METRO GROUP achieved like-for-like sales in Q1 2015/16 on prior year level (0.1%)

  • Group like-for-like sales in Q1 2015/16 on prior year level: +0.1%
  • Very good Christmas business in Germany with like-for-like sales increased by 2.1%
  • Currency adjusted sales growth at METRO Cash & Carry compensates for portfolio changes
  • Media-Saturn with positive sales development especially in Germany and Western Europe
  • Sale of METRO Cash & Carry Vietnam successfully completed; positive EBIT effect of more than €400 million

Düsseldorf, Germany, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — According to preliminary figures, METRO GROUP achieved like-for-like sales in Q1 2015/16 on prior year level (0.1%).METRO Cash & Carry and Media-Saturn showed sustained positive development in terms of like-for-like sales. In the corresponding quarter of the previous year, sales in Russia benefited from pull-forward effects in the course of the rouble crisis, which then were even compensated through the overall strong Christmas quarter in 2015. METRO GROUPsales in local currency fell just slightly by 0.1%. Reported sales fell by 1.5% to €17.1 billion (Q1 2014/15: €17.3 billion) due to the development of exchange rates – primarily that of the Russian rouble – and portfolio effects in particular. “The positive development in terms of like-for-like sales at METRO Cash & Carry and Media-Saturn continued into financial year 2015/16. We can also look back on a very good Christmas business, particularly in our domestic market, Germany, with like-for-like sales rising by 2.1% in December,” said Olaf Koch, Chairman of the Management Board of METRO AG. “We remain confident for financial year 2015/16, despite the difficult environ-ment, and expect positive development thanks to the range of measures introduced in our sales lines. We retain our original forecast.”

Strategic realignment has allowed METRO GROUP to make progress in introducing new services, expanding delivery and multichannel business and portfolio optimisation in Q1 2015/16.

METRO GROUP completed the sale of its cash & carry business in Vietnam successfully end of December 2015. The EBIT effect of more than €400 million will be included in Q1 2015/16 accounts. Therefore the reported result will increase significantly in Q1.

In Q1 2015/16, METRO GROUP opened a total of 11 new stores across 8 countries: 5 METRO Cash & Carry- and 6Media-Saturn stores. Of the new stores, 5 are located in the important expansion countries Russia, Turkey and India. Due to the sale of METRO Cash & Carry Vietnam the total number of METRO Cash & Carry stores decreased by 19. In addition, 2 Media-Saturn stores in Russia and 1 in Italy were closed.

METRO GROUP Q1 2014/15 Q1 2015/16
Sales (€ billion) 17.3 17.1
Change (€) -2.3% -1.5%
Change (in local currency) 0.5% -0.1%
Like-for-like 2.3% 0.1%

 

Development of the sales divisions in Q1 2015/16

 

METRO Cash & Carry

Sales at METRO Cash & Carry rose by 0.2% in like-for-like terms in Q1 2015/16, marking the tenth consecutive quarter of positive development. Sales in local currency fell just slightly by 0.1%. Reported sales declined by 2.4% to €8.0 billion. However, it should be noted that sales in the corresponding quarter of the previous year still included sales from business in Denmark and Greece. In addition, sales of METRO Cash & Carry Vietnam were only consolidated until the end of November 2015.

Sales at METRO Cash & Carry Germany experienced positive development. Christmas business gave sales a major push in December. The successful customer-focused initiative, which encompassed many marketing- and communication measures, made a very positive impression.

Moreover, sales in main countries such as Spain, Italy, Czech Republic and Romania developed positively.

In the corresponding quarter of the previous year, sales at METRO Cash & Carry in Russia benefited from pull-forward effects in the course of the rouble crisis. Sales declined based on this high benchmark from the previous year. All in all,METRO Cash & Carry in Russia was able to cement its position in a more difficult economic environment.

METRO Cash & Carry’s delivery business continued to perform extremely well, with the percentage share of sales rising further.

METRO Cash & Carry Q1 2014/15 Q1 2015/16
Sales (€ billion) 8.2 8.0
Change (€) -3.6% -2.4%
Change (in local currency) 1.1% -0.1%
Like-for-like 1.4% 0.2%

 

Media-Saturn

Like-for-like sales at Media-Saturn were up year on year in Q1 2015/16 by 0.4%. This marks the sixth consecutive quarter of rising sales. Sales in local currency grew by 1.1% while reported sales affected by the currency translation increased by 0.2% to €6.9 billion. Sales developed very positively in Germany.

In Western Europe, like-for-like sales performed well in several countries. In Eastern Europe, Russia had benefited from extensive pull-forward effects at the peak of the rouble crisis in December 2014, which is why sales in Russia declined considerably in the 2015 Christmas quarter. The good sales development in some other countries like Turkey, which recorded a double-digit like-for-like sales growth, and the robust performance in Germany could overcompensate the decrease in Russia.

Media-Saturn Q1 2014/15 Q1 2015/16
Sales (€ billion) 6.9 6.9
Change (€) 4.1% 0.2%
Change (in local currency) 5.6% 1.1%
Like-for-like 3.8% 0.4%

 

Real

Like-for-like sales at Real declined by 1.6% in the Christmas quarter. Store closures meant that reported sales declined by 3.8% to €2.1 billion year on year.

Sales development remained relatively stable in the intensely competitive food retail sector against the backdrop of price deflation, while sales in the non-food sector declined. Thereby particularly goods which are weather driven suffered from the unusual warm winter. Online sales developed extremely positively, but this was only able to partly compensate for the overall sales decline.

“The right frameworks must be created to improve Real’s competitiveness. This includes competitive conditions for labour costs. Overall, the realignment of Real according to the Essen model remains on the right course and we are ready to implement further steps, if the frameworks are right”, said Koch.

Real Q1 2014/15 Q1 2015/16
Sales (in € bn.) 2.2 2.1
Change(€) -0.8% -3.8%
Like-for-like 0.9% -1.6%

 

METRO GROUP is one of the most important international retailing companies. It generated sales of some €59 billion in financial year 2014/15. The company operates at more than 2,000 locations in 30 countries and employs some 230,000 people. The performance of METRO GROUP is based on the strength of its sales brands, which act independently on the market: METRO/MAKRO Cash & Carry, the international leader in the self-service wholesale trade; Media Markt and Saturn, the European market leader in consumer electronics retailing; and Real hypermarkets.

Contact Media Department

Telephone: +49 211 6886-4252
Telefax: +49 211 6886-2001
E-Mail METRO GROUP: presse@metro.de

SOURCE: METRO GROUP

Grand-prize winners from this year’s Starbucks for Life sweepstakes announced

 

STARBUCKS, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — With the Starbucks for Life sweepstakes wrapping up yesterday (January 11), winners of a free beverage or food item every day for the next 30 years are taking stock of their good fortune.

For the second consecutive year, Starbucks has presented the sweepstakes. This year, My Starbucks Rewards® members had an opportunity to win instant prizes, like bonus stars, or a game piece to place on their game board for the chance to win Starbucks for a day, a week, a month or a lifetime.

Seven customers – five in the U.S. and two in Canada – took the grand prize. In addition to the daily free beverage or food item, they’ll receive the Ultimate Starbucks Card made of 10K hammered gold and engraved with their name.

Here are some of the grand-prize winners from this year’s Starbucks for Life sweepstakes.

Trying Everything on the Menu

Starbucks David

 

David, a resident of California’s Sacramento County, has been ordering the same drink at his local Starbucks for three or four years: an iced Americano with peppermint and extra ice. It’s gotten to the point where the baristas start making his drink when they see him coming.

That kind of familiarity played into his winning Starbucks for Life. One of his regular baristas encouraged him to give the sweepstakes a shot. If nothing else, he expected he’d be able to earn extra stars toward a free drink. Then just after midnight during the holiday break, he found himself staring at his mobile phone screen in disbelief.

“I sat there for a little bit,” he said. “I kept processing for a while. Then I finally shouted to my wife, ‘I won the grand prize!’ I’ve never won anything before, so I was freaking out.”

Now that he’s won Starbucks for Life, he is open to branching out beyond his regular Americano.

“I plan to broaden my horizons,” said David, who has been coming to Starbucks since the 1990s. “I think I’ll try everything on the menu.”

Beyond Expectations

Starbucks Bill

 

Bill usually isn’t interested in sweepstakes, but he decided to give the Starbucks for Life a shot. A bit of a skeptic, the Florida-native didn’t give it too much thought when he came up a top-prize winner playing the Starbucks for Life game on his smartphone, assuming his name would go into a larger drawing and that would be that. Next thing he knew, he was being told he was indeed one of a handful of winners of Starbucks for Life in the U.S. and Canada.

Bill, who’s retired and lives in suburban Atlanta, said he’ll have no trouble making use of his Starbucks grand prize.

“I drink my coffee black so I can enjoy the taste and aroma of the coffee,” he said, adding that dark roast is his choice both in the store and at home.

Bill visits Starbucks several times a week, sometimes just to drop in and get a coffee for the road, other times to socialize with friends. His victory did prompt him to uncharacteristically buy a lottery ticket just to see if he was on a roll. No luck there, but he still has his Starbucks winnings to savor.

Editor’s note: This story will be updated as additional winners claim their grand prizes.

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

SOURCE: Starbucks Corporation

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Starbucks For Life winner David, with Starbucks partners in California

Starbucks For Life winner David, with Starbucks partners in California

Alibaba’s Jack Ma joins Starbucks Howard Schultz to discuss the role and responsibility of 21st Century companies

  • Long-term China growth aspirations on-track with 2,000 stores
  • Reaffirms Employer of Choice commitment with largest-ever Partner-Family Forum in Chengdu and China partner experience investments
  • Continued innovation in customer experience through Starbucks social gifting
  • Alibaba Group Founder and Executive Chairman, Jack Ma, joins Starbucks chairman and ceo, Howard Schultz, to discuss the role and responsibility of 21st Century companies

CHENGDU, China, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Howard Schultz, chairman and chief executive officer, Starbucks Coffee Company (NASDAQ: SBUX) today reaffirmed the strategic role of the China market in shaping the future of the company with the announcement of several market-leading initiatives, further elevating the unique Starbucks Experience for partners (employees) and customers.

Schultz and other company leaders announced the initiatives at Starbucks China Partner-Family Forum in Chengdu where they joined more than 1,300 Central and Western China region partners and their family members to experience Starbucks mission and values together and celebrated the 2,000 store milestone achievement.

“As Starbucks second largest and fastest-growing market globally, China represents the most important and exciting opportunity ahead of us,” said Schultz. “We are deeply humbled by the enthusiasm with which Chinese people have embraced Starbucks as part of their daily ritual over the past 17 years. Over time, it’s conceivable that China could become our largest market and I am grateful to our 30,000 dedicated China partners and their supportive families for the significant contributions they are making to Starbucks success. The continued investments we are making, coupled with the culture of innovation we have established, are elevating Starbucks partner and customer experience beyond that of any other retailer in China.”

Joining Schultz on stage at the Partner Family Forum was Jack Ma, founder and executive chairman of Alibaba Group, where both leaders shared their vision to redefine the roles and responsibilities of a for-profit public company – one that invests in its people, giving back to the local communities in meaningful ways, and creating unique developmental opportunities for the youth of today.

In his introduction of Ma at the Starbucks China Partner Family Forum, Schultz said, “When he and I get together we’re talking about common values and we’re talking about humanity.  Together building the kind of companies our parents would be proud of.  I asked him to come here and share with you his thoughts about building his company and share with you what it means to succeed against all odds in China.”

In addressing the Starbucks Partner Family Forum Ma said, “Alibaba hopes to work together with Starbucks to create even more opportunities to develop Chinese youth because they are our future. All of you at today’s event represent China’s future. The more seeds of love we sow in our Chinese youth today, the more love they will give to the world tomorrow.”

Unparalleled Partner Investments

The Partner Family Forum is a first-of-its-kind employee engagement event, first introduced by Starbucks China in 2012, as part of a series of new initiatives aimed to honor the special role families play in China. Today’s event highlights Starbucks aspiration to build  the world’s most admired and trusted company, while recognizing the significant contributions partners have made and will continue to play in the company’s success in China. The Starbucks Central and Western region is one of the fastest growing regions in China, having tripled its store footprint over the past three years, now operates more than 300 stores across 23 cities.

In addressing Starbucks China partners and family members at the standing room only Partner Family Forum in Chengdu, Schultz said, “I am so incredibly proud of what you (Starbucks China partners) have accomplished. And I promise you (the parents of Starbucks partners) we will grow this company the right way.  I am a true believer in the future of China because of the humanity and the heart and the conscience of the Chinese people. And we will do everything we can to continue to build a great and enduring company that you and your parents can be proud of.”

Beginning this month, full-time baristas and shift supervisors* in Starbucks company-owned stores across China will receive a monthly housing allowance subsidy to help them overcome the initial financial challenges of starting their careers and often, living and working independently. This benefit is expected to on-average to cover 50-percent of their monthly housing expenditures, enabling partners who are starting in their careers the ability to better take care of themselves, while they pursue their personal and professional dreams.

In addition, Starbucks China will introduce the Career Coffee Break, a partner benefit tradition from the U.S., to recognize, appreciate and honor the hard work put in by long serving partners. Starting this month, Starbucks partners within our company-operated store with 10 consecutive years of service will be eligible to apply for a career coffee break, of up to 12 months unpaid leave, to refresh themselves and more importantly, spend quality time with their loved ones and family. The partner will be guaranteed reinstatement to either the same position or a position with similar pay and benefits upon their return to work. The partner’s social and company benefits will also continue during the career coffee break.

“These and other industry-leading partner investments demonstrate our continued commitment to support our China partners to achieve their personal and professional aspirations,” said Belinda Wong, president, Starbucks China. “Families play a tremendous role in the life and career choices for our partners in China and it’s important that we include their families in the conversation of who we are as a company and the investments we’re making toward supporting our partners’ future.”

Starbucks has always believed that success is best when shared. The current pay and benefits programs have reflected the company’s commitment to take care of its partners and their families by offering comprehensive health insurance to full-and part-time partners, and the Starbucks Bean Stock program which gives all partners equity in the company. In addition to the ongoing training and development opportunities at the Starbucks China University, last year the company introduced the Starbucks China Talent Exchange Program for retail partners. In 2015, 16 partners started their international one-year exchange program in Singapore, while another 32 partners have had the opportunity to work in various store locations across China.

Starbucks was named China Best Employer by Aon Hewitt twice consecutively in 2013 and 2015, and China Best Employer Award and Best HR Management Company by Zhaopin and 51job, China’s leading human resource portals, respectively.

Elevating the Customer Experience

Over the past 17 years, Starbucks has been incredibly humbled by how its Chinese customers have come to embrace its stores as a community gathering place. Innovating the customer experience is core to the company and Starbucks once again delivered on this commitment with the opening of an e-flagship store on Alibaba’s Tmall last month, China’s largest open business-to-consumer (B2C) platform. As Starbucks first social gifting platform in China, the Starbucks Tmall e-flagship store  enables customers to foster deeper and more meaningful connections with their friends and loved ones by giving them a convenient and easy way to send a Starbucks gift digitally.  Customers have embraced this new social gifting concept with great enthusiasm. The store has more than 300,000 registered fans and has become the number one performing brand on Tmall’s “Food and Beverage” category within its first month.

“Digital is highly relevant to our customers in China and we are committed to building a locally-relevant Starbucks 4th-place Experience that seamlessly integrates our unique store experience and the digital space, while building moments of human connection for our customers” added Wong. “We will learn from the experiences in our other markets and explore new strategic partnerships with leading platforms to enable the Starbucks China digital flywheel. More awaits us as we implement new digital experience innovations to surprise, delight and exceed the expectations of our Chinese customers.”

Starbucks continues to elevate and innovate its unsurpassed coffee experience at the forefront of its stores for the Chinese customer. Over the past two years, Starbucks opened 45 Starbucks Reserve stores and introduced the pour-over slow bar in 150 stores across China. The Starbucks Reserve stores are specialized store experiences in China devoted to highlighting some of the world’s most exotic, rare and exquisite coffees that are available in limited quantities globally.

As Starbucks accelerates its growth in China to achieve its goal to operate 3,400 stores by 2019, so too will its foundational aspiration to build a different kind of company – one committed to being performance-driven through the lens of humanity. Through the Starbucks China Youth Development Program introduced in June 2014, the company has convened numerous leading experts to establish a unique curriculum focused on developing future leaders in China. 1,500 university students, from both urban and rural areas, and those with disadvantaged backgrounds, will benefit from the program over three years.

*across all company operated markets with a minimum of  six-months with Starbucks China required for eligibility.

Extended captions for photos above:

Starbucks chairman and ceo, Howard Schultz, greets partners (employees) and their family members at Starbucks Partner Family Forum in Chengdu China on Tuesday January 12, 2016.

Starbucks chairman and ceo, Howard Schultz, addresses more than 1,300 company partners (employees) and their family members at Starbucks largest-ever Partner Family Forum in Chengdu China on Tuesday January 12, 2016.

Jack Ma, founder and executive chairman of Alibaba Group (left), and Starbucks chairman and ceo, Howard Schultz (right), shared their visions with more than 1,300 Starbucks partners (employees) and their family members on redefining the role and responsibility of 21st Century public companies at Starbucks Partner Family Forum in Chengdu China on Tuesday January 12, 2016.

For more information on this news release, contact us.

SOURCE:  Starbucks Corporation

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Jack Ma and Howard Schultz, China Partner Family Forum

Jack Ma and Howard Schultz, China Partner Family Forum

LVMH: Guerlain unveiled colorful collaboration with street artist John Andrew Perello

PARIS, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Guerlain has unveiled a striking and colorful collaboration with street artist John Andrew Perello, better known as JonOne. The surprising meeting inspired an arty reinterpretation of the “bee bottle” in a special limited series.

Created in 1853 as a special order for the marriage of Empress Eugénie to Napoleon III, the bee bottle is a timeless icon of the Perfumes and Cosmetics house and the subject of earlier tributes by several artists. To begin 2016, JonOne proposes his own contemporary take on the 69 bees.

Nearly 100 bottles in the Guerlain Exclusive Collections lab became a blank canvas, inviting the artist to give free rein to his inspiration. Each fragrance took on a different color scheme:  blue tones for Shalimar, a palette of pink for La Petite Robe Noire and orange hues for Rose Barbare.

The one-liter bottles are veritable works of art, engraved with the Guerlain name, numbered and signed by the artist. They are available exclusively at the Guerlain 68 Champs-Elysées boutique, which is also hosting an exhibition of JonOne’s large format work.

SOURCE: LVMH

LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton

22, avenue Montaigne, 75008 Paris – FranceTel: +33 (0)1 44 13 22 22Fax: +33 (0)1 44 13 22 23

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© Guerlain

© Guerlain

BRC’s Helen Dickinson on retail sales in December: This was very much an online Christmas

  • Online sales of Non-Food products in the UK grew 15.1% in December versus a year earlier, when they had risen by 7.0% over the previous year. This is the best performance since June. December’s online sales performance was ahead of its 3-month and 12-month averages of 12.3% and 12.4%, respectively.
  • In December 2015, Online sales represented 19.7% of total Non-Food sales, against 17.3% in December 2014, meaning almost 1 in 5 pounds was spent online. This is the second highest penetration of 2015, indicative of the popularity of online shopping in the run-up to Christmas and during the early January sales.
  • Toys & Baby Equipment was the second fastest growing category and achieved its best performance since June. This was followed closely by Furniture and Homewares, the latter grew at its fastest rate since the inception of this monitor in December 2012.
  • Online sales contributed 3.0 percentage points to the year-on-year growth of Non-Food total sales in December, the highest on record, while stores made a negative contribution.

LONDON, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive, British Retail Consortium, said: “This was very much an online Christmas with this channel playing a vital role in driving retail sales in December. Growth was up 15.1 per cent, ahead of its 3-month and 12-month averages of 12.3 and 12.4 per cent respectively, and December’s online penetration rate was the second highest of 2015, at 19.7 per cent, up from 17.3 per cent the same time last year. The proportion of online spend was up across all categories we measure with household appliances, footwear and furniture leading the way. Over the three months to December, online contributed 2.5 percentage points to UK non-food growth overall, confirming this channel as the key driver of growth. In fact, store sales were in reverse.

“Click & Collect continued to be instrumental, providing convenience for consumers and equipping smaller format stores with extended product ranges during the busy Christmas period. There were also some knock-on benefits, such as encouraging greater footfall into stores in turn inspiring impulse buys.”

David McCorquodale, Head of Retail, KPMG, said: “With 190% of average rainfall in December, many consumers chose to login rather than walk in over the festive period. There was marked increase in online shopping this year with that channel producing its highest contribution percentage to non-food sales growth compared to a decline in store growth.

“Whilst the weather was one reason for this, another is a significant shift in consumer behaviours with online channel more convenient and logistics and fulfilment networks becoming increasingly slick. The online phenomenon is clearly here to stay and will continue to challenge the role of the store. 2016 will no doubt bring further innovation in this arena as retailers strive to deliver a seamless omni-channel experience.”

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

SOURCE: British Retail Consortium

British Retail Consortium: December 2015 saw just 1 per cent retail sales growth YoY

  • UK retail sales rose by 0.1% on a like-for-like basis from December 2014, when they had decreased 0.4% from the preceding year. On a total basis, sales were up 1.0%, against a 1.0% rise in December 2014.
  • Adjusted for the BRC-Nielsen Shop Price Index deflation, total growth was 3.0%.
  • Total growth was above the 3-month average of 0.9% but weaker than the 12-month average of 1.7%.
  • Total Food sales grew 0.2% over the three months to December and 0.3% over the twelve months. On a three-month basis, total Non-Food sales were up 1.5%, the weakest growth since January 2013.
  • Online sales of Non-Food products in the UK grew 15.1% in December versus a year earlier, when they had grown 7.0%. The Non-Food online penetration rate was 19.7%, up 2.4 percentage points from December 2014.

LONDON, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive, British Retail Consortium, said: “2015 drew to a disappointing close for retailers, with December seeing just 1 per cent sales growth, notwithstanding the strong underlying momentum of an improving consumer environment buoyed by rising real incomes, low inflation and low unemployment. Online performed strongly as consumers embraced the convenience and flexibility that more sophisticated retailers offered. Nevertheless, the boost from online was not enough to make this a Christmas to remember for most retailers. The three month rolling total sales across all categories was the weakest for the entire year, with only 0.9 per cent growth, while non-food saw its slowest performance since January 2013.

“Looking at the year as a whole, the strongest performing categories include those related to the home, supported by a robust housing market, renewed strength in mortgage approvals and a generally healthier appetite among consumer for credit. With price deflation and offers aplenty, the current retail climate is great news for consumers, however retailers are not benefiting from the improved economic climate in the same way that other sectors have done. This is in part due to changing consumer shopping habits and the rising cost of doing business for retailers such as business rates and the national living wage due to be introduced in April. The Government has a prime opportunity in March’s budget to help UK retailers continue to drive growth in the economy and create new jobs by reducing the disproportionate burden of business rates and keep going with its structural review.”

David McCorquodale, Head of Retail, KPMG, said: “Despite a number of positive economic indicators, retail sales over Christmas were relatively flat with more products on discount and the depth of discounting also deeper.

“Although retailers tried to tame Black Friday 2015, it still had a significant impact on the shape of sales over the festive season, spreading spend over six weeks rather than two. Fashion sales were the losers in December as mild weather deferred the need and wet weather deferred the inclination to try and buy a new winter outfit.

“The grocers had a fairly admirable Christmas with total food and drink sales back in the black for the first time since September in spite of the persistent price deflation in the sector.

“December’s star performer was Home Accessories as consumers “decked the halls” with baubles and fairy lights to get into the festive spirit. Children’s Toys also had a good month as Santa delivered to “those who’d been nice” on Christmas morning.”

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

Taubman not to move forward with an enclosed regional mall that was slated to be part of Miami Worldcenter mixed-use development in Miami, Florida

  • Company has decided not to move forward with enclosed regional mall
  • Now pursuing a high street retail plan
  • Write off of $11-$12 million to be recognized in the fourth quarter of 2015

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich., 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Taubman Centers, Inc. (NYSE: TCO) today announced that it has decided not to move forward with an enclosed regional mall that was slated to be part of the Miami Worldcenter mixed-use, urban development in Miami, Florida. Instead, Taubman, in conjunction with The Forbes Company and Miami Worldcenter’s master developer, Miami Worldcenter Associates, is now pursuing a high street retail plan that will better utilize the unique characteristics of the site and the market.

As a result of the decision, during the fourth quarter of 2015, Taubman expects to recognize a charge of $11-$12 million for the write off of previously capitalized costs related to predevelopment of the enclosed mall plan. This is expected to reduce 2015 Funds from Operations and net income allocable to common shareholders per diluted common share (EPS) by $0.13-$0.14.

“We’ve invested a significant amount of time on the project,” said Robert S. Taubman, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Taubman Centers. “Unfortunately, we were unable to structure an enclosed mall program that meets our investment criteria. We’re pleased, however, to work with The Forbes Company and Miami Worldcenter Associates on the potential development of a high street plan that we all believe will provide an outstanding retail experience.”

Taubman and Forbes have agreed with Miami Worldcenter Associates on preliminary terms to lease the retail portion of the street level project, with an option to purchase the retail component for a predetermined price once it opens.

About Miami Worldcenter
Occupying 27 acres in the heart of downtown Miami, Miami Worldcenter is one of the largest private real estate developments underway in the United States. The ten-block project will include world-class retail, hospitality and residential uses in the center of Miami’s urban core. All told, the project is expected to account for $2 billion in new investment in downtown Miami.

About Taubman
Taubman Centers is an S&P MidCap 400 Real Estate Investment Trust engaged in the ownership, management and/or leasing of 23 regional, super-regional and outlet shopping centers in the U.S. and Asia. Taubman’s U.S.-owned properties are the most productive in the publicly held U.S. regional mall industry. Taubman is currently developing four properties in the U.S. and Asia totaling 4.1 million square feet. Founded in 1950, Taubman is headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Taubman Asia, founded in 2005, is headquartered in Hong Kong. www.taubman.com.

For ease of use, references in this press release to “Taubman Centers,” “company,” “Taubman” or an operating platform mean Taubman Centers, Inc. and/or one or more of a number of separate, affiliated entities. Business is actually conducted by an affiliated entity rather than Taubman Centers, Inc. itself or the named operating platform.

This press release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These statements reflect management’s current views with respect to future events and financial performance. The forward-looking statements included in this release are made as of the date hereof. Except as required by law, we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future. Actual results may differ materially from those expected because of various risks and uncertainties.You should review the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including “Risk Factors” in its most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent quarterly reports, for a discussion of such risks and uncertainties.

Source: Taubman Centers, Inc.

Ryan Hurren, Taubman, Director, Investor Relations, 248-258-7232,
rhurren@taubman.com

Maria Mainville, Taubman, Director, Strategic Communications, 248-258-7469,
mmainville@taubman.com

Kimco Realty announces transaction activity in fourth quarter of 2015

NEW HYDE PARK, N.Y., 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kimco Realty Corp. (NYSE:KIM) today announced transactions of approximately $1.9 billion and $4.4 billion in the fourth quarter and full year 2015, respectively.

Highlights for the fourth quarter include the sale of 88 wholly owned and joint venture properties for $1.7 billion, of which Kimco’s share of the sales price and mortgage debt was $908.3 million and $285.4 million, respectively. Sixty-four of the properties were located in the U.S., 23 in Canada and the final being the company’s last asset in Chile. During the fourth quarter, the company also acquired three U.S. shopping centers totaling $207.8 million, two of which come from existing joint ventures.

In 2014, the company embarked on a simplification initiative focusing on its U.S. portfolio and reducing its joint venture program. Since that time, Kimco has transformed its U.S. shopping center portfolio to become more concentrated in core major metro markets by acquiring 119 high-quality properties totaling $3.5 billion and selling interests in 186 properties for $1.8 billion. During the same period, the company exited Mexico and South America and reduced its Canadian platform. In addition, the number of properties held in joint ventures decreased from 412 to 194.

Fourth Quarter Activity:

Dispositions:

  • Kimco sold 64 U.S. properties, totaling 3.0 million square feet, for a gross sales price of $437.7 million (which included 49 joint venture properties for $226.6 million). The company’s share from these sales was $275.5 million.
  • As previously announced, the company sold its interest in 23 Canadian shopping centers to RioCan based on a gross sales price of $1.2 billion, including the assumption of $404.9 million of existing mortgage debt. Kimco’s share of the sales price and assignment of debt was $581.5 million and $195.9 million, respectively.
  • The company sold its last remaining shopping center in Latin America, Vina del Mar, a wholly owned property in Chile for $51.3 million, including the assignment of $32.0 million of debt.

Acquisitions:

As previously announced, Kimco acquired:

  • Christown Spectrum, an 850,000-square-foot destination power center in the Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Ariz. metropolitan statistical area (MSA) for $115.3 million. Christown, which is supported by a population of 437,000 within a five-mile radius and lies adjacent to the second-busiest light rail station in Phoenix, offers a multitude of redevelopment and value creation opportunities.
  • The remaining 85% ownership interest in Conroe Marketplace (Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land MSA), a 289,000-square-foot power center, for $54.4 million based on a gross value of $64.0 million.
  • A 36-acre tract of land in Houston for $13.2 million. This parcel lies directly across from Kimco’s Grand Parkway Marketplace ground-up development project and will be part of a phase II expansion of this project.

In addition, Kimco acquired the remaining 85% ownership interest in The Shops at District Heights, a 91,000-square-foot, grocery-anchored neighborhood center located in the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria MSA for $24.3 million based upon a gross value of $28.5 million.

Subsequently, In January 2016, Kimco paid $11.5 million to acquire General Growth Properties’ (NYSE: GGP) remaining 50% ownership interest in the Owings Mills Mall (Baltimore-Columbia-Towson MSA). In connection with this transaction, Kimco also acquired the parcel owned by J.C. Penny Company, Inc. for $5.2 million and is under contract to acquire the parcel owned by Macy’s, Inc. for $7.5 million. As a result of these transactions, Kimco will own 100% of the Owings Mills Mall and plans to develop a new open-air center in its place.

ABOUT KIMCO
Kimco Realty Corp. (NYSE: KIM) is a real estate investment trust (REIT) headquartered in New Hyde Park, N.Y., that is North America’s largest publicly traded owner and operator of open-air shopping centers. As of December 31, 2015, the company owned interests in 564 U.S. shopping centers comprising 90 million square feet of leasable space across 38 states and Puerto Rico. Publicly traded on the NYSE since 1991, and included in the S&P 500 Index, the company has specialized in shopping center acquisitions, development and management for more than 50 years. For further information, please visit www.kimcorealty.com, the company’s blog at blog.kimcorealty.com, or follow Kimco on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kimcorealty.

SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT

The statements in this release state the company’s and management’s intentions, beliefs, expectations or projections of the future and are forward-looking statements. It is important to note that the company’s actual results could differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations include, but are not limited to, (i) general adverse economic and local real estate conditions, (ii) the inability of major tenants to continue paying their rent obligations due to bankruptcy, insolvency or a general downturn in their business, (iii) financing risks, such as the inability to obtain equity, debt or other sources of financing or refinancing on favorable terms to the company, (iv) the company’s ability to raise capital by selling its assets, (v) changes in governmental laws and regulations, (vi) the level and volatility of interest rates and foreign currency exchange rates and management’s ability to estimate the impact thereof, (vii) risks related to the company’s international operations, (viii) the availability of suitable acquisition, disposition, development and redevelopment opportunities, and risks related to acquisitions not performing in accordance with the company’s expectations, (ix) valuation and risks related to the company’s joint venture and preferred equity investments, (x) valuation of marketable securities and other investments, (xi) increases in operating costs, (xii) changes in the dividend policy for the company’s common stock, (xiii) the reduction in the company’s income in the event of multiple lease terminations by tenants or a failure by multiple tenants to occupy their premises in a shopping center, (xiv) impairment charges and (xv) unanticipated changes in the company’s intention or ability to prepay certain debt prior to maturity and/or hold certain securities until maturity. Additional information concerning factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those forward-looking statements is contained from time to time in the company’s SEC filings. Copies of each filing may be obtained from the company or the SEC.

The company refers you to the documents filed by the company from time to time with the SEC, specifically the section titled “Risk Factors” in the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014, as it may be updated or supplemented in the company’s Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and the company’s other filings filed with the SEC, which discuss these and other factors that could adversely affect the company’s results.

Kimco Realty Corp.
David F. Bujnicki
Vice President, Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
1-866-831-4297
dbujnicki@kimcorealty.com

Source: Kimco Realty Corporation

Sheetz to invest more than $15 million to raise the wages of store employees

ALTOONA, Pa., 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — To further their commitment to offer employees a great place to work and a competitive total compensation package, Sheetz, one of America’s fastest growing family-owned and operated convenience store chains, will invest more than $15 million to raise the wages of store employees across the company without cutting back on hours for full-time employees.

“While other businesses in the industry might have to cut back on employee hours or new hires as a result of wage increases, Sheetz is working hard to provide full time hours to as many employees as possible, providing them with an opportunity to earn more and secure health benefits,” said Stephanie Doliveira, Vice President of Human Resources at Sheetz. “As a family-owned business, we’re committed to attracting, retaining and developing the best people.  We believe that paying wages at the upper end of the retail scale is necessary to achieve that goal.  In addition to paying competitive wages, we provide our employees with increases based upon tenure, access to health insurance, quarterly bonuses, college tuition reimbursement, adoption assistance and paid time off, among many other benefits, continuing to prove that Sheetz strives to be a great place to work.”

Great Place to Work® and Fortune recently recognized Sheetz as one of the 20 Best Workplaces in Retail based on the quality of the company’s pay and benefits, opportunities for advancement, support for employees’ personal lives, management ethics and day-to-day respect for staff.  Sheetz was ranked #8 on that list.

About Sheetz, Inc.
Established in 1952 in Altoona, Pennsylvania, Sheetz, Inc. is one of America’s fastest growing family-owned and operated convenience store chains, with more than $6.9 billion in revenue and more than 17,000 employees. The company operates over 500 store locations throughout Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Ohio and North Carolina. Sheetz provides an award-winning menu of MTO® sandwiches and salads, which are ordered through unique touch-screen order point terminals. All Sheetz convenience stores are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. For more information, visit www.sheetz.com or follow us on Twitter (@sheetz), Facebook (www.facebook.com/sheetz) and Instagram (www.instagram.com/sheetz).

SOURCE Sheetz, Inc.

For further information: Tarah Arnold, 814.941.5183, tarnold@sheetz.com

SSP opens two new coffee shops at Euston Station

LONDON, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — SSP, a leading operator of food and beverage brands in travel locations worldwide, is making a visit to Euston Station even better with the opening of two new coffee shops.

As part of a major refurbishment of the station, the new Starbucks welcomed its first customers at the end of 2015, while a Caffè Ritazza is scheduled to open early this year.

The Starbucks store is the first in the UK rail sector to offer Starbucks Evenings, which gives customers a choice from a range of small hot and cold sharing plates, alongside premium wines and beers. Dishes on the menu range from chorizo and prawn skewers with chilli ketchup, to truffle mac & cheese, and braised British beef.

The Caffè Ritazza will be designed to feature the brand’s new look and will offer a newly improved premium fine food range.

Commenting on the new openings, Simon Smith, CEO of SSP UK and Ireland said; “We have had a long and successful relationship with Network Rail and we are delighted to be building on the success of this partnership with the opening of two great brands.”

Hamish Kiernan, director of retail at Network Rail said, “We want to create great places for station passengers and visitors. Part of this means providing a good selection of outlets where people can eat and drink, whatever time of day or night they are visiting. These two new additions to Euston station are part of major refurbishments and will help ensure we cater to the demands of the travelling public as well as all those who live and work near the station.”

If you have a press enquiry, please call Clare Williams at Templemere Public Relations on +44 (0) 1483 243 546 or press.office@ssp-intl.com

SOURCE: SSP Group plc

JFK Airport’s Terminal 4 expanded its food and beverage program in 2015 with eight new restaurants managed by SSP America

LONDON, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — To keep up with changing customer tastes, JFKIAT – the management company which operates Terminal 4 at John F. Kennedy International Airport – has made significant upgrades to its food and beverage program in 2015. Eight new restaurants came to the terminal this past year, all managed by SSP America, the exclusive food and beverage purveyor of Terminal 4.

The wide variety of offerings include everything from “grab-and-go” sandwiches and snacks to coffee shops, popular branded eateries and top-rated, full-service restaurants and bars, all catering to a diverse passenger mix reflective of New York City.

“Terminal 4 makes every effort to provide the best travel experience by offering a unique variety of some of the best food and beverage establishments,” said Gert-Jan de Graaff, President and CEO of JFKIAT. “We are grateful to work with SSP America and their food and beverage partners, who offer the best names and products in the world right here at JFK’s Terminal 4.”

“SSP America understands that Terminal 4’s passenger base anticipates quality and a taste of home, and our team is proud to deliver on that expectation,” said Michael Svagdis, President and CEO of SSP America. “We are excited to continue our partnership with JFKIAT to further expand the incredible portfolio of food and beverage establishments in the terminal.”

Among those who joined Terminal 4 are:

• Bento Sushi, Manhattan’s number one pick for high-quality grab-and-go sushi and Japanese entrees, offering everything from the traditional California Roll to full meal solutions like Donburi Rice Bowls and Bento Boxes.

• Camden Food Express, the “En-route Sandwich Retailer of the Year,” serves up a selection of healthy choices ranging from a Hummus Crunch Vegetable Wrap to the gluten-free brownie.

• Canal St. Noodle House, a quintessential Southeast Asian market created exclusively for Terminal 4, offers customized noodle bowls and Vietnamese-style sandwiches made from fresh ingredients daily. Travelers can choose from chicken, duck or tofu, and top their order with a selection of globally appealing vegetables including bok choy, edamame and Thai basil.

• Dunkin Donuts Express provides a wide variety of traveler’s favorite hot and iced coffees and baked goods.

• Flatiron Coffee, a contemporary coffee shop located in the retail lounge that features an assortment of coffee choices sourced locally from Irving Farms and pastries provided by Eli Zabar, New York’s First Family of Food member and a true artisanal bakery. The baked goods make for a stunning visual presentation and customers can purchase croissants, donuts, freshly baked sourdough-based breads, rolls, bagels, crisps and thins.

• Jamba Juice offers better-for-you food and beverages, including great tasting fruit smoothies, fresh squeezed juices, energy bowls, oatmeal, sandwiches, and a variety of baked goods and snacks.

• Pizza Vino, a modern pizzeria that features fresh out-of-the-oven artisanal pizzas and a hand-picked, premium wine selection, reopened this year after undergoing an expansion which included the addition of a full-service bar.

• Urban Crave is home to authentic street cuisine served in a storefront featuring vintage decor complete with warehouse bricks, beautifully reclaimed hardwood floors and a kitchen centered below a copper grill hood.

In 2016, JFKIAT and SSP America will continue to work together to create an unparalleled selection of offerings in Terminal 4 and will bring even more food and beverage options to the terminal. NY Street Foods, among others, are set to open later this year.

If you have a press enquiry, please call Clare Williams at Templemere Public Relations on +44 (0) 1483 243 546 or press.office@ssp-intl.com

SOURCE: SSP Group plc

Advocate Health Care to own and operate 56 Healthcare Clinics at Walgreens stores across Chicagoland area

Clinical agreement to improve care coordination and access across 56 retail clinic locations

DEERFIELD, Ill. & CHICAGO, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ —  Walgreens and Advocate Health Care today announced Advocate will own and operate the 56 Healthcare Clinics at Walgreens stores across the greater Chicagoland area. The retail clinics will function as part of Advocate and will strengthen care coordination for patients, while also furthering overall convenience and access. The clinics, to be branded as Advocate Clinic at Walgreens, will open under Advocate in May 2016.

“Advocate Clinic at Walgreens expands Advocate’s care delivery locations to provide more options for patients and meet the needs of consumers in an evolving health care environment,” said Lee Sacks, M.D., Advocate’s chief medical officer and executive vice president. “With Walgreens’ unmatched footprint coupled with our leading clinical expertise and commitment to delivering high quality, affordable health care, more patients will have access to the best care when and where they need it.”

Advocate Clinic at Walgreens will provide consumers the ability to receive care from a well-known, trusted provider with the easy access and convenience of a retail clinic setting. The clinics also offer a high quality, affordable option for treating common illnesses and injuries and allow for more effective care coordination.. Advocate Clinic at Walgreens will continue to offer walk-ins and same-day appointment scheduling.

For Walgreens, the agreement aligns with a two-pronged growth strategy for its retail clinics, which includes investing in its core business and expanding services to build a strong and viable model for future growth, while also developing deeper, more innovative approaches with health systems.

“Advocate shares our commitment to delivering extraordinary, personalized patient care, and is a nationally recognized health system that, like Walgreens, has been serving Chicagoland communities for more than 100 years,” said Pat Carroll, M.D., chief medical officer for Walgreens Healthcare Clinics. “We believe this approach will help ensure a true continuum of care for patients and their providers. This is also an emphasis for our Walgreens-managed clinics, where we continue to make investments, such as a new EHR platform, to offer patient benefits through a variety of convenient care options.”

Today’s announcement furthers Walgreens and Advocate’s efforts to improve care delivery. Walgreens currently operates on-site pharmacies at three Advocate hospitals, with plans to expand to three additional Advocate Hospitals in the near future.

Advocate Clinic at Walgreens will be staffed with board-certified nurse practitioners employed by, trained by and supervised by Advocate Medical Group. Advocate’s intention is to attempt to hire its initial workforce from among the employees currently working at Walgreens clinic locations.

The 56 Healthcare Clinics that Advocate will operate are located in Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will counties.

About Walgreens
Walgreens (www.walgreens.com), one of the nation’s largest drugstore chains, is included in the Retail Pharmacy USA Division of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBA), the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise. More than 8 million customers interact with Walgreens each day in communities across America, using the most convenient, multichannel access to consumer goods and services and trusted, cost-effective pharmacy, health and wellness services and advice. Walgreens operates 8,173 drugstores with a presence in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Walgreens digital business includes Walgreens.com, drugstore.com, Beauty.com, SkinStore.com and VisionDirect.com. Walgreens also manages more than 400 Healthcare Clinic and provider practice locations around the country.

About Advocate Health Care
Advocate Health Care is the largest health system in Illinois and one of the largest health care providers in the Midwest. Advocate operates more than 250 sites of care and 12 hospitals, including five of the nation’s 100 Top Hospitals, the state’s largest integrated children’s network, five Level I trauma centers (the state’s highest designation in trauma care), three Level II trauma centers, one of the area’s largest home health and hospice companies and one of the region’s largest medical groups. Advocate Health Care trains more primary care physicians and residents at its four teaching hospitals than any other health system in the state. As a not-for-profit, mission-based health system affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the United Church of Christ, Advocate contributed $783 million in charitable care and services to communities across Chicagoland and Central Illinois in 2014.

About Advocate Medical Group
Advocate Medical Group provides primary care and specialty services throughout Chicagoland and Central Illinois. The physician-led group is focused on serving Advocate’s communities and achieving optimal health outcomes for patients by providing safe, coordinated care. Advocate Medical Group is the state’s largest medical group with more than 1,300 providers at over 200 locations. It is part of Advocate Health Care, one of the leading integrated systems in the nation. More information can be found at AMGDoctors.com, or by calling 1.800.3.ADVOCATE (1.800.323.8622).

Contact(s)

Walgreens
Jim Cohn, 847-315-2950
jim.cohn@walgreens.com
or
Advocate Health Care
Lisa Lesniak, 630-929-6602
lisa.lesniak@advocatehealth.com

Teavana celebrates National Hot Tea Day with the launch of new seven wellness teas

Teavana unveils its new line of seven wellness teas that aid in supporting a healthy lifestyle, just in time to celebrate with customers on the first ever National Hot Tea Day

SEATTLE, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Americans consumed more than 80 billion servings of tea in 2014 and their interest in the health benefits of tea continues to grow, according to the Tea Council of the USA, which recently named January 12th National Hot Tea Day.

Today, Teavana® is introducing seven new loose-leaf wellness teas that are an easy and delicious way to support a healthy lifestyle, with blends like Purify, Defense and Rev Up.

“We know our customers are looking to incorporate health and wellness rituals into their everyday life, so this is the perfect time for Teavana to introduce a new line of wellness teas,” said Bernard Acoca, president, Teavana. “Enjoying a flavorful cup of Rejuvenate tea in the morning or Serenity tea in the evening is something our customers can feel good about and a wellness ritual that is easy to sustain throughout the year.”

Teavana partners (employees) are finding that customers commonly explore teas to support and enhance a healthy lifestyle. “On a regular basis, Teavana customers come to our stores asking for teas with specific ingredients,” said Naoko Tsunoda, director of Tea Development at Teavana. “They might be looking for a tea that is calming, one that may be energizing or an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamin C for overall wellness.”

With these customer requests in mind, the tea blending experts at Teavana created seven wellness teas as a permanent part of the company’s core lineup. The new loose-leaf blends are made from high-quality tea leaves, fruits and botanicals. The seven new teas (photos below the tea names) are:

Defense, a blend of white tea, blackberry leaves and amaranth grain, plus 50 percent of recommended daily value of vitamin C

Purify, a mix of white tea scented with jasmine and orange petals to promote hydration and an inner glow

Rev Up, a blend of second-flush Darjeeling black tea, green tea, and high quality Chinese oolong with notes of peach, apricot, and mango to help support a healthy metabolism

Serenity, a blend of chamomile, orange and rose petals that will help unwind before bed

Rejuvenate, a blend of black tea and yerba maté to help invigorate

Recover, a detoxifying blend of green tea and mint, plus 50 percent of recommended daily value of vitamin C

Comfort, a blend of ginger, spearmint and peppermint to help balance your being

“We chose different varieties of teas and botanicals regularly sought after by consumers in the wellness category such as chamomile, ginger, lavender and peppermint,” Tsunoda said. The Teavana team also carefully blended the teas to provide a striking balance of flavor.

In addition to the new wellness teas, Teavana offers a line of USDA Certified Organic Imperial Grade Matcha, which provides catechins and antioxidants from vitamins A and C. Teavana recently launched new organic Matcha Singles, which can be instantly brewed by simply adding hot or cold water, for customers on the go.

The wellness and matcha teas in addition to a full lineup of specialty teas are available at 350 Teavana stores across North America or online at Teavana.com.

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

SOURCE:  Starbucks Corporation

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Teavana celebrates National Hot Tea Day with the launch of new seven wellness teas

Teavana celebrates National Hot Tea Day with the launch of new seven wellness teas

Forever 21 launches plus-sized activewear range with Ashley Graham

LOS ANGELES, CA, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Forever 21, one of the most recognized and largest independent fashion retailers offering extended sizes, announces the launch of a plus-sized activewear range with American model, Ashley Graham.

The Forever 21 Plus Activewear Collection is an extension of the brand’s Activewear line and features high-tech impact attributes and anti-odor technology as well as on-trend designs, offering endless options for the woman who partakes in low-, medium-, and high-performance activity. From yoga to cycling, and running to taking on the great outdoors, the range covers all activewear apparel needs. Featured in the collection are sports bras with marble print and the words “No Days Off” repeated on a elastic band hem, stylish athletic leggings with form-fitting mesh paneling and a back-zipped welt pocket, long-sleeved hoodies with a flap-top front pocket, athletic tops cut from heathered stretch material with intricate ladder cutouts, and long-sleeved varsity style mesh tops. Key attributes of the collection include tight form fit, wicking, flat lock seams, key pockets, and a gusset design that allows functional comfort.

Forever 21 Plus Activewear Collection launches in the U.S. and on Forever21.com beginning Saturday, January 9, 2016.

ABOUT FOREVER 21
Forever 21, Inc., headquartered in Los Angeles, California, is a fashion retailer of women’s, men’s and kids clothing and accessories and is known for offering the hottest, most current fashion trends at a great value to consumers. This model operates by keeping the store exciting with new merchandise brought in daily. Founded in 1984, Forever 21 operates more than 730 stores in 48 countries with retailers in the United States, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Latin America, Mexico, Philippines and United Kingdom. For more information please visit: www.newsroom.forever21.com

CONTACT INFORMATION

Forever 21 Public Relations

 

SOURCE: FOREVER 21

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Forever 21 launches plus-sized activewear range with Ashley Graham

Forever 21 launches plus-sized activewear range with Ashley Graham

Forever 21 launches its Activewear 2016 campaign featuring model Vita Sidorkina

LOS ANGELES, CA, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Forever 21, one of the most recognized and largest independent fashion retailers in the world, debuts its Activewear 2016 Collection and campaign globally which features model Vita Sidorkina; the collection highlights new high-tech impact features, anti-odor technology as well as on-trend designs.

The sporty-chic collection is functional, fashionable and comfortable, offering endless options for the woman who partakes in low-, medium- and high-performance activity. From yoga to cycling, and running to taking on the great outdoors, the collection covers all activewear apparel needs. Featured are sports bras in a variety of eye-catching colors and patterns that provide support for all impact levels, t-shirts with inspirational words “Never Too Late,” “Don’t Ever Quit,” and “No Excuses”, yoga pants with lattice side detail and abstract prints and stylish hoodies designed to keep the wearer dry and warm during high-intensity outdoor activity. Key attributes of the collection include anti-odor technology, tight form fit, wicking, flat lock seams, key pockets, and a gusset design that allows functional comfort.

Forever 21 Activewear Collection launches in stores globally and on Forever21.com beginning Saturday, January 9, 2016.

ABOUT FOREVER 21
Forever 21, Inc., headquartered in Los Angeles, California, is a fashion retailer of women’s, men’s and kids clothing and accessories and is known for offering the hottest, most current fashion trends at a great value to consumers. This model operates by keeping the store exciting with new merchandise brought in daily. Founded in 1984, Forever 21 operates more than 730 stores in 48 countries with retailers in the United States, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Latin America, Mexico, Philippines and United Kingdom. For more information please visit: www.newsroom.forever21.com

CONTACT INFORMATION

Forever 21 Public Relations
press@forever21.com

 

SOURCE: Forever 21

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Forever 21 launches its Activewear 2016 campaign featuring model Vita Sidorkina

Forever 21 launches its Activewear 2016 campaign featuring model Vita Sidorkina

National Grocers Association announces the promotion of four staff members

Arlington, VA, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Grocers Association (NGA), the national trade association representing the independent supermarket industry, announced today the promotions of four of its staff.

Greg Ferrara has been named Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs. Ferrara will continue in his role overseeing the government relations and communications and marketing departments as well as serving as NGA’s chief lobbyist. Having first joined NGA in November 2005, Greg brings a wealth of experience in the grocery industry having managed the operations for his family’s century-old supermarket in New Orleans before the store was ultimately destroyed in Hurricane Katrina. He has also worked as a corporate project manager for Associated Grocers in Baton Rouge, LA. Ferrara was recognized in 2015 as one of Association TRENDS Leading Lobbyists. He holds a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola University New Orleans and is a fellow of the prestigious Institute of Politics at Loyola University.

Matthew R. Ott, M.S., CAE, CMP has been named to Chief Operating Officer. During his time at NGA, Ott has overseen NGA’s membership, business development, partnership and technology initiatives. In addition to his current responsibilities, Ott will have an expanded role in NGA’s office operations and administration. Prior to joining NGA in 2011, Ott has held various management positions within the association and non-profit industries with a focus on increasing organizational growth opportunities. In 2013, Ott was named as one of six Association TRENDS Young and Aspiring Professionals and was named to Association Forum of Chicagoland and USAE’s list of the top 40 Under Forty, recognizing the top young talent in the association and non-profit industries. Ott has also been recently recognized by BIZNOW as a member of the 2016 Trending 40: Association and Non-Profit Innovators. He is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire (M.S.) and George Mason University (B.S.).

Maggie Lyons has been promoted to Senior Director of Government Relations. Lyons will take on an expanded role in managing NGA’s relationship with Congress and federal agencies to advance the organization’s legislative and regulatory priorities. She will also work more closely on supervising NGA’s Grocers PAC political giving and fundraising strategy. Lyons came to NGA in January of 2014 from Capitol Hill, where she served as deputy chief of staff for a senior member of the House Agriculture Committee. Prior to her time spent working in the U.S. House, Lyons worked for a Washington-based think tank, and served on the staff of a U.S. Senator. Lyons is a graduate of Elon University, with a Bachelor’s degree in Corporate Communications.

Laura Strange has been promoted to Senior Director of Communications and Marketing. She will continue in her role running NGA’s communications and media relations functions in addition to managing marketing for NGA events and programs. Strange joined NGA in the fall of 2013, coming from Capitol Hill where she served as communications director for a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and prior to that a member on the House Appropriations Committee. In addition to having professional experience on Capitol Hill, Strange worked in the government affairs department for Yahoo! Inc., and in the communications and marketing division for a trade association. She earned a Master’s degree in Public Relations from George Washington University, and her undergraduate degree in Communications from the University of South Carolina.

“Each of these individuals has extensive experience in their areas of expertise and provides NGA with immense knowledge that expands beyond the food industry. They are great assets to this organization and I look forward to working with each as they continue to grow in their roles and work towards NGA’s goal to strengthen the independent supermarket industry,” said Peter J. Larkin, NGA President and CEO.

1005 N. Glebe Road
Suite 250
Arlington, VA, 22201
(703) 516-0700
Fax (703) 516-0115

SOURCE: National Grocers Association

Whole Foods Market to open its first North Orange County location on February 17 at La Floresta in Brea, California

Will host pre-opening events to connect with the community

LOS ANGELES, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Whole Foods Market’s first North Orange County location is scheduled to open Wednesday, Feb. 17, in the Village at La Floresta in Brea, California. The 38,000-square-foot store is currently under construction at 3301 Imperial Highway, at the corner of Valencia Avenue. It will create more than 150 jobs.

Store hours will be 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily; there will be a restaurant and bar on site with daily specials and a community room for hosting special events.

“We’re looking forward to bringing Brea and North Orange County a new, innovative option for shopping, entertaining and gathering with friends and family,” said Patrick Bradley, president of Whole Foods Market’s Southern Pacific Region. “This store will provide the very best we have to offer, and beyond high quality and delicious food is our commitment to community. We couldn’t be happier to be part of this wonderful neighborhood.”

Whole Foods Market Brea will host a series of pre-opening events to get to know the community and meet its new neighbors. These events will offer sampling, tastings and a sneak peek at the unique highlights of this location; events are free, open to the public, and attendees will receive gift bags with samples.

Wednesday, Jan. 20, 5:30 to 7 p.m., Brea Civic & Cultural Center, 1 Civic Center Cir, Brea, CA 92821
-New Year, New Start – Conquer your resolutions with pantry staples and discuss shared values on meat, seafood and produce

Saturday, Jan. 23, 1 to 2:30 p.m., Core Power Yoga, 3413 E Imperial Hwy, Brea, CA 92823
-Beauty, Community and Core Values – sample luxurious natural body care, learn about our high quality standards and mission

Wednesday Jan. 27, 5:30 to7 p.m., Brea Civic & Cultural Center, 1 Civic Center Cir, Brea, CA 92821
-Entertaining, your neighborhood culinary destination – from scratch bread and dessert to beer and wine pairings, tips for your next party

For more information about the events, and to RSVP, click here.

As Whole Foods Market does in every community in which it opens, the store will partner with like-minded organizations to foster and support local nonprofits, suppliers, businesses and residents to support community development.

Whole Foods Market Brea will host a final pre-opening community gathering, “Eat. Drink. Play. Give. — Brea Block Party,” Saturday, Feb. 6, from noon to 4 p.m. Tickets are a suggested donation of $5 for adults, $3 for children; all proceeds will benefit the Brea Education Foundation.  On Feb. 25, the store will host a community giving day in which 5 percent of the day’s net sales will benefit the MaxLove Project, a local organization that supports children with cancer and life-threatening conditions.

For updates, check out the store webpage, follow on Twitter @WFMSocal and Instagram @WFMBrea.

EXPERT

Patrick Bradley
President – Southern Pacific Region

His passion for food, innovation, creativity and retail excellence have contributed to the on-going success of Whole Foods Market.

SOURCE: Whole Foods Market

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Whole Foods Market to open its first North Orange County location on February 17 at La Floresta in Brea, California

Whole Foods Market to open its first North Orange County location on February 17 at La Floresta in Brea, California

mPOS Set to Revolutionize Indian Retail Sector

Chennai, India, January 13, 2016 — /EPR Retail News/ — Indian retail market is evolving at a rapid pace riding on technology innovations and customers’ changing preferences for superior shopping experience.

A lot of changes had happened during the last decade at Point of Sale (POS) counters as customers increasingly prefer cash-less transactions, and businesses have readily adopted right payment system for faster check-outs and better payment management.

One of the best ways the brick-and-mortar retailers can handle faster check-outs at their stores is via mobile-POS devices. These devices are like hand-held smart phones that are capable of accepting payments through cards, providing instant receipts and storing data for managing inventory, sales and other back-end business functions.

India, with close to 500 million credit/debit card holders and 700 million smart phone users, set to trigger cash-less transactions through mobile POS devices and online transactions, say analysts.

As per an estimate by the country’s leading banker Reserve Bank of India (RBI), India needs another 20 million M-POS devices in five years from the current 1.2 million sets to provide alternative retail delivery channels to both urban and rural populace across the country.

Predicting that M-POS will be a game changer for Indian payment market in 2020, Bhaskar Venkatraman, founder-director of JusTransact.com, India’s first e-commerce marketplace exclusively for Point Of Sale (POS) technology and solutions, says: “There are two reasons which can trigger the growth of M-POS in India – mobile devices becoming ubiquitous across the country with widespread internet penetration and customers craving for enhanced shopping experience with fast, convenient and cash-less transactions.  M-POS then becomes the natural choice to bridge the gap and promote card-based commerce for retailers. Also, fast evolving technology has changed the use cases of M-POS devices. Along with M-POS, we also expect more demand for Tablet POS and Cloud POS devices as the present generation retailers are more inclined to use latest technology to offer sophisticated shopping experience to buyers.”

Apart from the convenience in transactions and high customer experience, retail businesses choose mPOS devices to close the deal the moment customers make a decision on products without giving them time to change their mind when they proceed towards the checkouts, says Nimish Chandra, who manages a retail showroom selling electronic home appliances in Bangalore.

Despite the anticipated surge of these ‘anywhere commerce devices,’ Bhaskar doesn’t expect that mPOS will replace the traditional POS terminals in the near future.

“I think, to begin with, there will be a very little displacement due to mPOS in emerging markets like India where traditional POS systems are still ruling the roost. However, in the SMB environments, tablets will offer an attractive to traditional POS and mPOS. The displacement will be minimal at least for the next five years,” Bhaskar, who is also a domain expert in POS technology, feels.

He predicts that India will emerge as a leader in mPOS users in the Asia-Pacific region by 2019 as there has been a huge dependency on cash-on-delivery for e-commerce transactions which will open the gates for millions of mPOS deployments across the country.

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Media contacts

K Ramanathan,

JusTransact.com
G-19,2nd Floor, Block-16, 2nd Main Road
Ambattur Industrial Estate,Chennai-600 058
t : 91-44-43551366 | e : ram@justransact.com
m: 91-9384612789 | w: www.justransact.com

PREIT and ChargeItSpot provide consumers with free phone charging in secure lockers while shopping

  • Consumers from Michigan to Virginia Now Enjoying “Stress-Free” Shopping at PREIT Malls
  • More than 8,400 shoppers used the free service during its initial deployment in December 2015

PHILADELPHIA, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Two Philadelphia-based companies have teamed up to offer mall-goers a better shopping experience. PREIT (www.preit.com), a publicly traded REIT specializing in the ownership and management of differentiated shopping malls, and ChargeItSpot (www.chargeitspot.com), a four year-old mobile tech company, are providing consumers with free phone charging in secure lockers while they continue their shopping.

Shoppers at 10 PREIT malls from Michigan to Virginia will experience “stress-free” shopping in 2016 thanks to the installation of ChargeItSpot mobile phone charging stations.

As the Philadelphia area’s dominant mall landlord, PREIT now has the largest mall footprint of ChargeItSpot phone charging stations in the country with charging kiosks installed in 10 malls extending beyond its Philadelphia portfolio. Mall locations now equipped with the ChargeItSpot units are Cherry Hill Mall (Cherry Hill, N.J.), Viewmont Mall (Scranton, Pa.), Woodland Mall (Grand Rapids, Mich.), Willow Grove Park Mall (Willow Grove, Pa.), Valley Mall (Hagerstown, Md.), Springfield Town Center (Springfield, Va.), Mall at Prince Georges (Hyattsville, Md.), Logan Valley Mall (Altoona, Pa.), Exton Square Mall (Exton, Pa.) and Dartmouth Mall (Dartmouth, Mass.).

The ChargeItSpot charging kiosks are fully customizable and offer multiple opportunities for PREIT to engage with consumers in their mall locations. During the kiosks’ test period in December, PREIT used the customizable screens to tie into its holiday sweepstakes “Best Gift Ever” promotion, which offered shoppers a chance to win a $10,000 shopping spree along with other prizes when they scanned and uploaded shopping receipts into a PREIT mobile app.  On the charging station touchscreen, the kiosk asked shoppers “which prize do you like best” and displayed each of the available prizes. This helped stimulate awareness and adoption of the prize giveaway while also gathering information on consumer preferences which could be used for future mall giveaways and contests.

In December, more than 8,400 shoppers charged their phones with an average charge time of 53.1 minutes.

“By offering ChargeItSpot phone charging stations at 10 of our properties, we are providing an important convenience for our shoppers, allowing them to stay charged and engage more fully with our retailers, both of which have become increasingly important as mobile use as part of the omnichannel shopping experience continues to rise,” said Joseph F. Coradino, CEO of PREIT. “This initial installation is part of a company-wide initiative to connect more closely and frequently with our shoppers through mobile communications and state-of-the-art technology and amenities including free WiFi.”

ChargeItSpot’s free mobile app, available to PREIT shoppers, notifies users when their phone’s battery is low and directs them to the nearest ChargeItSpot kiosks so they can power up in secure charging lockers. The charging stations come equipped with eight charging bays, each containing three different charging cables for iPhone and Android phones. Shoppers simply enter their mobile phone number and select a security image in order to begin the user-friendly charging process. When consumers retrieve their phone, they receive an opt-in SMS message thanking them for charging their phones and inviting them to download the PREIT Malls app.

ChargeItSpot founder and CEO Douglas Baldasare added: “PREIT is a technological leader in its space. We are excited that they have identified and embraced the needs of their shoppers with a strong first phase of deployment of ChargeItSpot across 10 of their shopping malls. Their investment reflects a commitment to making their consumers’ shopping visits a truly enjoyable and social experience.”

Since its founding in 2011, ChargeItSpot has set out to solve the problem faced by millions of mobile phone-toting consumers every day – running out of “juice” and no place to get a charge. Today, with kiosks installations across the nation and in Canada, ChargeItSpot has quickly become the leading provider of secure phone charging stations for national retail stores, specialty retailers, shopping centers, casinos, hospitals, universities, stadiums and other indoor public venues. An innovative omnichannel marketing tool that delights and engages customers all while driving foot traffic and sales, ChargeItSpot charging kiosks are poised to become the next must-have retail tech amenity.

ABOUT PREIT
PREIT (NYSE: PEI) is a publicly traded real estate investment trust specializing in the ownership and management of differentiated shopping malls. Headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the company owns and operates approximately 27 million square feet of retail space in the Eastern half of the United Stated with concentration in the Mid-Atlantic region’s MSAs.  Since 2012 the company has seen a transformation guided by an emphasis on balance sheet strength, high quality merchandising and disciplined capital expenditures.  Additional information is available at www.preit.com, on Twitter or LinkedIn.

About ChargeItSpot 
Based in Philadelphia, and founded by Wharton graduate Douglas Baldasare, ChargeItSpot creates elegantly designed, fully customizable mobile phone charging kiosks. Built for retail, the stations feature an intuitive, user-friendly touchscreen interface, highly secure locking capability, promotional opportunities, customizable on-screen messages, and robust data tracking and reporting. ChargeItSpot also offers a mobile app that alerts users when their cell phone battery is running low and points them to the nearest ChargeItSpot kiosk. Retail partners include Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Bloomingdale’s, Under Armour, Century Casinos, AT&T, PREIT malls and others. Visit the ChargeItSpot Press Room for more info or download the mobile app for kiosk locations.

SOURCE ChargeItSpot
RELATED LINKS
http://www.chargeitspot.com

Price Chopper Supermarket in Ogdensburg open full-service pharmacy

Ogdensburg, NY, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — A new full-service pharmacy has opened in the Price Chopper Supermarket located at 2981 Ford Street Extension in Ogdensburg. It will provide the community with a convenient way to get all of their healthcare needs, including prescriptions and access to Price Chopper Pharmacy’s many programs available to help patients save on their medication. These programs include the Diabetes AdvantEdge Program that offers free diabetes medication and supplies as well as programs that include free antibiotics and free prenatal and children’s vitamins.

“We are pleased to extend our convenient and trusted patient centered services including immunizations and medication therapy management to Ogdensburg’s community members, who are already shopping our store for their groceries,” said Kathy Bryant, Vice President of Pharmacy for Price Chopper. “We look forward to collaborating with other health care providers in the community with the mutual goal of improving the outcomes of our patients”.

Price Chopper Pharmacy will be staffed with local pharmacists, Kaycee Cameron as the Pharmacy Manager and Patrick Duprey as the Staff Pharmacist. Private, professional, patient counseling rooms are available for patients to meet with the pharmacist to answer health and medication related questions.

The pharmacy accepts most insurance plans and transferring prescriptions is easy. Customers can simply bring their prescription bottles to the pharmacy and the pharmacist will take care of the rest.

The Price Chopper Pharmacy is open 8 am to 8 pm on Monday through Friday, and 9 am to 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday. To reach the pharmacy, please call 315-541-1181.

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About The Golub Corporation: Based in Schenectady, NY, the Golub Corporation owns and operates 136 Price Chopper and Market 32 grocery stores in New York, Vermont, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. The American owned, family-managed company prides itself on longstanding traditions of innovative food merchandising, leadership in community service, and cooperative employee relations. Golub’s 22,000 teammates collectively own more than 47% of the company’s privately held stock, making it one of the nation’s largest privately held corporations that is predominantly employee-owned. For additional information, visit www.pricechopper.com

Contact:
Mona Golub
Price Chopper
518.379.1480
or
Jonathan Pierce, APR
Pierce Communications
518.427.1186

Wincor Nixdorf to present its solutions at EuroCIS 2016

Creating an attractive shopping experience with leading technologies and efficient processes

Paderborn, GERMANY,  2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — A perfect shopping experience, satisfied customers, efficient processes: That is the slogan under which Wincor Nixdorf is presenting its forward-looking portfolio at EuroCIS 2016. Apart from mobile applications, as well as enhancements in attended and self-service checkouts and reverse vending machines, the particular focus this year is on solutions that enable consistent and transparent processes for retailers across all sales channels.

Omnichannel strategies. Wincor Nixdorf is showcasing TP.net 6.0, a new version of its modular software platform. The main feature of TP.net 6.0 is its clear business logic, i.e. the availability of consistent data and information for all sales channels. Data is available across customer touchpoints at the stores (e.g. the POS, kiosk, self-checkout, tablet, etc.), as well as for enterprise functions, such as the interfaces to the merchandise management system, e-commerce platforms or CRM systems. The software platform with its individual applications (including TPiShop for controlling mobile self-scanning processes, and TPOMM for accessing inventory data in merchandise management and orders in real time) enables:
•Comprehensive support of cross-channel customer service concepts
•A seamless shopping experience across all sales channels
•Selective, personalized addressing of customers
•Reliable data analysis (business analytics).

Mobile solutions. On the basis of its software platform TP.net, Wincor Nixdorf offers solutions for store employees who wish to serve their customers not only at the checkout, but throughout the entire store as well with the aid of tablet PCs. All POS functions are available on the tablet. The solution is thus particularly suitable for specialty retailing, where shoppers often want sound advice. Employees can obtain supplementary information on articles and prices, for example, and so respond competently and flexibly to customers’ wishes. If there are too many customers having to wait at open stationary checkouts, the mobile solution can help out and so reduce lines (“queue busting”).

Customer journey. A “real” store environment at EuroCIS will demonstrate how Wincor Nixdorf makes the entire shopping process more convenient, efficient and faster for customers with its solutions comprising hardware, software and services. This demonstration includes stationary and mobile scanning and payment solutions, as well as various self-checkout applications from Wincor Nixdorf.

Lifecycle management. With its “Store Lifecycle Management,” Wincor Nixdorf will present an end-to-end IT service solution for retailers at EuroCIS. Throughout a store’s lifecycle – from opening to operation to restoration of its original condition –, Wincor Nixdorf supports retail companies with consulting, project management, rollout and controlling of all service providers. The scalable solution offering also comprises operation of the store IT and application management, as well as ensuring smooth IT-based business processes.

Store modernization. To modernize stores, Wincor Nixdorf has developed scalable solutions to gear the concept and look of a store to modern requirements. The solution comprises detailed consulting, technical construction planning, as well as organization and supervision of the building work. That also includes IT rollout and well as repair and maintenance services (availability services) to optimize system availability.

Reverse vending. Wincor Nixdorf will present its new background and compaction solutions in the reverse vending arena. With a footprint of just under one square meter, the new modules offer greater flexibility in planning, a far greater compaction rate and quick and easy “one-touch” cleaning and operating processes. As a result, retailers can boost efficiency and save a lot more space behind the scenes.

Wincor Nixdorf will present its solutions at EuroCIS (Düsseldorf Exhibition Center, February 23 through 25, 2016) at Stand C 26 in Hall 9.

Wincor Nixdorf will also play an active role in the presentation program accompanying the trade show. Sabine Grün, Head of Retail Industry Marketing at Wincor Nixdorf, will give a talk on the subject of “Creating a new store experience with mobile solutions,” for example. Users will also talk about their experience with Wincor Nixdorf solutions. Claude Gerber, Head of IT at Calida AG, will present the SAP Order Management solution Wincor Nixdorf has installed at the global clothing group. And Dr. Alexander Bradel from s.Oliver will hold a presentation on the omnichannel concepts of the international fashion company.

Press Contact

Press/Financial Press

Andreas Bruck
Head of Corporate Communications
Phone: +49 5251 693 5200
E-Mail: andreas.bruck@wincor-nixdorf.com

Press/Trade Press

Dr. Thomas Daubenbüchel
Head of Press and Editorial Office
Phone: +49 5251 693 5212
E-Mail: thomas.daubenbuechel@wincor-nixdorf.com
Ulrich Nolte
Phone: +49 5251 693 5211
E-Mail: ulrich.nolte@wincor-nixdorf.com

Trade Press

Claudia Wendorff-Goerge
Phone: +49 5251 693 5203
E-Mail: claudia.wendorff-goerge@wincor-nixdorf.com

SOURCE: WINCOR NIXDORF

CBRE: U.S. commercial real estate market shows continued healthy demand during Q4 2015

Six Year Trend of Declining Office Vacancy and Industrial Availability Continues

Los Angeles, 2016-1-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — The U.S. commercial real estate market shows continued healthy demand across all property types during the fourth quarter of 2015 (Q4 2015), according to the latest analysis from CBRE Group, Inc.

In Q4 2015:

  • The office vacancy rate declined 20 basis points (bps) to13.2%. The vacancy rate has not shown an increase in 23 quarters.
  • The industrial availability* rate continued to decline, falling by 20 bps to 9.4%. Industrial availability has also not risen for 23 consecutive quarters.
  • The retail availability rate declined 10 bps to 11.2%, 210 bps below its post-recession peak of 13.3%.
  • Demand for the nation’s apartments remained strong in Q4 2015 with vacancy at 4.6%.

“U.S. commercial real estate had another solid quarter with vacancy rates declining for the office, industrial and retail sectors due to steady absorption and relatively limited supply,” said Jeffrey Havsy, Americas chief economist for CBRE. “Commercial real estate remains in a ‘goldilocks’ state with both demand and supply neither too hot nor too cold. This slow, stable improvement is extremely healthy for the sector, but is at a pace that is sustainable for 2016.”

Office Market
The Q4 2015 office vacancy rate of 13.2% is an 80-bps drop from a year ago. There has been no increase in the national office vacancy rate since the end of Great Recession—23 consecutive quarters. Vacancy rates continued to decline in both suburban and downtown markets in Q4, with the suburban rate falling by 30 bps to 14.7% while downtown dropped 10 bps to 10.3%s—the lowest rate since 2008.

San Jose recorded one of the largest quarterly declines (170 bps), while Chicago, Raleigh and Phoenix declined by 80 bps or more. Overall, markets in California and the South saw the greatest improvement in 2015. Besides San Jose and Raleigh, these include Oakland, Jacksonville, Miami, Atlanta, Sacramento, Orlando and Tampa. The nation’s lowest vacancy rates in Q4 2015 were recorded in San Francisco (6.3%), Nashville (7.5), Austin (7.6%), Albany (8.1%) and San Jose (8.2%).

“Economic fundamentals remain strong and point to continued U.S. office expansion in 2016, supported by a strong domestic job market. The Federal Reserve’s decision to raise interest rates most likely will not affect capital flows into the commercial real estate sector” said Mr. Havsy. ”Recent changes in the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act, and the extension of the EB-5 program should help to increase the flow of foreign capital into U.S. commercial real estate, while strong economic fundamentals will maintain asset valuations despite rising interest rates.”

Industrial Market
The Q4 2015 industrial availability rate of 9.4% underscores the full recovery in the sector that began earlier in the year and continued the move into expansionary territory for this cycle. 23 consecutive quarters of falling availability is the longest stretch since CBRE began tracking the national market in 1989. Thirty-five markets out of 57 industrial markets reported declining availability in Q4. Detroit led the declines with a 120 bps drop. Significant availability declines were also recorded in Dallas and New York (each of which fell 70 bps) and Atlanta (which declined 50 bps).

“The majority of markets continue to improve and few are even experiencing lower levels of available space than has been seen in decades,” noted Mr. Havsy. “Such constraints will continue to provide upward pressure on rent levels, as demand-side fundamentals remain quite favorable for industrial users.”

Retail Market
The Q4 2015 retail availability rate of 11.2% was 20 bps below its year ago rate. Half of the 62 markets tracked saw availability declines in Q4. Denver, Cleveland, San Francisco, Portland and Memphis were among the markets recording availability rate declines of at least 50 bps in the fourth quarter. Austin, Salt Lake City and Atlanta were among those recording the greatest declines compared to one year ago.

“With lower gas prices, easier access to credit and a rapidly improving labor market, consumer spending should continue to grow and the continuing decline in availability should translate into retail rent growth in the coming quarters,” said Mr. Havsy.

Apartment Market
Preliminary data for Q4 2015 shows that the nation’s apartment vacancy rate dropped 10 bps from a year earlier, to 4.6%. Compared to a year earlier vacancy rates declined in 36 of 62 markets while rising in 24 and staying the same in two. Cincinnati (-130 bps), Detroit (-100 bps) and Long Island and Providence (-90 bps each) had the greatest declines in vacancy. The tightest markets include those in the Greater New York area, Los Angeles, Fort Lauderdale, San Francisco, Salt Lake City and Nashville. The market is very tight and apartment demand remains strong as the vacancy rate pushes closer to its 20-year vacancy low of 4.0%.

“Over a longer time horizon, however, additional construction and renewed competition from the single-family housing market will temper rent growth,” noted Mr. Havsy.

* Availability is space that is actively being marketed and available for tenant build-out within 12 months.

About CBRE Group, Inc.
CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Los Angeles, is the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm (in terms of 2014 revenue). The Company has more than 70,000 employees (excluding affiliates), and serves real estate owners, investors and occupiers through more than 400 offices (excluding affiliates) worldwide. CBRE offers strategic advice and execution for property sales and leasing; corporate services; property, facilities and project management; mortgage banking; appraisal and valuation; development services; investment management; and research and consulting. Please visit our website at www.cbre.com.

Media contact

Robert McGrath
Senior Director, Global Media Relations
email

SOURCE: CBRE