDR’s website at  www.ddr.com, or from DDR Corp. at 3300 Enterprise Parkway, Beachwood, Ohio 44122, Attn: Matt Lougee, Senior Vice President of Finance, telephone (216) 755-5500, or from the Trustee, Paying Agent and Conversion Agent for the Offer at U.S. Bank National Association, Attn: Corporate Actions, 111 Fillmore Avenue, St. Paul, Minnesota 55107-1402.

About DDR Corp.
DDR is an owner and manager of 378 value-oriented shopping centers representing 116 million square feet in 41 states and Puerto Rico.  The Company’s portfolio is comprised primarily of large-format power centers located in top markets across the United States, and is actively managed to create long-term shareholder value.  DDR is a self-administered and self-managed REIT operating as a fully integrated real estate company, and is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol DDR.  Additional information about the Company is available at www.ddr.com.

SOURCE DDR Corp.

News Provided by Acquire Media

Reed MIDEM confirms that the international retail property market MAPIC will open for business in Cannes as scheduled

PARIS, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Reed MIDEM today confirms that MAPIC, the international retail property market, will open for business in Cannes as scheduled and take place November 18-20, 2015.

Air and rail transport is operating, the Palais des Festivals MAPIC venue is open and security measures have been reinforced across France. The build-up and breakdown of MAPIC will take place as planned. The MAPIC team is already in place in Cannes.

Reed MIDEM is liaising with the French authorities to ensure that all necessary measures are in place to provide adequate security for its clients and staff. Security has been increased throughout Cannes including at the Palais des Festivals, where MAPIC takes place. Reed MIDEM has advised clients that these measures may involve delays in accessing the venue.

Reed MIDEM is monitoring the situation and will communicate any important information via the official MAPIC web site www.mapic.com.

Reed MIDEM’s thoughts are with the victims and their families in these difficult times.

For editors:
Founded in 1963, Reed MIDEM is a leading organiser of professional, international tradeshows. Reed MIDEM events have established themselves as key dates in professional diaries. The company hosts MIPTV, MIPDOC, MIPCOM, and MIPJUNIOR for the television and audio-visual and digital content industries, MIDEM for music professionals, MIPIM, MIPIM Asia, MIPIM UK, MIPIM Japan for the real estate industry and MAPIC, Retail Real Estate Market powered by MAPIC in Shanghai and MAPIC Italy in Milan for the retail real estate sector.

Reed MIDEM is a division of Reed Exhibitions, the world’s leading event organiser, with over 500 events in 43 countries. In 2014 Reed brought together over seven million event participants from around the world generating billions of dollars in business. Today Reed events are held throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and Africa and organised by 41 fully staffed offices. Reed Exhibitions serves 43 industry sectors with trade and consumer events. It is part of the RELX Group plc, a world-leading provider of information solutions for professional customers across industries. www.reedexpo.com

PRESS CONTACTS
Mike WILLIAMS
Director of Communications
Tél. : +33 (0)6 24 19 36 57
Mike.williams@reedmidem.com

SOURCE: MAPIC

The Bon-Ton Stores launches exclusive online holiday gift guide

Win $15,000 in Prizes by Entering the Very Merry Gift Guide and Sweepstakes Beginning December 1

MILWAUKEE, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ:BONT) which operates Bon-Ton, Boston Store, Bergner’s, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers stores, has fashionable gifts for everyone on your list this holiday season. We want to make shopping simple for our customers by offering an exclusive online holiday gift guide designed specifically for our shoppers. Starting December 1, we are unveiling our Very Merry Gift Guide and Sweepstakes, which features 21 unique interest-based gift guides designed to get that “oh-my-goodness-how-did-you-know” reaction. To make your holidays brighter, we are hosting Santa Fest on Saturday, December 5, in all 252 Bon-Ton department stores.

“This holiday season, our customers will find stylish gifts they desire from brands they love for every budget,” said Kathryn Bufano, President & CEO,The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. “We are pleased to offer shoppers an easy, convenient shopping experience both in-store and online with a wide-array of designer products and exclusive brands for the entire family.”

No matter if you’re shopping in-store, on the Bon-Ton mobile app, or online at www.bonton.com, www.bergners.com, www.bostonstore.com,www.carsons.com, www.elder-beerman.com, www.herbergers.com and www.younkers.com, we can guarantee your shopping experience will be filled with extraordinary customer service. All stores are equipped with Wi-Fi and offer a new “Let Us Find It” tool to help customers find the unique brands and products that inspire.

The Very Merry Gift Guide and Sweepstakes

New this year, Bon-Ton will kick off the Very Merry Gift Guide and Sweepstakes – a Christmas countdown sweepstakes. Starting December 1, 21 gift guides will be revealed. Each gift guide features 10 unique items for specific people on your list based on personality and interests—designed to get you that “oh-my-goodness-how-did-you-know” reaction (i.e., “Glam Gifts for the Beauty Lovers,” “Gifts Foodies Will Eat Right Up,” Gifts for the Modern Gentleman” and “One-Size Fits All Gifts for Trend Setters”). Each day participants will have the opportunity to enter for their chance to win all of the items featured on that day’s gift guide. To sweeten the deal, one grand prize winner will win all 210 items on all featured gift guides with an estimated value of$15,000 in prizes. To enter, visit www.bonton.com/verymerry or text MERRY to 266866 to receive daily reminders for the Very Merry Gift Guide and Sweepstakes campaign.*

Santa Fest

On Saturday, December 5, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Santa will be in all 252 Bon-Ton department stores. We will transform our kids department into a festive, holiday celebration for Santa Fest, a one day shopping event where parents can take photos of their children with Santa (customers are encouraged to bring their own cameras or smart phone to take photos). Everyone will enjoy free Ghirardelli candy giveaways, candy canes and Keurigbrewed hot chocolate along with fun activities including make your own ornament, holiday coloring sheets and postcards. At every store, customers can register to win one of three $25 gift cards or one exclusive 2015 “Santa Fest Bear”. During this event, parents can save 30 percent off their entire children’s purchases (some exclusions apply) and kids will enjoy the cheerful environment.

“Give the Gift of a Great Future”

Bon-Ton’s exclusive collectible plush Teddy Bear, Cinnamon, is available at all 252 Bon-Ton department stores or online at www.bonton.com/bgca.Bon-Ton will donate 100 percent of the net proceeds to Boys & Girls Clubs of America and local chapters.

Stylish Gifts that Inspire

Sweater Spectacular

Choose from a variety of designer sweaters for everyone to keep warm and trendy this holiday season. From embellished cardigans by Calvin Klein, Michael Kors cowl neck sweaters, perfect ponchos from Lauren Ralph Lauren, Democracy and G. H. Bass, there is something for everyone. Step out in 100 percent comfy cashmere for ladies’ by ‘PLY’ and Weatherproof Vintage cashmere sweaters for men. Don’t forget to show off your silly side with a reindeer or snowman Critter sweater by Jolt & Love Always. An expanded men’s sweater collection makes it easier than ever to shop for every guy on your list. Select from a variety of favorite men’s designer sweaters in different colors, patterns and motifs by Polo Ralph Lauren, Nautica, John Bartlettand Izod.

Dress Destination

We are a one-stop shop for all your dress needs with a huge selection of styles and brands. Let the festivities begin in an Adrianna Papell cocktail dress, fit and flare dress by Nine West, a printed chiffon dress by BCBG Generation or a Calvin Klein sheath dress. Whether you’re going to a holiday party for work or a family gathering, we have a dress for every occasion at every price point. Some of our favorites include: Kensie, Karen Kane, Ivanka Trump, Jessica Simpson, Lauren Ralph Lauren, Vince Camuto and Guess.

Handbags

Every woman deserves a statement handbag. Choose from our brand new Vera Bradley collection, or iconic styles from Michael Kors, Coach, Calvin Klein and Dooney & Bourke. You can choose from great designers such as Lucky Brand, Kenneth Cole Reaction, Fossil, Jessica Simpson and The Sak. Each brand offers its chic and sophisticated signature collections including wristlets, wallets, cross body bags, totes and other small giftable items.

Jewelry and Watches

Give the perfect gift of glitz and sparkle with designer watches from Kate Spade, Michael Kors, Coach, Fossil and Skagen. Diamonds are a girl’s best friend. Choose from an assortment of classic diamond bracelets, necklaces and stackable rings by EFFY. Pick out unique and delightful earrings or necklace from Betsey Johnson’s jewelry collection and deliver heartfelt messages to loved ones with Gratitude & Grace stackable bracelets. No matter what you choose, you can’t go wrong with our great new styles for gift giving.

Shoes and Boots

Whatever the weather, we have gifts to sooth the sole. Dress up your feet for the holidays with Coach booties, Donald Pliner and Dolce Vita heels, Jessica Simpson platform pumps, and Nine West wedges. Boot must-haves for the season include tall leather boots by Frye, ladies’ duck boots by Sperry and Tommy Hilfiger, rain boots by Lauren Ralph Lauren, Coach and Michael Kors, and fur and fleece cold weather boots by Sorel.

Fragrances

We have everyone’s signature scent. Whether you’re looking for rollerballs, 3-piece gift sets, or everything in between we have beauty gifts for everyone on your list. New fragrances include Black Opium by Yves Saint Laurent, Illicit by Jimmy Choo, Modern Muse Le Rouge by Estee Lauder and Decadence by Marc Jacobs. Classic designer scents include Aqua di Gio by Georgio Armani, Viva La Juicy by Juicy Couture, Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue, Miss Dior, Sauvage and J’adore by Dior.

Sophisticated Gifts for Him

Every man needs a classic designer holiday outfit. Select a dress shirt and tie from Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, Lauren Ralph Lauren, Kenneth Cole Reaction, Van Heusen and John Bartlett for any special occasion. Dress up for the cold weather with a top coat, sport coat or blazer by Michael Kors and other top designer brands. Give the gift that will last a lifetime for those who love to travel with the sophisticated Polo Ralph Lauren leather duffel,John Bartlett watch box and hanging toiletry bag, or a Perry Ellis 10-piece manicure set.

Activewear

Choose from a variety of styles such as leggings, cropped pants, compression tights, sweatshirts, thermal wear, joggers and fleece zip-ups from Under Armour, Columbia, DKNY, Adidas, Marc New York Performance, Avalanche, Extertek, Puma, Champion, Reebok and Calvin Klein Performance. Don’t forget to get the gear to cheer with NFL and NCAA team accessories, apparel and loungewear for the whole family.

Outerwear

Bundle up in outerwear. Stay warm this holiday season with packable down jackets from 32 Degrees, MICHAEL Michael Kors, and Halifax. Available in short and length lengths in a variety of colors. Includes a bag for easy travel! We also have styles in a large assortment of categories, including faux fur trimmed down, wool, and active jackets for all the ladies on your shopping list. Styles from Calvin Klein, GUESS, Jessica Simpson, Columbia and more.

Kids’

Mix and Match is key. Coordinate different styles and patterns to create easy outfits from brands such as Little Miss Attitude and OshKosh B’gosh and Carter’s. Adorably festive kids’ holiday dress wear available from Calvin Klein, Izod, Amy Byer, Sweet Heart Rose and Chaps. Put a smile on their face with favorite Disney character tees and Star Wars gifts for your little Jedi and intergalactic princess. Unique toy gift picks include Discovery Kids sketch projector, build-a-fort and teepee, 3-in-1 tabletop art station and remote-controlled toys.

Deck the Halls with Holiday Décor

Don’t forget to give your home a gift this year. If you’re hosting a party or snuggling by the fireplace, decorate with Swarovski crystal ornaments, crystal gifts & barware from Waterford (guests will love our snowflake wishes collectible series!) and serve your holiday meal on our classic Lenox dinnerware and accessories. New this season, we offer Kate Spade for your home, including barware, giftware, drinkware, casual china, linens and home décor. For those who enjoy relaxing, snuggle up in a cozy throw from LivingQuarters and a variety of holiday quilts. Welcome your guests with holiday candle aromas by Yankee Candle, WoodWick, LivingQuarters and Deco Glow.

Everyday Kitchen Essentials

We have everyday kitchen essentials. Brew a cup of good cheer and a variety of cold beverages with the new Keurig KOLD drink maker system andKeurig 2.0 machines in multiple colors and spread the holiday warmth with the perfect stocking stuffer novelty mugs. Get juiced with our Ninja and Nutra Bullet blenders or upgrade to a Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer in all colors including the popular new color, Ice blue. Buy your Cuisinart Elements 10-piece ceramic cookware set and receive a six-piece mixing bowl set as your gift with purchase.

Santa’s Pantry

Giftable and tasty holiday treats. Dig in to delicious gifts from Stubbs, Hickory Farms, Johnsonville and Corona. For all those popcorn lovers, we have everything you desire from Wabash Valley Farms. Sweet treats everyone will love from Starbucks, Godiva, and the iconic gold box of chocolates fromHarry London. Satisfy your sweet tooth with candy filled gifts from Asher’s chocolate covered pretzels to Sanders assorted chocolates.

These gifts and more are available online by viewing our Holiday Gift Guide available here.

Online orders will receive free standard shipping with a minimum $75 purchase when entering the free shipping promo code available on the web site. Orders received by midnight on December 21 will be delivered by Christmas when selecting the special delivery promo code, also available on the web site.

About The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc.
The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., with corporate headquarters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and York, Pennsylvania, operates 270 stores, which includes nine furniture galleries and four clearance centers, in 26 states in the Northeast, Midwest and upper Great Plains under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers nameplates. The stores offer a broad assortment of national and private brand fashion apparel and accessories for women, men and children, as well as cosmetics and home furnishings. The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. is an active and positive participant in the communities it serves.

For store locations and information visit www.bonton.com. Join the conversation and be inspired by following Bon-Ton on Facebook, Twitter,Instagram, Pinterest and the fashion, beauty and lifestyle blog, #LoveStyle.

* Max 1 msg/day. Msg & data rates may apply. Consent is not required to make a purchase. Text HELP for more info, STOP to opt out. Visitbonton.com/mobileterms for Terms & Conditions.

CONTACT: Christine Hojnacki, Vice President Public Relations 414.347.5329, cell 262.378.9354 Christine.Hojnacki@bonton.com Nicole Koremenos, Senior PR Coordinator 414.347.1152 ext. 3278 Nicole.koremenos@bonton.com

 

Source: The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc.

News Provided by Acquire Media

USDA FSIS: Tyson Foods Inc. recalls 52,486 pounds of chicken wing product due to possible adulteration

WASHINGTON, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Tyson Foods Inc., a Pine Bluff, Ark. establishment, is recalling approximately 52,486 pounds of chicken wing product that may be adulterated because of having an “off odor” scent, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The fully cooked buffalo style chicken wing section item was produced on October 24, 2015 and October 25, 2015. The following product is subject to recall: [Labels (PDF Only)]

  • 28-oz. retail bags containing multiple pieces of “Tyson® Any’tizers® Fully Cooked Hot Wings® CHICKEN WING SECTIONS COATED WITH A FLAVORFUL HOT, TANGY SAUCE” with use by/sell by dates of October 24, 2016 and October 25, 2016, packaging dates 2975PBF0508-23/2985PBF0500-01 and case codes 2975PBF0508-23/2985PBF0500-01.

The product subject to recall bear establishment number “P-13456” inside the USDA mark of inspection as well as on the back of the bag above the heating instructions. These items were shipped to retail locations nationwide.

The problem was discovered when Tyson Foods Inc. received consumer complaints about the product being “off-odor” as well mild illness associated with consumption. After these consumer complaints, Tysons Food Inc. brought this to the attention of FSIS.

There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products by FSIS. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.

Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Media with questions about the recall can contact Derek Burleson, Public Relations Manager, (479) 290-6466. Consumers with questions about the recall can contact Tyson Foods’ Consumer Relations, (toll free) 866-328-3156.

Consumers with food safety questions can “Ask Karen,” the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov or via smartphone at m.askkaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day. The online Electronic Consumer Complaint Monitoring System can be accessed 24 hours a day at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/reportproblem.

USDA Recall Classifications
Class I This is a health hazard situation where there is a reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.
Class II This is a health hazard situation where there is a remote probability of adverse health consequences from the use of the product.
Class III This is a situation where the use of the product will not cause adverse health consequences.

Congressional and Public Affairs
Gabrielle N. Johnston
(202) 720-9113

eBay’s Interactive Holiday Map provides insights on this season’s consumer trends

Get instant views of the top bought holiday items across North America.

San Jose, California, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — With the busy holiday shopping season upon us, eBay’s detailed troves of data are already providing unique insights on this season’s consumer trends. From trending toys to the hottest electronics and fashion choices, you can surface the top bought holiday items using a new, interactive map that we’ve created.

You can view the map at www.ebayinc.com/holiday. Whether you’re seeking inspiration for your own holiday shopping, or curious about what’s popular in every U.S. state from Alabama to Wyoming, this interactive map will give you actionable and shoppable insights.

“With the Cyber 5 weekend right around the corner, we’re expecting to see an increase in shopping – both on mobile and desktop, especially as shoppers are looking for the ‘must haves’ for the season,” said Zoher Karu, eBay’s Vice President of Customer Optimization and Data. “This year, eBay shoppers are looking for great deals on a wide selection of products.”

Taking a look at some of the top national trends across the electronics, fashion and toys categories, Karu said, “It’s no surprise that electronics shoppers are eager to get their hands on the Microsoft Xbox One andSony PlayStation 4. Additionally, we’ve seen accessories like streaming devices for HDTVs are widely popular this year. “

“For toys, it is notable that LEGOs continue to be a popular gift. With the upcoming Star Wars film, the Star Wars LEGO Advent Calendar Building Kit was one of the most popular gifted items,” Karu added. “Adults also like their toys as we saw quadcopter drones pique the interest of shoppers.”

“For fashion,” Karu noted, “we saw a lot of variety at different price points. Brands like Ray Bans, UGG’sand Michael Kors are certainly popular, but items varied state-to-state, showcasing the uniqueness of each state.”

To navigate through the interactive map, click on any state, and then you can sort for product categories – Fashion, Electronics or Toys – to see what’s being brought across each of these categories.

Check back each week to see how the trends change as we get closer to the holidays! At eBay, we want to make your holiday wishes come true, and we encourage everyone to Wish Bigger this season.

eBay

SOURCE: eBay Inc.

 

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eBay’s Interactive Holiday Map provides insights on this season’s consumer trends

eBay’s Interactive Holiday Map provides insights on this season’s consumer trends

Lindex opens in Nordic region’s largest shopping center Mall of Scandinavia

Lindex has opened in Mall of Scandinavia, the Nordic region’s largest shopping center with 224 shops and restaurants, across over 101,000 square meters.

Gothenburg, Sweden, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Lindex store has one of the mall’s most central locations and an area of 830 square meters. The shop is one of the fashion chain’s largest in Stockholm and offers all business areas; women, kids, lingerie and cosmetics. The interest in the new mall has been great, and with the opening in Mall of Scandinavia Lindex will have the opportunity to reach many customers, both in Stockholm and in other Nordic cities.

Finally, we are open in Mall of Scandinavia, we have really looked forward to this day. With a unique shop in a unique shopping centre, we give our customers a shopping experience beyond the ordinary. It is particularly great that the opening is taking place at the start of the Christmas season when we have some amazing products and offers, says Elisabeth Peregi, Country Manager, Lindex Sweden.

The interior is based on the design in the two newly opened Lindex stores in London. The store concept highlights the brand’s Scandinavian heritage, including natural materials and a mix of different textures and patterns. The interior together with the garments and the Lindex staff creates a welcoming and inspiring atmosphere that makes it easy for customers to shop.

For more information about Mall of Scandinavia, visit: http://mallofscandinavia.se/om-mall-of-scandinavia/

For more information, contact:

Miriam Tjernström
Press Relations Manager, Lindex
Phone: 46 (0)31 739 50 60
E-mail: miriam.tjernstrom@lindex.com

SOURCE: Lindex

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Lindex opens in Nordic region’s largest shopping center Mall of Scandinavia

Lindex opens in Nordic region’s largest shopping center Mall of Scandinavia

Zalando to open its office campus in the Berlin district Friedrichshain/ Kreuzberg in 2018

  • Zalando is planning the extension of its existing office space to a campus in the Berlin district Friedrichshain/ Kreuzberg with around 100,000 square meters
  • Core will be a seven-story building designed by the architectural firm Henn
  • The official groundbreaking ceremony for Zalando’s new headquarters will follow in Q2 2016

BERLIN, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Zalando, Europe’s leading online fashion platform, is planning to open its office campus in the Berlin district Friedrichshain/ Kreuzberg in 2018. The campus, in the heart of Berlin, will have space for around 5,000 Zalando employees. The core architectural piece of the project will be a seven-story building, constructed by Münchner Grund Immobilien Bauträger GmbH, on the Anschutz site in Berlin-Friedrichshain, where Zalando will rent 42,000 square meters of office space of. The groundbreaking ceremony for the new company headquarters will follow in the second quarter of 2016. The office space will be available from 2018 and will cover a total of around 100,000 square meters.

Zalando will extend its campus from its current headquarters at Tamara-Danz-Straße up to its photo production site, located nearby in the former Postbahnhof. Recently, an additional 3,500 square meters were rented in the “Arena Boulevard” on the future campus site. To be included is also rental space in the office building “M_Eins” with 13,000 square meters of office space in construction (to be completed in 2017). Mid-2016 more office and photo production rental areas will also be based in the Zeughofstraße. The campus site is expected to be completed in 2018. In total almost 100,000 square meters will be available to the Zalando teams.

“We are very happy about the growth of Zalando and the associated creation of new jobs. As one of the largest private employers in Berlin, our objective is to give our employees in Berlin a work environment that allows for creativity while also bringing our employees closer together.” says Rubin Ritter, Member of the Board of Zalando.

The new office complex, with its two buildings of 29,000 and 13,000 square meters, respectively, is designed by the architectural firm Henn Office, winner of the tender process. The building concept reflects Berlin’s flair as a creative and innovative capital, which perfectly fits Zalando.

The construction will be managed by Münchner Grund Immobilien Bauträger GmbH, which already took care of the construction of the current headquarters at Tamara-Danz-Straße. In addition, Zalando was supported by Freshfield Bruckhaus Deringer LLP.

Link to the Campus-Video

Cornelia Yzer, Senator for Economy, Technology and R&D: “Zalando is not only Europe’s hottest-selling fashion e-commerce and a growth-oriented technology company. But, it is also one of the biggest employers in Berlin and a key pillar of the capital’s economy. With this campus project, the Berlin company is clearly setting the course for further growth and the creation of more jobs. A clear recognition for Europe’s number one location.”

“From a start-up to a technology company – Zalando has become the poster child for a modern Berlin success story. The company is now laying the foundation for the next chapter on this historical site. Innovative and growing companies such as Zalando are the ones shaping Berlin’s international appeal” says Dr. Stefan Franzke, Spokesperson of the Management of Berlin Partner for Economy and Technology.

Martin Henn, Partner & Design Director Henn: “We envision the new Zalando Campus as an integral part of the city. The architecture creates a stage for a diverse „cast“and a variable use of the building. The central vertical market place will make the company and its different identities tangible – it will foster exchanges beyond individual territories. ”

“Dynamic, future oriented and towards urbanity,” this is how Christian Berger, CEO of Münchner Grund Immobilien Bauträger GmbH, describes the location of the new Zalando-Headquarters. “We are looking forward to contributing with Zalando to the further development and vitalization of the Anschutz area. Now more than ever we are convinced of this specific site after having completed the HOTEL+OFFICE CAMPUS and Arena Boulevard projects. The optimal infrastructure connection, as well as the mix of accommodation, office and businesses will shape the area and create a unique neighborhood.”

Michael Kötter, Vice President Real Estate and Development Anschutz Entertainment Group Development GmbH (AEG): “We are happy that Zalando shares with us this vision of a vibrant city district and is giving us the opportunity to make it together a reality. Zalando’s decision to create an open campus around the future Mercedes-Platz will give an additional boost to this whole expansion.”

ABOUT ZALANDO
Zalando (https://corporate.zalando.com) is Europe’s leading online fashion platform for women, men and children. We offer our customers a one-stop, convenient shopping experience with an extensive selection of fashion articles including shoes, apparel and accessories, with free delivery and returns. Our assortment of over 1,500 international brands ranges from popular global brands, fast fashion and local brands, and is complemented by our private label products. Our localized offering addresses the distinct preferences of our customers in each of the 15 European markets we serve: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Poland and the United Kingdom. Our logistics network with three centrally located fulfillment centers in Germany allows us to efficiently serve our customers throughout Europe. We believe that our integration of fashion, operations and online technology give us the capability to deliver a compelling value proposition to both our customers and fashion brand partners.

Zalando’s shops attract over 131 million visits per month. In the third quarter of 2015, around 59 per cent of traffic came from mobile devices, resulting in close to 17.2 million active customers by the end of the quarter.


CONTACT ZALANDO
Nadine Przybilski
nadine.przybilski@zalando.de
+49 (0) 30 209 68 5002

SOURCE: ZALANDO

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Zalando to open its office campus in the Berlin district Friedrichshain/ Kreuzberg in 2018

Zalando to open its office campus in the Berlin district Friedrichshain/ Kreuzberg in 2018

Hudson’s Bay Company sells total of $533 million of its equity in HBS Global Properties to three third party investors

Proceeds to be used to reduce debt

TORONTO & NEW YORK, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — (All amounts in US dollars) – Hudson’s Bay Company (“HBC” or the “Company”) (TSX: HBC) is pleased to announce that it has sold a total of $533 million of its equity in HBS Global Properties, HBC’s real estate joint venture with Simon Property Group, to three third party investors. Proceeds from the equity sale, together with cash on hand, will be used to reduce HBC’s outstanding term loan B borrowings from $1,085 million to $500 million.

This equity sale follows the Company’s announcement on September 30, 2015 that it expected to sell between $400and $600 million of equity in HBS Global Properties. The total third party investment of $533 million values HBS Global Properties’ portfolio at $4.5 billion(1)(2) based on a blended capitalization rate of 5.90%, and is comprised of individual investments from the following entities:

  • $250 million equity investment by Ivanhoé Cambridge;
  • $150 million equity investment by Madison International Realty; and
  • $133 million equity investment by a large U.S. pension.

This transaction provides additional third party endorsements of the value of HBC’s real estate ventures while further de-leveraging the Company’s balance sheet. HBC will retain an approximate 63% ownership interest in HBS Global Properties as a result of this transaction and following the contribution of Simon Property Group’s $100 millioncommitment for tenant improvements.

Mr. Richard Baker, Governor and Executive Chairman of HBC, said: “We are thrilled to have three premier real estate investors join HBS Global Properties, bringing with them significant real estate investment expertise. These transactions further demonstrate the substantial value of our real estate portfolio, and our ability to unlock this value for our shareholders. We look forward to working with our partners to significantly expand and diversify the assets ofHBS Global Properties. We believe this will lead to an increase in the value of HBS Global Properties and therefore benefit HBC shareholders.”

As part of the transactions, Ivanhoé Cambridge will be granted representation on the board of directors of HBS Global Properties, raising the total number of board seats from four to five.

From time to time, HBC or HBS Global Properties may sell additional equity in HBS Global Properties, the proceeds of which could be used to further deleverage the Company or fund future acquisitions by HBS Global Properties.

RBC Capital Markets acted as exclusive financial advisor to HBC in connection with the equity sale.

(1) Assumes a EURUSD exchange rate of 1.07
(2) Represents the value of the properties after all transactions are completed, including the post-closing acquisition of certain German real estate properties and the minority interest related to the Kaufhof transaction, expected to occur within 5 months.

About Hudson’s Bay Company
Hudson’s Bay Company (TSX: HBC) is one of the fastest-growing department store retailers in the world, based on its successful formula of driving the performance of high quality stores and their all-channel offerings, unlocking the value of real estate holdings and growing through acquisitions. Founded in 1670, HBC is the oldest company in North America. With the recent completion of its acquisition of GALERIA Kaufhof Group, HBC’s portfolio today includes eight banners, in formats ranging from luxury to better department stores to off price, with more than 460 stores and 65,000 employees around the world.

In North America, HBC’s leading banners include Hudson’s Bay, Lord & Taylor, Saks Fifth Avenue and Saks OFF 5TH, along with Home Outfitters. In Europe, its banners include GALERIA Kaufhof, the largest department store group inGermany, Belgium’s only department store group Galeria INNO, as well as Sportarena.

HBC has significant investments in real estate joint ventures. It has partnered with Simon Property Group Inc. in HBS Global Properties Joint Venture, which owns properties in the United States and Germany. In Canada, it has partnered with RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust in the RioCan-HBC Joint Venture.

Forward Looking Statements

Certain statements made in this news release constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws, including, without limitation, statements regarding the pay down of HBC’s outstanding term loan B borrowings, Simon Property Group’s remaining commitments for tenant improvements, the expansion and diversification of the assets of HBS Global Properties, the acquisition of certain German real estate properties, HBC’s pro forma equity interest in HBS Global Properties and the potential future sale by HBC of additional equity in HBS Global Properties. The words “may”, “will”, “would”, “should”, “could”, “expects”, “plans”, “intends”, “trends”, “indications”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “estimates”, “predicts”, “likely” or “potential”, or the negative or other variations of these words or other comparable words or phrases, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on current estimates and assumptions made by the Company in light of its experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors that it believes are appropriate and reasonable in the current circumstances. However, there can be no assurance that such estimates and assumptions will prove to be correct.

Although HBC believes that the forward-looking statements in this news release are based on information and assumptions that are current, reasonable and complete, these statements are by their nature subject to a number of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from management’s expectations and plans as set forth in such forward-looking statements for a variety of reasons. Some of the factors – many of which are beyond HBC’s control and the effects of which can be difficult to predict – include, among others: (a) the possibility that the anticipated benefits from HBS Global Properties are not realized; (b) the risk that HBS Global Properties will not be able to expand and diversify its assets or effect a future monetization transaction for the benefit of shareholders of HBC; and (c) credit, market, currency, operational, liquidity and funding risks generally, including changes in economic conditions, interest rates or tax rates.

HBC cautions that the foregoing list of important factors and assumptions is not exhaustive and other factors could also adversely affect its results. For more information on the risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause HBC’s actual results to differ from current expectations, please refer to the “Risk Factors” section of HBC’s Annual Information Form dated April 30, 2015, HBC’s second quarter Management Discussion & Analysis dated September 10, 2015, as well as HBC’s other public filings, available at www.sedar.com and at www.hbc.com

The forward-looking statements contained in this news release describe HBC’s expectations at the date of this news release and, accordingly, are subject to change after such date. Except as may be required by applicable Canadian securities laws, HBC does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this news release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements.

Media Relations:
Hudson’s Bay Company
Tiffany Bourré, 905-595-7184
Director, External Communications
tiffany.bourre@hbc.com
or
Investor/Media Contact
Investor Relations:
416-256-6745
investorrelations@hbc.com

Source: Hudson’s Bay Company

News Provided by Acquire Media

HBS Global Properties announces the sale of $533 million of equity to three new investors

New investment values HBS Global Properties’ portfolio at US$4.5 billion(1)(2)

NEW YORK, LOS ANGELES & COLOGNE, Germany, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — (All amounts in US dollars) – HBS Global Properties, the real estate joint venture between Hudson’s Bay Company (“HBC”) (TSX: HBC) and Simon Property Group Inc. (“Simon”) (NYSE: SPG), is pleased to announce the sale of $533 million of equity, previously held by HBC, to three new investors.

The third party investment of $533 million values HBS Global Properties’ portfolio at $4.5 billion(1)(2), based on a blended capitalization rate of 5.90%. The investment is comprised of individual investments from the following premier real estate investors:

  • $250 million equity investment by Ivanhoé Cambridge;
  • $150 million equity investment by Madison International Realty; and
  • $133 million equity investment by a large U.S. pension.

HBC received all proceeds from the transaction. As a result of this transaction and the expected contribution of Simon Property Group’s $100 million commitment for tenant improvements, the pro forma ownership of HBS Global Properties will be held approximately as follows. All partner equity has been valued at a 5.9% capitalization rate:

  • 63% by HBC;
  • 13% by Simon Property Group;
  • 11% by Ivanhoé Cambridge;
  • 7% by Madison International Realty; and
  • 6% by a large U.S. pension.

“This investment highlights the value of our existing portfolio of properties. We are excited to combine the expertise of our new investors with our team to continue to grow our portfolio through anticipated accretive acquisitions in the United States and Europe,” said Lee Neibart, Chief Executive Officer of HBS Global Properties. “HBC’s collection of leading retail banners has the opportunity to serve as attractive tenants for a range of retail opportunities which we believe affords HBS Global Properties a significant competitive advantage.”

As part of the transactions, Ivanhoé Cambridge will be granted representation on the board of directors of HBS Global Properties, raising the total number of board seats from four to five.

With the recent acquisition of 41 GALERIA properties, HBS Global Properties now owns an international property portfolio of 83 marquee retail locations across the United States and Germany, including Saks, Lord & Taylor and GALERIA Kaufhof flagship department stores in Berlin, Beverly Hills, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, the greater New York area, and other metropolitan and suburban centers. HBS Global Properties has a mandate to pursue attractive credit tenant, net-leased and multi-tenanted retail buildings in the United States and Europe.

As appropriate, HBS Global Properties may sell new equity, the proceeds of which could be used to fund future acquisitions.

(1) Assumes a EURUSD exchange rate of 1.07
(2) Represents the value of the properties after all transactions are completed, including the post-closing acquisition of certain German real estate properties and the minority interest related to the Kaufhof transaction, expected to occur within 5 months.

For HBC Shareholders – Forward Looking Statements

Certain statements made in this news release constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws, including, without limitation, statements regarding the pro forma equity interests of HBC and other investors in HBS Global Properties, future anticipated accretive acquisitions by HBS Global Properties and the potential future sale of new equity of HBS Global Properties. The words “may”, “will”, “would”, “should”, “could”, “expects”, “plans”, “intends”, “trends”, “indications”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “estimates”, “predicts”, “likely” or “potential”, or the negative or other variations of these words or other comparable words or phrases, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on current estimates and assumptions made by the Company in light of its experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors that it believes are appropriate and reasonable in the current circumstances. However, there can be no assurance that such estimates and assumptions will prove to be correct.

Although HBC believes that the forward-looking statements in this news release are based on information and assumptions that are current, reasonable and complete, these statements are by their nature subject to a number of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from management’s expectations and plans as set forth in such forward-looking statements for a variety of reasons. Some of the factors – many of which are beyond HBC’s control and the effects of which can be difficult to predict – include, among others: (a) the possibility that the anticipated benefits from HBC are not realized; (b) the risk that HBS Global Properties will not be able to expand and diversify its assets or effect a future monetization transaction for shareholders of HBC; and © credit, market, currency, operational, liquidity and funding risks generally, including changes in economic conditions, interest rates or tax rates.

HBC cautions that the foregoing list of important factors and assumptions is not exhaustive and other factors could also adversely affect its results. For more information on the risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause HBC’s actual results to differ from current expectations, please refer to the “Risk Factors” section of HBC’s Annual Information Form dated April 30, 2015, HBC’s second quarter Management Discussion & Analysis dated September 10, 2015, as well as HBC’s other public filings, available at www.sedar.com and at www.hbc.com.

The forward-looking statements contained in this news release describe HBC’s expectations at the date of this news release and, accordingly, are subject to change after such date. Except as may be required by applicable Canadian securities laws, HBC does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this news release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements.

Media Contact

HBS Global Properties

Tiffany Bourré
Phone: (905) 595-7184
Email: tiffany.bourre@hbc.com

SOURCE: Hudson’s Bay Company

Kohl’s Department Stores appoints Sona Chawla Chief Operating Officer

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis., 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kohl’s Department Stores (NYSE: KSS) today announced the appointment of Sona Chawla to the newly created position of Chief Operating Officer, reporting directly to Kohl’s chairman, chief executive officer and president Kevin Mansell.

Chawla, who will join Kohl’s onNovember 30, will have leadership responsibility for Kohl’s full omnichannel operations. She will oversee all store operations, logistics and supply chain network, information and digital technology, e-commerce strategy, planning and operations, and store construction and design.

“The search for this role has been exhaustive and dynamic,” said Kevin Mansell, Kohl’s chairman, chief executive officer and president. “As our future vision for Kohl’s developed under our Greatness Agenda, the search for this role dramatically evolved. We saw an enormous opportunity to create something truly unique in retail – a leader that has oversight for the full omnichannel experience. When stores, online and digital teams are not just compatible but truly integrated, new thinking and new ways of delivering a seamless customer experience emerge.”

“We’ve never been more clear about the future of the company or the types of leaders that we need in place to deliver against our vision and Sona is exactly the right leader to join us,” said Mansell. “Sona will lead the seamless integration of all of our operations – from our stores to our website to all of our digital touchpoints with our customers. Her depth of experience in retail and her understanding of how to fully integrate technology and e-commerce into a retail experience will help Kohl’s elevate our customer conveniences across all channels.”

“I’m very happy to join the Kohl’s team,” said Sona Chawla. “Today’s retail customer expects conveniences that make shopping easier and more inspiring, no matter where or how they shop. Kohl’s Greatness Agenda has set the strategic framework in place for the company to deliver a truly compelling and engaging shopping experience in-store, online and across digital devices. I’m thrilled to be part of the bright future at Kohl’s.”

Along with chief merchandising and customer officer Michelle Gass, Chawla is expected to be a potential candidate in the company’s long-term CEO succession planning.

Prior to joining Kohl’s, Chawla spent seven years with Walgreens in a variety of senior leadership roles including president of e-commerce. Most recently, Chawla was president of digital and chief marketing officer. During her tenure with Walgreens, Chawla led a team responsible for developing industry-leading digital innovations that significantly enhanced core aspects of the company’s customer experience such as refilling prescriptions in seconds, printing photos from smartphones directly to stores, enabling seamless shopping through the integration of their loyalty program, coupons and mobile payments in store and launching digital health coaching and telehealth. Prior to joiningWalgreens, she was vice president of global online business at Dell, Inc. Before Dell, she worked at Wells Fargo’s Internet Services Group, where she held several roles including executive vice president of online sales, service and marketing. Chawla also worked at Andersen Consulting and Mitchell Madison Group.

About Kohl’s
Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) is a leading specialty department store with 1,166 stores in 49 states. With a commitment to inspiring and empowering families to lead fulfilled lives, the company offers amazing national and exclusive brands, incredible savings and inspiring shopping experiences in-store, online at Kohls.com and via mobile devices. Committed to its communities, Kohl’s has raised more than $274 million for children’s initiatives nationwide through its Kohl’s Cares® cause merchandise program, which operates under Kohl’s Cares, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. For additional information about Kohl’s philanthropic and environmental initiatives, visit www.Kohls.com/Cares. For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit www.Kohls.com.

Connect with Kohl’s:
Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/Kohls)
Twitter (http://twitter.com/Kohls)
Google+ (http://plus.google.com/+Kohls)
Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/Kohls)
Instagram (http://instagram.com/Kohls)
YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/kohls)

Source: Kohl’s Department Stores

Kohl’s Department Stores
Jen Johnson, 262-703-5241
Jen.Johnson@Kohls.com

 

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Sona Chawla, Chief Operating Officer, Kohl's (Photo: Business Wire)

Sona Chawla, Chief Operating Officer, Kohl’s (Photo: Business Wire)

The TJX Companies, Inc. announces sales and earnings results for Q3 ended October 31, 2015

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — The TJX Companies, Inc. (NYSE: TJX), the leading off-price retailer of apparel and home fashions in the U.S. and worldwide, today announced sales and earnings results for the third quarter ended October 31, 2015. Net sales for the third quarter of Fiscal 2016 increased 5% to $7.8 billion and consolidated comparable store sales increased 5% over last year’s 2% increase. Net income for the third quarter was $587 million and diluted earnings per share were $.86 versus last year’s $.85.

For the first nine months of Fiscal 2016, net sales were $22.0 billion, a 6% increase over last year, and consolidated comparable store sales increased 5%. Net income for the first nine months of Fiscal 2016 was $1.6 billion. Diluted earnings per share were $2.35, a 5% increase over the prior year’s adjusted $2.23, which excluded a $.01 per share debt extinguishment charge from reported earnings per share of $2.22.

Carol Meyrowitz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The TJX Companies, Inc., stated, “I am extremely pleased with our third quarter performance as our momentum continued. Our 5% consolidated comparable store sales growth, over a 2% increase last year, continued our excellent trend from the first two quarters and significantly exceeded our plans. Our $.86 in earnings per share was also well above our expectations. We are delighted that strong customer traffic drove our entire consolidated comp and was the primary driver of our comp increases at every division. Our excellent traffic gains and strong performance across our apparel, accessories and home categories, demonstrate that our brands globally are offering the right values and merchandise mix. Again this quarter, we saw strong sales at every division. I am particularly pleased with our ability to simultaneously deliver exceptional value to consumers while maintaining strong merchandise margins, which speaks to the flexibility of our off-price business model. Our goal is to keep serving consumers and growing our market share around the world. To that end, we continue to balance growth with investments in our future to establish a strong foundation in the U.S. and internationally. Further, we were happy to add Trade Secret, an Australian off-price retailer, to our family of companies in October. As to the fourth quarter, we are pleased to see that traffic continues to be up and we could not be more excited about the holiday selling season. I am convinced that our gift-giving selections are better than ever this year and that our holiday marketing campaigns will resonate with consumers and attract more shoppers to our stores. With our clear vision for global growth, a differentiated apparel and home fashions business, and world-class organization, I am very confident we will grow TJX to a $40 billion-plus company!”

Sales by Business Segment

The Company’s comparable store sales and net sales by division, in the third quarter, were as follows:

Third Quarter
Comparable Store Sales1,2
Third Quarter
Net Sales ($ in millions)3,4
FY2016 FY2015 FY2016 FY2015
In the U.S.:
Marmaxx5,6 +3% +1% $4,927 $4,674
HomeGoods +6% +7% $960 $851
International:
TJX Canada +10% +3% $754 $792
TJX Europe +7% -1% $1,114 $1,050
TJX +5% +2% $7,753 $7,366

1Comparable store sales outside the U.S. calculated on a constant currency basis, which removes the effect of changes in currency exchange rates.
2Comparable store sales exclude Sierra Trading Post, tjmaxx.com and tkmaxx.com sales.
3Sales in Canada and Europe include the impact of foreign currency exchange rates. See below.
4Figures may not foot due to rounding.
5Combination of T.J. Maxx and Marshalls.
6Net sales include Sierra Trading Post.

Impact of Foreign Currency Exchange Rates

Changes in foreign currency exchange rates affect the translation of sales and earnings of the Company’s international businesses into U.S. dollars for financial reporting purposes. In addition, ordinary course, inventory-related hedging instruments are marked to market at the end of each quarter. Changes in currency exchange rates can have a material effect on the magnitude of these translations and adjustments when there is significant volatility in currency exchange rates.

The movement in foreign currency exchange rates had a three percentage point negative impact on consolidated net sales growth in the third quarter of Fiscal 2016 versus the prior year. The overall net impact of foreign currency exchange rates had a $.04 negative impact on third quarter Fiscal 2016 earnings per share, compared with a $.01 positive impact last year.

For the first nine months of Fiscal 2016, the movement in foreign currency exchange rates had a three percentage point negative impact on consolidated net sales growth. The overall net impact of foreign currency exchange rates had an $.08 negative impact on earnings per share in the first nine months of Fiscal 2016, compared with a neutral impact last year.

A table detailing the impact of foreign currency on TJX pretax earnings and margins, as well as those of its international businesses, can be found in the Investor Information section of the Company’s website, tjx.com.

The foreign currency exchange rate impact to earnings per share does not include the impact currency exchange rates have on various transactions, which we refer to as “transactional foreign exchange.”

Margins

For the third quarter of Fiscal 2016, the Company’s consolidated pretax profit margin was 12.1%, a 0.9 percentage point decrease compared with the prior year.

Gross profit margin for the third quarter of Fiscal 2016 was 29.0%, down 0.4 percentage points versus the prior year. The decrease was primarily due to transactional foreign exchange at the Company’s international divisions and increased supply chain costs related to a substantial increase in units sold during the quarter. Merchandise margins remained strong.

Selling, general and administrative costs as a percent of sales were 16.7%, up 0.5 percentage points versus the prior year’s ratio, primarily due to the Company’s wage initiative and increased supply chain costs, as the Company had anticipated.

Inventory

Total inventories as of October 31, 2015, were $4.4 billion, compared with $4.0 billion at the end of the third quarter last year. Consolidated inventories on a per-store basis as of October 31, 2015, including the distribution centers, but excluding inventory in transit and the Company’s e-commerce businesses, were up 4% on a reported basis (up 6% on a constant currency basis). The Company is very comfortable with its inventory position, which it strategically increased ahead of the fourth quarter to provide more flexibility to flow fresh merchandise to its stores with greater precision throughout the holiday season. The Company enters the fourth quarter in an excellent position to take advantage of the plentiful buying opportunities for branded, quality merchandise it is seeing in the marketplace.

Shareholder Distributions

During the third quarter, the Company repurchased a total of $459 million of TJX stock, retiring 6.4 million shares. For the first nine months of Fiscal 2016, the Company spent a total of $1.3 billion in repurchases of TJX stock, retiring 19.1 million shares. The Company continues to expect to repurchase approximately $1.8 to $1.9 billion of TJX stock in Fiscal 2016. The Company may adjust this amount up or down depending on various factors.

Fourth Quarter and Full Year Fiscal 2016 Outlook

For the fourth quarter of Fiscal 2016, the Company expects diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $.91 to $.93 compared to $.93 last year. This guidance reflects an assumption that the combination of foreign currency, transactional foreign exchange, the Company’s wage initiative, incremental investments to support growth, and pension costs would have a 9% negative impact on EPS growth. This guidance also reflects a negative impact to EPS from the acquisition of Trade Secret that was not contemplated in the Company’s prior guidance. This EPS outlook is based upon estimated consolidated comparable store sales growth of 2% to 3%.

For the fiscal year ending January 30, 2016, the Company continues to expect diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $3.26 to $3.28 versus $3.15 in Fiscal 2015. Excluding a $.01 debt extinguishment charge in Fiscal 2015, this guidance would represent a 3% to 4% increase over the adjusted $3.16 in Fiscal 2015. This guidance for EPS growth reflects a 9% negative impact from the same factors affecting estimated EPS growth in the fourth quarter, detailed above. This guidance also now reflects a $.02 to $.03 negative impact to EPS from the acquisition of Trade Secret, which was not contemplated in the Company’s prior guidance. This EPS outlook is now based upon a raised estimate of consolidated comparable store sales growth of 4% to 5%.

The Company’s earnings guidance for the fourth quarter and full year Fiscal 2016 assumes that currency exchange rates will remain unchanged from the levels at the beginning of the fourth quarter.

Stores by Concept

During the third quarter ended October 31, 2015, the Company increased its store count by a net of 133 stores to a total of 3,594 stores. The Company increased square footage by 5% over the same period last year.

About The TJX Companies, Inc.
The TJX Companies, Inc. is the leading off-price retailer of apparel and home fashions in the U.S. and worldwide. As of October 31, 2015, the end of the Company’s third quarter, the Company operated a total of 3,594 stores in nine countries, the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Poland, Austria, the Netherlands, and Australia, and three e-commerce sites. These include 1,149 T.J. Maxx, 1,001 Marshalls, 522 HomeGoods and 7 Sierra Trading Post stores, as well as tjmaxx.com and sierratradingpost.com in the United States; 245 Winners, 101 HomeSense, and 41 Marshalls stores in Canada; 454 T.K. Maxx and 39 HomeSense stores, as well as tkmaxx.com, in Europe; and 35 Trade Secret stores in Australia. TJX’s press releases and financial information are also available at tjx.com.

Fiscal 2016 Third Quarter Earnings Conference Call

At 11:00 a.m. ET today, Carol Meyrowitz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of TJX, will hold a conference call with stock analysts to discuss the Company’s third quarter Fiscal 2016 results, operations and business trends. A real-time webcast of the call will be available to the public at tjx.com. A replay of the call will also be available by dialing (866) 367-5577 through Tuesday, November 24, 2015, or at tjx.com.

Non-GAAP Financial Information

The Company has used non-GAAP financial measures in this press release. Adjusted financial measures refer to financial information adjusted to exclude from financial measures prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States (GAAP) items identified in this press release. The Company believes that the presentation of adjusted financial results provides additional information on comparisons between periods including underlying trends of its business by excluding certain items that affect overall comparability. Non-GAAP financial measures should be considered in addition to, and not as an alternative for, the Company’s reported results prepared in accordance with GAAP.

Important Information at Website

Archived versions of the Company’s conference calls are available in the Investor Information section of tjx.comafter they are no longer available by telephone as are reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to GAAP financial measures and other financial information. The Company routinely posts information that may be important to investors in the Investor Information section at tjx.com. The Company encourages investors to consult that section of its website regularly.

Forward-looking Statement

SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT UNDER THE PRIVATE SECURITIES LITIGATION REFORM ACT OF 1995: Various statements made in this release are forward-looking and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. All statements that address activities, events or developments that we intend, expect or believe may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. The following are some of the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements: execution of buying strategy and inventory management; operational and business expansion and management of large size and scale; customer trends and preferences; marketing, advertising and promotional programs; competition; personnel recruitment, training and retention; labor costs and workforce challenges; economic conditions and consumer spending; data security; information systems and new technology; adverse or unseasonable weather; serious disruptions or catastrophic events; seasonal influences; corporate and retail banner reputation; merchandise quality and safety; expanding international operations; merchandise importing; commodity pricing; fluctuations in currency exchange rates; fluctuations in quarterly operating results and market expectations; mergers, acquisitions, or business investments and divestitures, closings or business consolidations; compliance with laws, regulations and orders; changes in laws and regulations; outcomes of litigation, legal matters and proceedings; tax matters; real estate activities; cash flow and other factors that may be described in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not undertake to publicly update or revise our forward-looking statements even if experience or future changes make it clear that any projected results expressed or implied in such statements will not be realized.

Source: The TJX Companies, Inc.

The TJX Companies, Inc.
Debra McConnell
Global Communications
(508) 390-2323

METRO Start-up Study 2015 shows digital tools continually gaining importance among restaurateurs and customers

  • METRO Start-up Study 2015 investigates the demand for digital tools and services in the hotel and food service industries
  • Young adults in particular want more digital services, like the option to reserve tables and pay via smartphone in restaurants and cafés
  • Business owners’ use of digital tools is so far largely limited to image-building and advertising
  • The mood among German food service start-ups is even better than last year

Düsseldorf, Germany, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Fancy eating out? Why not use an app to reserve a table, select your meals and drinks from the digital menu and pay using your phone? This is what the future of the food service industry could look like if many consumers get their wish. The METRO Start-up Study 2015, conducted in collaboration with the German market research institute GfK, surveyed food service and hotel business owners and their customers. The representative survey shows that digital tools are continually gaining in importance among restaurateurs and customers. One in four Germans can imagine reserving a restaurant table online or via an app.

Customers also want to be able to pay using their mobile phones. One in five customers would like to settle their bill by phone, but only 8 per cent of businesses currently offer this option. When it comes to making use of digital technology, most business owners think primarily of websites, Facebook pages and online rating sites, according to the METRO Start-up Study 2015. Their declared aim is to make themselves more widely known and attract new customers. For instance, 60 per cent of businesses are active on social networks, and 84 per cent have an online presence – used by 21 per cent of consumers. The majority of businesses use digital accounting (60 per cent) and digital cash register systems (54 per cent). 47 per cent already use digital goods purchasing technologies. However, only one in five businesses uses digital technologies for personnel management.

“Our survey confirms that restaurateurs and hotel managers are recognising more and more the potentials of digital solutions, although these are still used quite moderately. At the same time, the interest in and the need for digital solutions among customers is rising.  This is a good opportunity for businesses to win customers through digital services,” says Olaf Koch, Chairman of the Management Board of METRO AG. Our study also reveals that it is primarily a lack of time that prevents business owners from investigating digital services. In addition, worries about data protection and investment risk also play a role. In future, we will be offering significant support to our customers when it comes to choosing the right digital services – to help them become even more successful in their day-to-day business.”

Entrepreneurs more optimistic than last year

Germans love restaurants: one in two regularly eats at one of the country’s nearly 75,000 establishments and the industry employs over 400,000 people – a good basis for the 2015 study. As in 2014, the study investigated the aims, motivating factors and attitudes of business owners. “The mood in the hotel and food service industries has improved again since 2014,” says Olaf Koch. “Our METRO Start-up Study shows that 80 per cent of self-employed businesspeople are satisfied with their situation.” Catering companies are particularly happy (88 per cent), compared with just 70 per cent of snack bar owners. Satisfaction levels are influenced primarily by the businesses’ financial situation – and by size: nine out of ten owners of businesses with an annual revenue of more than €500,000 describe themselves as satisfied.

Being one’s own boss is an important happiness factor: nearly all business owners (95 per cent) are positive about the fact that they can assume a high degree of responsibility. Creative work and scope for independent action are important positive aspects of being self-employed for eight out of ten business owners. The majority of business owners in the hotel and food service industries should therefore have achieved their expectations: for 81 per cent (6 percentage points lower than last year), the desire for independence was the most important factor driving the decision to set up their own business.

Shortage of qualified staff

The worry about finding suitable staff has risen by 8 percentage points compared with last year (79 per cent), and 93 per cent of restaurants regard the shortage of qualified staff as a big problem. In addition, even more business owners than last year (79 per cent compared with 70 per cent) are bothered by bureaucratic hurdles and industry regulations. The hotel industry in particular suffers from bureaucracy (87 per cent).

The METRO Start-up Study 2015

On behalf of METRO, the German market research institute GfK surveyed business owners in the food service and hotel industries about their attitudes, motivating factors and challenges, and the extent of digitisation in their businesses. It is the second study of its kind – the first one was conducted in 2014. Anonymous telephone interviews were carried out with a total of 350 people in September 2015. At the same time, GfK conducted a representative survey of German consumers (sample size: approximately 1,000 people) on expectations and user habits regarding digital services in the food service and hotel industries. The METRO Start-up Study 2015 can be accessed at www.metro-startupstudy.com.

METRO GROUP is one of the largest and most important international retailing companies. In the financial year 2014/15 it generated sales of around €59 billion. The company operates more than 2,000 stores in 30 countries and has a headcount of around 230,000 employees. The performance of METRO GROUP is based on the strength of its sales brands that operate independently in their respective market segments: METRO/MAKRO Cash & Carry – the international leader in self-service wholesale – Media Markt and Saturn – the European market leader in consumer electronics retailing and Real hypermarkets. More information on www.metrogroup.de

METRO AG
Corporate Communications
Metro-Straße 1
D-40235 Düsseldorf

Telephone: +49 211 6886-4252
Telefax: +49 211 6886-2001

E-Mail METRO GROUP: presse@metro.de

SOURCE: METRO GROUP

Walmart announces the completion of commitments to reduce 20m metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions and expanded commitment to preserve wildlife habitat

Company celebrates 10 years of progress towards aspirational sustainability goals at Milestone Meeting, announces new commitment to preserve wildlife habitat

BENTONVILLE, Ark., 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — In front of an audience of associates, suppliers and nonprofit organizations at its Global Sustainability Milestone Meeting, Walmart today announced the completion of commitments to reduce 20 million metric tons of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from its global supply chain, double fleet efficiency, and expanded an existing commitment to preserve wildlife habitat. The company also highlighted major progress around a pledge to develop a sustainable food system: the completion of several food and nutrition commitments and receipt of an award from Partnership for a Healthier America for its work to open stores in food deserts.

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“Today we celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the launch of our sustainability agenda,” said Doug McMillon, president and chief executive officer of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. “We’re proud to recognize the progress we continue to make every day, and we’re excited about what we hope to accomplish in the next ten years and beyond.  Our company has made major strides since we embarked on this journey, and our focus for the next decade will remain the same: doing the right thing for our customers, our communities, people working in the supply chain and the planet. Our approach to global responsibility not only makes sense for the environment, but it’s also good for our customers, and our business.”

A decade ago, Walmart’s then-CEO Lee Scott set forth three aspirational goals outlining the company’s support for environment and people worldwide:

  1. To be supplied by 100% renewable energy;
    2. Create zero waste;
    3. Sell products that sustain people and the environment.

To ensure progress toward these goals, Walmart continually establishes ambitious commitments with definitive timelines, while collaborating with suppliers, nonprofits, industry experts and governments. Walmart today shared progress against several of these commitments:

  • Eliminated 20 million metric tons of GHG emissions from its global supply chain. In 2010, Walmart announced its goal to eliminate 20 million metric tons of GHG emissionsfrom its global supply chain by the end of 2015. Today, the company announced that it has exceeded this commitment early by eliminating 28.2 million metric tons to date, which is the equivalent of taking more than 5.9 million cars off the road for an entire year. Collaborating with EDF, Walmart has achieved this goal by implementing various innovative measures across both its global operations and those of suppliers, including enhanced energy efficiency, the execution of numerous renewable energy projects and collaborating with suppliers on the Sustainability Index to track progress towards reducing overall carbon footprint.
  • Doubled fleet efficiency. In 2005, Walmart committed to doubling the efficiency of its fleet by the end of 2015. Today, the company shared that it has achieved this momentous goal by working with its associates to establish innovative solutions for loading, routing and driving techniques, as well as collaborating with tractor and trailer manufacturers on new technologies. With these new efficiencies, in this fiscal year alone, the company expects to save nearly $1 billion compared to a 2005 baseline, and avoid emissions of almost 650,000 metric tons of CO2.  This contributes to a cleaner environment and lower prices for customers.
  • Permanently preserved acres of wildlife habitat. Today Walmart announced it is renewing its conservation efforts by committing $35 million over the next ten years to Acres for America.  Since 2005, Walmart, in collaboration with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, has helped preserve and restore more than 1 million acres of wildlife habitat through 61 projects in 33 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico through the Acres for America program. This commitment aims to permanently conserve at least one acre of priority wildlife habitat for every developed acre of the company’s current and future footprint, and has already dramatically exceeded the original commitment of 100,000 acres.
  • Advanced the sustainability the company’s biggest product category. In keeping with the goal of selling products that sustain people and the environment, Walmart hascommitted to create a more sustainable food system. This commitment focused on four key pillars: improving food affordability; increasing access to food; making healthier eating easier; and improving safety and transparency in the supply chain. Today, Walmart announced the completion of several key food commitments under these pillars:
    • Affordability: Beginning in 2011, Walmart committed to helping customers save on healthy food, including $1 billion in annual savings on fresh produce. The company has exceeded this commitment year over year, totaling over $4.69 billion in customer savings to date.
    • Accessibility: In July, 2011, Walmart committed to opening up to 300 stores serving USDA-designated food deserts. By the end of January 2015, Walmart had exceeded this goal, a year earlier than planned, by opening 375 stores.  Today Walmart is being recognized for those efforts as a recipient of the Partnership for a Healthier America Award.
    • Health and Transparency: As part of its focus on making healthy eating easier, Walmart committed in 2011 to reduce sodium by 25 percent, added sugars by 10 percent and to eliminate industrially produced transfats in private label and national brand packaged foods sold in the company’s stores. So far, Walmart has reduced sodium in these products by more than 16 percent, reduced added sugars by over 10 percent and ensured that fewer than 6 percent of contain partially hydrogenated oils. Walmart also created a Great For You front-of-pack seal, which is now on more than 30 percent of the company’s private label products, to help customers easily identify more nutritious choices.

“While our journey is far from over, it’s clear that we are on the right path. Even as Walmart grows, we are continuing to leverage our scale and enhancing our supply chain for the good of people and the planet,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, chief sustainability officer for Walmart.  “The progress we have achieved would not be possible without the passion and the hard work of associates across the company, as well as the partnership of our suppliers and the NGOs who have helped us drive our work forward.”

For more details and to watch the replay of Walmart’s Global Sustainability Milestone Meeting, please visit: http://news.walmart.com/events/fall-sustainability-milestone-meeting

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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, nearly 260 million customers and members visit our 11,554 stores under 72 banners in 28 countries and e-commerce websites in 11 countries. With fiscal year 2015 revenue of $485.7 billion, Walmart employs approximately 2.2 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.

SOURCE: Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Teavana stores receive makeovers to create special experience for tea connoisseurs

SEATTLE, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — A team of Teavana and Starbucks partners (employees) have created a special experience for tea connoisseurs in two Seattle-area locations.

“We selected one of our Teavana stores and completely transformed the customers experience,” said Dan Karches, director, Marketing and Category for Teavana. “A tight partnership between tea, design and merchandise partners was the only way we were able to develop this unique concept that makes meaningful changes to how customers will experience our Teavana brand.”

Color-corrected LED lights create a spotlight on 75 varieties of tea in vibrant pink, yellow and traditional grey tones at the store, which reopened on November 10 in Westfield Southcenter in Tukwila.  A second location with a similar design opened November 16 at Bellevue Square, a high-end shopping center in Bellevue.

Crossing the Threshold

Anthony Perez, director, Americas Concepts and Pacific Northwest Store Design for Starbucks and Teavana, and a team of designers altered the store layout and put tea front and center.

“We know that it takes about three seconds for a customer to decide to come into the store or not,” said Perez. “Our goal was for the intention of the store to be immediately and clearly understood, that this is a vibrant and exciting new store absolutely all about tea.”

Teavana partners are on hand to answer questions or provide assistance to customers with tea blending, sampling and merchandise demonstrations.

“We wanted to turn the original store experience inside out, so it’s more invitational,” said Perez. “You can experience the store through a self-guided tour or learn about tea alongside one of our tea experts.”

Interacting with Tea

The Southcenter store features a matcha green tea wall, a hot tea demonstration section and a self-serve wet bar with six flavors of signature fresh-brewed iced tea. Customers can order iced tea by the glass or fill a glass growler to enjoy at home. In addition, pure teas as well as epicurean tea blends are available in loose leaf and pre-packed sachets.

A 23-foot-long concrete table known as the “make table” runs nearly the length of the Teavana location. It’s the store’s centerpiece where people can come together to taste and blend tea.

“We’ve created an experience that is like going behind the bar with your favorite bartender or spending time in a restaurant kitchen with your favorite chef,” said Jason Adams, Teavana category manager. “This community table provides an interactive space where you can gain a greater understanding of tea and customize a signature blend.”

The Southcenter and Bellevue locations will be the only Teavana stores to offer 14 microlot or small-batch teas.

“These teas are the best of the best, hand plucked from backyard gardens and small farms,” said Adams. “We are excited to offer them exclusively at these two newly designed stores.”

Creative Gifting

Ben Nelson, Starbucks director, Creative and Merchandise Design, ensured the look and feel of the merchandise appropriately complemented the store’s contemporary design. At Southcenter and Bellevue, one will find tea pots, tins, cups and other merchandise not available at any other Teavana store.

“I thought about our existing customers as well as those who are new to tea when I assembled our collection,” said Nelson.

Moving away from bundled gift packs allows for customization and personalized gift options.

“We pushed for a mix of high-design, fashion and fun,” he said. “We tried to straddle that mix of what a museum art design store might carry, while also staying fun and youthful with colors and patterns.”

Holiday shopping online through Teavana.com

For more information on this news release, contact the Starbucks Newsroom.

SOURCE:  Starbucks Corporation

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Teavana stores receive makeovers to create special experience for tea connoisseurs

Teavana stores receive makeovers to create special experience for tea connoisseurs

Starbucks Coffee Korea launches new Starbucks® app on the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch

Seoul, Korea, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Starbucks Coffee Korea today launched the new Starbucks® app on the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch. Through the pre-loaded Starbucks® app, customers in Korea can track their My Starbucks Rewards™ status and pay for Starbucks purchases directly from the wearable device. This marks the company’s first Starbucks® app on a wearable device in Asia.

“We’re pleased to make the Starbucks digital experience convenient and rewarding for our customers,” said SJ Paik, chief marketing officer, Starbucks Korea. “This new Starbucks app for the Gear S2 smartwatch reflects Starbucks continued commitment globally to lead, innovate and connect with customers using mobile technology.”

Custom Display Options

With the circular design of the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch, Starbucks fans can access uniquely designed Starbucks smartwatch face designs, such as the My Starbucks Rewards™ cup icon design. The Starbucks smartwatch face designs were specially created by Starbucks and new designs will be regularly available on the Samsung Gear S2 Manager app to bring even greater personalization to the mobile Starbucks experience.

Loyalty and Mobile Innovation

Starbucks Coffee Korea continues to create emotional connections with customers through a number of key loyalty and digital offerings, such as the debut of the Starbucks Card in 2009 and the launch of the My Starbucks Rewards™ program in 2011. Last year, Siren Order, a convenient mobile beverage pre-ordering and payment service launched and, at the time, was a first of its kind for the company. The launch of the Starbucks® app on the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch is another example of how Starbucks continues to bring relevant digital innovations to customers in Korea.

As the mobile industry leader across Korea, Samsung launched the Gear S2 smartwatch in the market this past September to enhance and innovate the mobile experience.

Korean-Language Translation

For more information on this news release, contact us.

SOURCE:  Starbucks Corporation

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Starbucks Coffee Korea launches new Starbucks® app on the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch

Starbucks Coffee Korea launches new Starbucks® app on the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch

Amazon.com announces holiday deals starting on November 20-27

  • Enjoy new deals every five minutes starting Friday, November 20 through Friday, November 27
  • Effortlessly keep tabs on top deals from anywhere with new “Watch A Deal” feature

SEATTLE, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — (NASDAQ:AMZN)—Amazon.com today announced holiday deals start on Friday, November 20, with new deals added as often as every five minutes for eight straight days at www.amazon.com/blackfriday. Customers will have access to 10 coveted Deals of the Day starting at midnight on Thanksgiving, and up to 10 more on Black Friday. Customers can also shop limited-time Lightning Deals on thousands of sought-after products per day throughout the eight days of deals. Plus, Prime members will get 30-minutes early access to the majority of these Lightning Deals.

This year, Amazon will introduce more than 150 hand-picked Lightning Deals on everything from electronics to kitchen gadgets only through the Amazon Mobile Shopping App available on Android, iOS, and Fire OS. These deals can be found on the “App Only Deals” tab and will be released daily from 3 PM PT to 11 PM PT starting Thanksgiving through Wednesday, December 9. In addition, Prime members in 20 metro areas can use the dedicated Prime Now mobile app to enjoy free two-hour delivery on select Deals of the Day throughout the holiday season.

Last year, total holiday sales from the Amazon Mobile Shopping App doubled in the U.S. and Black Friday had the most rapid growth in mobile shopping. This year, it will be even easier to spend time with loved ones thanks to “Watch A Deal” which allows holiday shoppers to pick the deals they’re most excited about and receive a notification to their mobile device when the deal is live. With this new feature, Amazoncustomers can effortlessly take advantage of deals throughout the day and while on-the-go.

“Customers can truly sit back and relax with their family and friends this holiday season knowing that they will be notified as soon as the products they’ve had their eye on are about to go on sale,” said Steve Shure, Vice President, Amazon Consumer Marketing. “Year after year, more and more customers shop for deals on Amazon from the comfort of their own home, and we continue to make that process even more convenient for them. And with App Only Deals, customers will have plenty of options when it comes to scoring great deals from Amazon.”

Following are examples of some of the top deals that will be available at various times between November 20 and Black Friday at www.amazon.com/blackfriday:

Electronics:

  • Kindle Paperwhite, $99.99
  • $30 off Kindle and Kindle for Kids Bundle
  • Fire, $34.99
  • Fire Kids Edition, $84.99
  • $25 off Amazon Fire TV
  • $15 off Amazon Fire TV Stick and Amazon Fire TV Stick with Voice Remote
  • Up to 45% off select Samsung and LG TVs, including Samsung 32” 1080p LED TV for $177.99, LG 49” 1080p LED TV for less than$370, and Samsung 75” 1080p Smart LED TV for less than $2,000
  • Top-selling 60” 4K LED TV, $799.99
  • TCL 55” Roku Smart LED TV, $348
  • Hisense 55” 4K Smart LED TV, $448 (App Only Deal)
  • 50” 1080p LED TV, $149.99 (App Only Deal)
  • 40” 1080p LED TV, $145
  • TCL 32” Roku Smart LED TV, $125
  • 32” LED TV, $75
  • Acer Home Theater Projector, $299.99
  • VIZIO 38” 2.1 Home Theater Sound Bar, $79.99
  • $49 off SONOS 2-Room Streaming Music Starter Set
  • Save 40% on Polk Audio Omni S2 Wireless Speaker
  • Up to 25% off Denon HEOS 1 Wireless Speakers
  • 50% off Sony Extra Bass Bluetooth Headphones
  • Save more than 50% on Sennheiser HD 598 Special Edition Over-Ear Headphones in Black (Amazon Exclusive)
  • More than 50% off top-selling point-and-shoot camera
  • Jawbone UP3, $99
  • Save $100 on an Intel-Powered Dell 2-in-1 Laptop
  • ASUS 15” laptop, $129
  • Up to 40% off select Acer desktops, monitors, chromebooks, and tablets
  • Save more than 20% on select Samsung Galaxy Tablets
  • Save up to 70% on select SanDisk memory cards and USB flash drives
  • Top-selling mobile printer for less than $100

Baby, Toys & Pets:

  • Save 30% or more on select Graco Car Seats and Strollers
  • Up to 60% off select Disney apparel, toys, and more
  • Save 50% on select best-selling wooden preschool toys
  • 40% off select Fisher-Price Musical Instruments
  • Up to 50% off select toys from favorite brands like Barbie, Hot Wheels, Fisher-Price, and more
  • Save 50% on select construction toys from K’NEX, Lincoln Logs, and Tinkertoys
  • Up to 50% off select Lionel Train Sets, including Polar Express
  • 50% off select wearable technology products and robotic toys for kids
  • 45% off UDI R/C Falcon Drone with HD Camera
  • LEGO Star Wars Stormtrooper Figurine Alarm Clock, $15.99
  • Up to 60% off select Nylabone dog treats and chew toys
  • Save more than 50% on select Outward Hound dog toys
  • Up to 50% off select PetSafe pet products

Home & Kitchen:

  • Save $50 on Samsung SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit
  • Save up to $200 on select Dyson vacuums
  • Save 40% on Silhouette Cameo Starter Bundle
  • $25 off with select DEWALT purchases of $100 or more
  • $20 off select orders of $100 or more in Porter-Cable tools
  • DEWALT 18-Volt Compact Drill/Driver Kit with Two Batteries, $89
  • More than 45% off Miracle-Gro AeroGarden Ultra LED Indoor Garden with Gourmet Herb Seed Kit
  • Up to 60% off select products from FoodSaver, Oster, Krups, Nespresso, T-fal, Wilton, and more
  • More than 55% off select Imprint Cumulus Comfort Mats
  • More than 50% off select Instant Pot Programmable Pressure Cookers
  • Save up to 40% on select cookware from Circulon and Rachael Ray
  • More than 40% off Rabbit 6-Piece Wine Tool Kit
  • Save 20% on Soma Sustainable Carafe and Plant-Based Water Filter, available through the new Amazon Launchpad program for startups

Sports & Travel:

  • 34% off Skywalker 15-Feet Jump N’ Dunk Trampolines
  • Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress with Never Flat Pump – Queen, $87.99
  • BARSKA Starwatcher 400x70mm Refractor Telescope, $49.50
  • 30% off Reebok Professional Deck Workout Bench
  • 25% off Nautilus T614 Treadmill
  • STIGA Triumph Table Tennis Table, $299.99
  • 25% off select Timbuk2 Command Messenger Bags
  • 25% off select Under Armour fleece
  • adidas Originals Men’s Sport Essentials Tee, $19.99
  • Save up to 50% on select adidas footwear for men, women, and kids
  • Save 70% or more on Samsonite Two-Piece Spinner Sets
  • Up to 45% off RV and camping supplies, including select products from Camco and Valterra
  • Up to 55% off select Automotive D-I-Y items

Fashion & Beauty:

  • Up to 70% off select clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, and watches for men, women, and kids
  • 30% off select clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, and watches with promotional code 30BLACKFRI
  • Up to 70% off select diamond jewelry gifts
  • Up to 50% off select luxury watches for women
  • Select Levi’s Jeans for men, $39.99 or less
  • 45% off select New Balance shoes for men, women, and kids
  • 50% off select Steve Madden shoes for men
  • 50% off select Steve Madden and Madden Girl shoes for women and kids
  • 50% off select Stride Rite shoes and more for kids
  • Select baby and kids’ coats, fleece, hats, and more, $14.99 or less
  • Save up to $30 on Oral Care, including Oral-B electric toothbrushes
  • Up to 25% off select skin care products, including Dove, Olay, and more

Books, Music & Video Games:

  • 80% off Transformers: The Covenant of Primus
  • Save more than 50% on Deathstroke Volume 1 Book and Mask Set
  • Save on more than 10 autographed CDs, including Kenny Rogers, Megadeth, and more (Amazon Exclusive)
  • Save 15% or more on select vinyl records
  • Save $20 on Need for Speed
  • Save $30 on Rock Band 4 Wireless Guitar Bundle
  • $50 off Xbox One Consoles
  • $50 off PlayStation 4 Uncharted Bundle
  • $25 off Metal Gear Solid V
  • Hundreds of PC download deals up to 70% off

All prices available at select times and while supplies last.

Amazon Prime members enjoy unlimited Free Two-Day Shipping on more than 20 million items and unlimited Free Same-Day Delivery on more than a million items in 16 metro areas. In addition, Prime members in 20 metro areas receive one- and two-hour delivery on tens of thousands of everyday essentials with the dedicated Prime Now mobile app. To become a member, visit www.amazon.com/prime. Amazonalso offers free shipping on millions of items every day, year-round, on eligible orders of $35 or more.

About Amazon

Amazon.com opened on the World Wide Web in July 1995. The company is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, and Alexa are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon. For more information, visit www.amazon.com/about.

Source: Amazon.com, Inc.

Amazon.com, Inc.
Media Hotline, 206-266-7180
www.amazon.com/pr

Netflix to premiere new action adventure drama series Frontier exclusively in 2016

Beverly Hills, Calif., 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Netflix, the world’s leading internet TV network, announced that Frontier, a new action adventure drama series starring Jason Momoa (Game of Thrones, Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice) and from co-creators Rob Blackie (Republic of Doyle) and Peter Blackie (Majumder Manor) and director Brad Peyton (San Andreas, Incarnate, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island) will premiere exclusively on Netflix outside of Canada, everywhere the service is available, in 2016.

The first season of the drama series, commissioned by Discovery Canada, is made up of six, one-hour episodes. Frontier will debut on Discovery Canada in Canada and will come to Netflix Canada beginning in 2018.

The series is an action-packed adventure drama following the chaotic and violent struggle to control wealth and power in the North American fur trade in the late 18th century. Told from multiple perspectives, the series takes place in a world where business negotiations might be resolved with close-quarter hatchet fights, and where delicate relations between Native tribes and Europeans can spark bloody conflicts.

Alun Armstrong (New Tricks, Braveheart), Landon Liboiron (Hemlock Grove, Degrassi), Zoe Boyle (Downton Abbey, Sons of Anarchy) and Allan Hawco (Republic of Doyle, The Book of Negroes), and round out the international cast. The series also introduces Canadian newcomer, Jessica Matten.

“We jumped at the opportunity to bring this action-packed series to our global viewers” said Erik Barmack, Vice President of Local Originals at Netflix. “The creative team behind the series has a very exciting vision for Jason and the show, and we’re thrilled to be working with Discovery Canada on getting a vast, worldwide audience to enjoy it.”

“Frontier presents an outstanding opportunity for our company and we are thrilled to be in business with Netflix and Discovery on this exciting project,” said Alex Patrick, President of Take the Shot.

Rob Blackie, Peter Blackie, Brad Peyton, Jeff Fierson (This is Not a Robbery), Alex Patrick (Republic of Doyle) and John Vatcher (Republic of Doyle) serve as executive producers on the series. The series is produced by Take The Shot Productions and Factory Backwards, in association with Discovery, the exclusive Canadian broadcaster, and Netflix.

About Netflix
Netflix is the world’s leading Internet television network with over 69 million members in over 50 countries enjoying more than 100 million hours of TV shows and movies per day, including original series, documentaries and feature films. Members can watch as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, on nearly any Internet-connected screen. Members can play, pause and resume watching, all without commercials or commitments.

About Factory Backwards
Factory Backwards is the feature film and television production company founded by writer/director Brad Peyton and his producing partner Jeff Fierson. Peyton directed the Warner Bros. hit film San Andreas, which has earned more than $470 million at the worldwide box office and remains 2015’s top grossing wholly original live action film. Upcoming features include New Line Cinema’s Rampage, based on the 1980s arcade game, starring Dwayne Johnson, and an untitled high-concept action/adventure feature for Sony Pictures Entertainment, both of which Peyton will direct. Peyton and Fierson will produce Rampage, and executive produce the untitled project at Sony. On the television side, the duo’s action/adventure series Frontier, starring Jason Momoa will debut on Discovery Canada and on Netflix in 2016.

About Take The Shot Productions
Established in 2009, St. John’s based Take The Shot produces a variety of scripted and unscripted projects for television. Past and current productions include the Gemini-nominated series Republic of Doyle, now airing in over 100 countries; the hit factual series Majumder Manor; Boy on Bridge featuring Great Big Sea’s front man Alan Doyle, and HBO Canada’s Shaun Majumder, Every Word is Absolutely True.

Media Contact:

Karen Barragan
Netflix PR
310-350-2969 cell

SOURCE: Netflix

Lowe’s to give $25,000 each to 4 U.S. public schools through its student letter-writing campaign on ways to improve their school

MOORESVILLE, N.C., 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Thanks to students who put their writing skills and imaginations to the test to highlight the needs of their schools, four public schools across the U.S. will each receive a $25,000 grant from Lowe’s and its Charitable and Educational Foundation.  The winning schools were announced today after more than 4,000 students wrote Letters to Lowe’s as part of a campaign celebrating ten years of the company’s Toolbox for Education grants program.  Lowe’s used the student letter-writing campaign as a platform to encourage teachers to have open conversations with their students about ways to improve their school.

Denver teacher Kyle Schwartz, an education advocate who brought national awareness to the challenges faced by students by tweeting her students’ responses to the phrase “I wish my teacher knew,” supported the Letters to Lowe’s campaign and inspired school communities from California to Maine to submit their students’ letters to Lowe’s.

“For the 10th anniversary of Lowe’s Toolbox for Education, we wanted to bring a powerful new voice into the process – students,” said Joan Higginbotham, Lowe’s director of community relations. “Many public schools face challenges to meet the basic needs of their students. We wanted to empower students to make a change by allowing them to share what they believe their school truly needs.”

Lowe’s selected 10 finalists from student letters from across the country and then invited the public to vote for the four schools they felt most needed improvements. The following schools will each receive a $25,000 grant and support from Lowe’s Heroes employee volunteers to complete their projects:

  • Hiddenite Elementary School (Hiddenite, NC) – Fourth grader Callie wrote to Lowe’s about her school’s need for a playground refurbishment. She described cracked slides, the need for handicap accessible equipment and benches for kids to rest on as some of the reasons her school should receive the grant.
  • Lake County High School (Tiptonville, TN) – Twelfth grader Peyton told Lowe’s about the deteriorating conditions at his school that was built more than 50 years ago. He shared how awesome the teachers are at his school, but that the school needed an updated physical appearance the students could be proud of.
  • San Cayetano Elementary School (Rio Rico, AZ) – Fifth grader Sophia told Lowe’s about her school’s need for a sun shade on their playground to protect students from 90 to 100 degree temperatures in the spring and summer. She shared that parents tried to fundraise for the structure but were not able to raise enough funds.
  • Berkeley Springs High School (Berkeley Springs, WV) – Twelfth grader Kaitlyn wrote to Lowe’s for help with getting her school more access to technology. She said many of the students at her school do not have high-speed internet at home and that the computer lab is always booked.

For 10 years, Lowe’s Toolbox for Education® has awarded grants benefiting more than 6 million K-12 public school students. Every spring and fall, teachers and school administrators across the country are awarded grants from Lowe’s towards projects including refurbishments and safety improvements. Schools interested in applying for future Toolbox for Education grants can find more information on toolboxforeducation.com. The next spring grants cycle opens on December 18, 2015.

ABOUT LOWE’S
Lowe’s, a FORTUNE® 50 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 Lowes.com/SocialResponsibility and LowesInTheCommunity.tumblr.com.

SOURCE Lowe’s Companies, Inc.

 

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Lowe’s to give $25,000 each to 4 U.S. public schools through its student letter-writing campaign on ways to improve their school

Lowe’s to give $25,000 each to 4 U.S. public schools through its student letter-writing campaign on ways to improve their school

The British Land Company PLC reports its Half Year 2015/16 Results

The British Land Company PLC Half Year Results

LONDON, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Chris Grigg, Chief Executive said: “We are reporting another strong set of results. In recent years we have positioned our portfolio to benefit from long-term macro trends. This focus has underpinned our performance in the last six months where we have benefited from strong occupational demand and a sound UK economy. Moreover our high quality portfolio and attractive and flexible development opportunities, position us well for the future.”

Strong first half results

  • Total accounting return of 9.1% for 6 months to 30 September 2015 (H1 2014/15: 13.7%)
  • EPRA NAV +7.5% to 891 pence per share; IFRS Net Assets at £9.3 billion (31 March 2015: £8.6 billion)
  • Underlying PBT +10.3% to £171 million; IFRS PBT of £823 million (H1 2014/15: £1,043 million)
  • Quarterly dividend of 7.09 pence; bringing the half year to 14.18 pence (+2.5%)

Valuation growth reflecting robust markets and our initiatives

  • Total portfolio valuation +4.7%; standing investments +4.5%; developments +8.5%
  • Strong uplift in Offices & Residential +8.2%; continued growth in Retail & Leisure +1.8%
  • ERV growth of 2.3%; strengthening in Offices and positive in Retail
  • Continued outperformance vs IPD: all property returns +10 bps; capital returns +30bps

Strong operating metrics; letting space on good terms

  • 573,300 sq ft of leasing across Retail and Offices; 5.7% ahead of ERV; total occupancy of 98.4%
  • 365,100 sq ft Retail lettings and renewals; 6.6% ahead of ERV; further 326,600 sq ft under offer
  • 208,200 sq ft Office lettings and renewals; 5.0% ahead of ERV; 41,500 sq ft under offer 12% ahead of ERV
  • Retail footfall +1.9% (300 bps ahead of market); retailer sales +3.3%

Allocating capital to our strongest assets

  • Net investment of £172 million into London and the South East; acquisition of One Sheldon Square, Paddington Central and investment in development more than outweighing sales (includes 39 Victoria Street, SW1); increases London and South East weighting to 65%
  • On site at £825 million committed developments; includes Clarges Mayfair and 4 Kingdom Street, Paddington Central; further £80 million Retail capital spend
  • £258 million of non-core Retail disposals, including £60 million post period end; investing in our multi-let portfolio to drive performance

Creating opportunities which significantly enhance the scale of our assets

  • 535,000 sq ft moved forward to the near-term development pipeline
  • Progressing the Broadgate Vision; planning granted on 100 Liverpool Street and resolution to grant planning consent received at 1 Finsbury Avenue; advancing plans on 2-3 Finsbury Avenue
  • 230,000 sq ft of leisure extensions to retail assets including Drake Circus, Plymouth and New Mersey Shopping Park, Speke
  • Progressing medium-term opportunities including Canada Water

Strong financial position; maintaining capital discipline

  • LTV reduced to 34% in line with strategy of not gearing up on market yield shift
  • WAIR reduced 20 bps to 3.6%; issue of zero coupon £350 million convertible bond the key driver
  • Maintaining capital discipline with selective acquisitions in strong markets
Income statement H1 2014/15 H1 2015/16 Change
1 Underlying profit before tax excludes capital and other one-off items and is the measure that is used internally to assess the Group’s income performance. This is presented on a proportionally consolidated basis.
2 See Note 2 to the condensed set of financial statements
3 Valuation movement during the period (excluding effect of capital expenditure) of properties held at the balance sheet date, including purchases and sales
Underlying profit before tax1,2 £155m £171m +10.3%
IFRS profit before tax £1,043m £823m
Diluted Underlying EPS2 15.3p 16.0p +4.6%
Diluted EPS 97.9p 75.4p
Dividend per share 13.84p 14.18p +2.5%
Balance sheet YE 2014/15 H1 2015/16 Change
Portfolio at valuation £13,637m £14,384m +4.7%3
EPRA Net Asset Value per share 829p 891p +7.5%
IFRS net assets £8,565m £9,253m
Loan to value ratio 35% 34%

Investor Conference Call

A presentation of the results will take place at 9.30am today, 17 November 2015, and will be broadcast live via webcast (www.britishland.com ) and conference call. The details for the conference call are as follows:
UK Toll Free Number: 0808 109 0700
Password: British Land
A dial in replay will be available later in the day and will be available for 7 days. The details are as follows:
Replay number: 0208 196 1998
Access PIN: 4574450#

For Information Contact

Investor Relations
Sally Jones, British Land 020 7467 2847
Media
Pip Wood, British Land 020 7467 2838
Gordon Simpson, Finsbury 020 7251 3801
Guy Lamming, Finsbury

Forward-Looking Statements

This Report contains certain ‘forward-looking’ statements. Such statements reflect current views on, among other things, our markets, activities, projections, objectives and prospects. Such ‘forward-looking’ statements can sometimes, but not always, be identified by their reference to a date or point in the future or the use of ‘forward-looking’ terminology, including terms such as ‘believes’, ‘estimates’, ‘anticipates’, ‘expects’, ‘forecasts’, ‘intends’, ‘due’, ‘plans’, ‘projects’, ‘goal’, ‘outlook’, ‘schedule’ ‘target’, ‘aim’, ‘may’, ‘likely to’, ‘will’, ‘would’, ‘could’, ‘should’ or similar expressions or in each case their negative or other variations or comparable terminology. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve inherent risks, assumptions and uncertainties because they relate to future events and depend on circumstances which may or may not occur and may be beyond our ability to control or predict. Forward-looking statements should be regarded with caution as actual results may differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, such statements.

Important factors that could cause actual results, performance or achievements of British Land to differ materially from any outcomes or results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements include, among other things: (a) general business and political, social and economic conditions globally, (b) industry and market trends (including demand in the property investment market and property price volatility), (c) competition, (d) the behaviour of other market participants, (e) changes in government and other regulation, including in relation to the environment, health and safety and taxation (in particular, in respect of British Land’s status as a Real Estate Investment Trust), (f) inflation and consumer confidence, (g) labour relations and work stoppages, (h) natural disasters and adverse weather conditions, (i) terrorism and acts of war, (j) British Land’s overall business strategy, risk appetite and investment choices in its portfolio management, (k) legal or other proceedings against or affecting British Land, (l) reliable and secure IT infrastructure, (m) changes in occupier demand and tenant default, (n) changes in financial and equity markets including interest and exchange rate fluctuations, (o) changes in accounting practices and the interpretation of accounting standards and (p) the availability and cost of finance. The Company’s principal risks are described in greater detail in the section of this Report headed Principal Risks and Uncertainties. Forward-looking statements in this Report, or the British Land website or made subsequently, which are attributable to British Land or persons acting on its behalf should therefore be construed in light of all such factors.

Information contained in this Report relating to British Land or its share price or the yield on its shares are not guarantees of, and should not be relied upon as an indicator of, future performance. Any forward-looking statements made by or on behalf of British Land speak only as of the date they are made. Such forward-looking statements are expressly qualified in their entirety by the factors referred to above and no representation, assurance, guarantee or warranty is given in relation to them (whether by British Land or any of its associates, Directors, officers, employees or advisers), including as to their completeness, accuracy or the basis on which they were prepared.

Other than in accordance with our legal and regulatory obligations (including under the UK Financial Conduct Authority’s Listing Rules and Disclosure Rules and Transparency Rules), British Land does not intend or undertake to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect any changes in British Land’s expectations with regard thereto or any changes in information, events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based. This document shall not, under any circumstances, create any implication that there has been no change in the business or affairs of British Land since the date of this document or that the information contained herein is correct as at any time subsequent to this date.

Notes to Editors:

About British Land
We are one of Europe’s largest publicly listed real estate companies. We own, manage, develop and finance a portfolio of high quality commercial property, focused on retail locations around the UK and London offices. We have total assets in the UK, owned or managed of £19.7 billion (of which British Land share is £14.4 billion), as valued at 30 September 2015. Our properties are home to over 1,200 different organisations ranging from international brands to local start-ups. Our objective is to deliver long-term and sustainable total returns to our shareholders and we do this by focusing on Places People Prefer. People have a choice where they work, shop and live and we aim to create outstanding places which make a positive difference to people’s everyday lives. Our customer orientation enables us to develop a deep understanding of the people who use our places. We employ a lean team of experts, who have the skills to translate this understanding into creating the right places, and we have an efficient capital structure which is able to finance these places effectively.

UK Retail assets account for 51% of our portfolio. As the UK’s largest listed owner and manager of retail space, our portfolio is well matched to the different ways people shop today. We are focused on being the destination of choice for retailers and their customers by being the best provider of spaces and services. Comprising around 22 million sq ft of retail space across shopping parks, superstores, shopping centres, department stores and leisure assets, the retail portfolio is modern, flexible and adaptable to a wide range of formats.

Our Office and Residential portfolio, which accounts for 49% of our portfolio is focused on London. We have an attractive mix of high quality buildings in well managed environments and a pipeline of development projects which will add significantly to our portfolio. Increasingly, our Offices are in mixed-use environments which include retail and residential elements. Our 7.5 million sq ft of high quality office space includes Regent’s Place and Paddington Central in the West End and Broadgate, the premier City office campus (50% share).

Our industry-leading sustainability strategy is a powerful tool to deliver lasting value for all our stakeholders. By supporting communities, improving environments and growing economies, we create Places People Prefer and enhance long-term returns. Further details can be found on the British Land website at www.britishland.com

SOURCE: British Land

The Home Depot® reports $21.8 billion sales in Q3 of fiscal 2015; 6.4% increase YoY

ATLANTA, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Home Depot®, the world’s largest home improvement retailer, today reported sales of $21.8 billion for the third quarter of fiscal 2015, a 6.4 percent increase from the third quarter of fiscal 2014. Comparable store sales for the third quarter of fiscal 2015 were positive 5.1 percent, and comp sales for U.S. stores were positive 7.3 percent.

Net earnings for the third quarter of fiscal 2015 were $1.7 billion, or $1.35 per diluted share, compared with net earnings of$1.5 billion, or $1.15 per diluted share, in the same period of fiscal 2014. For the third quarter of fiscal 2015, diluted earnings per share increased 17.4 percent from the same period in the prior year.

Third quarter of fiscal 2015 results include a pretax expense of $20 million, or $0.01 per diluted share, related to the Company’s 2014 data breach.

“During the quarter, we saw broad-based growth across our geographies and product categories, led by growth in transactions from both our DIY and Pro customers,” said Craig Menear, chairman, CEO and president. “I would like to thank our associates for their hard work and dedication to our customers.”

Updated Fiscal 2015 Guidance

Based on its year-to-date results and the outlook for the fourth quarter, the Company expects fiscal 2015 sales growth of approximately 5.7 percent, with comps of approximately 4.9 percent. The Company also expects fiscal 2015 diluted earnings per share to grow by approximately 14 percent to $5.36. This guidance assumes foreign exchange rates remain at current levels through the fourth quarter. The Company’s diluted earnings-per-share guidance includes the benefit of its intent to repurchase an additional $2 billion of shares in the fourth quarter, bringing total fiscal 2015 share repurchases to $7 billion.

On December 8 at 9 a.m. ET, the Company will hold an Investor and Analyst Conference. All presentations will be webcast live at ir.homedepot.com in the Events & Presentations section.

The Home Depot will conduct a conference call today at 9 a.m. ET to discuss information included in this news release and related matters. The conference call will be available in its entirety through a webcast and replay at earnings.homedepot.com.

At the end of the third quarter, the Company operated a total of 2,273 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia,Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, 10 Canadian provinces and Mexico. The Company employs more than 370,000 associates. The Home Depot’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: HD) and is included in the Dow Jones industrial average and Standard & Poor’s 500 index.

Certain statements contained herein constitute “forward-looking statements” as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements may relate to, among other things, the demand for our products and services; net sales growth; comparable store sales; effects of competition; state of the economy; state of the residential construction, housing and home improvement markets; state of the credit markets, including mortgages, home equity loans and consumer credit; demand for credit offerings; inventory and in-stock positions; implementation of store, interconnected retail and supply chain initiatives; management of relationships with our suppliers and vendors; the impact and expected outcome of investigations, inquiries, claims and litigation, including those related to the data breach; issues related to the payment methods we accept and the timing of upgrades and enhancements impacting point of sale devices; continuation of share repurchase programs; net earnings performance; earnings per share; dividend targets; capital allocation and expenditures; liquidity; return on invested capital; expense leverage; stock-based compensation expense; commodity price inflation and deflation; the ability to issue debt on terms and at rates acceptable to us; the effect of accounting charges; the effect of adopting certain accounting standards; store openings and closures; guidance for fiscal 2015 and beyond; financial outlook; and the integration of Interline Brands, Inc. into our organization and the ability to recognize the anticipated synergies and benefits of the acquisition. Forward-looking statements are based on currently available information and our current assumptions, expectations and projections about future events. You should not rely on our forward-looking statements. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to future events, risks and uncertainties – many of which are beyond our control or are currently unknown to us – as well as potentially inaccurate assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from our expectations and projections. These risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to those described in Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” and elsewhere in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for our fiscal year ended February 1, 2015 and in our subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q.

Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and we do not undertake to update these statements other than as required by law. You are advised, however, to review any further disclosures we make on related subjects in our periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

SOURCE The Home Depot

Financial Community, Diane Dayhoff, Vice President of Investor Relations, 770-384-2666, diane_dayhoff@homedepot.com; News Media, Stephen Holmes, Director of Corporate Communications, 770-384-5075, stephen_holmes@homedepot.com

Asda reports its third quarter trading figures for 2015

LEEDS, England, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Asda today reported its third quarter trading figures for 2015, posting a 4.5% fall in like-for-like sales for the 13 weeks to 30th September.

Speaking in London today, Asda President and CEO Andy Clarke said:

“There’s no doubt this represents another challenging quarter. Sales volumes remain under pressure from price deflation and the intensely competitive background remains throughout the food sector. Having said that, we have the financial strength and clear plan to sustain us through this period, while we take appropriate and considered action to further strengthen our competitive position.

“Last month I launched Project Renewal, an 18-month programme designed to work parts of my five year strategy harder to return us to long term, sustainable volume growth. Increasing our focus on the core business means strengthening some areas while pausing activity in others which will allow us to sharpen our customer offer and continue to improve operational efficiency.

“I’m confident that by reinforcing our offer we can further extend our price advantage over major competitors and close the gap against the limited assortment discounters – not only on price, but across range, service and quality.”

At the update, Andy gave more detail on Project Renewal and confirmed that he and his leadership team had acknowledged early on the need to evolve the five-year strategy in this volatile market – working on the detail of Renewal up to six months ahead of its launch. This included an in-depth evaluation of the changing behaviour of customers which analysed the way they shop today.

He explained the fundamentals of Project Renewal as getting back to a ‘simpler way of doing business’ in order to ‘deliver market leading value in a way customers will notice.’ Examples of this included working closely in partnership with suppliers on a range review programme to deliver an overall 10% reduction to remove duplication while sustaining choice and ensuring the best quality and the prices to deliver long-term volume growth. Other examples included investment in a refresh of 95 large stores and delivering proposition stores to continue innovating and taking learnings on what really works for customers.

He added: “This is a logical and necessary adjustment of our existing strategy, to better address the immediate challenges and permanent changes the market is facing. It is a slow and costly process to reconfigure any business to meet fundamental challenges on this scale, but I’m clear that only businesses which are well positioned, financially strong and able to efficiently deliver what their customers want can be successful in this environment.”

Joined by his Chief Finance Officer Alex Russo, Clarke spoke to the strength of his leadership team driving the strategy, adding he now had “one of the strongest, most experienced boards in the industry, which is looking forward to welcoming Roger Burnley to the Asda family as the new Chief Operating Officer” next year.

Russo pinpointed key highlights including Back to School and Halloween sales – up 9% and 12% YoY respectively, continued growth in online grocery – sales up 6% in the quarter, and George.com clothing sales growing ahead of the market and up 30%.

In terms of the retailer’s low cost operating model, a focus of the core of Asda’s strategy, Russo announced that store efficiency savings were on track to deliver £100m this year, and efficiencies in logistics will deliver a 3% saving.

SOURCE: ASDA

NRF’s Gift Card Spending Survey reveal that those planning to buy gift cards will spend slightly less on average this year

WASHINGTON, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — While gift cards remain the most requested holiday gift, they seem to have fallen off consumers’ shopping lists this year. Torn between the love of a great deal and settling for a gift card, the latest National Retail Federation’s Gift Card Spending Survey found that those planning to buy gift cards will spend slightly less on average ($153.08 vs. $172.74 last year), the first drop in average spending since 2009. Total spending is expected to reach $25.9 billion.*

In NRF’s first holiday survey released in October, 58.8 percent of shoppers said that they would like to receive a gift card, making them the most requested gift item nine years in a row.

“Retailers’ early promotions and exclusive offerings have made it easier for consumers to find everything they need without having to consider raiding the gift card rack,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “That said, there is an interesting disconnect between gift givers and gift recipients this year as gift cards still top millions of Americans’ wish lists.”

“Regardless, there’s no question that early birds and procrastinators alike will still look to gift cards to help make the holidays bright,” continued Shay.

According to the survey, shoppers plan to spend an average of $44.83 per card. Adults 65+ who plan to buy at least one card will spend the most overall, spending an average of $186.44; this same age group will also spend the most per card ($47.88). Again this year, men plan to spend more than women on gift cards ($162.01 vs. $144.62 respectively).

Of those who plan to buy at least one card, half (50.4%) understand the practicality of the cards and said they will buy gift cards because they allow the recipients to select their own gift. Nearly one-quarter of shoppers (24.7%) plan to guy gift cards because they know they are easier and faster to buy than traditional gifts and 5.6 percent said gift cards are easier to mail and ship to out-of-town family and friends.

“After years of exchanging gift cards over the holiday season, consumers may want to try to avoid the potential awkward exchange when the card they’ve given their loved ones are worth less or more than the one they’ve received,” Prosper’s Principal Analyst Pam Goodfellow said. “However, there will always be an appetite for gift cards, especially with procrastinators who will wrap up their shopping in the final hours.”

With an abundance of purchase options, department stores, restaurants and coffee shops are the top choices for the majority of holiday shoppers. According to the survey, 34.8 percent of shoppers will treat their loved ones to a meal at a restaurant, and 34.4 percent will pick up a gift card for a department store. One in five (20.1%) will choose a gift card for a coffee shop, 17.2 percent will opt for an entertainment gift card such as for movies or sporting events, and 15.8 percent will choose an electronics store.

About the Survey
The NRF 2015 Gift Card Spending Survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the winter holidays. The survey polled 7,172 consumers and was conducted for NRF by Prosper Insights & Analytics, November 3-10, 2015. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.2 percentage points.

Prosper Insights and Analytics delivers executives timely, consumer-centric insights from multiple sources. As a comprehensive resource of information, Prosper represents the voice of the consumer and provides knowledge to marketers regarding consumer views on the economy, personal finance, retail, lifestyle, media and domestic and world issues. www.ProsperDiscovery.com

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. nrf.com

Treacy Reynolds
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

NRF welcomed attorneys general’s call to credit card companies on the use of personal identification numbers with the new chip-based credit cards

Letter Calls PIN ‘Gold Standard’ for Card Security

WASHINGTON, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Retail Federation today welcomed a letter sent by nine attorneys general to the nation’s top credit card companies and banks calling for the use of personal identification numbers rather than signatures to approve purchases made with new chip-based credit cards.

“This is further proof that top law enforcement officials and security experts agree that continued reliance on an illegible scrawl isn’t good enough to protect American consumers when the technology of a secret, secure PIN is readily available,” NRF Senior Vice President and General Counsel Mallory Duncan said. “Banks and credit card companies should heed the advice being given them and immediately implement chip-and-PIN. That’s the standard used around the world and U.S. consumers deserve nothing less.”

The request was made in a letter sent today by the attorneys general of Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington state and the District of Columbia to the chief executives of Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Bank of America, Capital One Finance Group, Citigroup and J.P. Morgan Chase.

“The chip-and-PIN approach is considered by many to be the gold standard currently for payment card security,” the letter said. “Countries that have implemented chip-and-PIN cards have seen significant reductions in fraudulent transactions.”

Chip-and-PIN is used in approximately 80 countries from Asia to Europe but chip cards being issued in the United States use chip-and-signature instead.

“There can be no doubt that this is a less secure standard since signatures can easily be forged or copied or even ignored,” the attorneys general said. “Unlike signatures, PIN numbers can be changed easily and as frequently as needed by the consumer. Absent this additional protection, your customers and our citizens will be more vulnerable to damaging data breaches. This is something we cannot accept.”

The letter dismissed claims that using a PIN would be burdensome for consumers, noting that consumers already use PINs with debit cards. The attorneys general said they were not seeking legislation requiring PINs but rather calling on card companies and banks to make the change “as good corporate citizens.”

Last month, the Federal Bureau of Investigations issued a warning that said PINs were more secure than signatures, then revised the statement after receiving objections from the banking industry. Last year, President Obama issued an executive order requiring PINs on credit cards issued to government workers.

NRF has argued for years that the new cards should replace fraud-prone signatures with a more secure PIN. While chips make the new cards more difficult to counterfeit than traditional magnetic stripe cards, the chip can be circumvented, and the chips do nothing to protect lost and stolen cards from being used. A PIN could prevent fraud with lost, stolen or counterfeit cards even without a chip.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. nrf.com

J. Craig Shearman
(202) 626-8134
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

SOURCE: National Retail Federation

Starbucks Coffee Company and food-service organization Albron open Starbucks branch at the University of Twente campus

ENSCHEDE, THE NETHERLANDS, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Today (13 November 2015), Starbucks Coffee Company and food-service organization Albron are jointly opening a new Starbucks branch at EDU-Café, which is located at the Education and Research square of the University of Twente (UT) campus. The UT campus is a meeting place for international pioneers and entrepreneurs, and plays a key role in helping people get the most out of their talents and skills through partnerships. And what better way to get these collaborations going than over a delicious cup of coffee at top-notch facilities?

AN INSPIRING MEETING PLACE WITH INTERNATIONAL APPEAL

The campus of the UT is developing into an inspiring meeting place for scientists and students alike, offering innovative, fearless and creative souls a platform to thrive. It offers an international breeding ground for pioneering innovations, where theory becomes practice and where state-of-the-art facilities are made available. In this framework, UT sets high standards for its environment. As a result, the campus is more than just a place where people meet and greet each other. It is a place where personal interaction, development and experiences blend seamlessly together.

The Starbucks concept is perfectly suited to this atmosphere and these ambitions. Starbucks, the University of Twente and Albron all promote quality as one of their key priorities, and have an eye for linking people with their environment. With this in mind, EDU-Café was given a significant boost, now boasting even more meeting places and suitable facilities. The result is a fully-fledged ‘educational square’ with exclusive facilities for both staff and students. This renovated location perfectly illustrates the Starbucks ‘third-place’ concept, i.e. creating a cosy space between home and work where people can come together and enjoy a cup of coffee or tea in a pleasant atmosphere. What’s more, the opening of this branch supports the development of an international community which promotes talent and entrepreneurship at the university.

“This was a unique opportunity to link the renovation of the university café with an international brand like Starbucks, allowing students and staff to enjoy a great cup of coffee in a wonderful setting, where they can meet others, and discuss or study in peace and quiet,” explains Victor van der Chijs, President of the Executive Board.

PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN STARBUCKS AND ALBRON

The opening of the Starbucks branch at the UT campus ties in with Starbucks’ strategy to further extend its reach in the Netherlands through branches operated by licensed partners, in this case Albron, which was already a solid partner. In fact, Starbucks and Albron had previously jointly opened stores at the Academic Medical Centre (AMC) in Amsterdam, the University Library of the University of Groningen and Erasmus University, among others.

About Starbucks
Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to the sustainable purchase and roasting of arabica coffee of the highest quality since 1971. The company has branches globally and is the world’s largest coffee roasting organization and retailer of high-quality coffee. We always strive for perfection and never stray from our principles to allow each and every customer to enjoy the one-of-a-kind ‘Starbucks Experience’. Share yours at one of our branches or via Starbucks.com.

About Albron
Albron is a food-service organization focusing on hotels, restaurants and catering establishments. Albron’s team of 5,000 employees supplies almost 1,000 locations in the Netherlands with food and drink, from companies to government bodies, schools, hospitals, care facilities, daytime leisure facilities and tourist accommodation. If you would like to find out more, visit Albron.nl.

For additional information, please contact:

Albron: Anselma van den Berg at anselma.van.den.berg@albron.nl or on +31 (0)6 23156108

Starbucks: EMEACommunications@starbucks.com

University of Twente: Bertyl Lankhaar, 053 489 2210 or 06 2002 74 35, spokesperson of the Executive Board of the University of Twente.

BERTYL LANKHAAR
Spokesman Executive Board
06-20027435
b.g.lankhaar@utwente.nl

SOURCE: UNIVERSITY OF TWENTE

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Starbucks Coffee Company and food-service organization Albron open Starbucks branch at the University of Twente campus

Starbucks Coffee Company and food-service organization Albron open Starbucks branch at the University of Twente campus

 

Haggen receives court approval for two purchase agreements on certain assets with Gelson’s Markets and Smart & Final LLC.

Haggen Receives Approval of Sale of Stalking Horse Bidder Packages and Announces Auction Results

Bellingham, Wash, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Haggen today announced that the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for Delaware in Wilmington confirmed the sale of certain stores. The Court approved two separate purchase agreements for certain assets with Gelson’s Markets and Smart & Final LLC.

Gelson’s purchased certain assets related to eight stores located in California for approximately $36 million. Under a separate agreement, Smart & Final purchased certain assets of 28 stores located in California for $56 million.

Gelson’s and Smart & Final acquired the following stores:

GELSON’s MARKETS

California

Carlsbad – El Camino Real, Carlsbad
Del Mar – Via De La Valle, Del Mar
Ladera Ranch – Crown Valley Parkway, Ladera Ranch
Laguna Beach – South Pacific Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach
La Jolla – Turquoise St, San Diego
Rancho Mirage – Bob Hope Drive, Rancho Mirage
Santa Monica – Lincoln Blvd, Santa Monica
Thousand Oaks – Avenida De Los Arboles, Thousand Oaks

SMART & FINAL LLC

California

Atascadero – El Camino Real, Atascadero
Carlsbad – Carlsbad Village Dr, Carlsbad
Carpinteria – Linden Avenue, Carpinteria
Chino Hills – Chino Hills Pkwy, Chino Hills
Chula Vista – East H St, Chula Vista
Corona Del Mar – Coast Highway, Corona Del Mar
Coronado – B Ave, Coronado
El Cajon – Camino Canada, El Cajon
El Cajon – Fletcher Pkwy, El Cajon
La Mesa – Avocado Avenue, La Mesa
Newbury Park –Newbury Road, Newbury Park
Palmdale – W Avenue N, Palmdale
Paso Robles –Creston Road, Paso Robles
Redondo Beach – N. Pacific Coast Hwy., Redondo Beach
Redondo Beach – S. Pacific Coast Hwy., Redondo Beach
San Diego – Tierra Santa Bl., San Diego
San Diego – Westview Pkwy, San Diego
San Luis Obispo – Johnson Ave, San Luis Obispo
San Pedro – W 25th St, San Pedro
San Ysidro – W San Ysidro Blvd, San Ysidro
Santa Barbara – State St., Santa Barbara
Santee – Magnolia Ave., Santee
Simi Valley –Los Angeles Avenue, Simi Valley
Torrance – Hawthorne Blvd, Torrance
Trabuco Canyon – Plano Trabuco Rd., Trabuco Canyon
Ventura – Telegraph Road, Ventura
Westlake Village – Lindero Canyon Rd, Westlake Village
Yorba Linda – Yorba Linda Blvd., Yorba Linda

Completion of the transactions with Gelson’s and Smart & Final remain subject to certain conditions.

The Company also announced that it has accepted bids for certain its non-core stores.  A total of 55 stores were sold for more than $47 million. Haggen intends to submit the results of the auction for approval to the bankruptcy court at a hearing on November 24.

Haggen accepted bids with the following parties for the following stores:

BUYER STATE STORE METRO AREA
Albertson’s LLC AZ Lake Havasu – McCulloch Blvd Lake Havasu
Albertson’s LLC AZ Tucson – East Broadway Blvd Tucson
Albertson’s LLC AZ Tucson – N. Silverbell Road Tucson
Smart & Final Stores LLC CA Laguna Niguel – Crown Valley Pkw Laguna Niguel
Tustin Safe LLC CA Tustin – 17th St Tustin
Albertson’s LLC CA Tujunga – Foothill Blvd Tujunga
Smart & Final LLC CA Diamond Bar – S. Diamond Bar Blvd Diamond Bar
Albertson’s LLC CA Saugus – Bouquet Canyon Rd Saugus
Smart & Final LLC CA Burbank – W. Verdugo Ave Burbank
Sprouts Farmers Market CA Los Angeles – Venice Blvd Los Angeles
Regency Centers L.P. CA Woodland Hills – Mulholland Dr Woodland Hills
Balboa Retail, LLC CA Lomita – Pacific Coast Highway Lomita
Albertson’s LLC CA Bakersfield – Panama Lane Bakersfield
Albertson’s LLC CA Bakersfield – E. Stockdale Hwy Bakersfield
Albertson’s LLC CA Rancho Cucamonga – Foothill Blvd Rancho Cucamonga
Donahue Schriber Realty Grp CA Camarillo – Las Posas Camarillo
Sprouts Farmers Market CA Simi Valley – Cochran Simi Valley
Stater Bros. Markets CA Simi Valley – E. Los Angeles Ave Simi Valley
Albertson’s LLC CA Lompoc – N. ‘H’ St Lompoc
Albertson’s LLC CA Goleta – S. Turnpike Rd Goleta
Sprouts Farmers Market CA Goleta – N. Fairview Ave Goleta
SB Grocery, LLC CA Santa Barbara – Cliff Dr Santa Barbara
Tawa, Inc. CA Chula Vista – Telegraph Canyon Rd Chula Vista
Carnival Supermarkets Inc. CA Chula Vista – Third Ave Chula Vista
Smart & Final Stores LLC CA San Diego – University Ave San Diego
Albertson’s LLC CA El Cajon– Broadway St El Cajon
Albertson’s LLC CA La Mesa – Lake Murray Blvd La Mesa
RJS Investment Group              CA      Poway – Pomerado Road Poway
Albertson’s LLC    CA      Rancho Bernardo-Rancho Bernardo Rd Rancho Bern.
Albertson’s LLC CA      San Diego – Highland Village Pl San Diego
Tawa, Inc. CA      San Diego – Balboa Ave San Diego
Carnival Supermarket Inc.            CA San Marcos – Rancho Sante Fe                 San Marcos
Good Food Holdings CA       San Diego – W. Washington St                  San Diego
Albertson’s LLC NV      Henderson – Bicentennial Pkwy Henderson
Albertson’s LLC NV     Henderson – College Dr Henderson
Albertson’s LLC NV      Henderson – Boulder Hwy Henderson
Sprouts Farmer’s Market      NV Las Vegas – W. Lake Mead Blvd Las Vegas
Tawa, Inc. OR Beaverton – S.W. Hall Beaverton
Albertson’s LLC OR Baker City – Campbell St Baker City
Albertson’s LLC OR Eugene – Hilyard St Eugene
Albertson’s LLC OR Springfield – Main St Springfield
Albertson’s LLC OR         Ashland – Sisiyou Blvd Ashland
Albertson’s LLC WA         Monroe – SR 2 Monroe
Albertson’s LLC WA Burien – First Ave. S Burien
Albertson’s LLC WA Burien – 1st Ave. S. Burien
Alberton’s LCC WA Renton – SE Petrovitsky Rd Renton
Albertson’s LLC WA        Everett – Evergreen Wy Everett
Albertson’s LLC WA Renton – 4th Ave. Renton
Albertson’s LLC WA Shoreline – Aurora Ave. N Shoreline
Albertson’s LLC WA Port Orchard – Bethel Rd. S.E. Port Orchard
Yoke’s Foods, Inc. WA Liberty Lake – N. Liberty Lake Rd Liberty Lake
Albertson’s LLC WA Spanaway/Tacoma –Pacific Ave. S Spanaway/Tacoma
Albertson’s LLC WA Gig Harbor – Point Fosdick Dr. NW Gig Harbor
Albertson’s LLC WA Puyallup – Canyon Rd. East Puyallup
Albertson’s LLC WA Milton – Milton Way Milton

Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, LLP and Young, Conway, Stragatt & Taylor, LLP serve as legal counsel, Sagent Advisors as real estate advisors, and Alvarez & Marsal as restructuring advisors to Haggen Inc.
Media Inquiries

If you are a member of the media working on a story about Haggen, please click here to reach our PR team.

SOURCE: Haggen, Inc.

Wegmans Food Markets recalls Wegmans Italian Classics Butternut Squash Ravioli due to undeclared cashews and almonds

ROCHESTER, NY, 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. is recalling Wegmans Italian Classics Butternut Squash Ravioli, 9 oz. (UPC #77890 36434), because the product may contain undeclared cashews and almonds. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to cashews or almonds run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume this product.

Approximately 54,000 units of Wegmans Italian Classics Butternut Squash Ravioli, 9 oz. was sold in 88 Wegmans stores located in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maryland, and Massachusetts. This product, packaged in a plastic tray, is sold in a refrigerated case in the dairy department. All date codes sold since June 6, 2015 are included in the recall.

There have been no injuries or illnesses reported to date associated with this product. The recall was initiated because Wegmans was notified by the manufacturer that product testing showed the presence of almonds and cashews not declared on the label.

Wegmans will place automated phone calls to customers who purchased the product using their Shoppers Club card.

Customers who purchased the recalled product from Wegmans should return it to the service desk for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact Wegmans consumer affairs department toll free at 1-855-934-3663 Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Eastern time.

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Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. is an 88-store supermarket chain with stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland, and Massachusetts.  The family-owned company, founded in 1916, is recognized as an industry leader and innovator.  Wegmans has been named one of the ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ by FORTUNE magazine for eighteen consecutive years.  In 2015, Wegmans ranked #7 on the list.  The company also ranked #1 for Corporate Reputation, among the 100 ‘most-visible companies’ nationwide in the 2014 Harris Poll Reputation Quotient ® study.

Contact Information:  Jo Natale, Wegmans vice president of media relations, 585-429-3627

SOURCE: Wegmans Food Markets, Inc.

Dollar General helps customers stretch their budget this holiday season

Major retailer provides product assortment to save customers time and money this holiday

  • Major retailer provides savings on popular gift options, electronics, entertaining supplies and food with weekly specials, discounts and digital coupons to help customers further stretch their budget this holiday season.
  • Dollar General offers a wide selection of toys, of which 70 percent is licensed and branded in 2015; Offers a 25 percent instant discount on all qualifying toy purchases of $75 or more.
  • All sales and promotions are available at more than 12,000 retail locations or online at www.dollargeneral.com.

GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn.,  2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Dollar General (NYSE: DG) continues to help customers stretch their budget this holiday season with an assortment of toys, gifts, food, entertaining needs and more with digital coupons, hot deals and everyday low prices both online and at more than 12,000 convenient locations.

“Dollar General’s holiday selection will offer customers the top items on their holiday lists including brand name toys, popular gift cards, numerous gift options including electronics and apparel, affordable décor and delicious food options,” said Jim Thorpe, Dollar General’s executive vice president and chief merchandising officer. “Additionally, with weekly specials throughout the holiday season, everyday discounts on qualifying toy purchases, Dollar General Digital Coupons and our everyday values throughout the store, we are keeping true to our brand promise to help save customers time and money, every day.”

Hot Deals
Both now and throughout the holiday season, Dollar General will offer online and storewide savings on electronics, gaming items, toys, gift options, small kitchen appliances, foods and more. Additional exciting specials on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday will further allow customers the opportunity to stretch their budget and save more on everything to make this holiday the most memorable one yet.

Digital Coupons
Available through the Dollar General app or online at www.dg.com/coupons, Dollar General’s Digital Coupons provide an easy-to-use and convenient way to save more this holiday. This season, digital coupons can help customers save on their overall purchase, provide exclusive one-day specials and offer additional savings on America’s most popular brand names and Dollar General’s 100% satisfaction-guaranteed private brands.

Gift Ideas
Toy Discount
Dollar General is offering customers an immediate 25% discount off all qualifying toy purchases of $75 or more, both in stores and online, this holiday through December 24, 2015. Save on popular and major brand-name toys for children including popular Star Wars™, Frozen™, Monster High™, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™ and My Little Pony® Equestria™ merchandise. Dollar General carries a large selection of licensed products from top name brands including Mattel®, Fisher Price®, Hasbro®, Disney®, Nickelodeon®, Marvel® and more.

All Dollar General stores are also collecting toys to benefit the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Foundation or a local toy drive through Dec. 10, 2015.

DIY Gifts
Giving a meaningful DIY gift can be fun to make and personalized to each recipient. Tasty treats using $1 canning jars, cookie mixes or candies and inexpensive décor are affordable and great ideas for teachers, service providers and neighbors. Other DIY gifts include adorning a $1 ornament to a Starbucks®, Apple® or other gift card or making a basket of a recipient’s favorite snacks. Finally, the gift of convenience is always appreciated with Dollar General’s automatic renewal program. With items from more than 20 categories like coffee, diapers, pet needs and more, recipients can have items delivered straight to their doorstep on a monthly or weekly basis.

Electronics
Electronics including a seven-inch family tablet, action camera and licensed video games are not only a great gift, but incredibly affordable at Dollar General this holiday.

Apparel
Fashionable apparel for the entire family makes a great gift and Dollar General’s affordable prices allow customers to buy more for less. With options including sweaters, tops, loungewear, sleepwear, undergarments, accessories, shoes, jeans and more available for babies, children, juniors, women and men, apparel makes a stylish and practical gift option.

Home Décor
This year’s popular home décor trends are represented throughout Dollar General’s assortment of bedding, towels, shower curtains, lamps, pillows, rugs, window curtains and kitchen accessories. Recipients of home décor items from the trusted Comfort Bay® brand can enjoy quality and trend-right options all year long, not just during the holidays.

Seasonal Accents
The holidays are a wonderful time of the year to create an indoor winter wonderland with modern, traditional and country-themed schemes to decorate throughout the home including the front door, mantle, tree and everywhere else. Affordable garland, artificial trees, lights, pillows, throws, ribbons, bows, wrapping paper and so much more is the perfect way to accentuate any home this holiday.

In addition to great low prices in more than 12,000 stores across the 43 states Dollar General serves, customers may also shop from the comfort of their home at www.dollargeneral.com with exclusive online savings throughout the season including free shipping days and discounts. Dollar General email subscribers can also take advantage of special shipping discounts.

Additional information, photographs, stock footage and story ideas are available online at Dollar General’s newsroom or by contacting the Media Relations Department at 1-877-944-DGPR (3477) or via email at dgpr@dg.com.

About Dollar General Corporation
Dollar General Corporation (NYSE: DG) has been delivering value to shoppers for over 75 years. Dollar General helps shoppers Save time. Save money. Every day!® by offering products that are frequently used and replenished, such as food, snacks, health and beauty aids, cleaning supplies, clothing for the family, housewares and seasonal items at low everyday prices in convenient neighborhood locations. With 12,396 stores in 43 states as of October 30, 2015, Dollar General is America’s largest small-box discount retailer offering multi-price point merchandise. In addition to high quality private brands, Dollar General sells products from America’s most-trusted manufacturers such as Clorox, Energizer, Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Coca-Cola, Mars, Unilever, Nestle, Kimberly-Clark, Kellogg’s, General Mills, and PepsiCo. For more information on Dollar General, please visit www.dollargeneral.com.

Contact(s):

Dollar General Corporation
Media Hotline: 1-877-944-DGPR (3477)
dgpr@dg.com
or
Dan MacDonald, 615-855-5209
or
Crystal Ghassemi, 615-855-5210

About Dollar General Corporation

Dollar General Corporation (NYSE: DG) has been delivering value to shoppers for over 75 years. Dollar General helps shoppers Save time. Save money. Every day!® by offering products that are frequently used and replenished, such as food, snacks, health and beauty aids, cleaning supplies, clothing for the family, housewares and seasonal items at low everyday prices in convenient neighborhood locations. With 12,396 stores in 43 states as of October 30, 2015, Dollar General is America’s largest small-box discount retailer offering multi-price point merchandise. In addition to high quality private brands, Dollar General sells products from America’s most-trusted manufacturers such as Clorox, Energizer, Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Coca-Cola, Mars, Unilever, Nestle, Kimberly-Clark, Kellogg’s, General Mills, and PepsiCo. For more information on Dollar General, please visit www.dollargeneral.com.

SOURCE:  Dollar General Corporation

Dollar General begins construction on its new distribution center in Janesville, Wisconsin

New Distribution Center is expected to create more than 550 jobs in Rock County

Goodlettsville, Tenn., 2015-11-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Dollar General Corporation (NYSE:DG) announced it has begun construction today on its new state-of-the-art distribution center in Janesville, Wisconsin. It will be the 14th facility in the retailer’s growing distribution network.

At full capacity, the approximately one million square-foot Dollar General facility is expected to employ more than 550 people to serve stores in Wisconsin and surrounding states. Assuming no significant construction or other delays, Dollar General plans to begin hiring in late summer 2016 with operations expected to begin in December 2016. The Wisconsin Department of Economic Development estimates a total of 1,073 jobs would be positively impacted by the new facility within five years, taking into account the construction jobs that result from the project as well as the ripple effects the increased employment will have on the local economy. Clayco Inc. will be serving as general contractor for the project. Leo A Daly is the building design company and Élan Design Lab, Inc. is the civil design company.

“This state-of-the-art distribution center will help support our growth throughout Wisconsin and the Midwest,” said Todd Vasos, chief executive officer of Dollar General. “I want to thank the City of Janesville, Rock County and the State of Wisconsin for their support of our project. Janesville provides a great location, a strong business environment and a great workforce to draw from to fill the 550 jobs that are anticipated to be created by this new distribution Center.”

“Wisconsin’s growing business environment and dedicated workforce continue to attract more businesses to our state,” said Governor Walker.  “We are excited for Dollar General’s new development here in Wisconsin, and with over 550 anticipated new jobs, they are a great addition to Rock County.”

“The work done to bring Dollar General to Janesville represents a true public-private partnership between the City of Janesville, Dollar General, Rock County Development Alliance, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, Wisconsin Department of Transportation and Alliant Energy,” said Janesville City Manager Mark Freitag. “Dollar General’s decision to choose our community demonstrates that we are business-friendly and provide the quality of life amenities that the company was seeking. We are excited to see the strong boost that this project will give to Janesville’s local economy.”

The new distribution center is expected to service more than 1,000 stores in the Upper Midwest. Dollar General currently has 122 stores in Wisconsin with more than 900 employees. Dollar General’s 13 other distribution centers are located in Alabama, California, Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas and Virginia.

For additional information, photographs or items to supplement a story, please contact the Media Relations Department at 1-877-944-DGPR (3477) or via email at dgpr@dg.com.

About Dollar General Corporation
Dollar General Corporation (NYSE: DG) has been delivering value to shoppers for over 75 years. Dollar General helps shoppers Save time. Save money. Every day!® by offering products that are frequently used and replenished, such as food, snacks, health and beauty aids, cleaning supplies, clothing for the family, housewares and seasonal items at low everyday prices in convenient neighborhood locations. With 12,396 stores in 43 states as of October 30, 2015, Dollar General is America’s largest small-box discount retailer offering multi-price point merchandise. In addition to high quality private brands, Dollar General sells products from America’s most-trusted manufacturers such as Clorox, Energizer, Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Coca-Cola, Mars, Unilever, Nestle, Kimberly-Clark, Kellogg’s, General Mills, and PepsiCo. For more information on Dollar General, please visit www.dollargeneral.com.

# # #

Forward-Looking Statements
Dollar General includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws throughout this release.  A reader can identify forward-looking statements because they are not limited to historical fact or they use words such as “scheduled,” “may,” “will,” “could,” “should,” “would,” “expect,” “believe,” “anticipate,” “project,” “plan,” “estimate,” and similar expressions that concern Dollar General’s  strategy, plans, intentions or beliefs about future occurrences or results.

Forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors that may change at any time and may cause actual results to differ materially from those that Dollar General expected. Many of these statements are derived from Dollar General’s operating budgets and forecasts, which are based on many detailed assumptions that Dollar General believes are reasonable, or are based on various assumptions about certain plans, activities or events which we expect will or may occur in the future. However, it is very difficult to predict the effect of known factors, and Dollar General cannot anticipate all factors that could affect actual results that may be important to an investor. All forward-looking information should be evaluated in the context of these risks, uncertainties and other factors, including those factors disclosed under “Risk Factors” in Dollar General’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly filings on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

All forward-looking statements are qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements that Dollar General makes from time to time in its SEC filings and public communications. Dollar General cannot assure the reader that it will realize the results or developments Dollar General anticipates, or, even if substantially realized, that they will result in the consequences or affect Dollar General or its operations in the way Dollar General expects. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made. Dollar General undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances arising after the date on which they were made, except as otherwise required by law. As a result of these risks and uncertainties, readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements included herein or that may be made elsewhere from time to time by, or on behalf of, Dollar General.

Contact(s):

Dollar General Corporation
Media Hotline: 1-877-944-DGPR (3477)
Media Email: DGPR@dg.com

About Dollar General Corporation

Dollar General Corporation (NYSE: DG) has been delivering value to shoppers for over 75 years. Dollar General helps shoppers Save time. Save money. Every day!® by offering products that are frequently used and replenished, such as food, snacks, health and beauty aids, cleaning supplies, clothing for the family, housewares and seasonal items at low everyday prices in convenient neighborhood locations. With 12,396 stores in 43 states as of October 30, 2015, Dollar General is America’s largest small-box discount retailer offering multi-price point merchandise. In addition to high quality private brands, Dollar General sells products from America’s most-trusted manufacturers such as Clorox, Energizer, Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Coca-Cola, Mars, Unilever, Nestle, Kimberly-Clark, Kellogg’s, General Mills, and PepsiCo. For more information on Dollar General, please visit www.dollargeneral.com.

SOURCE: Dollar General Corporation