Amazon.com announced financial results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2016

SEATTLE, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) today announced financial results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2016.

Operating cash flow increased 44% to $11.3 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $7.8 billion for the trailing twelve months ended March 31, 2015. Free cash flow increased to $6.4 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $3.2 billion for the trailing twelve months ended March 31, 2015. Free cash flow less lease principal repayments increased to $3.5 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $1.5 billion for the trailing twelve months ended March 31, 2015. Free cash flow less finance lease principal repayments and assets acquired under capital leases increased to $1.6 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with an outflow of $1.2 billion for the trailing twelve months ended March 31, 2015.

Common shares outstanding plus shares underlying stock-based awards totaled 490 million on March 31, 2016, compared with 483 million one year ago.

Net sales increased 28% to $29.1 billion in the first quarter, compared with $22.7 billion in first quarter 2015. Excluding the $210 millionunfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales increased 29% compared to first quarter 2015.

Operating income was $1.1 billion in the first quarter, compared with $255 million in first quarter 2015.

Net income was $513 million in the first quarter, or $1.07 per diluted share, compared with net loss of $57 million, or $0.12 per diluted share, in first quarter 2015.

“Amazon devices are the top selling products on Amazon, and customers purchased more than twice as many Fire tablets than first quarter last year,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. “Earlier this week, the $39 Fire TV Stick became the first product ever — from any manufacturer — to pass 100,000 customer reviews, including over 62,000 5 star reviews, also more than any other product ever sold onAmazon. Echo too is off to an incredible start, and we can’t yet manage to keep it in stock despite all efforts. We’re building premium products at non-premium prices, and we’re thrilled so many customers are responding to our approach.”

Highlights

  • Amazon introduced Kindle Oasis, the thinnest and lightest Kindle, crafted from the ground up for readers with an all-new, incredibly thin and light design, plus an included charging cover that delivers months of battery life. Kindle Oasis, our eighth generation of Kindle, weighs just 4.6 ounces and is only 3.4 mm at its thinnest point — 30% thinner and over 20% lighter than any other Kindle.
  • Amazon announced two Alexa-enabled devices: Amazon Echo Dot, a hands-free, voice-controlled device that uses the same far-field voice recognition as Amazon Echo — for less than $90; and Amazon Tap, an Alexa-enabled portable Bluetooth and Wi-Fi speaker for under $130.
  • Amazon announced that Spotify Premium is now available in the U.S. on Echo. Spotify subscribers can listen to their music on Echo and ask Alexa to play any playlist, artist, genre, and more from Spotify’s catalog.
  • Alexa added hundreds of new skills, which include requesting a car from Uber, ordering a pizza from Domino’s, checking your credit balance with Capital One, getting fitness information from Fitbit, receiving election updates from NBC News, and many more. Alexa also supports more smart home devices, including thermostats from Nest, ecobee, Insteon, and Honeywell so customers can control the temperature in their homes using only their voice.
  • Amazon Dash Button has more than tripled the lineup of available brands. Customers can now choose from over 100 Dash Buttons, including Brawny, Doritos, Energizer, Honest Kids, Peet’s Coffee, Purina, Red Bull, Seventh Generation, and Starbucks.
  • Amazon Studios acquired the rights to several high-profile films including Woody Allen’s Café Society, Whit Stillman’s Love & Friendship, and 2016 Sundance Film Festival titles Manchester by the Sea, Gleason, Author: The JT Leroy Story, and Wiener-Dog. Following its theatrical run, each film will become available exclusively to Prime members through Prime Video.
  • Amazon’s second original live-action kids’ series, Just Add Magic, was the most successful Amazon Original Kids premiere with the most streams and hours in the first weekend.
  • Prime Music teamed up with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis to live stream their album release concert for This Unruly Mess I’ve Made. The live stream was available to all Amazon customers at no cost.
  • Amazon entered into agreements with Air Transport Services Group (ATSG) to lease 20 air cargo planes to support one and two-day delivery for U.S. customers. ATSG will operate the planes for Amazon.
  • Prime Free Same-Day Delivery expanded to 11 new metro areas and now serves Prime members in 27 metro areas throughout the U.S.
  • Amazon launched Prime Belgium with unlimited Free One-Day Shipping on millions of items, unlimited photo storage with Prime Photos, access to more than one million books to borrow with Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, and early access to flash sales.
  • Amazon was ranked #1 in corporate reputation among the 100 most visible companies in America, according to the 23,000-person Harris Poll. Amazon was also ranked #1 on the Reputation Institute’s U.S. RepTrak 100 list of the most reputable companies, which is based on more than 83,000 ratings.
  • U.K. consumers ranked Amazon #1 in customer satisfaction in a nationwide poll from the Institute of Customer Service. And for the second year in a row, customers selected Amazon.in as India’s most trusted online shopping brand, according to an annual Trust Research Advisory survey.
  • The Amazon Global Store on Amazon.cn has grown to over 10 million items, providing Chinese customers with an easier and more convenient shopping experience with authentic products curated from the Amazon.com website.
  • Amazon.in launched Amazon Tatkal, a studio-on-wheels offering a suite of launch services to sellers, including registration, imaging and cataloging services, and basic seller training. Since launching in February, Amazon Tatkal has reached sellers in 25 cities.
  • Handmade at Amazon, featuring genuinely handcrafted items sold directly from artisans, has increased selection to nearly 400,000 products from 12,000 artisans in more than 80 countries.
  • Amazon Home Services, providing customers with a simple way to buy and schedule professional services, now serves more than 40,000 U.S. zip codes with more than 1,200 service options across 45 categories.
  • Amazon launched the Amazon Payments Partner Program, a global program that offers unique tools and services to help ecommerce service providers and developers integrate their merchant customers with Amazon Payments.
  • Amazon Business, a B2B offering that includes features and benefits tailored to businesses, now serves more than 300,000 businesses ranging from small to Fortune 500 companies.
  • Amazon launched Style Code Live, a daily live show dedicated to fashion and beauty that features trends and useful tips from style experts, looks that the audience can shop, and interactive features like live chat. Style Code Live is hosted by Lyndsey Rodrigues,Rachel Smith, and Frankie Grande, and has featured guests such as Meghan Trainor, Karolina Kurkova, Lauren Conrad, Whitney Port, and Molly Sims. The show streams free for all viewers weeknights at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT at  www.amazon.com/stylecodelive.
  • Amazon Education, TenMarks, and a coalition of non-profit education and education technology organizations launched the initiative “With Math I Can” to change student mindsets about math. The campaign challenges more than three million teachers and their students to replace the notion of “I’m not good at math” with “I am working to get better at math.” Teachers and students can visit www.withmathican.org to learn more.
  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced Amazon Lumberyard, a free, cross-platform, 3D game engine for developers to create the highest-quality games, connect their games to compute and storage of the AWS Cloud, and engage fans on Twitch. Amazon Lumberyard helps developers build beautiful worlds, make realistic characters, and create stunning real-time effects.
  • AWS announced the general availability of the AWS Database Migration Service, a fully managed service that allows customers to migrate their production Oracle, SQL Server, MySQL, MariaDB, and PostgreSQL databases from on-premises data centers to any of these engines or Amazon Aurora on AWS with virtually no downtime. So far this year, customers used the AWS Database Migration Service to move more than 2,000 databases to the AWS Cloud.
  • AWS announced the general availability of Amazon Inspector, an automated security assessment service that helps customers improve the security and compliance of their applications deployed on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2).
  • AWS further enhanced its block storage service, Amazon Elastic Block Store (Amazon EBS), announcing two new low-cost hard disk drive (HDD)-backed storage options that offer customers predictable performance for big data workloads. Amazon EBS Throughput Optimized HDD (st1) and Cold HDD (sc1) volumes deliver consistent baseline performance with the ability to “burst” to higher throughput to meet the performance needs of big data applications like processing streaming data or performing data analytics.

Financial Guidance

The following forward-looking statements reflect Amazon.com’s expectations as of April 28, 2016, and are subject to substantial uncertainty. Our results are inherently unpredictable and may be materially affected by many factors, such as fluctuations in foreign exchange rates, changes in global economic conditions and customer spending, world events, the rate of growth of the Internet, online commerce, and cloud services, and the various factors detailed below.

Second Quarter 2016 Guidance

  • Net sales are expected to be between $28.0 billion and $30.5 billion, or to grow between 21% and 32% compared with second quarter 2015.
  • Operating income is expected to be between $375 million and $975 million, compared with $464 million in second quarter 2015.
  • This guidance includes approximately $825 million for stock-based compensation and other operating expense (income), net. It assumes, among other things, that no additional business acquisitions, investments, restructurings, or legal settlements are concluded and that there are no further revisions to stock-based compensation estimates.

A conference call will be webcast live today at 2:00 p.m. PT/5:00 p.m. ET, and will be available for at least three months at www.amazon.com/ir. This call will contain forward-looking statements and other material information regarding the Company’s financial and operating results.

These forward-looking statements are inherently difficult to predict. Actual results could differ materially for a variety of reasons, including, in addition to the factors discussed above, the amount that Amazon.com invests in new business opportunities and the timing of those investments, the mix of products and services sold to customers, the mix of net sales derived from products as compared with services, the extent to which we owe income taxes, competition, management of growth, potential fluctuations in operating results, international growth and expansion, the outcomes of legal proceedings and claims, fulfillment, sortation, delivery, and data center optimization, risks of inventory management, seasonality, the degree to which the Company enters into, maintains, and develops commercial agreements, acquisitions and strategic transactions, payments risks, and risks of fulfillment throughput and productivity. Other risks and uncertainties include, among others, risks related to new products, services, and technologies, system interruptions, government regulation and taxation, and fraud. In addition, the current global economic climate amplifies many of these risks. More information about factors that potentially could affect Amazon.com’s financial results is included in Amazon.com’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), including its most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent filings.

Our investor relations website is www.amazon.com/ir and we encourage investors to use it as a way of easily finding information about us. We promptly make available on this website, free of charge, the reports that we file or furnish with the SEC, corporate governance information (including our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics), and select press releases and social media postings, which may contain material information about us, and you may subscribe to be notified of new information posted to this site.

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

Source: Amazon.com, Inc.

Amazon.com Investor Relations
Darin Manney, 206-266-2171
www.amazon.com/ir
or
Amazon.com Public Relations
Ty Rogers, 206-266-7180
www.amazon.com/pr

Macy’s celebrates Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with renowned chef, Katie Chin

Macy’s welcomes renowned author, chef and television personality, Katie Chin, at six stores nationwide for cooking demos and discussions on Asian Cuisine and her new book, “Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen.”

NEW YORK, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — This May, Macy’s celebrates Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with renowned chef, Katie Chin. Chin will host in-store culinary events at six Macy’s stores across the country, highlighting the Asian food experience through cooking demos, tips for setting your table, and more. Chin will also discuss the importance of her heritage and its specific influence on her culinary style. Of Chinese descent, Chin has been internationally-celebrated for her presence in the culinary and entertainment industries.

“Macy’s is thrilled to partner with Katie Chin to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and honor its rich culture and heritage, in stores nationwide. Chin offers a unique and celebrated take on Asian Cuisine, and we are excited to share her story and expertise with Macy’s customers,” said Macy’s vice president of Diversity & Inclusion Strategies.

Chin recently released her fourth title, “Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen,” featuring her mother’s most beloved recipes.

In the past, Chin co-hosted the national PBS cooking series, “Double Happiness,” in conjunction with her mother, and together they wrote “Everyday Chinese Cooking.” On her own, Chin wrote “300 Best Rice Cooker Recipes” and the award-winning bestseller “Everyday Thai Cooking.” She has also been featured in several national publications including O Magazine, Cooking Light, bon appetit, Elle, Real Simple, andFamily Circle, and has made appearances on The “Today Show”, the Hallmark Channel, “The Daily Buzz,” the Cooking Channel, and as a guest judge on Food Network’s “Iron Chef America” and a chef contestant on “Cutthroat Kitchen.”

“In the spirit of my mother, Leeann Chin’s enduring legacy, I am so proud to partner with Macy’s to celebrate my heritage and demystify authentic Asian cooking for everyday home chefs across the U.S.,” said Katie Chin.

Following the cooking demo, Macy’s will host a customer reception, where Chin will sign her most recent book, “Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen.” Plus, with any home purchase of $50 or more, guests will receive limited-edition branded chopsticks and a copy of Chin’s newest cookbook. (While supplies last and as time permits. Purchase must be at the specific Macy’s event location and made on the day of the event.)

Below are the stores and select information for Macy’s Asian Pacific American Heritage Month events:

Macy’s Galleria Houston – Houston, – Saturday, May 7 at 2 p.m.
Macy’s on State Street – Chicago, – Wednesday, May 11 at 5:30 p.m.
Macy’s Herald Square – New York, – Thursday, May 19 at 6 p.m.
Macy’s Montgomery – Bethesda, MD – Saturday, May 21 at 2 p.m.
Macy’s Pasadena – Los Angeles, – Wednesday, May 25 at 6:30 p.m.
Macy’s Union Square – San Francisco, – Thursday, May 26 at 6 p.m.

For a complete listing of Macy’s Asian Pacific American Heritage Month events, please visit macys.com/celebrate.

About Macy’s
Macy’s, the largest retail brand of Macy’s, Inc. (NYSE:M), delivers fashion and affordable luxury to customers at approximately 730 locations in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as to customers in the U.S. and more than 100 international destinations through its leading online store at macys.com. Via its stores, e-commerce site, mobile and social platforms, Macy’s offers distinctive assortments including the most desired family of exclusive and fashion brands for him, her and home. Macy’s is known for such epic events asMacy’s 4th of July Fireworks® and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®, as well as spectacular fashion shows, culinary events, flower shows and celebrity appearances. Macy’s flagship stores — including Herald Square in New York City, Union Square in San Francisco, State Street in Chicago, and Dadeland in Miami and South Coast Plazain southern California — are known internationally and are leading destinations for visitors. Building on a more than 150-year tradition, and with the collective support of customers and employees, Macy’s helps strengthen communities by supporting local and national charities giving more than $69 million each year to help make a difference in the lives of our customers.

For Macy’s media materials, including images and contacts, please visit our online pressroom at macys.com/pressroom.

About Katie Chin
Author Katie Chin’s love of cooking blossomed at an early age as she helped her renowned mother, Leeann Chin, prepare delicious Chinese dishes in her popular restaurants. Together they hosted the national PBS cooking seriesDouble Happiness, taught cooking classes and made appearances on NBC’s Today. Now, Katie is a world-renowned Asian food expert, blogger, TV host and author. Her latest release, Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen, is a family treasury of memories and recipes that introduces her mother’s mastery of Chinese flavors and techniques to the everyday kitchen.

Source: Macy’s

Macy’s
Jacqueline King, 312-781-4689
jacqueline.king@macys.com
or
Christine Olver, 646-429-5713
christine.olver@macys.com

 

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Katie Chin's Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother's Kitchen (Photo: Business Wire)

Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen (Photo: Business Wire)

Macy’s partners with Lady Gaga and Sir Elton John to create limited-edition line of clothing and accessories, Love Bravery

  • 25% of the purchase price of Love Bravery will benefit Born This Way Foundation and Elton John AIDS Foundation
  • The limited-edition line launches this spring as part of Macy’s American Icons campaign

NEW YORK, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Macy’s has partnered with Grammy® and Golden Globe®-winning icon Lady Gaga, as well as Grammy, Tony® and Academy Award®-winning legend Sir Elton John to create Love Bravery, a high-spirited, limited-edition line of clothing and accessories that inspire compassion and combat prejudice. Available as part of Macy’s American Icons campaign, Love Bravery spans several categories, including shirts, sweats, outerwear, clutches, backpacks, scarves, beanies, keychains, pins, and even speakers, water bottles and skateboards, all rendered in vibrant graphic prints and designs that fuse both artists’ renowned musical talent and revered inimitable style.

“It’s an honor to team up with Sir Elton Johnto create this line with Macy’s,” said Lady Gaga. “We need to make the world a kinder and braver place where men and women everywhere are empowered to live with compassion. That’s what Born This Way Foundation is all about, that’s what the Elton John AIDS Foundation is all about, and that’s what Love Bravery is all about.”

“I love the idea of fusing who you are on the inside – your passions and dreams – with what you wear on the outside,” said Sir Elton John. “Love Bravery is about the compassion on the inside to understand someone’s fears, and the bravery on the outside to stand up for them, and for yourself: to accept others for who they are and to be who you want to be. It’s what I’ve tried to do in my life, my career and with the Elton John AIDS Foundation, and it’s a passion Lady Gaga and I share. So I’m thrilled we are collaborating on this project and delighted Macy’s understood our dream to connect with people this way.”

Created in collaboration with Lady Gaga’s sister, Natali Germanotta, and designerBrandon Maxwell, the limited line boasts fresh crop tops and sleeveless tees in stark black-and-white, while heather sweatshirts with tonal graphics and tops with metallic lettering are edgy updates to the athleisure trend. Oversized scarves with piano key prints and artistic interpretations of Lady Gaga’s face are stylishly offbeat, and neoprene backpacks that say “LOVE” and also have piano key prints are super cool must-haves. With enamel pins and patches in the shape of moto jackets, electric guitars, microphones, platform shoes and Lady Gaga’s infamous claw, the options to show off your inner little monster are endless. Clutches in the shape of sunglasses, pianos and hearts are unapologetically fun and sassy.

“In addition to being deeply talented musical artists, Lady Gaga and Sir Elton John are champions of self-love, courage, empathy and kindness, and Love Bravery represents all of those tenets,” said Martine Reardon, Macy’s chief marketing officer. “We are so proud to present a line that is not only fun and bold, but also stands for something so meaningful and important. The work they do through Born This Way Foundation and the Elton John AIDS Foundation is invaluable and truly changes lives, and Macy’s is honored to partner with them to spread the message of love and acceptance.”

Born This Way Foundation is committed to supporting the wellness of young people and empowering them to create a kinder and braver world by shining a light on real people, supporting quality research, and fostering meaningful partnerships focused on social emotional learning (SEL) and mental health awareness and resources. The Elton John AIDS Foundation raises much-needed funds for evidence-based programs that give people the information and tools to protect and care for themselves and those they love – challenging stigma, reducing the spread of HIV and preventing people from getting sick or dying of AIDS.

The foundations brought together a diverse array of young people to showcase the Love Bravery apparel and will be sharing content from that campaign this spring. The limited-edition line with Macy’s is the first in a series of activations which are planned for the coming months to make people feel proud of who they are.

Love Bravery will be sold exclusively at Macy’s this spring, with 25 percent of the purchase price benefitting Born This Way Foundation and the Elton John AIDS Foundation, and will be available globally later this year. All donations from the limited-edition line, on sale through Aug. 30, 2016, will be made to Born This Way Foundation, which will use 50 percent to support the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

About Macy’s
Macy’s, the largest retail brand of Macy’s, Inc. (NYSE:M), delivers fashion and affordable luxury to customers at approximately 730 locations in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as to customers in the U.S. and more than 100 international destinations through its leading online store at macys.com. Via its stores, e-commerce site, mobile and social platforms, Macy’s offers distinctive assortments including the most desired family of exclusive and fashion brands for him, her and home. Macy’s is known for such epic events asMacy’s 4th of July Fireworks® and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®, as well as spectacular fashion shows, culinary events, flower shows and celebrity appearances. Macy’s flagship stores — including Herald Square in New York City, Union Square in San Francisco, State Street in Chicago, and Dadeland in Miami and South Coast Plazain southern California — are known internationally and are leading destinations for visitors. Building on a more than 150-year tradition, and with the collective support of customers and employees, Macy’s helps strengthen communities by supporting local and national charities giving more than $69 million each year to help make a difference in the lives of our customers.

For Macy’s media materials, including images and contacts, please visit our online pressroom at macys.com/pressroom.

About Elton John AIDS Foundation

The Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) is dedicated to reducing the spread of HIV/AIDS through innovative HIV prevention programs, eliminating the stigma and discrimination associated with HIV/AIDS and supporting direct care for people living with HIV/AIDS.

Sir Elton John created EJAF over twenty years ago, first in the United States in 1992 and then in the United Kingdomin 1993. Since then, the two organizations have raised nearly £220m (over $350m) and reached over 150 million people across four continents. We work with local, national and international organizations to provide non-discriminatory HIV information, testing and treatment services that stop people becoming infected with HIV or getting sick and dying of AIDS. This has meant funding some 1,500 programs including providing HIV tests to over 20 million people, and treatment prevention for more than 800,000 pregnant woman living with HIV so that they could protect their babies from the HIV virus. The Foundation also prioritizes those who are highly vulnerable to HIV and the stigma that surrounds it in many parts of the world such as men who engage in male-to-male sex, people who use drugs and people who sell sex. Our work with Love Bravery will go towards prevention and treatment programs for adolescents living with HIV. AIDS is the second leading cause of death for 10-19 year olds worldwide.

www.ejaf.org/London

About Born This Way Foundation
Led by Lady Gaga and her mother Cynthia Germanotta, Born This Way Foundation was founded in 2012 to support the wellness of young people and empower them to create a kinder and braver world. Born This Way Foundationachieves this by shining a light on real people, quality research, and authentic partnerships. Working with more than 50 non-profit organizations, Born This Way Foundation has connected more than 150,000 young people with services and programing in their communities. The Foundation has also partnered with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, theNational Council for Behavioral Health, and the National Association of School Psychologists to collect data from more than 2,500 young people. This research, presented before the American Psychological Association, improved our understanding of young people’s views of mental-health services and delivery methods.

Visit us at bornthisway.foundation.

Source: Macy’s

Macy’s
Holly Thomas, 646-429-5250
holly.thomas@macys.com
or
Macy’s
Julie Strider Fukami, 646-429-5213
julie.striderfukami@macys.com

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Lady Gaga and Sir Elton John partner with Macy’s on new limited-edition line, Love Bravery, available exclusively at Macy’s stores and macys.com this Spring (Photo: Business Wire)

Lady Gaga and Sir Elton John partner with Macy’s on new limited-edition line, Love Bravery, available exclusively at Macy’s stores and macys.com this Spring (Photo: Business Wire)

Belk announces 19 finalists for its 2016 Southern Designer Showcase competition

Finalists to present May 19 in Charlotte for the opportunity to have designs sold at Belk and on Belk.com

CHARLOTTE, N.C., 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — To celebrate emerging fashion designers who embody modern, Southern style, Belk has selected 19 finalists for the company’s 2016 Southern Designer Showcase competition. The finalists, who all have roots in the South, will go on to compete for the opportunity to have their collections sold in select Belk stores and on Belk.com in spring 2017.

Finalists will present their designs to a panel of Belk executives at the company’s headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Thursday, May 19. Following the presentations, the judges will select and announce the showcase winners.

“We are excited to see firsthand the collections from these 19 creative and gifted finalists, who will help Belk bring our modern, Southern style to life,” said Cynthia Washburn-Nester, Belk’s vice president of fashion and trend. “Each year we look forward to introducing our customers to new brands they will love, while recognizing exceptional talent within our communities.”

The Southern Designer Showcase competition was open to designers of women’s, men’s and kid’s apparel, shoes and women’s accessories, who are 18 or older and live in the South or have a strong affiliation with the region.

2016 Southern Designer Showcase finalists

Women’s Apparel
Emily Bargeron Angela Kim
Company: Mamie Ruth Company: ANGELA KIM DESIGNS
Savannah, Georgia Asheville, North Carolina
 

Gabriela Lener

 

Zankhna Parekh

Company: Gabriela Marie Company: Zankhna Designs
Richardson, Texas Cary, North Carolina
 

Tracy Nicole Prather

 

LaQuoya Robinson

Company: TRACY NICOLE Company: Q. Robinson Apparel
Atlanta, Georgia Birmingham, Alabama
 

Ashley Worrall

Company: Borough
Charleston, South Carolina
 

Men’s Apparel

 

James Barron

 

Jessica Fulks

Company: BARRON & J. Company: Laché Supply & Company
Fort Worth, Texas Charleston, South Carolina
 

Kimberlie Nguyen

Company: Tie-My-Knot
Charlotte, North Carolina
 

Kid’s Apparel

 

Jessica Agrelius

 

Hannah Ostrowski, Amanda Bolan

Company: MCKEVIANNA Company: TINY VINES
Morganton, North Carolina Madison, Alabama
 

Handbags

 

Donna King

 

Erika Lynn McKelvey

P.Sherrod & Co. Company: Erika Lynn
Columbia, South Carolina James Island, South Carolina
 

Shoes

 

Eleanor Anukam

 

Sarah Parrott

Company: Eleanor Anukam Company: Sarah Parrott
Grand Prairie, Texas Marietta, Georgia
 

Jewelry

 

Brittany and Tricia Armstrong

 

Suzette Bentley

Company: Ragazza Jewelry Company: e.b. jewelry studio
Plano, Texas Waxhaw, North Carolina
 

Rebecca McMenemy

Company: SURCEE
Charleston, South Carolina

For more information about Belk’s Southern Designer Showcase competition, please visit belk.com/southerndesigner.

About Belk, Inc.
Belk, Inc., a private department store company based in Charlotte, N.C., is the home of Modern. Southern. Style. with 293 Belk stores located in 16 Southern states and a growing digital presence. Belk is a portfolio company of Sycamore Partners, a private equity firm based in New York. Belk and www.belk.com offer a wide assortment of national brands and private label fashion apparel, shoes and accessories for the entire family along with top name cosmetics, a wedding registry and a large selection of quality merchandise for the home.

Belk offers many ways to connect via digital and social media, including Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Google Plus, and provides exclusive offers, fashion updates, sales notifications and coupons via email or mobile phone text messages. Customers can also download the latest Belk mobile apps for the iPad, iPhone or Android.

SOURCE Belk, Inc.

For further information: Stacey McCray, 704-552-6565, stacey.mccray@lgapr.com

Support Save the Children’s ‘Early Steps to School Success’ program by scanning your IKEA Family card during May

Conshohocken, PA, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — During the month of May, every time an IKEA customer scans the IKEA Family card, a donation will be made to Save the Children’s ‘Early Steps to School Success’ program.*

The ‘Early Steps to School Success’ program is Save the Children’s language development and pre-literacy program for children from pre-birth to age 5 in poor, rural areas where there is little early childhood support. The program is designed to reach these rural communities with an affordable home visitation program in which participating families are served through parent/child groups and a book exchange program. The demographics of the communities served are ethnically, racially and culturally diverse.

“Although 90 percent of brain development happens by age five, many children in America’s poorest, rural communities do not even begin to receive an education until kindergarten,” said Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children. “Through this partnership with IKEA, we’re able to bring quality early education to these kids, giving them a solid foundation for a successful future.”

“At IKEA, children are the most important people in the world. Working with partners like Save the Children helps us make sure that children always have the opportunity to get a good education and a better start in life, no matter where they live or what their circumstances,” commented Evamay Lawson, Sustainability Manager. “IKEA U.S. has been committed to Save the Children’s ‘Early Steps to School Success’ program since 2008 and the results show positive outcomes.”

Last year, during the 2015 program, Early Steps served 105 communities in 14 states. They reached 2,845 children ages 0-3, 4,469 children ages 3-5 and 4,009 adults. In 2015, they completed 35,959 home visits, averaging 1.8 visits a month to each family.

Working in partnership with schools and community-based organizations, Early Steps provides services to pregnant women, mothers and children 0 to 5 years of age. They implement this work through a home-visiting model for expecting families and those with children ages 0-3, as well as with transition-to school activities for children ages 3-5.

The ‘Early Steps to School Success’ program is built around four goals that encompass a theory of change:
•Children will enter school with the skills necessary for school success.
•Parents will have the skills and knowledge to support their children’s education.
•Home/school connections will be strong and children will be prepared for a smooth transition to school.
•Early childhood knowledge and skills in the community will be increased.

Save the Children has been working for decades to cultivate and support Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) programs and national-level policies that benefit young children and their families in the United States.

*IKEA will make a donation of 50 cents – with each Family card swipe – to Save the Children’s ‘Early Steps to Schools Success’ Literacy program in the United States; up to $75,000 maximum.

About IKEA Group
The IKEA vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people. Our business idea supports this visionby offering a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them. There are currently 328 IKEA Group stores in 28 countries. Additionally, there are 40 IKEA stores run by franchises. There are 41 IKEA stores in the U.S. In FY 15, IKEA Group had 771 million visitors to the stores and 1.9 billion visitors to IKEA.com. IKEA incorporates sustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment. For more information, please visit www.IKEA.com, facebook.com/IKEAUSA, @IKEAUSANews, @IKEAUSA, http://pinterest.com/IKEAUSA/, www.youtube.com/IKEAUSA, www.theshare-space.com, www.theshare-space.com/en/Blog

About Save the Children:
Save the Children (www.savethechildren.org) invests in childhood – every day, in times of crisis and for our future. In the U.S. and around the world, we are dedicated to ensuring every child has the best chance for success. Our pioneering programs give children a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. Our advocacy efforts provide a voice for children who cannot speak for themselves. As the leading expert on children, we inspire and achieve lasting impact for millions of the world’s most vulnerable girls and boys. By transforming children’s lives now, we change the course of their future and ours. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Press Contact Information
USA CORPORATE PUBLIC RELATIONS
Mona Astra Liss
1-610-834-0180 x 5852

USA PRODUCT PUBLIC RELATIONS
Janice Simonsen
1-610-834-0180 x 6349

USA EXPANSION
Joseph Roth
1-610-834-0180 x 6500

TV Chef James Martin announces new venture with leading supermarket Asda

LEEDS, England, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Today (Thursday 28th April) James Martin announces a new venture with leading supermarket Asda, bringing the much-loved chef back into British kitchens with a commitment to making it easy for people to enjoy great tasting, quality food no matter what their budget.

Both from Yorkshire and proud of their northern roots, Asda and James will be cooking up a storm together in the coming months, giving food inspiration to families every day of the week throughout summer.

The partnership is part of Asda’s Project Renewal blueprint to transform its business and boost its Save Money Live Better brand strategy as the retailer looks to differentiate itself with customers both in stores and online.

The first campaign, which will be masterminded by recently appointed Saatchi & Saatchi, is due to hit in June across multiple channels from TV to digital and in-store, with a second burst taking the partnership through the key Christmas trading period and beyond.

James Martin said: “To me Asda represents everyday kitchens up and down the country and that’s why this partnership comes from the heart. I can’t think of a better way to offer inspiration to busy families looking to cook up simple, tasty meals on a budget while still having time to enjoy life!

“As a born and bred Yorkshire man, I’m also looking forward to getting back to my roots to help people realise that low prices doesn’t mean low quality. Mine and Asda’s values go hand-in-hand, so heading into summer it’s all about cooking up a fresh new approach to food for customers every day of the week – watch this space!”

Andy Clarke, Asda’s President and CEO said: “This partnership is all about a meeting of minds when it comes to the core values of our customers, making James Martin a natural fit for Asda. We’re excited about working together to showcase exactly what Asda stands for, which is delivering quality food at everyday low prices and has been since we opened our doors over 50 years ago.

“We know that our customers lead busy lives and want to make the most of family time together, we also know that they are constantly looking for inspiration when it comes to meal solutions and at prices they can trust. Together with James we’re committed to going the extra mile to make this summer the best yet for our shoppers.”

CarMax opened its first store in Springfield, Illinois

Company Celebrates with Community Donations

RICHMOND, Virginia, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — CarMax, Inc. (NYSE: KMX), the nation’s largest retailer of used cars, officially opened its first store in Springfield, Illinois, located at 2531 Chuckwagon Drive. The store is approximately 8,000 square feet, occupies more than 3 acres and stocks more than 140 used vehicles.

In celebration of the Springfield store opening, CarMax donated $2,500 to the Central Illinois Food Bank. Springfield CarMax associates selected this nonprofit for its mission to distribute approximately 8.5 million pounds of food to more than 150 food pantries, soup kitchens, residential programs and after-school programs in the region.

The CarMax Foundation also is providing a $5,000 grant to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Illinois. This grant will support the “Reading Partners” program to help improve reading proficiency for camp participants. This grant also came at the recommendation of Springfield CarMax associates.

“CarMax is a company that truly cares about the communities where its associates live and work and actively seeks out ways to get involved locally,” said Brenda Basile, location general manager of the Springfield CarMax. “As a native of Illinois, I could not be more thrilled to be back in my home state and introduce the simple and seamless CarMax experience to Springfield.”

CarMax was founded more than 20 years ago to fundamentally change the way car buying is done. We make the process more ethical, fair and transparent by offering a no-haggle, no-hassle experience and an incredible selection of CarMax Quality Certified vehicles. In addition, we stand behind our vehicles with a 5-Day Money-Back Guarantee and a 30-Day Limited Warranty. CarMax customers can shop for nearly every make and model at our stores or online at carmax.com, with prices clearly listed for each of our nearly 50,000 vehicles nationwide. CarMax also takes the hassle out of selling your car by offering fast, commitment free appraisals – we’ll buy your car, even if you don’t buy ours. Shopping at CarMax is truly the way car buying should be.

About CarMax
CarMax, a member of the FORTUNE 500 and the S&P 500, and on the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® list for 12 consecutive years, is the nation’s largest retailer of used vehicles. Headquartered in Richmond, Virginia, CarMax currently operates 159 superstores in 79 markets. The CarMax consumer offer features low, no-haggle prices, a broad selection of CarMax Quality Certified used vehicles, and superior customer service. During the 12 months ending February 29, 2016, the company retailed 619,936 used cars and sold 394,437 wholesale vehicles at our in-store auctions. For more information, access the CarMax website at www.carmax.com

Media Contacts
Lindsey Duke, CarMax Public Relations, pr@carmax.com
Twitter: @CarMax, Facebook: facebook.com/CarMax

DDR’s CFO and Treasurer Luke J. Petherbridge to step down from his role effective May 6, 2016

BEACHWOOD, Ohio, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — DDR Corp. (NYSE: DDR) today announced that Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer Luke J. Petherbridge will step down from his role effective May 6, 2016, in order to assume the position of president and chief executive officer of Excel Trust, a retail REIT owned by a fund affiliated with Blackstone Real Estate.

“I want to thank Luke for his eight years of service to DDR, initially running our joint venture with MDT and more recently leading DDR’s capital markets and transactional efforts. He will certainly be missed, but I am confident that the significant progress that he has helped us make with our deep finance team and our dramatically improved balance sheet and portfolio will ensure a seamless transition and will enable DDR to continue to execute on our strategic plan and create value for shareholders,” commented David J. Oakes, president and chief executive officer.

The Company has commenced a search process for Mr. Petherbridge’s replacement, which is expected to include internal and external candidates. David J. Oakeswill also serve as chief financial officer and treasurer on an interim basis until a successor is appointed following Mr. Petherbridge’s resignation, effective May 6, 2016.

About DDR Corp.
DDR is an owner and manager of 352 value-oriented shopping centers representing 113 million square feet in 37 states and Puerto Rico. The Company’s assets are concentrated in high barrier-to-entry markets with stable populations and high growth potential and its portfolio is actively managed to create long-term shareholder value. DDR is a self-administered and self-managed REIT operating as a fully integrated real estate company, and is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol DDR. Additional information about the Company is available at www.ddr.com.

Safe Harbor
DDR Corp. considers portions of the information in this press release to be forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, both as amended, with respect to the Company’s expectation for future periods. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that its expectations will be achieved. For this purpose, any statements contained herein that are not historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. There are a number of important factors that could cause our results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements, including, among other factors, local conditions such as supply of space or a reduction in demand for real estate in the area; competition from other available space; dependence on rental income from real property; the loss of, significant downsizing of or bankruptcy of a major tenant; redevelopment and construction activities may not achieve a desired return on investment; our ability to buy or sell assets on commercially reasonable terms; our ability to complete acquisitions or dispositions of assets under contract; our ability to secure equity or debt financing on commercially acceptable terms or at all; our ability to enter into definitive agreements with regard to our financing and joint venture arrangements or our failure to satisfy conditions to the completion of these arrangements; and the success of our capital recycling strategy. For additional factors that could cause the results of the Company to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements, please refer to the Company’s Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2015. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly revise these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that arise after the date hereof.

SOURCE DDR Corp.

News Provided by Acquire Media

University of California at Berkeley students’ natural gas and electricity model wins Fuels Institute’s 2016 Future of Transportation Case Competition

SAN FRANCISCO, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — A proposed natural gas and electricity model by students at the University of California at Berkeley has been chosen as the winner of the Fuels Institute’s 2016 Future of Transportation Case Competition at the Institute’s Annual Meeting in San Francisco.

The Fuels Institute’s Case Competition, sponsored by Gilbarco Veeder Root North America, asked each team to create an ideal future transportation (mass transit and consumer vehicles) sector looking 30 years in the future. Teams were asked to explain how consumers would travel from point A to point B within an urban, suburban and rural setting, describe which sustainable fueling options would be used in each area, as well as describe how their vision would affect vehicle ownership, vehicle use and fuel demand.

“Our vision is motivated by long-term social and economic goals, especially the mitigation of climate change,” Negah Nafisi, Alana Siegner and Mercedes Taylor, the University of California at Berkeley students, noted in their proposal. “Although the most severe consequences of America’s energy issues will occur outside the 30-year time frame of this challenge, adverse climate-driven impacts are already being felt in the U.S. and elsewhere.”

To move the transportation sector towards their vision in the next 30 years, the winning proposal aims to convert heavy-duty vehicles from predominantly diesel to adsorbed natural gas (ANG), as well as transition the passenger vehicle sector to electric power.

“This competition showcases the ideas and possibilities for enhancing our transportation and fueling resources for a more efficient and viable future,” said Fuels Institute Executive Director John Eichberger.

The three finalists, Duke University, Morgan State University and the University of California, Berkeley, were chose from 20 teams of three or more students from 11 schools that registered for the competition. The finalists were flown out to San Francisco to present their cases and field Q&A from more than 80 professionals in the fuels and vehicle industries, who then selected a winner. The University of California at Berkeley won $5,000; the second place team, Duke University, won $2,500; and the third place team, Morgan State University, won $1,000. The finalists and three honorable mention submissions will be published by the Fuels Institute.

“All three of the universities did a tremendous job,” Eichberger said. “I was incredibly impressed by the poise of these student teams.”

In addition to the student competition, the Fuels Institute, founded by the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) in 2013, commissions and publishes comprehensive, fact-based research projects that address the issues identified by the affected stakeholders. These projects will help to inform both business owners considering long-term investment decisions and policymakers considering legislation and regulations affecting the market.

About the Fuels Institute
The Fuels Institute (fuelsinstitute.org), founded by NACS in 2013, is a non-profit research-oriented think tank led by a diverse Board of Directors and driven by a Board of Advisors. We are dedicated to evaluating the market issues related to vehicles and the fuels that power them. The Institute incorporates the perspective of interested stakeholders by commissioning and publishing comprehensive, fact-based research projects. These stakeholders include but are not limited to fuel retailers, fuel producers and refiners, alternative and renewable fuel producers, automobile manufacturers, environmental advocates, consumer organizations, academics, government entities and other stakeholders with expertise in the fuels and automotive industries.

For media interviews/comments contact Jeff Lenard

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Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS (nacsonline.com) is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 154,000 stores across the country, conducts 160 million transactions a day, sells 80% of the fuel purchased in the country and had total sales of $575 billion in 2015. NACS has 2,100 retail and 1,700 supplier member companies, which do business in nearly 50 countries.

Wincor Nixdorf receives Red Dot Design Award for new automated teller machine

Paderborn, Germany, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Wincor Nixdorf has received the renowned Red Dot Design Award for a new automated teller machine at which customers can withdraw cash via a smartphone or NFC card. The Red Dot Design Award is conferred by Design Zentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen and is one of the most prestigious design competitions in the world. In awarding the Red Dot for the innovative CINEO C2020 ATM, Design Zentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen has again recognized Wincor Nixdorf’s outstanding design skills. Wincor Nixdorf has received numerous distinctions in previous years for the design of its automated teller machines, cash recycling systems, and self-service terminals.

This time, the award went to an ATM that has been designed mainly with digital natives in mind. At the CINEO C2020, smartphone users can initiate cash withdrawals via an app that features the branding of the bank they use. The advantages of this new system are that cash is dispensed quickly in a convenient and secure way and that it can also be dispensed to third parties. For banks, certification and integration of the new systems in their existing networks is extremely simple since the CINEO C2020 uses standard software technology.

Banks everywhere are responding to digitalization by integrating mobile technologies into all their customer channels. When banks enable cash withdrawals at their ATMs via smartphone, they present themselves as innovative financial institutions that keep up with today’s trends, and increase the likelihood that smartphone users among their customers will perceive them as attractive financial partners.

The smart ATM is operated via a mobile banking app that Wincor Nixdorf provides to banks. With this app, bank customers can already choose the account and the amount they want to withdraw while they are on their way to the ATM. They then receive a QR code, which they scan at the ATM’s QR code scanner to identify themselves. NFC technology is also available for authentication as an alternative to the QR code. When cash is withdrawn using an NFC card, bank customers enter their PINs using a special encrypting touch sensor.

In addition to its modern operating concept, this smart ATM benefits users with its fast, convenient and secure transaction processing. And since the system has a contactless reader and an encrypted touchscreen for PIN entry, the risks of card trapping and skimming attacks are eliminated.
This year, a record number of over 5,200 products from 57 nations were assessed in the Red Dot competition. The Red Dot jury consisted of independent designers, design professors and trade journalists.

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

The highly anticipated Oculus Rift virtual reality headset is coming to select Best Buy stores

Minneapolis, MN, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — It’s one of this year’s most talked about products, and now you can see for yourself what all the excitement is about. The highly anticipated Oculus Rift virtual reality headset is coming to select Best Buy stores.

Best Buy is the first and only U.S. retailer where customers can try out Rift headsets in stores. Starting Saturday, May 7, we’ll have free in-store demos at The Intel Experience inside 48 Best Buy stores across the nation. Oculus Rift demos will be coming to additional Best Buy stores throughout the year, starting this summer.

The demos allow you to experience Rift firsthand by getting immersed in two virtual reality experiences. Dreamdeck transports you to impossible places, like the top of the tallest skyscraper or alien encounters in outer space. The Climb is a game in which you can scale new heights through the thrill of (virtual) rock climbing.

Best Buy stores with Rift demos will also have very limited quantities of headsets available for purchase.

To try Oculus Rift for yourself, you can sign up here in advance for a specific timeslot or swing by the store during eligible hours for a drop-in session. During the demonstration, an Oculus expert will guide you through the experience, making sure the headset fits right and showing you how to use the technology.

The Rift requires a high-powered PC to operate. You can purchase an Oculus Ready unit (designed, assembled and tested with Rift in mind). If building your own system, make sure you choose component parts and monitors that meet Rift’s system requirements, found here. For example, Oculus recommends an Intel® Core™ i5 or a Core i7 processor based PC for a full Rift experience. Check out the Oculus PC compatibility tool to see if your unit is up to specifications.

Check out our website to learn more about virtual reality at Best Buy.

Media Contact:

Jeff Shelman, Public Relations
612-859-4632
Jeffrey.shelman@bestbuy.com

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The highly anticipated Oculus Rift virtual reality headset is coming to select Best Buy stores

The highly anticipated Oculus Rift virtual reality headset is coming to select Best Buy stores

Geek Squad Academy 2016 season kicks off on May 2 in Atlanta, Georgia

Minneapolis, MN, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Geek Squad Academy (GSA) is officially turning double digits! Entering its 10th year in 2016, GSA so far has inspired more than 30,000 kids from underserved communities to become the new generation of engineers, entrepreneurs, teachers, designers and dreamers.

The 2016 season kicks off on May 2 in Atlanta, Georgia, and will go coast-to-coast with more than 30 camps throughout summer and early fall. GSA works with local nonprofits and other organizations to provide much-needed technology education for students aged 10-18. Each camp will serve at least 100 students, with some camps hosting up to 300. Classes will cover topics such as HTML coding, digital filmmaking, graphic design, digital photography and circuits and logic. Students get to spend two days participating in lectures and hands-on activities around the topics.

GSA is made possible by the contribution of time and resources from Best Buy and Geek Squad employees. Approximately 5,000 Geek Squad Agents and Blue Shirts volunteer each year to help provide tech education to youth through Best Buy’s various community programs, including GSA. That’s a lot of geeks on the ground, spreading the good word of tech!

“We are committed to giving underserved youth hands-on access to the tech education and tools they need to be successful in school and in their future careers,” said Susan Bass Roberts, senior director of Community Relations/Diversity & Inclusion at Best Buy. “Through our vast pool of talented employees and network of stores, we are in a unique position to bridge the digital divide – when and where underserved young people need us most.”

Those who get bitten by the tech bug at GSA can continue their tech-education year-round at Best Buy’s Teen Tech Centers. Developed from the success of GSA, these centers are free, out-of-school programs where teens explore technology to discover new interests, collaborate with one another and develop the skills they’ll need to be successful in a tech-reliant future. Four new locations are opening this year — in Atlanta, Dallas, Los Angeles and Oakland — to bring the total number of tech centers to 12.

The Geek Squad Academy dates confirmed so far this season are:

  • May 2,3: Atlanta, GA, at McNair Middle School, hosted by McNair M.S./United Way
  • May 23,24: Orlando, FL, at Lawton Chiles Elementary, hosted by Lawton Chiles Elementary
  • June 8,9: Chicago, IL, at Round Lake District #116, hosted by Round Lake Schools
  • June 9,10: Houston, TX, at CE King Middle School, hosted by CE King Middle School
  • June 9,10: Charleston, SC, at College of Charleston, hosted by Junior Girls Day Out
  • June 14,15: Durant, OK, at Durant High School, hosted by Choctaw Nation
  • June 15,16: Kansas City, KS, at Wyandotte County Unit, hosted by Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City
  • June 15,16: Cleveland, OH, at East Professional Center, hosted by Cleveland Metro School District
  • June 22,23: Minneapolis, MN, at Jordan Middle School, hosted by Jordan Public Schools
  • June 22,23: Dallas, TX, at DeSoto High School, hosted by Desoto ISD/GEAR UP
  • June 22,23: New Orleans, LA, at Alice Harte Charter School, hosted by Alice Harte Charter School
  • June 29,30: San Diego, CA, at Unit Event Center, hosted by Camp Pendleton
  • June 29,30: Birmingham, AL, at Huffman High School, hosted by Huffman High School
  • July 13,14: Louisville, KY, at Americana Community Center, hosted by Americana Community Center
  • July 14,15: Raleigh, NC, at Shaw University Tupper Hall, hosted by Alexander YMCA
  • July 20,21: Detroit, MI, at Golightly Education Center, hosted by Golightly
  • July 20,21: San Antonio, TX, at Best Buy Teen Tech Center, hosted by Family Service Association
  • July 20,21: Philadelphia, PA, at New Foundations High School, hosted by New Foundations Charter School
  • July 27,28: Las Vegas, NV, at Valley View Rec Center, hosted by Victory Black Mountain Church
  • Aug 3,4: Jersey City, NJ, at Best Buy Teen Tech Center, hosted by Boys & Girls Club Hudson County
  • Aug 3,4: Seattle, WA, at Best Buy Teen Tech Center, hosted by Boys & Girls Club at Bellevue
  • Aug 3,4: Allentown, PA, at William Allen High School, hosted by Communities in Schools
  • Aug 10,11: Hartford, CT, at Asylum Hill Boys & Girls Club, hosted by Boys & Girls Club Hartford
  • Aug 10,11: Syracuse, NY, at Onondaga Hill Middle School, hosted by Onondaga Free Library
  • Aug 25,26: Oshkosh, WI, at Oshkosh Boys & Girls Club, hosted by Oshkosh Boys & Girls Club
  • Aug 30,31: Phoenix, AZ, at Kroc Center, hosted by Salvation Army Kroc Center


For a complete schedule of GSA 2016 dates, locations, enrollment information and more, you can also visit https://academy.geeksquad.com/

Media Contact:

Jeff Shelman, Public Relations
612-859-4632
Jeffrey.shelman@bestbuy.com

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Geek Squad Academy 2016 season kicks off on May 2 in Atlanta, Georgia

Geek Squad Academy 2016 season kicks off on May 2 in Atlanta, Georgia

NEW WORLD wins gold for the second time at the Readers Digest Quality Service Awards 2016

New World – Gold

Auckland, New Zealand, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — NEW WORLD has been proudly serving New Zealanders since 1963 and at the core of its success is the team’s promise to deliver outstanding customer service.

Steve Anderson, Managing Director, Foodstuffs (NZ) Ltd, says winning gold in our category for a second time is a fantastic accolade.

“The New World team has been working hard to ensure customers feel welcome and enjoy their shopping experience whilst in our stores. This award is direct recognition from our customers that we are meeting, and hopefully exceeding, their expectations on a daily basis.”

“New World is committed to putting its customer’s needs first.  We pride ourselves on having fantastic staff with the knowledge, passion and expertise in food to ensure we are meeting all the needs of our customers. And of course the friendly and helpful New World approach that is second to none,” says Anderson.

New World continues to be a positive part of the communities in which it operates. This includes employing local staff, supporting schools and community groups wherever possible, as well as supporting home-grown products and suppliers.

New World is truly delighted to have won this award once again and this result will continue to encourage our team across the country, to reach for even higher standards of service excellence next year.

For more information, visit www.newworld.co.nz

Foodstuffs Own Brands Ltd
Address:
95 May Road, Mt Roskill, Auckland 1041
PO Box 27-480, Mt Roskill, Auckland 1440
DX Box CX 15021, Mt Roskill, Auckland 1440
Phone: +64 9 621 0508
Fax: +64 9 621 0987

Foodstuffs wins gold once again at the Reader’s Digest Quality Service Awards

Auckland, New Zealand, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Foodstuffs’ has triumphed at the Reader’s Digest Quality Service Awards winning gold once again for New World and silver for PAK’nSAVE in the Supermarket category.

The independent survey asked more than 1,500 New Zealanders to vote in an online questionnaire to decide the winners. Companies were rated on their ability to deliver a personalised, reliable service, to understand their customers, meet (or exceed) expectations, and make the whole shopping experience quick and easy.

Steve Anderson, Managing Director, Foodstuffs New Zealand, says that winning the service medals for a second time is a fantastic accolade.

“The New World team has been working hard to ensure customers feel welcome and enjoy their shopping experience whilst in our stores. This award is direct recognition from our customers that we are meeting, and hopefully exceeding, their expectations on a daily basis,” he says.

“And PAK’nSAVE consistently offers New Zealand’s the lowest prices for their groceries and customers also appreciate the can-do attitude of our friendly staff.”

“Our stores are committed to putting our customer’s needs first. We pride ourselves on having fantastic staff with the knowledge, passion and expertise in food to ensure we are meeting all the needs of our customers,” says Anderson.

Anderson says, “Thank you to our customers for letting us know that we are doing a great job. We are truly delighted to have won these awards once again and this result will continue to encourage our team across the country, to reach for even higher standards of service excellence next year.”

New World and PAK’nSAVE stores are 100 per cent owned and operated by New Zealanders and we continue to strive to be a positive part of the communities in which we operate. This includes employing local staff, supporting schools and community groups wherever possible, as well as supporting home-grown products and suppliers.

Foodstuffs North Island Support Centre (Auckland)
Address:
60 Roma Road, Mt Roskill, Auckland 1041
PO Box 27-480, Mt Roskill, Auckland 1440
DX Box CX 15021, Mt Roskill, Auckland 1440
Phone: +64 9 621 0600
Fax: +64 9 621 0601

Philippines: SM Prime Holdings reports core net income growth of 12% in the first quarter of 2016

Pasay City, Philippines, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — SM Prime Holdings, Inc. (SM Prime), the Philippines’ leading integrated property company, reported a core net income growth of 12% in the first quarter of 2016 to PHP5.8 billion while consolidated revenues rose 10% to PHP18.2 billion.

“SM Prime’s massive expansion last year propelled our performance this quarter. Our strong balance sheet coupled with consistent recurring revenue and income should allow us to pursue our growth plans this year and in the medium term,” SM Prime President Hans T. Sy, said.

In the first quarter, mall revenues surged 11% to PHP11.0 billion from PHP9.9 billion in the previous year. Mall revenue alone accounted to 60% of SM Prime’s consolidated revenue, for which 85% of it comes from rental income. Growth was largely driven by new malls and expansion of existing malls in 2015. These are SM Seaside City Cebu, SM City Cabanatuan, SM City San Mateo, SM Center Sangandaan and SM City Iloilo with a total gross floor area (GFA) of 738,000 square meters (sqm). Excluding the new malls and expansions, same-store growth averaged 7%.

To date, SM Prime has a total of 57 Malls in the Philippines and six in China with total retail space of 8.4 million sqm. This includes the newly opened SM City San Jose del Monte in Bulacan, with a GFA of 101,000 sqm. The company is set to open four more malls this year namely, SM City Trece Martires, SM City East Ortigas, Cherry SM Congressional and Cherry SM Antipolo. SM Prime also intends to expand its existing malls namely SM City Calamba and SM City Naga.

SM Prime’s residential group, which contributed 32% of consolidated revenues, posted revenues of PHP5.8 billion in the period being reviewed, up 5%. The increase can be traced by the higher construction accomplishments of SM Development Corporation (SMDC) projects launched in 2013 to 2015. These are Grass Residences, Shore Residences and Air Residences in the cities of Quezon, Pasay and Makati. This was also supported by the increase in sales take-up in M Place Residences, Field Residences and Jazz Residences in the cities of Quezon, Parañaque, and Makati.

Consolidated costs of real estate inched up by 2% to PHP2.9 billion mainly due to higher revenues recognized in real estate sales. This generated a higher gross profit margin of 47% from 46% in the same period last year. Net income margin likewise rose to 24% from 23%.

SM Prime currently has twenty eight residential projects in the market in Metro Manila and Tagaytay. SM Prime has already launched two new projects and an expansion of existing development equivalent to 4,000 units in Las Pinas, Bicutan and along Roxas Boulevard. For the rest of the year, SM Prime is still set to launch an additional 10,000 to 12,000 units located in the Mall of Asia Complex, Tagaytay, Quezon City, Bulacan, Cavite and Cabanatuan.

The Commercial Properties Group, accounted for 5% of consolidated revenues, soared 16% to PHP 1 billion in revenues. The growth was complemented by the opening of SM Cyber West and Five E-Com Center, with a combined GFA of 171,000 sqm. These office buildings currently enjoy an average occupancy rate of 99%. The Commercial Properties Group presently has five office buildings with an estimated gross floor area of 318,000 sqm. ThreeE-Com and FourE-Com Centers are under construction and scheduled for completion in 2017 and 2019, respectively.

The hotels and convention centers business grew by 22% in the first quarter of 2016 to PHP 617 million in terms of revenue. The growth was propelled by an improvement in the average room and occupancy rates which was supplemented by the opening of 154-room Park Inn Clark in Pampanga. SM Prime will unveil the 347-room Conrad Manila in second half 2016.

SM Prime remains committed to its role as a catalyst for economic growth, delivering innovative and sustainable lifestyle cities, thereby enriching the quality of life of millions of people.

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For further information, please contact:

Alexander Pomento
Vice President, Investor Relations
SM Prime Holdings, Inc.
E-mail: alex.pomento@smprime.com
Tel. no.: +632 862 7940

PHILIPPINES: SM Prime Holdings opens SM City San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan

Pasay City, Philippines, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — SM Prime Holdings, Inc. (SM Prime), the country’s largest integrated property company, is opening SM City San Jose Del Monte on April 29, 2016. This is SM Prime’s 57th mall in the Philippines and the third in the province of Bulacan – after SM City Baliwag and SM City Marilao.

This newest retail and dining destination will add 101,000 square meters (sqm) in gross floor area (GFA) to the floorplate, which will bring SM Prime’s total retail space to 7.4 million sqm, the largest footprint in the country.

“We continue to expand in the provincial areas as we remain optimistic about their huge potential for growth. The opening of SM City San Jose Del Monte in Bulacan is a testament to this strategic direction as we remain steadfast in developing premier destinations around the country,” SM Prime President Hans T. Sy said.

SM City San Jose Del Monte is strategically located along Quirino Highway in Bulacan, which is connected to the cities of Quezon and North Caloocan. San Jose Del Monte is a second-tier city with predominantly middle income households, of which, 62% have family members that are Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW). The city contributes to one of the fastest growing residential and commercial hubs in the Northern Gateway of Metro Manila, covering 59 barangays and a population of almost 500,000 based on the 2010 census.

SM City San Jose Del Monte opens with 70% of space lease-awarded occupying its three floors with retail stores, dining outlets, recreation and entertainment facilities, and service centers topped with commendable architectural design making it the newest vibrant urban hub in the north of Metro Manila. The prime spaces are allocated to local and international retail brands, well-loved food outlets and anchor tenants such as THE SM STORE, SM Supermarket, SM Appliance Center, Ace Hardware, BDO, Surplus, Watsons, and SM Cinema with four state-of-the-art cinemas giving a total of 1,026 cinema seats. A multilevel basement parking, with 912 parking slots, is also provided for mall-goers’ convenience.

By the end of 2016, SM Prime is targeting to have 61 malls in the Philippines and six in China with an estimated combined GFA of 8.6 million sqm.

SM Prime remains committed to its role as a catalyst for economic growth, delivering innovative and sustainable lifestyle cities, thereby enriching the quality of life of millions of people.

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For further information, please contact:

Alexander Pomento
Vice President, Investor Relations
SM Prime Holdings, Inc.
E-mail: alex.pomento@smprime.com
Tel. no.: +632 862 7940

 

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Architect’s Perspective of SM City San Jose Del Monte in Bulacan

Architect’s Perspective of SM City San Jose Del Monte in Bulacan

PHILIPPINES: SM Investments Corporation releases its 2015 Environmental, Social and Governance Report

Pasay City, Philippines, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — SM Investments Corporation (SM), the country’s largest conglomerate, has reported significant progress in its sustainability practices which involves its operations, social development programs and environmental conservation efforts. These efforts are disclosed in SM’s 2015 Environmental, Social and Governance Report released on April 27 during the company’s Annual Stockholders’ Meeting.

Among its key initiatives in 2015, climate change adaptation became one of its top priorities, with the SM Group taking a leadership role in spearheading the United Nations Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies (UN ARISE) initiative in the country. SM and its subsidiaries signed the commitment, enjoining other Philippine companies to help raise awareness and to implement projects in disaster risk reduction. Mr. Hans T. Sy, President of property arm SM Prime Holdings, Inc. sits as the only Filipino in the 12-member board of UN Arise.

The SM group also showed progress in sustainable operations, particularly in the areas of energy efficiency, water management, waste management and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In 2015 for instance, despite continued growth in its footprint to 7.3 million square meters in the Philippines, SM Supermalls consumed a monthly average of energy intensity of 41.5 MJ/sqm (megajoules per square meter), from 43.3 MJ/sqm in 2014. It also continued to recycle the water used in all SM Supermalls so 3.9 million cubic meters out of the 13.1 million cubic meters of water consumed in 2015 was reused. This is equivalent to the amount of water in over 1,500 Olympic-sized swimming pools. The SM malls also recycled and reused 38% of its solid waste materials. And given its various means to achieve energy efficiency, the malls prevented additional emissions of about 110,000 tonnes of CO2 (carbon dioxide).

Committed to social inclusion, SM works closely with communities through SM Foundation, SM Cares and BDO Foundation. The programs focus on education, healthcare, shelter, food security, disaster response and rehabilitation and care for persons with special needs. In 2015 alone, SM Foundation supported 1,500 college scholars, built eight public school buildings with 32 classrooms, conducted 114 medical missions, renovated and refurbished 14 health centers and conducted 20 farmers’ training programs.

SM Investments Corporation, for its part, turned over a nine-level building to the University of the Philippines (UP) Professional Schools at Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. The new building in the satellite campus spans a total floor area of 12,000 square meters and houses 29 classrooms three computer laboratories, learning commons, an auditorium, a moot court for your law students, a multi-purpose hall for various events, conference rooms, office spaces, and faculty lounges.

BDO Foundation, on the other hand, built nine school buildings with 32 classrooms. In addition, the foundation renovated eight health centers, built and donated 469 homes for displaced families and served 61,170 families in relief operations.

With respect to disaster rehabilitation and response, SM Cares turned over 200 homes to families that survived Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in Concepcion Iloilo. This is the second SM Cares Village completed following the first village with 200 houses that was donated in Bogo, Cebu. SM Cares is nearing the completion of its target 1,000 homes for Yolanda victims with the turnover of another 400 homes in Tacloban in 2016, the area hardest hit by the typhoon. The fourth and last village in Ormoc, Leyte will also be turned over this year.

SM fosters the practices of good governance across the whole group by adhering to principles and policies that promote integrity, transparency and equal opportunity. SM has been voted one of the ten most aspired companies to work for in the country by Jobstreet in its 2015 Top Companies Report. In addition, it received various awards from both local and international award giving bodies highlighting the group’s commitment to good corporate governance.

The SM subsidiaries that have contributed to its ESG report are SM Retail Inc., SM Prime Holdings, Inc., BDO Unibank Inc. and China Banking Corporation. The said report is the company’s second group-wide ESG Report that adheres to global practices.

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About SM Investments Corporation
SM Investments Corporation, founded by entrepreneur Henry Sy, Sr. is the country’s largest publicly listed holding company with a sustainable group of businesses that thrives on leadership, innovation and the synergies of its banking, property and retail operations. SM has evolved into one of the most highly respected companies in the country owing to its progressive approach in business and its comprehensive sustainability programs for its host communities through SM Foundation and SM Cares.

SM’s retail operations enjoy a strong brand franchise consisting of non-food under THE SM STORE and food under SM Markets consisting of SM Supermarket, SM Hypermarket, and Savemore and other food retail stores under Waltermart and Alfamart. SM’s property arm, SM Prime Holdings, Inc., is the largest integrated property developer in the Philippines with interests in malls, residences, offices, hotels and convention centers as well as tourism-related property developments. SM’s interests in banking are in BDO Unibank, Inc. (BDO), the country’s largest and in China Banking Corporation (China Bank), one of the country’s largest private banks.

For further information, please contact:

Ms. Corazon P. Guidote
Senior Vice President for Investor Relations
SM Investments Corporation
E-mail: cora.guidote@sminvestments.com
Tel. No. (632) 857-0117
www.sminvestments.com

Dollar Tree, Inc. releases results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year ended January 30, 2016

Fourth Quarter Sales increased to $5.37 billion and Same-Store Sales increased 1.7%

CHESAPEAKE, Va., 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Dollar Tree, Inc. (NASDAQ: DLTR), North America’s leading operator of discount variety stores, today reported results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year ended January 30, 2016.

Bob Sasser, Chief Executive Officer of Dollar Tree, stated, “I am proud of the Company’s performance in the fourth quarter and full year 2015. Through a challenging economic environment, we delivered sales of $5.37 billion, which was the mid-point of our fourth quarter guidance range, and our 32nd consecutive quarter of positive same-store sales. This was against a strong 5.6% comp from the prior year’s fourth quarter. Additionally, while not included in our comp calculation, for the second consecutive quarter, our Family Dollar banner delivered positive same-store sales increases each month during the quarter.”

Sasser added, “2015 was a very successful year for Dollar Tree. I would like to thank all of our associates for their commitment and hard work throughout the year. We continued to serve our loyal customer base by providing terrific values every day; we successfully completed the acquisition of Family Dollar; we initiated, and remain on schedule with, the integration of our companies; and we are on track to achieve our stated synergy targets. Looking ahead, we are committed to growing and improving our Dollar Tree and Family Dollar businesses to better serve more customers, while delivering long-term value to our shareholders.”

Fourth Quarter Results

Consolidated net sales increased 116.7% to $5.37 billion from $2.48 billion in the prior year’s fourth quarter. The increase was the result of $2.68 billion in sales from the Family Dollar segment and a same-store sales increase of 1.7% on a constant currency basis for the Dollar Tree segment. In comparison, same-store sales, on a constant currency basis, increased 5.6% in the prior-year period for the Dollar Tree segment. Adjusted for the impact of Canadian currency fluctuations, the same-store sales increase was 1.3%. The positive same-store sales were driven by increases in customer count and average ticket.

Gross profit increased by $734.5 million, or 80.0%, to $1.65 billion in the fourth quarter compared to $918.1 million in the prior year’s fourth quarter. The dollar increase was primarily driven by $673.7 million of gross profit for Family Dollar as well as higher sales at Dollar Tree. As a percent of sales, gross margin decreased to 30.8% compared to 37.1% in the prior year. The primary contributors to the decrease were the impact of the overall lower-margin product mix for the Family Dollar business, $15.9 million for Family Dollar related to the amortization of the stepped up inventory basis, and $11.5 million of planned markdowns associated with rebannering Deals stores.

Selling, general and administrative expenses were 22.0% of sales compared to 21.6% of sales in the prior year’s fourth quarter. Excluding $8.9 million of severance costs, as well as purchase accounting-related costs of $19.3 million for favorable lease rights amortization and $16.0 million in depreciation for useful life and fixed asset revaluation, selling, general and administrative expenses were 21.2% in the fourth quarter of 2015. Excluding acquisition-related costs of $6.7 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, selling, general and administrative expenses were 21.3% of sales.

Net income compared to the prior year’s fourth quarter increased $22.4 million to $229.0 million, and diluted earnings per share decreased by 2.9% to $0.97. Adjusted net income increased from $239.0 million to $239.4 million and adjusted diluted earnings per share decreased from $1.16 to $1.01. A reconciliation of reported net income before income taxes to adjusted earnings per share is contained in the attached tables. Management believes this non-GAAP measure is relevant and useful in understanding the performance of the core business.

During the quarter, the Company opened 128 stores, expanded or relocated 53 stores, closed 28 stores and divested of 325 Family Dollar stores. Additionally, as part of its re-banner initiative, the Company opened 58 former Family Dollar store locations as new Dollar Tree stores during the quarter. The Company also converted 52 Deals stores to Dollar Tree stores in January. Retail selling square footage at the end of the quarter was approximately 108.4 million square feet.

Full Year Results

Consolidated net sales increased $6.90 billion, or 80.2%, to $15.50 billion from $8.60 billion in the prior year. Family Dollar sales represented $6.16 billion of the increase. Same-store sales, for the Dollar Tree segment, increased 2.5% on a constant currency basis, compared to a 4.4% increase in the prior-year period. Adjusted for the impact of Canadian currency fluctuations, the same-store sales increase was 2.1%.

Gross profit increased $1.62 billion, or 53.5%, to $4.66 billion from $3.03 billion in the prior year. As a percent of sales, gross margin decreased by 520 basis points to 30.1%. The primary contributors to the decrease were $73.0 million of markdown expense for Family Dollar related to SKU rationalization and planned liquidations, $70.3 million for Family Dollar related to the amortization of the stepped up inventory basis and the impact of the overall lower-margin product mix for the Family Dollar business.

Selling, general and administrative expenses were 23.3% of sales compared to 23.2% of sales in the prior year. Purchase accounting-related costs of $87.1 million in the year included $45.1 million for favorable lease rights amortization and $42.0 million in depreciation for useful life and fixed asset revaluation. In addition, we incurred $39.2 million in acquisition-related costs and $13.4 million of severance costs. Acquisition-related costs for 2014 were $28.5 million. Excluding all of these costs, selling, general and administrative expenses improved 40 basis points to 22.4% of sales.

Net income decreased $316.8 million compared to the prior year, resulting in net income of $1.26 per diluted share. Adjusted net income decreased from $645.6 million to $518.2 million and adjusted diluted earnings per share decreased from $3.12 to $2.32.

Company Outlook

The Company estimates consolidated net sales for the first quarter of 2016 to range from $5.05 billion to $5.12 billion, based on a low single-digit increase in same-store sales and year-over-year selling square footage growth of 132%. Diluted earnings per share are expected to range from $0.75 to $0.83.

For fiscal 2016, the Company estimates consolidated net sales to range from $20.76 billion to $21.11 billion. This estimate is based on a low single-digit increase in same-store sales, and 4.0% square footage growth. Fiscal year 2016 diluted earnings per share are expected to range from $3.35 to $3.65.

Conference Call Information

On Tuesday, March 1, 2016, the Company will host a conference call to discuss its earnings results at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time. The telephone number for the call is 800-768-6563. A recorded version of the call will be available until midnight Tuesday, March 8, 2016 and may be accessed by dialing 888-203-1112. The access code is 3402665. A webcast of the call is accessible through Dollar Tree’s website, and will remain online until Tuesday, March 8, 2016.

Dollar Tree, a Fortune 500 Company, operated 13,851 stores across 48 states and five Canadian provinces as of January 30, 2016. Stores operate under the brands of Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, Dollar Tree Canada, and Deals. To learn more about the Company, visit www.DollarTree.com.

A WARNING ABOUT FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: Our press release contains “forward-looking statements” as that term is used in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements address future events, developments or results and typically use words such as believe, anticipate, expect, intend, plan, forecast, or estimate. For example, our forward-looking statements include statements regarding first quarter 2016 and full-year 2016 net sales and same-store sales, first quarter 2016 and full-year 2016 diluted earnings per share, square footage growth, the benefits, results, and effects of the merger including synergies, future financial and operating results and shareholder value, the combined company’s plans, objectives, expectations (financial or otherwise) and intentions. For a discussion of the risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could affect our future events, developments or results, you should carefully review the “Risk Factors,” “Business” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” sections in our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed March 13, 2015, the “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and other sections in our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed November 24, 2015 and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We are not obligated to release publicly any revisions to any forward- looking statements contained in this press release to reflect events or circumstances occurring after the date of this report and you should not expect us to do so.

Dollar Tree, Inc.
Randy Guiler, 757-321-5284
Vice President, Investor Relations
www.DollarTree.com
DLTR-E

Source: Dollar Tree, Inc.

News Provided by Acquire Media

PetSmart® doubles previous Bark at the Park event attendees with 858 dogs paraded at Chase Field

PHOENIX, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Exactly 858 dogs paraded, gobbled treats and took in some baseball at Chase Field earlier today as PetSmart, the Arizona Diamondbacks and Central Garden & Pet attempted to set a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title for the Most Dogs Attending a Sporting Event. While the group came up short – just 142 dogs shy of the 1,000 dogs needed to set the record – the total number of dogs was more than double previous Bark at the Park events at Chase Field. PetSmart says this feat speaks to pet parents’ enthusiasm for including their best friends in cherished activities, including America’s favorite pastime.

“We had a blast earlier today and are thrilled that so many pets and their pet parents joined us for this historic event,” said Eran Cohen, chief customer experience officer, PetSmart. “We believe involving our beloved pets in more of life’s memorable moments is what being a pet parent truly is all about. We sincerely thank all of the dog-loving baseball fans who took part in our GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS attempt — there is always next year!”

According to the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS organization, this was the first official attempt for this record. A GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS Adjudicator was on hand to account for the dogs entering Chase Field and called the total number at the end of the second inning.

The GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS attempt was heavily aided by the national kick-off of Bark at the Park at Chase Field, a traveling 12 game dog-friendly program where dog-loving fans can bring their best friends to a baseball game at stadiums across America. This year’s Bark at the Park program is hosted by Central Garden & Pet, the parent company of Nylabone® and AvoDerm® Natural Pet Foods, as well as PetSmart.

Dogs and their pet parents can continue to take in D-backs games on the PetSmart Patio during the Dog Days of Summer, where all Sunday home games are dog-friendly. The PetSmart Patio features 30 “doggie suites” each accommodating four humans and one dog and all the human and doggie treats fans can eat. Adoptable dogs are also available at The Adopt Spot by PetSmart at Chase Field, where local animal welfare organizations feature dogs ready to find their forever homes among the D-backs’ fan base. There were 15 adoptable dogs at the world record attempt from the Arizona Animal Welfare League (AAWL); all were included in the count and nine pups were adopted as of the end of the sixth inning. Lucky dog Hyde, who was with the AAWL shelter for more than 200 days, found his forever home.

Take in a baseball game with your dog! There are 10 more Dog Days of Summer games in the 2016 D-backs season. Go to www.dbacks.com/dogdays to purchase tickets. There are 11 more games in the national Bark at the Park series schedule. Go to www.petsmart.com/barkatthepark.

About PetSmart
PetSmart, Inc. is the largest specialty pet retailer of services and solutions for the lifetime needs of pets. At PetSmart, we love pets, and we believe pets make us better people. Every day with every connection, PetSmart’s passionate associates help bring pet parents closer to their pets so they can live more fulfilled lives. This mission impacts everything we do for our customers, the way we support our associates, and how we give back to our communities. We employ approximately 53,000 associates, operate approximately 1,433 pet stores in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico and approximately 202 in-store PetSmart® PetsHotel® dog and cat boarding facilities. PetSmart provides a broad range of competitively priced pet food and pet products and offers dog training, pet grooming, pet boarding, PetSmart Doggie Day Camp day care services and pet adoption services in-store. Our portfolio of digital resources for pet parents – including PetSmart.comPetFoodDirect.comPet360.com and petMD.com – offers the most comprehensive online pet supplies and pet care information in the U.S. Through our in-store pet adoption partnership with independent nonprofit organizations, PetSmart Charities™ and PetSmart Charities™ of Canada, PetSmart helps to save the lives of more than 450,000 homeless pets each year. In addition, PetSmart supports organizations that make communities a better place to call home through our philanthropy program, PetSmart Gives Back™. By giving back to the communities where we live and work, PetSmart not only celebrates the power of pets to enrich people’s lives—we live it.

Follow PetSmart on Twitter: @PetSmart
Find PetSmart on Facebook: www.facebook.com/PetSmart
See PetSmart on YouTube: www.YouTube.com/PetSmart

Contacts:

Danielle Bickelmann
Golin for PetSmart
469-680-2503
dbickelmann@golin.com
 

PetSmart Media Line
623-587-2177

D-backs Communications
602-462-6519
Katie Krause
210-279-6793

PetSmart Charities® announces the appointment of Dr. David Haworth, DVM, PhD, as its new President

Phoenix, 2016-May-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Board of Directors of PetSmart Charities®today announced that it has appointed Dr. David Haworth, DVM, PhD, as its new President, effective May 2. A veterinarian by training, Dr. Haworth has more than 15 years of experience in the animal health industry.

Commenting on the announcement, Steve Marton, Chairman of PetSmart Charities’ Board of Directors, said, “David has extensive medical, philanthropic and business experience in the animal welfare field, making him uniquely qualified to lead PetSmart Charities in its next phase of growth. He has a true passion for our mission to end pet homelessness and support pet families. We are confident that David will help PetSmart Charities become a stronger, more effective and efficient organization. It is a privilege to have him on board.”

Dr. Haworth added, “I am excited to join this important organization, with its strong purpose and a committed group of associates. PetSmart Charities is an industry leader in pet philanthropy, and I look forward to working closely with the team, as well as its network of animal welfare organizations and not-for-profit partners, to execute PetSmart Charities’ reinvigorated strategy and build upon its significant success to date.”

Dr. Haworth joins PetSmart Charities from the Morris Animal Foundation in Denver, Colorado, where he most recently served as the President and CEO. He has been Chair of the Human-Animal Bond Research Initiative’s (HABRI) Research Working Group since 2010, and will continue in that role with PetSmart Charities. Previously, Dr. Haworth spent eleven years with Pfizer’s Animal Health business. Dr. Haworth earned his veterinary degree as well as a Ph.D. in reproductive physiology from Colorado State University. He completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the Animal Cancer Center, also at Colorado State University.

Dr. Haworth will report to Steve Marton, Chairman of the PetSmart Charities Board; and Eran Cohen and Paulette Dodson, Co-Vice Chairpersons of the PetSmart Charities Board.

About PetSmart Charities™
PetSmart Charities, Inc. is a nonprofit animal welfare organization that saves the lives of homeless pets. Nearly 500,000 dogs and cats find homes each year through our adoption program in all PetSmart® stores and sponsored adoption events. PetSmart Charities grants more money to directly help pets in need than any other animal welfare group in North America, with a focus on funding spay/neuter services that help communities solve pet overpopulation. PetSmart Charities is a 501(c)(3) organization, independent from PetSmart, Inc.

Media Contact:
Mardi Larson
623.587.2180 or mlarson@petsmart.com