Evine Live Inc. announces the appointment of Bob Rosenblatt as permanent CEO

MINNEAPOLIS, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Evine Live Inc. (NASDAQ:EVLV), a multiplatform video e-commerce company today (August 18, 2016) announced that Bob Rosenblatt, currently Evine’s Chairman of the Board and interim Chief Executive Officer, has been appointed permanent Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. In connection with the appointment, Rosenblatt has agreed to remain a member of the Board of Directors, but will step down as Board Chairman.  Landel Hobbs, currently the Company’s Lead Independent Director and Vice Chair, will succeed Rosenblatt as Chairman of the Board.

“I am excited to have this opportunity to lead Evine and become a permanent member of this energized management team.  Since assuming the role of Interim CEO earlier this year I feel we have made significant progress towards improving the Company’s merchandising balance, accelerating the development of engaging brands our customers love and prioritizing profitability for continued shareholder growth,” stated Rosenblatt.  “We feel interactive video commerce is the most dynamic opportunity in the retail landscape today and we are positioned well to continue to deliver this experience to our customers.”

“During the past six months, Bob has shown that there is no better person to lead Evine,” says Landel Hobbs, Evine’s new Chairman of The Board. “Bob’s proven leadership, his years of both traditional retail and electronic retail experience, and his abilities to inspire and coalesce the team around him makes him the perfect person at this exciting time in video commerce. After reviewing and interviewing many candidates, we came to the conclusion that Bob is the ideal individual to take Evine to the next level of video-based retailing.”

About Bob Rosenblatt
Mr. Rosenblatt has more than 25 years of leadership experience at a number of leading retail organizations, including Tommy Hilfiger, HSN (formerly the Home Shopping Network) and Bloomingdale’s. As Group President and COO of Tommy Hilfiger Corporation, he grew revenues and profitability and built the company’s first transactional web site. Mr. Rosenblatt co-managed the process which culminated in the Tommy Hilfiger Company successfully being sold to Apax Partners in 2006. Mr. Rosenblatt also previously served as CFO, COO and President of HSN. Mr. Rosenblatt introduced and built HSN’s online operation, which achieved profitability within three months of inception. As CFO at Bloomingdale’s, Mr. Rosenblatt was responsible for financial reporting, financial planning and administrative management. Most recently, Mr. Rosenblatt was the CEO of Rosenblatt Consulting, LLC, which specializes in helping investment firms determine value in both public and private companies in the consumer products sector, as well as helping retail firms maximize profitability. Mr. Rosenblatt currently serves on several public and private boards in the retail and technology industry and previously taught at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) as an Adjunct Professor.

About Evine Live Inc.
Evine Live Inc. (NASDAQ:EVLV) operates Evine, a digital commerce company that offers a compelling mix of proprietary and name brands directly to consumers in an engaging and informative shopping experience via television, online and on mobile. Evine reaches approximately 87 million cable and satellite television homes 24 hours a day with entertaining content in a comprehensive digital shopping experience.

Safe Harbor Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

This document may contain certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements may be identified by words such as anticipate, believe, estimate, expect, intend, predict, hope, should, plan, will or similar expressions. Any statements contained herein that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management’s current expectations and accordingly are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. Actual results may vary materially from the expectations contained herein due to various important factors, including (but not limited to): consumer preferences, spending and debt levels; the general economic and credit environment; interest rates; seasonal variations in consumer purchasing activities; the ability to achieve the most effective product category mixes to maximize sales and margin objectives; competitive pressures on sales; pricing and gross sales margins; the level of cable and satellite distribution for our programming and the associated fees; our ability to establish and maintain acceptable commercial terms with third-party vendors and other third parties with whom we have contractual relationships, and to successfully manage key vendor relationships and develop key partnerships and proprietary and exclusive brands; our ability to manage our operating expenses successfully and our working capital levels; our ability to remain compliant with our credit facilities covenants; our ability to successfully transition our brand name and corporate name; customer acceptance of our new branding strategy and our repositioning as a digital commerce company; the market demand for television station sales; changes to our management and information systems infrastructure; challenges to our data and information security; changes in governmental or regulatory requirements; litigation or governmental proceedings affecting our operations; significant public events that are difficult to predict, or other significant television-covering events causing an interruption of television coverage or that directly compete with the viewership of our programming; our ability to obtain and retain key executives and employees; our ability to attract new customers and retain existing customers; changes in shipping costs; our ability to offer new or innovative products and customer acceptance of the same; changes in customers viewing habits of television programming; and the risks identified under “Risk Factors” in our recently filed Form 10-K and any additional risk factors identified in our periodic reports since the date of such Form 10-K. More detailed information about those factors is set forth in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our annual report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, and current reports on Form 8-K. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this announcement. We are under no obligation (and expressly disclaim any such obligation) to update or alter our forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Contacts:
Media:

Carl Schroeder
Evine Live Inc.
press@evine.com
(952) 943-6574

Investors:
Jason Iannazzo
Evine Live Inc.
jiannazzo@evine.com
(952) 943-6126

Source: Evine Live Inc./ GLOBE NEWSWIRE

The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. announces Q2 FY2016 operating results ended July 30, 2016

YORK, Pa., 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ:BONT) today (August 18, 2016) reported operating results for its fiscal second quarter ended July 30, 2016, and reaffirmed its earnings guidance for the full year fiscal 2016.

Results for the Second Quarter Ended July 30, 2016

  • Comparable store sales decreased 2.0% as compared with the prior year period.
  • Net loss was $38.7 million, or $1.95 per diluted share, compared with net loss of $39.6 million, or $2.01 per diluted share, in the second quarter of fiscal 2015.
  • Adjusted EBITDA totaled $2.5 million, inclusive of $2.2 million of severance costs associated with the Company’s previously announced planned expense reductions and a $2.4 million consulting expense related to cost reduction initiatives. (Adjusted EBITDA is not a measure recognized under generally accepted accounting principles – see the financial table accompanying this release.) Excluding the financial impact of the severance costs and consulting expenses, Adjusted EBITDA would have been $7.1 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2016.In the second quarter of fiscal 2015, Adjusted EBITDA was $5.7 million, including a $0.7 million gain associated with an insurance settlement and $1.0 million of severance costs. Excluding the financial impacts of these items, Adjusted EBITDA would have been $6.0 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2015.

Kathryn Bufano, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We made progress on a number of our strategic initiatives during the second quarter, although the soft mall traffic trends continued to negatively impact our business.  Importantly, we delivered sales gains in our key growth categories and brands, and drove accelerated double digit growth in our omnichannel business, with a triple digit increase on our mobile site.  In addition, we maintained careful inventory controls, as we reduced inventory by 6% with fewer markdowns.  We also continued to make progress on our cost savings plan.”

Ms. Bufano continued, “Looking ahead, we believe that the Fall assortment will be our best to date.  We also expect that our omnichannel business will continue to deliver strong performance. While we are cognizant that the operating environment remains difficult, we believe that we are well positioned for the back half of the year with a strong merchandising assortment, a compelling marketing program focused on new customer acquisition, and continued discipline in inventory management and cost controls.”

Second Quarter Review
Comparable store sales in the second quarter of fiscal 2016 decreased 2.0%.  Total sales in the period decreased 2.4% to $542.4 million, compared with $555.4 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2015.  Sales increases were achieved in Activewear, Big & Tall, Denim, Young Men’s, Young Contemporary Plus, Women’s Better Handbags, Hard Home and Furniture.

The Company achieved accelerated growth in omnichannel, which reflects sales via its website, mobile site, and its Buy Online Pick Up In-Store and Let Us Find It initiatives, as it continued to successfully leverage its West Jefferson facility and expanded store-fulfillment network.

Other income in the second quarter of fiscal 2016 was $16.3 million, an increase of $0.7 million over the comparable prior year period.  The increase was largely the result of higher revenues associated with the Company’s proprietary credit card operations.  Proprietary credit card sales, as a percentage of total sales, increased 390 basis points to 57.1% in the second quarter of fiscal 2016.

Gross profit decreased $6.5 million to $198.1 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2016, primarily as a result of decreased sales volume. The gross margin rate in the second quarter of fiscal 2016 was 36.5% of net sales as compared to 36.8% in the same quarter last year.

Selling, general and administrative (“SG&A”) expense in the second quarter of fiscal 2016 decreased $3.3 million, or 1.5%, to $211.9 million, compared to the second quarter of fiscal 2015. This was largely due to a benefit from a mid-single digit decline in non-customer facing store expenses, partially offset by higher medical claims, as well as severance costs and consulting expenses associated with the Company’s cost reduction initiatives. The SG&A expense rate in the second quarter of 2016 was 39.1% of net sales, an increase of 40 basis points over the prior year, primarily as a result of the decreased sales volume in the period. Excluding the severance and consulting costs in the second quarter of fiscal 2016, as well as the severance costs in the second quarter of fiscal 2015, SG&A expense in the second quarter of fiscal 2016 decreased $6.9 million from the comparable prior year period, and the SG&A expense rate leveraged 40 basis points, to 38.2%.

As of July 30, 2016 , the Company had approximately $225 million of borrowing capacity under its revolving credit facility and expects to decrease debt by approximately $40 million to $50 million by the end of the year.

Guidance
For fiscal 2016, loss per diluted share is expected to be in a range of $0.95 to $1.45. The Company continues to expect Adjusted EBITDA in a range of$130 million to $140 million.  (As used in this release, Adjusted EBITDA is not a measure recognized under GAAP – see the accompanying financial table which reconciles this non-GAAP measure to net loss.)

ABL Refinancing
As announced earlier this week, the Company successfully closed a new $150 million ABL Term Loan that replaces the existing $100 million A-1 Tranche of the Company’s credit facility and increases the total commitment under the facility to $880 million. The Company will use approximately $75 million of the net proceeds to reduce all amounts currently outstanding under the existing A-1 Tranche of its credit facility which matures in December 2018. The balance of the net proceeds will be used to enhance the Company’s liquidity and retire the remaining approximately $57 million of its Senior Notes due in July 2017.

Call Details
The Company’s quarterly conference call to discuss second quarter fiscal 2016 results will be broadcast live today at 10:00 a.m. Eastern time.  Investors and analysts interested in participating in the call are invited to dial (888) 208-1361 at 9:55 a.m. Eastern time and reference conference ID 7684146.  A taped replay of the conference call will be available within two hours of the conclusion of the call and will remain available through August 25, 2016.  The number to call for the taped replay is (877) 870-5176 and the replay PIN is 7684146.  The conference call will also be broadcast on the Company’s website at http://investors.bonton.com.  An online archive of the webcast will be available within two hours of the conclusion of the call.

About The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc.
The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., with corporate headquarters in York, Pennsylvania and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, operates 267 stores, which includes nine furniture galleries and four clearance centers, in 26 states in the Northeast, Midwest and upper Great Plains under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers nameplates.  The stores offer a broad assortment of national and private brand fashion apparel and accessories for women, men and children, as well as cosmetics and home furnishings.  For further information, please visit the investor relations section of the Company’s website at http://investors.bonton.com.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Certain information included in this press release contains statements that are forward-looking within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements, which may be identified by words such as “may,” “could,” “will,” “plan,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “project,” “intend” or other similar expressions and include the Company’s fiscal 2016 guidance, involve important risks and uncertainties that could significantly affect results in the future and, accordingly, such results may differ from those expressed in any forward-looking statements made by or on behalf of the Company. Factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to: risks related to retail businesses generally; a significant and prolonged deterioration of general economic conditions which could negatively impact the Company in a number of ways, including the potential write-down of the current valuation of intangible assets and deferred taxes; risks related to the Company’s proprietary credit card program; potential increases in pension obligations; consumer spending patterns, debt levels, and the availability and cost of consumer credit; additional competition from existing and new competitors or changes in the competitive environment; inflation; deflation; changes in the costs of fuel and other energy and transportation costs; weather conditions that could negatively impact sales; uncertainties associated with expanding or remodeling existing stores; the ability to attract and retain qualified management; the dependence upon relationships with vendors and their factors; a data security breach or system failure; the ability to reduce or control SG&A expenses, including initiatives to reduce expenses and improve efficiency; operational disruptions; unsuccessful marketing initiatives; the ability to expand our capacity and improve efficiency through our new eCommerce fulfillment center; changes in, or the failure to successfully implement, our key strategies, including initiatives to improve our merchandising, marketing and operations; adverse outcomes in litigation; the incurrence of unplanned capital expenditures; the ability to obtain financing for working capital, capital expenditures and general corporate purposes; the impact of regulatory requirements including the Health Care Reform Act and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act; the inability or limitations on the Company’s ability to favorably adjust the valuation allowance on deferred tax assets; and the financial condition of mall operators.  Additional factors that could cause the Company’s actual results to differ from those contained in these forward-looking statements are discussed in greater detail under Item 1A of the Company’s Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

CONTACT:
Investor Relations:
Wendy Wilson
414-347-5153
Wendy.Wilson@bonton.com

Source: The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. /GLOBE NEWSWIRE

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. declares quarterly cash dividend of $0.20 per share on the Class A Common Stock

New Albany, Ohio, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE: ANF) today reported that on August 17, 2016, the Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.20 per share on the Class A Common Stock of Abercrombie & Fitch Co., payable on September 12, 2016 to stockholders of record at the close of business on September 2, 2016.

About Abercrombie & Fitch
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. is a leading global specialty retailer of high-quality, casual apparel for men, women and kids with an active, youthful lifestyle under its Abercrombie & Fitch, abercrombie kids and Hollister Co. brands.  At the end of Fiscal 2015, the Company operated 754 stores in the United States and 178 stores across Canada, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. The Company also operates e-commerce websites at www.abercrombie.comwww.abercrombiekids.com and www.hollisterco.com.

Media Contact:
Michael Scheiner
Public Relations
Abercrombie & Fitch
(614) 283-6192
Public_Relations@abercrombie.com

Investor Contact:
Brian Logan
Abercrombie & Fitch
(614) 283-6877
Investor_Relations@abercrombie.com

Source: Abercrombie & Fitch

Lenta Ltd to release its reviewed IFRS financial results for H1 FY2016 on 25th August 2016

St-Petersburg, Russia, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Lenta Ltd, (LSE, MOEX: LNTA) (“Lenta”), one of the largest retail chains in Russia, is pleased to announce it will release its reviewed IFRS financial results for the first half-year of 2016 on 25th August 2016. Lenta will also host an Analyst and Investor Conference Call on the same day to discuss the results.

Conference call details:

Date: Thursday, 25th August 2016

Time: 17:00 (Moscow time), 15:00 (UK time), 10:00 (EST)

Speakers:
Jan Dunning, Chief Executive Officer
Jago Lemmens, Chief Financial Officer
Albert Avetikov, Director for Investor Relations

To participate in the conference call, please dial:

Russia:
+7 495 705 9450

UK:
+44 20 7136 2050 (local access)
0800 279 5004 (toll free)

USA:
+1 718 354 1359 (local access)
1 877 280 2342 (toll free)

Conference ID: 2058090 or quote the conference call title: “Lenta Ltd. 1H 2016 Financial results”

The reviewed IFRS financial results for the first half-year ended 30 June 2016 and respective presentation will be published at 10:00am Moscow time (08:00am UK time) and will be available at www.lentainvestor.com

About Lenta
Lenta is the largest hypermarket chain in Russia (in terms of selling space) and the country’s fifth largest retail chain (in terms of 2015 sales). The Company was founded in 1993 in St. Petersburg. Lenta operates 147 hypermarkets in 72 cities across Russia and 42 supermarkets in Moscow and St. Petersburg, with a total of approximately 922,865 sq.m of selling space. The average Lenta hypermarket store has selling space of approximately 6,000 sq.m. The average Lenta supermarket store has selling space of approximately 1,000 sq.m. The Company operates six owned hypermarket distribution centres.

The Company’s price-led hypermarket formats are differentiated in terms of their promotion and pricing strategies as well as their local product assortment. The Company employed approximately 38,414 people as of 31 December 2015.

The Company’s management team combines a mix of local knowledge and international expertise coupled with extensive operational experience in Russia. Lenta’s largest shareholders include TPG Capital, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, all of whom are committed to maintaining high standards of corporate governance. Lenta is listed on the London Stock Exchange and on the Moscow Exchange and trades under the ticker: ‘LNTA’.

A brief video summary on Lenta’s business can be seen here.

For further information please visit www.lentainvestor.com, or contact:

Lenta
Albert Avetikov,
Director for Investor Relations
+7 812 363 28 44
Albert.Avetikov@lenta.com

Citigate
International Media:
David Westover and Marina Zakharova
Тel: +44 207 282 2886
lentateam@citigatedr.co.uk

FTI Consulting
Russian Media:
Anton Karpov and Victoria Afonina
Тel:+7 495 795 06 23
lenta@FTIconsulting.com

Source: Lenta

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. announces Q2 FY2016 results ended July 10, 2016

ATLANTA, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. (NASDAQ: PLKI), the franchisor and operator of Popeyes® restaurants, today (August 16, 2016) reported results for its fiscal second quarter of 2016, which ended July 10, 2016. The Company also reaffirmed earnings guidance for fiscal 2016.

“The second quarter was a productive one for Popeyes on each of our three strategic pillars, despite the competitive pressures on comparable sales,” said Cheryl Bachelder, Popeyes Chief Executive Officer. “We have continued to offer our guests a balance of exciting new products and value-oriented promotions, and our share of chicken-QSR grew this quarter. We have successfully implemented our new field visit protocols to advance our operations and we completed the scoping of our One Technology initiative. Our international team is delivering excellent results. So while we are experiencing slower domestic sales, consistent with the sector; we remain highly confident that our bold long term goals are achievable.”

Second Quarter 2016 Highlights:

  • Total revenues increased 3.9% to $61.7 million, compared to $59.4 million in the second quarter of 2015.
  • Reported net income was $10.3 million, or $0.47 per diluted share, compared to $10.3 million, or $0.44 per diluted share in the second quarter 2015. Adjusted earnings per diluted share(1) was $0.47, compared to$0.44 in 2015. Both earnings per diluted share and adjusted earnings per diluted share had a year over year growth of 6.8%.
  • Total system-wide sales increased by 6.5% in the second quarter 2016 as a result of net unit growth and same-store sales performance.
  • Global same-store sales increased 0.7%.
  • Total domestic same-store sales were flat, compared to a 7.9% increase in the second quarter of 2015.Popeyes increased its domestic market share of the chicken-QSR category to a record high 26.6%, compared to 25.4% in the second quarter of 2015.
  • International same-store sales increased 6.4%, compared to a 4.3% increase in the second quarter of 2015, marking the 26th consecutive quarter of positive international same-store sales growth.
  • Sales by Company-operated restaurants were $25.2 million in the second quarter compared to $25.1 million last year. Company-operated restaurant operating profit(1) was $4.7 million, or 18.7% of sales, compared to$4.9 million, or 19.5% of sales in the second quarter of 2015. The decrease was primarily due to lower sales in our new markets along with higher labor costs, which were partially offset by lower chicken and grocery basket costs.
  • Operating EBITDA(1) was $19.8 million, or 32.1% of total revenue in the second quarter, compared to $19.5 million, or 32.8% of total revenue last year. The increase was primarily due to an increase in franchise royalties and fees partially offset by a planned increase in general and administrative expenses to support the Company’s new strategic roadmap along with a decrease in Company-operated restaurant operating profit.
  • Through the first 28 weeks of fiscal 2016, free cash flow(1) was $23.6 million, compared to $19.6 million in 2015.
  • The Popeyes system opened 43 restaurants, which included 23 domestic and 20 international restaurants. Net restaurant openings were 36 compared to 31 in the same period last year.
  • As of the end of the second quarter, the Company operated and franchised 2,594 restaurants, compared to 2,443 at the end of the second quarter in 2015, representing a net unit growth of 6.2% over the last twelve months.
  • The Company repurchased 532,864 shares of its common stock for approximately $30 million.

Fiscal 2016 Guidance:

Based on performance through the second quarter, the Company is making the following adjustments to guidance for the full-year fiscal 2016:

  • System-wide same-store sales growth in the range of 1.0% to 2.0%, a decrease from previous guidance in the range of 2.0% to 3.0%.
  • Two new Company-operated restaurant openings, a decrease from previous guidance of three to five.

In addition, the Company reiterates the following guidance for full year fiscal 2016:

  • New restaurant openings in the range of 200 to 235, including approximately 85 to 100 internationally.
  • Net new restaurant openings in the range of 140 to 185, for a net new unit growth rate of approximately 6% to 7%.
  • General and administrative expenses to be approximately 2.9% to 3.0% of system-wide sales, maintaining an investment rate that supports long-term growth.
  • Capital expenditures to be in the range of $10 million to $15 million, including approximately $10 million for new Company-operated restaurants and other capital improvements at existing restaurants.
  • Earnings per diluted share and adjusted earnings per diluted share to be in the range of $2.10 to $2.15.
  • Share repurchases of $80 million to $120 million in outstanding shares, compared to $62 million in 2015, with$60 million purchased from operating cash flows and up to $60 million from additional borrowings.
  • Effective income tax rate in 2016 to be approximately 38%.

Conference Call

The Company will host a conference call and Internet webcast at 9:00 A.M. ET on August 17, 2016, to review second quarter 2016 results. A live listen-only webcast of the conference call will be available on the Popeyes website at www.popeyes.com/investors. The conference call can also be accessed live over the phone by dialing (855) 427-4392 or for international callers by dialing (484) 756-4257. A replay will be available after the call and can be accessed by dialing (855) 859-2056, or for international callers by dialing (404) 537-3406; the conference ID is 41416512. The replay will be available until Wednesday, August 31, 2016. A replay of the conference call will also be available for 90 days at the Company’s website.

Corporate Profile

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. is the franchisor and operator of Popeyes® restaurants, the world’s second-largest Quick- Service Restaurant (“QSR”) chicken concept based on number of units. As of July 10, 2016, Popeyes had 2,594 operating restaurants in the United States, the District of Columbia, three territories, and 26 foreign countries. The Company’s primary objective is to deliver sales and profits by offering excellent investment opportunities in its Popeyes brand and providing exceptional franchisee support systems and services to its owners. Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. can be found at www.popeyes.com.

(1) Adjusted earnings per diluted share, operating EBITDA, Company-operated restaurant operating profit, and free cash flow are supplemental non-GAAP measures of performance. See the heading entitled “Management’s Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

Investor inquiries:
ICR
Dara Dierks
404-459-4584
Investor Relations
investor.relations@popeyes.com

Media inquiries:
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc.
Renee Kopkowski
404-459-4630
Vice President, Brand Communications
renee.kopkowski@popeyes.com

Source: Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc.

ASKO SKAL SAMARBEIDE MED SCANIA OM HYDROGENDREVNE LASTEBILER

Norway, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — ASKO har valgt Scania som leverandør av lastebiler til sitt hydrogenprosjekt. Hydrogen skal framstilles lokalt, ved hjelp av solceller. Målet er at både lastebiler og trucker skal kjøres med lokalt produsert hydrogen.

ASKO har en ambisjon om å bli klimanøytral. Ambisjonen innebærer at ASKO kun skal distribuere matvarer med fornybart drivstoff. Hydrogenprosjektet til ASKO Midt-Norge er et viktig ledd i denne strategien.

ASKO har definert et fremtidig drivstoffmønster hvor elektriske og hydrogendrevne biler vil være et satsingsområde når teknologien er ferdig utprøvd. Det er besluttet at ASKO Midt-Norge skal bygge et anlegg for produksjon av hydrogen. Erfaringene fra dette anlegget vil danne grunnlag for videre satsing på hydrogen innenfor ASKO.

Hydrogenteknologi har et stort potensiale som 0-utslippsalternativ for lastebiler på lengre distanser, mens elektriske lastebiler kan egne seg mer for bynær distribusjon. De første elektriske lastebilene vil komme på norske veier allerede i høst. De første hydrogendrevne lastebilene vil være i drift høsten 2018.

ASKO har søkt i markedet etter større distribusjonskjøretøy med rekkevidde opp mot 500 km som kan benytte hydrogen som drivstoff. Valget falt på Scania.

ASKO har bestilt tre treakslede chassiser med opsjon på ytterligere en bil. Lastebilene drives elektrisk med strøm fra brenselsceller som benytter hydrogen som drivstoff.

Enova bidrar økonomisk til prosjektet gjennom å støtte ASKOs investeringer i kjøretøy og hydrogenproduksjonsanlegg med i overkant av 19,6 millioner kroner. Selskapet anser prosjektet som viktig for å bygge kunnskap i bransjen om hvordan hydrogendrevne lastebiler vil fungere under tøffe norske forhold.

For mer informasjon ta kontakt:

ASKO MIDT–NORGE AS, Jørn A. Endresen, + 47 95287845

NORSK SCANIA AS, John Lauvstad, + 47 90684523

ENOVA, Audhild Kvam, + 47 95137086

FAKTA

Om ASKO:

ASKO er Norges største grossist, og leverer dagligvarer til NorgesGruppens kjeder. ASKO er også en betydelig leverandør til storhusholdnings- og servicehandelsmarkedet. ASKO omfatter 13 regionale ASKO-selskap. Med 600 lastebiler på veien hver dag er ASKO en av Norges største transportbedrifter

Source: Norges Gruppen

FMI and Nielsen announce partnership to uncover comprehensive insights on the “Digitally Engaged Food Shopper”

ARLINGTON, VA/NEW YORK, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — To help retailers and manufacturers better understand the forces and factors of change driven by digital technologies within the food marketplace, Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and Nielsen (NYSE: NLSN) announced today (August 17, 2016) a strategic analytic alliance to uncover comprehensive insights on the “Digitally Engaged Food Shopper.” Results from this multi-year initiative will focus on current and future digital shopping behaviors, incorporating perspectives from top retailers, CPG manufacturers and technology providers, along with extensive consumer research by FMI and Nielsen.

Mark Baum, FMI chief collaboration officer and senior vice president of industry relations said, “Fundamentally, we know the impact of digital on grocery shopping is significantly and quickly growing, which is creating a real urgency to explore the emerging technologies shaping the new norm in food and consumer products shopping. We’ll explore with Nielsen how a new generation of technology-enabled digital collaboration, including format, supply chain, and information capabilities, will be required for seamless engagement with the grocery customer. Connected commerce will become the norm.”

“The use of mobile and digital technologies are reshaping the food retail landscape and creating the immediate need for retailers and manufacturers to implement ‘connected commerce’ strategies to maintain retail relevance,” said Chris Morley, President of Nielsen U.S. Buy. “This analytic alliance between FMI and Nielsen will aim to better define the digital shopper and uncover deep insights on a topic that is strategically crucial for the industry.  Together, the combination of data and analytics across multiple sources will help provide 360 degree clarity on core factors for all FMI members navigating this new, digital retail topography.”

Initial survey findings of the FMI and Nielsen “Digitally Engaged Food Shopper” program will be available to all FMI members in 2017.  A preview of topline insights will be revealed at the FMI Midwinter Executive Conference in January 2017.

Contact:

Tel: 202-452-8444
Fax: 202-429-4519

Source: FMI

Rakuten Kobo announces its latest step towards the perfect reading device with the launch of Kobo Aura ONE

TORONTO, ON, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — For many, reading is not just a pastime, but an identity. Inspired by that insight, Rakuten Kobo today announces Kobo Aura ONE, which was designed with the help of its best customers and reflects Kobo’s latest step towards the perfect reading device. A team of nine of Kobo’s top customers challenged the Kobo design team to push the limits on all aspects of hardware and software. Months of collaboration resulted in an eReader with a screen size that fits more words to a page, front-light technology that allows for nighttime reading with no impact on sleep, and an interface offering customized book recommendations to suit each and every reader.

Kobo Aura ONE makes its debut with a singular goal—to offer a reading experience like no other. It will be available in soft black and will retail for $249.99 CAD (MSRP) in Canada exclusively at www.kobo.com and with Indigo in-store and online at www.indigo.ca from August 30 to September 29 (pre-order from August 30 to September 5; September 6 in-store availability); the device will be available at Best Buy beginning September 30; and as of September 6 in the US, the UK, Italy, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Japan, and Turkey; October/November in Australia, New Zealand and Mexico; and March 2017 in Brazil.

Welcome to the reader-centric Kobo Aura ONE experience

Get Lost in a Story with a Book-Sized Touchscreen: Those who like the size of a hardcover book with spacious pages will enjoy reading on the largest premium Carta E Ink touchscreen currently available on the market, with 300 ppi for print-quality resolution. Housed within the device’s thin, lightweight design (195.1 x 138.5 x 6.9 mm; 230g), the edge-to-edge 7.8” screen allows for an enjoyable reading experience with more words to a page, which means fewer page turns.

Bedtime Readers Rejoice with ComfortLight PRO: Experts have cautioned that devices in bed, and specifically the blue light from screens, can affect sleep quality. By reducing blue light exposure, Kobo Aura ONE’s enhanced front-light technology lets people enjoy nighttime reading without impacting their sleep. An ambient light sensor automatically detects current light levels to emit the optimal brightness based on the time of day; by setting a bedtime hour, the hue of the light mimics the sun’s natural progression. Readers can also manually choose their own light settings based on personal preference.

“Getting the right amount of sleep is extremely important, and is just as valuable to your health as a balanced diet and daily exercise routine”, says Colleen Carney, Associate Professor and Director of the Sleep and Depression Laboratory at Ryerson University. “A lot of people find it hard to wind-down at the end of the day, and falling asleep with a racing mind doesn’t make it easy. Doing something relaxing like meditation, yoga or reading for 20 minutes before hitting the pillow can help, but we’ve all heard that reading on an electronic device can hinder a restful night’s sleep due to the activating effects of blue spectrum light. We require red spectrum light to stimulate melatonin, a hormone that regulates our body clock. This device pays attention to the timing of blue and red spectrum light to protect sleep quality.”

She said a lot of people troubled by insomnia or sleeplessness give up their reading devices. “That’s the last thing I want you to do,” says Carney. “Depending on what kind of bedside light you have, I’d prefer you to read on a device, and one that eliminates blue light is excellent. It’s especially important for teens who are much more photo sensitive than adults.”

Borrowing eBooks has Never Been Easier: Readers can easily connect to their local public libraries right from their Kobo Aura ONE with built-in, one-touch OverDrive library lending access*. Set-up is free with a library card from any OverDrive-powered library, and through an integrated catalogue, booklovers can search for the title they want, and depending on the title, choose to either borrow or buy.

Waterproof for the ultimate escape: Sink into a good read while in the bath or take it poolside without worry. Advancing from the breakthrough Kobo Aura H2O waterproof device, Kobo Aura ONE now has HZO Protection™, making it waterproof** for reading in places where other devices might not survive. The coating technology applied to the device’s interior allows it to be fully submerged without the need for port covers. Now relax, draw a bath and start reading.

Read your way: As no two booklovers are alike, Kobo offers a reading experience to suit any reader’s taste. TypeGenius offers customizable font options, which include exclusive weight and sharpness settings, with the choice of 50 font sizes and 11 font types. In addition, readers can adjust margins, highlight passages, write notes, and look up words with the built-in dictionary. With a world-class catalogue of more than 5 million titles available at Kobo.com, ranging from romance to thrillers, biographies and memoirs to business books, non-fiction to literary fiction—there are options for everyone—available directly from the device with a Wifi connection.

Carry an entire library in the palm of your hand: Not sure which book to take on vacation or on the bus to work? Take them all. With 8GB of storage, Kobo Aura ONE stores up to 6,000 eBooks. What’s more, the device’s battery life of up to one month allows booklovers to enjoy a full book before needing a charge. Reading is a breeze with 512 MB of RAM and the Solo Lite processor—making page turns fast and seamless.

“As we build new devices, we are trying to keep the reader’s entire reading life in mind – where and when do they read, how can we make things easier, how can we combine beautiful design with pushing the envelope of what technology can do. Everything we do is for the reader,” said Michael Tamblyn, CEO, Rakuten Kobo. “The insights and feedback gleaned from working closely with some of our top customers were instrumental in the design of this new device. The result is an eReader that offers our biggest, thinnest screen yet, a revolutionary light that adapts to day and night—and it’s waterproof, which means it can go virtually anywhere you do. In the end, we want to make people’s reading lives better, and with the help of our most passionate customers, we created Kobo Aura ONE to do just that.”

Kobo Aura Edition 2—a refreshed version of a beloved classic

The new Kobo Aura encourages readers to lose themselves in their favourite stories on its 6” Carta E Ink touchscreen (1024 x 768 resolution; 212 ppi). The device’s lightweight and comfortable design makes it easy and comfortable to hold for hours of reading, and offers access to millions of books 24/7 through a Wifi connection. With a print-on-paper look (11 font types and 40 font sizes), booklovers can read in direct sunlight without glare; battery life of up to 2 months; 4 GB of memory of on-board memory to store up to 3,000 eBooks; and with the built-in, adjustable ComfortLight, reading is made easy regardless of lighting conditions. Starting September 6, Kobo Aura will be available in Canada, the US, the UK, Italy, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Turkey; October/November in Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and the Philippines; in 2017 – Japan and Brazil; it will be available in black and retail for $129.99 CAD (MSRP).

For more information, please visit www.kobo.com.

*Dependent on library participation, available through most public libraries in North America, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. eBook availability varies based on library.

**Meets requirements of IPX8 rating. Waterproof for up to 60 minutes in up to 2 metres of water.

Source: Rakuten

Barnes & Noble to report fiscal 2017 first quarter earnings results on September 8, 2016

New York, NY, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) today (08/18/2016) announced the company will report fiscal 2017 first quarter earnings results on Thursday, September 8, before the market opens. The company will host an investor conference call at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time on Thursday, September 8, to review the company’s financial results and operations.

This call is being webcast and can be accessed at Barnes & Noble, Inc.’s corporate website at www.barnesandnobleinc.com/webcasts. The webcast of this call will be archived and available for three months on Barnes & Noble, Inc.’s corporate website.

About Barnes & Noble, Inc.
Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) is a Fortune 500 company, the nation’s largest retail bookseller, and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products. The Company operates 640 Barnes & Noble bookstores in 50 states, and one of the Web’s premier e-commerce sites, BN.com (www.bn.com). The NOOK Digital business offers a lineup of popular NOOK (www.nook.com) and UK® tablets and eReaders and an expansive collection of digital reading and entertainment content through the NOOK Store®. The NOOK Store features more than 4 million digital books in the US plus periodicals, comics, apps, movies and TV shows, and offers the ability to enjoy content across a wide array of popular devices through Free NOOK Reading Apps™ available for Android™, iOS® and Windows®.

General information on Barnes & Noble, Inc. can be obtained by visiting the Company’s corporate website at www.barnesandnobleinc.com.

Contacts:
Mary Ellen Keating
Senior Vice President,
Corporate Communications
Barnes & Noble, Inc.
(212) 633-3323
mkeating@bn.com

Andy Milevoj
Vice President,
Investor Relations
Barnes & Noble, Inc.
(212) 633-3489
amilevoj@bn.com

Source: Barnes & Noble, Inc.

Barnes & Noble introduces next-generation reader’s tablet, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK

New York, NY, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the nation’s largest retail bookseller and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products, in conjunction with Samsung Electronics America, today introduced the Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK, the newest addition to the NOOK by Samsung lineup and the next-generation reader’s tablet, designed with the NOOK experience readers love and the latest tablet features they need. The Galaxy Tab A NOOK is available for purchase starting today at Barnes & Noble stores nationwide and online at BN.com for only $139.99. Existing NOOK customers can upgrade to the newest NOOK by Samsung device at an even greater value, for only $99.99, by trading in or showing proof of purchase of any NOOK device at any Barnes & Noble store. Barnes & Noble Members taking advantage of this incredible, limited-time upgrade offer will also receive a free cover for their device (a $39.95 value).

“The Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK is the perfect device for customers who are looking for a leading tablet that combines the latest features and a great reading experience at an unbeatable price,” said Fred Argir, Chief Digital Officer at Barnes & Noble. “By adding the 7-inch Tab A NOOK to the lineup alongside the cutting-edge Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 NOOK®, the large-screen Samsung Galaxy Tab E NOOK® and the popular NOOK GlowLight Plus™ eReader, Barnes & Noble has an amazing lineup of devices for everyone in the family heading into the back-to-school and holiday shopping seasons.”

Introducing the Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK
The Galaxy Tab A NOOK is the next-generation reader’s tablet designed with the NOOK experience readers love and the latest tablet features they need, including a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, GPS and an integrated FM tuner for radio (no Wi-Fi® required) that makes tuning into local FM radio easier than ever before. The Galaxy Tab A NOOK gives users access to all the best Android apps, and is equipped with the most advanced technology so that they can enjoy fast downloads, smooth web browsing, crisp text and vivid images. The Tab A runs Lollipop (Android 5.1) and has access to the Google Play store.

The Galaxy Tab A NOOK offers users an enhanced digital bookstore experience, integrated with the latest NOOK software (version 4.6) and BN.com bookmarked directly onto the home screen of the device so that they have quick and easy access to Barnes & Noble’s vast product offering. Plus, the Galaxy Tab A NOOK enables the expansion of storage space from 8 GB to an additional 200 GB via a microSD card (sold separately), including the ability to download certain NOOK Books® directly to the microSD card.

The enhanced digital bookstore experience continues with the Galaxy Tab A NOOK as users will be able to read for hours on end due to the device’s extra long battery life, with up to 11 hours of Internet usage.* Plus, users will never run out of content ideas for their next great read, as the device features B&N Readouts™, which brings the pleasures of bookstore browsing and discovery to the NOOK digital experience. Additionally, NOOK Audio books will be coming to the Samsung Galaxy Tab A in September via a software update, providing seamless access to nearly 80,000 digital audio books, including 9,500 free titles.

The whole family can enjoy the Galaxy Tab A NOOK as it features NOOK Profiles™, enabling families to customize up to 6 profiles that turn the tablet into a personalized reading and entertainment center. Parents will appreciate the ease of setting up profiles for their children with lots of relevant kid-friendly NOOK content for them to enjoy, while managing appropriate content and access to the NOOK Store®.

B&N Readouts: Bookstore-Like Browsing and Free Bite-Sized Content
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK comes equipped with B&N Readouts, an innovative feature that brings the pleasures of bookstore browsing and discovery to the NOOK digital experience.  B&N Readouts offers a daily selection of addictive quick reads that can be enjoyed anytime and anywhere on all NOOK by Samsung devices including the new Galaxy Tab A NOOK, the Free NOOK Reading Apps™ for Android™ and iOS® devices, the NOOK GlowLight Plus, and at www.bn.com/readouts.

Leveraging Barnes & Noble’s vast content catalog and deep bookseller knowledge, B&N Readouts delivers compelling two-minute book excerpts as well as full articles from current issues of popular periodicals. These mobile-friendly quick reads are tailored to users’ favorite genres and subjects and optimized for sharing. A delightful tasting menu for readers of every interest, B&N Readouts is curated by Barnes & Noble’s editors to surprise and delight always-on, on-the-go customers.

Plus, through B&N Readouts, customers can join the thousands of NOOK readers on Serial Reads, Barnes & Noble’s popular program of free fiction serials through which subscribers enjoy a new book every month, delivered free in daily chapters directly to their devices. Titles are hand-picked by Barnes & Noble editors across genres and a variety of authors.

NOOK by Samsung: Extraordinary Reading & Entertainment Content
Customers who trade up to any NOOK by Samsung device will find an impressive collection of digital content to explore from Barnes & Noble. The expansive NOOK Store’s reading and entertainment content offering includes:

  • Over 4 million books including bestsellers, new releases, classics and enhanced titles with special content, including more than 1 million titles priced under $5.
  • Nearly 80,000 digital audio books, including 9,500 free titles.**
  • An extensive collection of popular comic books and graphic novels, as well as picture-perfect art, photography, travel guides and cookbook titles.
  • An expansive digital selection of best-loved children’s books – over 110,000 – including chapter books and a selection of more than 11,000 interactive picture books.
  • The NOOK Newsstand®, with the largest digital collection of the top 100 bestselling U.S. magazines available for both digital subscriptions and single copy sale, and a vast collection of newspapers and magazines from around the world. Reading tools like ArticleView® lets the reader focus on the text, customized to their needs, and the Visual Table of Contents provides a quick scan of the entire issue, allowing readers to jump directly to any article or section.

Availability, In-Store Support and Other Benefits
All NOOK devices come with free lifetime in-store support. NOOK customers can visit any of Barnes & Noble’s 640 stores across the country for complimentary, personal support, including help setting up their NOOK device and organizing their library. While in-store, customers can speak with any of the company’s expert booksellers, access free Wi-Fi and enjoy the popular Read In Store® program, which allows guests to read any book free for up to one hour per day. Customers can also take advantage of a full calendar of popular NOOK events, including NOOK Night workshops, family Storytimes, book discussion groups and author signings.

*Based on laboratory testing. Results may vary. Battery power consumption depends on factors such as network configuration, carrier network, signal strength, operating temperature, features selected, vibrate mode, backlight settings, browser use, frequency of calls, and voice, data and other application-usage patterns.
**Available in September via a software update.

About Barnes & Noble, Inc.
Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) is a Fortune 500 company, the nation’s largest retail bookseller, and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products.  The Company operates 640 Barnes & Noble bookstores in 50 states, and one of the Web’s premier e-commerce sites, BN.com (www.bn.com).  The Nook Digital business offers a lineup of popular NOOK® tablets and eReaders and an expansive collection of digital reading and entertainment content through the NOOK Store®. The NOOK Store features more than 4 million digital books in the US (www.nook.com), plus periodicals and comics, and offers the ability to enjoy content across a wide array of popular devices through Free NOOK Reading Apps™ available for Android™, iOS® and Windows®.

General information on Barnes & Noble, Inc. can be obtained by visiting the Company’s corporate website at www.barnesandnobleinc.com.

Barnes & Noble®, Barnes & Noble Booksellers® and Barnes & Noble.com® are trademarks of Barnes & Noble, Inc. or its affiliates. NOOK® and the NOOK logos are trademarks of Nook Digital, LLC or its affiliates.

For more information on Barnes & Noble, follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr, and like us on Facebook. For more information on NOOK, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

Contacts:
Mary Ellen Keating
Senior Vice President,
Corporate Communications
Barnes & Noble, Inc.
(212) 633-3323
mkeating@bn.com

Andy Milevoj
Vice President,
Investor Relations
Barnes & Noble, Inc.
(212) 633-3489
amilevoj@bn.com

Source: Barnes & Noble, Inc.

Barnes & Noble announces the departure of its CEO Ronald D. Boire

New York, NY, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Board of Directors of Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) today (08/16/2016) announced the departure of its Chief Executive Officer, Ronald D. Boire. The Board of Directors determined that Mr. Boire was not a good fit for the organization and that it was in the best interests of all parties for him to leave the Company. The Company also said that its Executive Chairman, Leonard Riggio, who was scheduled to retire at the close of the Company’s Annual Meeting on September 14, will postpone his retirement until a later date.

The Company will immediately begin an executive search for a new CEO. Mr. Riggio, along with other members of the executive management team, will assume Mr. Boire’s duties. The Company will continue to execute on its previously announced strategic initiatives.

About Barnes & Noble, Inc.
Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) is a Fortune 500 company, the nation’s largest retail bookseller, and a leading retailer of content, digital media and educational products. The Company operates 640 Barnes & Noble bookstores in 50 states, and one of the Web’s premier e-commerce sites, BN.com (www.bn.com). The NOOK Digital business offers a lineup of popular NOOK (www.nook.com) tablets and eReaders and an expansive collection of digital reading and entertainment content through the NOOK Store®. The NOOK Store features more than 4 million digital books in the US plus periodicals, comics, apps, movies and TV shows, and offers the ability to enjoy content across a wide array of popular devices through Free NOOK Reading Apps™ available for Android™, iOS® and Windows®.

General information on Barnes & Noble, Inc. can be obtained by visiting the Company’s corporate website at www.barnesandnobleinc.com.

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements (within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended) and information relating to Barnes & Noble that are based on the beliefs of the management of Barnes & Noble as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to the management of Barnes & Noble. When used in this communication, the words “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “will,” “forecasts,” “projections,” and similar expressions, as they relate to Barnes & Noble or the management of Barnes & Noble, identify forward-looking statements.

Such statements reflect the current views of Barnes & Noble with respect to future events, the outcome of which is subject to certain risks, including, among others, the general economic environment and consumer spending patterns, decreased consumer demand for Barnes & Noble’s products, low growth or declining sales and net income due to various factors, including store closings, higher-than-anticipated or increasing costs, including with respect to store closings, relocation, occupancy (including in connection with lease renewals) and labor costs, the effects of competition, the risk of insufficient access to financing to implement future business initiatives, risks associated with data privacy and information security, risks associated with Barnes & Noble’s supply chain, including possible delays and disruptions and increases in shipping rates, various risks associated with the digital business, including the possible loss of customers, declines in digital content sales, risks and costs associated with ongoing efforts to rationalize the digital business and the digital business not being able to perform its obligations under the Samsung commercial agreement and the consequences thereof, the risk that financial and operational forecasts and projections are not achieved, the performance of Barnes & Noble’s initiatives including but not limited to its new store concept and e-commerce initiatives, unanticipated adverse litigation results or effects, potential infringement of Barnes & Noble’s intellectual property by third parties or by Barnes & Noble of the intellectual property of third parties, and other factors, including those factors discussed in detail in Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” in Barnes & Noble’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended May 2, 2015, and in Barnes & Noble’s other filings made hereafter from time to time with the SEC.

Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results or outcomes may vary materially from those described as anticipated, believed, estimated, expected, intended or planned. Subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to Barnes & Noble or persons acting on its behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements in this paragraph. Barnes & Noble undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise after the date of this communication.

Contacts:
Mary Ellen Keating
Senior Vice President,
Corporate Communications
Barnes & Noble, Inc.
(212) 633-3323
mkeating@bn.com

Andy Milevoj
Vice President,
Investor Relations
Barnes & Noble, Inc.
(212) 633-3489
amilevoj@bn.com

Source: Barnes & Noble, Inc.

Tiffany & Co. declares regular quarterly dividend of $0.45 per share of Common Stock

NEW YORK, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Board of Directors of Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) has declared a regular quarterly dividend of $0.45 per share of Common Stock. The dividend will be paid on October 11, 2016 to shareholders of record on September 20, 2016. Future dividends are subject to declaration by the directors.

Tiffany is the internationally-renowned jeweler founded in New York in 1837. Through its subsidiaries, Tiffany & Co. manufactures products and operates TIFFANY & CO. retail stores worldwide, and also engages in direct selling through Internet, catalog and business gift operations. For additional information, please visit www.tiffany.com or call our shareholder information line at 800-TIF-0110.

Contact:

Mark L. Aaron
212-230-5301
Mark.aaron@tiffany.com

Source: Tiffany & Co.

Alibaba Group to host 2016 11.11 Global Shopping Festival

Alibaba Group to host 2016 11.11 Global Shopping Festival
Alibaba Group to host 2016 11.11 Global Shopping Festival

 

Hangzhou, China, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA) announced today that as a continuation of the success of the Group’s inaugural 11.11 countdown gala last year, it will once again host a similar event this year in the hours leading up to the midnight start of the upcoming 2016 11.11 Global Shopping Festival.

“Alibaba Group single-handedly created the iconic 11.11 shopping festival in China seven years ago to unlock the power of the Chinese consumer,” said Chris Tung, Chief Marketing Officer of Alibaba Group. “Today, 11.11 has become not only a day for China to shop for deals, but truly a festival where people all over China and the world gather to celebrate a new and improved lifestyle, as well as a world of fun and opportunities made possible because of technology – namely the Internet, Mobile, and Big Data.”

At a press conference held in Hangzhou, China, Alibaba revealed that the gala will be live broadcasted by its official media partner, Zhejiang Satellite TV. The gala has also garnered a very substantial title sponsorship from Shanghai Jahwa, one of China’s largest manufacturers of daily-used personal chemicals products company.

Apart from Zhejiang Satellite TV, Alibaba’s media assets like Youku Tudou, Tmall TV Box and UC Web etc. will be conducting live broadcast of the gala.

“Last year we held a countdown gala for the first time to experiment with the idea of making 11.11 truly a day of fun and entertainment. People loved it,” said Tung. “As Alibaba continues its globalization journey, we want to make sure that the whole world has an opportunity to witness and experience the festivities of 11.11. This year will be no exception. We look forward to creating another truly global, and fun-filled 11.11.”

Alibaba announced that it will be allocating four one-minute advertising time slots for free to consumers, brands, non-profit organizations and 11.11 participants during prime time live broadcasting of this year’s gala, depending on the level of creativity in their ad submissions. This is just one of the many initiatives by the company to encourage innovation and originality.

During the four-hour countdown gala on the eve of November 11 last year, broadcasted live internationally from the Water Cube National Aquatics Center in Beijing, consumers were able to enjoy an interactive multiscreen experience over mobile, online and through TV allowing them to watch, play and purchase at the same time. Approximately 130 million users visited the Taobao App during the 2015 11.11 gala, while a live audience of nearly 100 million people from within China, and around the world participated in the event. With globalization as a key theme of the 11.11, the star-studded gala included the guest appearances of various international celebrities.

Key highlights from the 2015 11.11 Global Shopping Festival

Alibaba Group’s 2015 11.11 Global Shopping Festival was the biggest global shopping day in history as measured by gross merchandise volume (“GMV”),1 with over US$14.3 billion settled through China’s leading mobile and online payments platform, Alipay. Other highlights included:

  • Total mobile GMV settled through Alipay was approximately US$9.8 billion (RMB62.6 billion), exceeding total GMV in 2014, and accounted for 68.7 percent of total GMV
  • Total mobile GMV increased by 158 percent compared to 2014’s 11.11 festival
  • Alipay processed a total of 710 million payment transactions, and processed 85,900 payment transactions per second at peak
  • Alibaba Cloud processed a total of 140,000 transactions per second at peak
  • More than 40,000 merchants and more than 30,000 brands from 25 countries participated. Top countries selling to China include: United States, Japan, South Korea, Germany and Australia
  • As part of Alibaba’s omni-channel initiatives, more than 180,000 brick-and-mortar stores in 330 cities across China participated, representing over 1,000 retail brands
  • 232 countries and regions, and more than 16,000 international brands, completed transactions
  • Cainiao Network received 467 million delivery orders during the 24-hour shopping period, representing a 68 percent year-over-year increase

The 11.11 shopping festival began in 2009 with participation from just 27 merchants as an event for Tmall.com merchants and consumers to raise awareness of the value in online shopping. Some refer to the event as the Singles Day Sale because it falls on Singles Day, a day for Chinese young single people to celebrate their independence by treating themselves to a special purchase. Seven years later, 11.11 has become a global shopping event with participating merchants in the tens of thousands, buyers in the millions, and total sales in the billions.

For additional history and facts from last year’s festival, as well as the latest news and updates on the 2016 11.11 Global Shopping Celebration, please visit corporate news site Alizila (www.alizila.com) or go to Alibaba Group corporate website (www.AlibabaGroup.com).

1 Gross merchandise volume (“GMV”) is the total amount settled through Alipay on Alibaba’s China and international retail marketplaces

About Alibaba Group
Alibaba Group’s mission is to make it easy to do business anywhere. It is the largest retail commerce company in the world in terms of gross merchandise volume. Founded in 1999, the company provides the fundamental technology infrastructure and marketing reach to help businesses leverage the power of the Internet to establish an online presence and conduct commerce and engage with hundreds of millions of consumers and other businesses.

Source: Alibaba Group

###

Rack Room Shoes introduces new mobile app

Charlotte, N.C., 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Family footwear retailer, Rack Room Shoes announced today the release of a mobile application to enhance loyalty and customer engagement. The app offers a seamless mobile experience intended to unite online and offline shopping experiences. Users can enjoy exclusive, app-only savings – and easily browse and purchase footwear from the retailer’s extensive offering of brand name shoes for men, women and children.

The company’s investment in the mobile platform is part of a larger effort to grow the retailer’s omnichannel initiatives that put the customer experience at the center of the business.

“Our core customer is short on time – she values easy and efficient shopping solutions. The app allows her to purchase trend-right shoes for her family, now with more convenience than ever,” said Mark Lardie, Rack Room Shoes president and CEO. “From price and purchase to support and service, she can count on an excellent and continuous experience across all of Rack Room Shoes’ platforms.”

In addition to expanding its e-commerce capabilities, through the app, Rack Room Shoes allows customers to enroll and track their earning progress in the company’s Rewards program.

Other features include the ability to receive alerts about recent orders, identify store locations, track shipments and make quick returns using purchase histories. Customer Care representatives are also readily available to assist customers through the app’s live chat feature. The retailer’s full catalog of comfort, dress, casual and athletic products can be purchased through the mobile app, which is available for free download in the App Store.

About Rack Room Shoes Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Rack Room Shoes is the family footwear retailer of choice. Known as an innovator in the shoe industry for more than 90 years, Rack Room Shoes offers a wide selection of nationally recognized and private brands of shoes for men, women and children in comfort, dress, casual and athletic categories. For more information, visit Rack Room Shoes’ website at www.rackroomshoes.com.

Media Contacts:

Carolyn Canington
864-672-4995
carolyn@fullcirclepr.com

Brenda Christmon
704-491-1850
bchristmon@rackroom.com

Source: Rack Room Shoes

Dunkin’ Donuts announces the return of one of fall’s favorite flavors — pumpkin coffees and baked goods

Dunkin’ Donuts announces the return of one of fall’s favorite flavors — pumpkin coffees and baked goods
Dunkin’ Donuts announces the return of one of fall’s favorite flavors — pumpkin coffees and baked goods

 

CANTON, MA, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Dunkin’ Donuts is welcoming back one of fall’s favorite flavors, announcing today that its lineup of pumpkin coffees and baked goods will return to its restaurants nationwide before the end of August. Guests in Metro New York will be among the first to enjoy pumpkin at Dunkin’, with pumpkin flavored coffee, lattes and macchiatos served at participating Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants throughout the area beginning today. The brand’s full pumpkin menu, including coffees, donuts, MUNCHKINS® and muffins, will be available for a limited time in all Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants nationwide no later than August 29.

In addition to classic pumpkin, Dunkin’ Donuts will offer a new way for coffee lovers to satisfy cravings for fall flavors, introducing Salted Caramel flavored coffee, lattes and macchiatos, also available for a limited time at Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants by August 29. Served hot or iced, Dunkin’ Donuts’ new Salted Caramel flavored coffees combine sweet and salty in a delicious blend for fall.

Dunkin’ Donuts also shared plans to offer more people more choices for their coffee, announcing today that, by end of August, Almondmilk will be available at all of its restaurants nationwide as a non-dairy alternative to milk and cream. Through a partnership with Blue Diamond Growers, Dunkin’ Donuts first introduced Blue Diamond Vanilla Almond Breeze Almondmilk at the majority of its restaurants in 2014 as an addition to Hot or Iced Coffee and Espresso Beverages. By August 29, it will be available at all Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants for guests who seek an alternative to dairy or for those who simply prefer the rich and creamy texture and delicious taste that Almond Breeze offers.

To celebrate the countdown to fall flavors’ arrival and to help get people pumped for pumpkin’s return, over the next 10 days Dunkin’ Donuts will put the K in pumpkin by surprising select guests at counters throughout the country with $1,000 cash. Lucky guests will receive a special pumpkin themed prize pack, including the $1,000 check and other Dunkin’ Donuts coffee-themed items. No purchase necessary, 18+.

Dunkin’ Donuts’ entire autumn array offers one of the largest varieties of pumpkin choices of any national restaurant chain, available all day long. Guests can savor the season with Dunkin’ Donuts’ delicious pumpkin flavored coffee and lattes, served hot or iced. Dunkin’ Donuts’ Pumpkin Macchiato, also served hot or iced, is a handcrafted, layered espresso beverage made with steamed milk and pumpkin flavored swirl, then topped with a double shot of Dunkin’ Donuts’ rich, freshly-brewed espresso.

Dunkin’ Donuts will also bring back baked goods perfect for a fall treat any time of day, including the Pumpkin Donut, a glazed pumpkin cake donut that can also be enjoyed as bite-size MUNCHKINS® donut hole treats. Dunkin’ Donuts’ Pumpkin Muffin is a pumpkin spiced autumn delight topped with white icing and sweet streusel crumbs.

For fall brew-at-home options, Dunkin’ Donuts Pumpkin flavored K-Cup® pods are available in a box of 14 individually-sized portions, and Dunkin’ Donuts’ packaged Pumpkin flavored coffee is available in a 16 oz. size. Both are available at participating Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants as well as online at http://shop.dunkindonuts.com. For a new fall treat, Dunkin’ Donuts has introduced new Pumpkin Spice packaged coffee and K-Cup® pods (in both 10-count and 16-count boxes), available at grocery stores nationwide for a limited time only.

To learn more about Dunkin’ Donuts, visit www.DunkinDonuts.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/DunkinDonuts), Instagram (www.instagram.com/DunkinDonuts) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/DunkinDonuts).

About Dunkin’ Donuts
Founded in 1950, Dunkin’ Donuts is America’s favorite all-day, everyday stop for coffee and baked goods. Dunkin’ Donuts is a market leader in the hot regular/decaf/flavored coffee, iced coffee, donut, bagel and muffin categories. Dunkin’ Donuts has earned a No. 1 ranking for customer loyalty in the coffee category by Brand Keys for 10 years running. The company has more than 11,900 restaurants in 44 countries worldwide. Based in Canton, Mass., Dunkin’ Donuts is part of the Dunkin’ Brands Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: DNKN) family of companies. For more information, visit www.DunkinDonuts.com.

Contact:

Lindsay Cronin
Phone: 781-737-5200
Email: lindsay.cronin@dunkinbrands.com

Source: Dunkin’ Donuts

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NCR Corporation to move its Hyderabad R&D facility to a new location at Raheja Mindspace in Hyderabad

HYDERABAD, India, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR), a global leader in omni-channel solutions, today announced that it will move its Hyderabad R&D facility to a new, state-of-the-art location at Raheja Mindspace in Hyderabad to be ready by early 2017. This new facility will be one of the global centers of excellence for NCR as part of its transformational journey towards leadership in the omni-channel evolution.

“The world economy today is more interconnected than ever. We are living in interesting times, where a massive democratization of the global economy is under way, which is changing the way we research, innovate, design and think about how we solve our clients’ challenges,” said Eli Rosner, senior vice president and chief technology officer for software solutions at NCR Corporation. ”As we continue to build out our innovative, omni-channel architecture, the Hyderabad facility will play an important role as a strategic global center for software development.”

NCR’s Hyderabad R&D center is one of NCR’s largest software development centers and will remain a critical hub focused on developing innovative solutions for global markets. The Hyderabad center is already developing and supporting software and services that global institutions use to empower consumers through self-service applications like the Interactive Teller ATM, EMV contactless ATM cash withdrawals, mobile cash withdrawals, mobile check deposits, EMV-enabled multi-industry payments systems, retail self-checkout lanes, CRM platforms, and cinema and stadium systems management solutions, among many others.

”Multi-channel commerce has quickly evolved into omni-channel commerce as businesses strive to develop seamless, transactional experiences to meet the demands of tech-savvy consumers,” said Ashok Nallam, head of R&D Center, NCR India. ”Our new R&D center will continue to invest in talent to create a robust innovation pipeline to change the way consumers connect, interact and transact with businesses.”

Starting in 2004 with 50 engineers, NCR’s current Hyderabad R&D center now houses more than 800 professionals focused on software development for the financial, retail, and hospitality industries, as well as 125 consultants supporting customer deployment of NCR technologies.

NCR operates in 180 countries, with India increasingly becoming an area of significant operational growth. In addition to the R&D Center in Hyderabad, NCR has a new world-class manufacturing facility in Chennai, a development center in Gurgaon and sales & services headquarters in Mumbai.

About NCR Corporation
NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR) is the global leader in omni-channel solutions, turning everyday interactions with businesses into exceptional experiences. With its software, hardware, and portfolio of services, NCR enables more than 550 million transactions daily across retail, financial, travel, hospitality, telecom and technology, and small business. NCR solutions run the everyday transactions that make your life easier.

NCR is headquartered in Duluth, Georgia with over 30,000 employees and does business in 180 countries. NCR is a trademark of NCR Corporation in the United States and other countries.

Web sites: www.ncr.com, www.ncrsilver.com
Twitter: @NCRCorporation
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ncrcorp
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/ncr-corporation
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/ncrcorporation

Media Contact:
Rakesh Aulaya
NCR Corporation
912.261. 954. 583
rakesh.aulaya@ncr.com

Source: NCR Corporation

Volksbank eG Schwarzwald Baar Hegau the first German bank to introduce NCR’s breakthrough concept — NCR Innovation Experience Room

Augsburg, Germany, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR), the global leader in omni-channel solutions, has developed a completely new concept called the NCR Innovation Experience Room, an experiential “playground” that gives financial institutions the opportunity to build digital literacy among employees and customers, enabling them to seize current megatrends in ways that are mutually beneficial to the business and their customers. Volksbank eG Schwarzwald Baar Hegau, one of the largest cooperative banks in Germany, is the first to introduce the new breakthrough concept. This mobile experiential room enables the bank’s customers and employees to shape its digital transformation with the aim to combine digital technologies and human interaction in a way that creates real added value for customers.

The NCR Innovation Experience Room is a flexible and versatile room that is equipped with a variety of state-of-the art technologies. These range from virtual reality headsets, 3D printers, drones, and robots, to examples of big data or Internet of Things applications and nanotechnologies. The featured technologies are exchanged after a while to keep up the attraction.

The ‘Voba Playroom’ of the Volksbank eG is designed as a mobile room that will tour the different branches of the bank in the coming months. Furthermore, it will be set up at events and trade shows to demonstrate how a regional bank creatively plays out digitalization. NCR developed the conceptual design of the innovation experience room, supplied technology and provided its expertise to the Volksbank eG. Furthermore, NCR supports the introduction phase of the VobA playroom as think-tank and coach to drive the usage of the experience.

The mobile Voba Playroom was brought into operation at the end of April and features the following bases: A NCR SelfServ 85 kiosk as an interactive assistant, a 3D printer, a multi-copter drone, Amazon Echo personal assistant, as well as virtual reality glasses with which customers can not only take a virtual roller coaster ride, but also view real estate properties in 3D. Employees and customers of Volksbank eG are already familiar with the NCR kiosks, as the bank uses them to advertise properties on the large touchscreens, allowing customers to navigate properties and corresponding mortgages with just a few swipes. As interactive assistant and selfie creator the kiosks are now generating new experiences. As the war for talents heats up, employers in rural areas have to look for new ways to stand out and provide long term strategy and vision. With the NCR Innovation Experience Room Volksbank eG demonstrates a whole new dimension in consulting and employee engagement.

“In order to master the change in the financial industry, banks need the environment and a culture that allows and supports change,” explained Harald Heinz, Channel Area Leader in Germany, Austria and Switzerland at NCR Financial Services. “With our innovative playground the Volksbank eG has taken another step in that direction. Enabling a creative, hands-on approach to complex topics unleashes the creativity in everyday work. Banks and their customers both benefit from employees who enjoy their work and are motivated to shape and drive the future.”

About NCR Corporation
NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR) is a leader in omni-channel solutions, turning everyday interactions with businesses into exceptional experiences. With its software, hardware, and portfolio of services, NCR enables more than 550 million transactions daily across retail, financial, travel, hospitality, telecom and technology, and small business. NCR solutions run the everyday transactions that make your life easier.

NCR is headquartered in Duluth, Georgia with over 30,000 employees and does business in 180 countries. NCR is a trademark of NCR Corporation in the United States and other countries.

Web site: www.ncr.com
Twitter: @NCRCorporation
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ncrcorp
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/ncr-corporation
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/ncrcorporation

Media Contact:
Ortrud Wenzel
NCR Public Relations
+49 821 405 8191
ortrud.wenzel@ncr.com

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Volksbank eG Schwarzwald Baar Hegau the first German bank to introduce NCR's breakthrough concept — NCR Innovation Experience Room
Volksbank eG Schwarzwald Baar Hegau the first German bank to introduce NCR’s breakthrough concept — NCR Innovation Experience Room

 

Source: NCR Corporation

Disney Junior brings Doc McStuffins directly to fans through touring museum exhibit across the U.S.

Disney Junior brings Doc McStuffins directly to fans through touring museum exhibit across the U.S.
Disney Junior brings Doc McStuffins directly to fans through touring museum exhibit across the U.S.

 

GLENDALE, Calif., 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Dottie “Doc” McStuffins first opened the doors to her backyard playhouse clinic, where the six-year-old girl communicates with and heals stuffed animals and broken toys, in 2012. Four years later, Disney Junior’s Doc McStuffins — which debuted its newest season on July 29 — is the winner of the prestigious Peabody Award, recognizing outstanding storytelling in electronic media, and two NAACP Image Awards (in 2015 and 2016) for Outstanding Children’s program. The show has consistently been a Top 10 preschool cable TV series in key demographics, reaching 70 percent of Disney Channel’s and Disney Junior’s available Kids 2–5, while also averaging 16 million views each quarter on the Disney Juniorapp, VOD and HULU. Doc McStuffins has been ordered more than 20 million times via set-top-box in just the past year alone.

“One of the things that we spend a lot of time thinking about at Disney Junior is obviously making great shows that we think kids will enjoy and watch,” Nancy Kanter, executive vice president, Original Programming, and general manager, Disney Junior Worldwide, said. “But we also think that bringing the messaging of those shows into kids’ communities is incredibly important.”

Disney Junior is bringing Doc McStuffins directly to fans in a brand-new way, through a touring museum exhibit that opened earlier this month, at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis — the largest children’s museum in the world. “Right away, they demonstrated the passion, the vision and the expertise to make this happen,” Jennifer Rogers-Doyle, vice president, Franchise Management, Disney Channels Worldwide, said about the Indianapolis museum. The exhibit is designed to model “care and compassion” for kids ages 2–7 in immersive activities that reinforce the importance of health and well-being. “Doc McStuffins: The Exhibit” will travel to other museums around the country beginning in 2017.

The exhibit is scheduled through 2019, with stops currently planned for the Discovery Cube OC in Santa Ana, California; Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, New Jersey, and Children’s Museum of Atlanta in Georgia, to name just a few.

“Seeing the Disney Junior brand grow to be that trusted brand for preschool moms has really allowed us to take the storytelling from TV into this incredible immersive experience so that we can have a true impact on kids,” Rogers-Doyle said. Watch this video for a look at how Disney Junior collaborated with The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis to bring Doc McStuffins’ messages of care, compassion and good health practices directly into communities across the country and to see how the exhibit is inspiring kids to learn more about good health practices and the importance of taking care of oneself and others:

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Source: Walt Disney

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Al Meera listed as one of five Qatari firms in Marmore Mena Intelligence’s 30 most valuable non-banking companies in the GCC’ list

Al Meera listed as one of five Qatari firms in Marmore Mena Intelligence’s 30 most valuable non-banking companies in the GCC’ list
Al Meera listed as one of five Qatari firms in Marmore Mena Intelligence’s 30 most valuable non-banking companies in the GCC’ list

 

QATAR, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Reflecting the success of its growth strategy and sustained profitability over its decade-long history, Al Meera Consumer Goods Company (QSC) has been named as one of five Qatari firms in Marmore Mena Intelligence’s ‘30 most valuable non-banking companies in the GCC’ list.

The selection was based on financial performance and quantitative methods, taking into account three key parameters, namely the company’s Return on Equity (ROE), Debt-to-Equity (D/E) ratio, and its average profit after tax (PAT) growth percentage for the past three financial years, with weight age of 40%, 40% and 20% respectively.

Out of the 30 GCC companies that made it to the list, Al Meera recorded the second highest annualized 5-year returns (5 year CAGR) at 43%, following Qatar’s Medicare Group, which registered a 5-year CAGR of 49%.

According to the report, Al Meera has expanded its operations in the previous years and witnessed an increase in sales in 2015, while maintaining a low D/E ratio of 0.06. “The average PAT growth percentage was 24% (2013-2015) and the ROE was 11.7% in 2015. The company has planned for major expansions in the coming years and has attracted investors from Qatar and GCC”, the report stated.

In addition to Al Meera and Medicare Group, the other Qatari companies included in Marmore Mena Intelligence’s ‘Top 30’ list are Qatar Fuel (Woqod), Widam Food, and Mazaya Qatar.

Commenting on the company’s achievement, Dr. Mohammed Nasser Al Qahtani, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Al Meera, said:

“Being recognized as one of five Qatari companies that are considered the most valuable in the GCC is not only a testament to Al Meera’s sound policies and carefully planned and executed expansion strategy throughout the years, but also reaffirms our position as one of the main pillars of the national economy and an integral part of Qatar’s development program.”

He added: “Driven by the excellence of our people, our innovative approach and a solid development strategy that paces with Qatar’s urbanization plan, Al Meera is committed to fulfilling its promises to shareholders, customers and stakeholders, as it continues marching towards becoming the leading retail company for consumer goods in Qatar and beyond.”

Al Meera’s outstanding achievement comes on the heels of the company’s disclosure of its semi-annual financial statements for H1 2016, in which it announced a 10.6% increase in sales from QR 1.22 billion to QR 1.35 billion, compared to the same period in 2015, the total equity stood at QR 1.33 billion on a capital base of QR 200 million, and earnings per share for the period was QR 5.12, a 1.5% increase from H1 2015. In addition to declaring that Al Meera is now in the process of finishing the final stages for the opening of 5 new stores out of the 14 announced last year. The shopping centers announced are due to be open in the near future in Bu Sidra, North Sailiya (Al Miarad), Al Wakra (West), Leaibab 2, and Um Salal Ali.

Contact:
Tel: 40119111 – 40119112
Fax: +974 40119186
Email: admin@almeera.com.qa

Source: Al Meera

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Bose and Currys PC World research reveals top music genre London commuters listen to

Bose and Currys PC World research reveals top music genre London commuters listen to
Bose and Currys PC World research reveals top music genre London commuters listen to

 

London, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — If you thought that your fellow commuters were starting the day with an upbeat dance track, you’d be wrong. New research by Bose and Currys PC World reveals that the top genre to listen to while making your daily commute is Rock, with 19% of Londoners choosing this type of music.

Trailing closely behind is Pop music (16%) beating out both RnB (10%) and House/Techno (7%). Perhaps surprisingly, Classical music (7%) ranks higher on the chart than Hip Hop/Rap (5%), Drum n Bass (4%), and Reggae (3%).

In terms of most popular artists, Beyonce reigns over the charts, followed by Rihanna and Drake for joint second, and Katy Perry in third. London it seems has fallen out of love with its own artists, with Adele the only London-born artist to make it in the city’s top 5 artists.

Looking more closely at favourite artists per genre reveals Drum n Bass lovers prefer Rudimental, Jazz listeners tune into Amy Winehouse, and fans of Indie music rate the Arctic Monkeys.

So if you’re intrigued to know if Adele or Skepta is top of your fellow passengers’ playlists, check out our infographic below. It’s jam-packed with interesting stats and facts about London’s music tastes.

Contact:

Dixons Retail switchboard on 0844 800 2030
Carphone Warehouse switchboard on 0370 111 6565

Source: DixonsCarphone

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Currys PC World report shows most British parents turn to “tech rewards” for children’s good behaviour and academic success

LONDON, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — British parents are turning to “tech rewards” to keep their children’s behaviour and school progress on the straight and narrow, according to a new report by Currys PC World.

New research of the nation’s parents has found that a staggering 64 percent admit to purchasing tablets, laptops and mobile phones as a reward for good behaviour and academic success, with 12 percent doing so more than five times a year. 38 percent of parents believe that using tech rewards pushes their children to do better and 26 per cent do it as they believe it makes them happy.

According to the research, more than one in ten (14 percent) have bought their child a mobile phone as a reward – while 12 percent have bought a tablet, nine percent a games console and eight percent a laptop.

Good A-level and GCSE results emerged as the top two scenarios in which parents will splash out on tech-bribes, with 43 percent of parents admitting they have used a tech “carrot” to dangle over their children to get the top grades.

Astonishingly, the average spend on a single tech reward emerged as a whopping £293 – according to the data. Those living in London spend almost twice as much as those living in the north of England – £501 compared with £252. However, despite the costs – tech bribes seem to be working for the nation’s parents’ – with 72 percent claiming electronic gifts has had a marked positive effect on their lives.

Boys emerged as the sex that responds better to bribes, with 32 percent of parents saying tech bribes work better on boys – compared to just 15 percent for girls, and dads are more likely to offer bribes than mums.

However, the Currys PC World research found that parents don’t keep the bribes simply for achieving good grades alone – they’re also rewarding children for general good behaviour, with 23 percent admitting they have splashed out on tech for their children in return for being good. 16 percent have forked out on a gadget following a successful driving test – and a further 16 percent simply for helping out with day-to-day chores.

The research also revealed tech punishments work just as well as tech bribes – with 74 percent saying taking confiscating a tablet, laptop or mobile phone was their punishment of choice. More than a fifth even take away the techy item more than five times a week with parents aged 30-44 admitting they’ve done this a lot in the past. In fact, 89 percent said taking away their tech was considerably more effective than the now defunct method of “grounding”.

Computing Commercial Director for Currys PC World, Phil Samuels, comments: “With the wealth of tech products now available and so engrained in children of today’s lives, it’s no wonder that parents are using these to incentivise them to do well. While money continues to play a role in rewarding good exam results, our research shows parents are increasingly looking for specific practical items that can help their child’s development too – such as laptops, tablets and mobile phones.”

Currys PC World has a great range of tech perfect for furthering educational development. Visit www.currys.co.uk/getstarted

Notes to editors:

The research of 1,515 parents in the UK was conducted in August 2016.

About Dixons Carphone
Dixons Carphone plc is Europe’s leading specialist electrical and telecommunications retailer and services company, employing over 42,000 people in eleven countries.

Focused on helping customers navigate the connected world, Dixons Carphone offers a comprehensive range of electrical and mobile products, connectivity and expert after-sales services from the Geek Squad and Knowhow.

Dixons Carphone’s primary brands include Carphone Warehouse and CurrysPCWorld in the UK & Ireland, Elkjøp, Elkjøp Phonehouse, Elgiganten, Elgiganten Phonehouse, Gigantti and Lefdal in the Nordic countries, Kotsovolos in Greece, Dixons Travel in a number of UK & Ireland airports and Phone House in Spain. Our key service brands include Knowhow in the UK, Ireland and the Nordics, and Geek Squad in the UK, Ireland and Spain.

Business-to-business (B2B) services are provided through Connected World Services, PC World Business and Carphone Warehouse Business. Connected World Services aims to leverage the Group’s existing expertise, operating processes and technology to provide a range of services to businesses.

Dixons Carphone was voted ‘Retailer of the Year’ at the Retail Week Awards 2016

For further information, please contact:

Currys PC World press office: M&C Saatchi PR
curryspcworld@mcsaatchi.com
0207 544 3600

Source: Dixons Carphone

Lindex expands Reuse and recycle initiative at all its stores in Sweden and Norway

Lindex expands Reuse and recycle initiative at all its stores in Sweden and Norway
Lindex expands Reuse and recycle initiative at all its stores in Sweden and Norway

 

Gothenburg, Sweden, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Lindex launches the possibility for their customers to hand in used textile for recycling and reuse in all stores in Sweden and Norway. Reuse and recycle is a part of the company’s long term ambition to close the material loop. In Sweden, Lindex is collaborating with Myrorna.

Lindex launched the possibility to hand in textiles for reuse and recycle, in a limited amount of stores in 2014 but are now expanding the initiatives to all stores in Sweden and Norway. During the autumn the initiative will also be launched in thirty stores in Finland.

Every year approximately eight kilos of textiles are thrown away in Sweden. We want to change that, and together with our customers, reuse old textiles in the best possible way. Our long term goal is to close the material loop and use fibers recycled by consumers in our own production in order to decrease our need of new raw materials, says,Sara Winroth, Sustainability Manager at Lindex.

Today the collected textiles are given a new life in Myrorna’s second hand shops or through recycling where they become parts in new products such as cloths for the industry or isolation material. Since the start over six tons of textile have been collected.

”This collaboration gives us the possibility to reach new donors and is really in line with our ambition to increase reuse and make it easier for people to donate instead of throwing away. In addition the collaboration with Lindex contributes to us making a profit that is dedicated to social work for people in need of help and support in Sweden, says, Emma Enebog, Sustainability Manager at Myrorna.

For more information, please contact:

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

Source: Lindex

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ICA Gruppen releases its 1Q2016 sustainability report

Solna, Sweden, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — ICA Gruppen today ( 2016,18 August) presented its sustainability report for the first quarter of 2016. The report addresses important issues and initiatives regarding the environment, quality, ethical trade, health and community engagement.

ICA Gruppen’s greenhouse gas emissions decreased by 27% during the period July 2015 to June 2016 compared with 2006.

“Our ambition is to be a leader in corporate responsibility,” comments Per Strömberg, CEO of ICA Gruppen. “It is a position we want to achieve in part because of the responsibility we have by virtue of our size, and in part because we so clearly see that sustainability is a driver of growth. Spurred by our customers’ interests and our new, internal climate targets, during the past quarter we further accelerated the pace of our activities to include such measures as a continued review of refrigerants in stores, efficiency improvements in transports, and the launch of climate-guided recipes on ica.se.”

  • ICA first to offer climate-guided recipes
    During the quarter ICA launched a climate guide for recipes on ica.se. The recipes are marked with one, two or three leaves to symbolise how beneficial they are from a climate perspective. At the end of the period approximately 2,000 climate-guided recipes were available, and going forward all new recipes will be climate-rated.
  • Swedish milk in ICA’s private label dairy products
    During the quarter ICA Sweden signed a new agreement concerning production of ICA’s private label dairy products. Once the agreement has taken full effect, most of ICA’s private label dairy products and hard cheeses will be made using milk produced in Sweden.
  • Launch of industry-wide country of origin label – “Från Sverige”
    In April the new, industry-wide Från Sverige (“From Sweden”) country of origin label was launched. The label may be used on food, ingredients and plants that are produced in Sweden and that meet the label’s criteria. ICA Sweden was one of the initiative-takers behind the new label, which was developed in collaboration with the Swedish Food Federation, Svensk Dagligvaruhandel and the Federation of Swedish Farmers (LRF).
  • Continued positive sales trend for organic products
    Store sales of organic products from ICA Sweden’s central assortment remained positive during the quarter. On a rolling 12-month basis, sales growth for organic products was 25%.
  • Intensified environmental monitoring of suppliers
    During the quarter, ICA Gruppen’s tool for auditing and monitoring working conditions at suppliers – ICA Social Audit – was complemented with additional aspects focusing on suppliers’ environmental work. The aim is to expand the monitoring of suppliers to include their environmental performance. The new aspects focus on waste handling, chemicals and water treatment, among other things.

ICA Gruppen discloses the information provided herein pursuant to the Securities Market Act and/or the Financial Instruments Trading Act. The information was submitted for publication at 08:00 CET on Thursday, August, 2016.

For more information:

ICA Gruppen press service
Telephone number: +46 10 422 52 52

Source: ICA Gruppen

ICA Gruppen announces favourable earnings and higher market shares during Q2 report 2016

Solna, Sweden, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ —

Second quarter of 2016 in summary

  • Consolidated net sales amounted to SEK 26,222 million (25,542), an increase of 2.7%
  • Operating profit excluding non-recurring items totalled SEK 1,154 million (1,018). Operating profit for the comparison period included costs of SEK 27 million associated with the acquisition and integration of Apotek Hjärtat
  • Profit from continuing operations (ICA Gruppen excl. ICA Norway) was SEK 829 million (786). Profit includes capital gains on sales of noncurrent assets and impairment losses totalling SEK -37 million, net (47)
  • Earnings per share for continuing operations were SEK 4.12 (3.77)
  • Cash flow from operating activities for continuing operations amounted to SEK 1,785 million
  • The same period in 2015 included SEK 1.2 billion of capital gain in earnings and SEK 2.8 billion in cash flow from the divestment of ICA Norway
  • inkClub was divested as per 29 June 2016, giving rise to a capital loss of SEK 30 million

After the end of the quarter

  • No significant events have taken place after the end of the quarter

Comment from the CEO of ICA Gruppen, Per Strömberg:

“ICA Gruppen continued to show favourable performance into the second quarter. All parts of the Group posted earnings improvements, except for ICA Bank. It is especially positive to note that we gained market shares and that the ICA stores in Sweden have had a few months with very good sales performance. On the negative side, we have experienced continued disruptions with associated high costs in our logistics operation in southern Sweden.”

Press and analyst meeting

ICA Gruppen is arranging a press and analyst meeting at Tändstickspalatset, Stockholm, on Wednesday, 17 August 2016 at 10.00 CET. CEO Per Strömberg and CFO Sven Lindskog will present the interim report. The meeting will be webcast and can be followed at  www.icagruppen.se/investerare. There is also an opportunity to call in on tel.

SE: +46856642694

UK: +442030089801

Calendar

9 November 2016                  Interim report January–September 2016

15 December 2016                Capital Markets Day

8 February 2017                    Year-end report 2016

ICA Gruppen discloses the information provided herein pursuant to the Securities Market Act and/or the Financial Instruments Trading Act. The information was submitted for publication at time 07.00 CET on Wednesday, August 17, 2016.

For further information, please contact:

Frans Benson
Head of Investor Relations
tel. +46 8-561 500 20

ICA Gruppen press service
Tel +46 10 422 52 52

Source: ICA Gruppen

Ross Stores announces 2Q financial results ended July 30, 2016

DUBLIN, Calif., 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Ross Stores, Inc. (Nasdaq: ROST) today (Aug. 18, 2016) reported earnings per share for the second quarter ended July 30, 2016 of $.71, a 13% increase on top of an 11% gain in the prior year.  Net earnings for the current year period grew to $282 million, up from $259 million last year.  Sales for the 2016 second quarter rose 7% to $3.181 billion, with comparable store sales up 4% on top of 4% growth in the prior year.

For the first six months of fiscal 2016, earnings per share were $1.44, up 9% on top of a 15% increase last year. Net earnings were $573 million, up from $541 million in the prior year.  Sales for the first half of 2016 rose 6% to $6.270 billion, with comparable store sales up 3% versus a 5% gain in the same period last year.

Barbara Rentler, Chief Executive Officer, commented, “Both sales and earnings results in the second quarter were ahead of our forecast. Higher merchandise gross margin during the quarter drove a 50 basis point increase in operating margin to 14.4%, up from 13.9% in the same period last year.”

Ms. Rentler continued, “During the second quarter and first six months of fiscal 2016, we repurchased 3.1 million and 6.2 million shares of common stock, respectively, for an aggregate price of $176 million in the quarter and$352 million year-to-date.  As planned, we expect to buy back a total of $700 million in common stock during fiscal 2016 to complete the two-year $1.4 billion authorization approved by our Board of Directors in February 2015.”

Looking ahead, Ms. Rentler said, “For the third quarter ending October 29, 2016, we are forecasting a same store sales gain of 1% to 2% on top of a 3% increase in the prior year, and earnings per share of $.52 to $.55, compared to $.53 in last year’s third quarter. For the fourth quarter ending January 28, 2017, we are also projecting same store sales to grow 1% to 2% versus a 4% increase last year, with earnings per share expected to be $.73 to $.76, up from $.66 in the 2015 fourth quarter.  Based on our first half results and second half guidance, fiscal 2016 earnings per share are now planned to increase 7% to 10% to $2.69 to $2.75, on top of a 14% gain last year.”

The Company will host a conference call on Thursday, August 18, 2016 at 4:15 p.m. Eastern time to provide additional details concerning its second quarter results and management’s outlook for the remainder of the year.  A real-time audio webcast of the conference call will be available in the Investors section of the Company’s website, located at www.rossstores.com. An audio playback will be available at 404-537-3406, PIN #60158976 until 8:00 p.m. Eastern time on August 25, 2016, as well as on the Company’s website.

Forward-Looking Statements:  This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding expected sales, earnings levels and other financial results in future periods that are subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause our actual results to differ materially from management’s current expectations. The words “plan,” “expect,” “target,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “believe,” “forecast,” “projected,” “guidance,” “looking ahead” and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. Risk factors for Ross Dress for Less® (“Ross”) and dd’s DISCOUNTS® include without limitation, competitive pressures in the apparel or home-related merchandise retailing industry; changes in the level of consumer spending on or preferences for apparel or home-related merchandise; market availability, quantity, and quality of attractive brand name merchandise at desirable discounts and our buyers’ ability to purchase merchandise that enables us to offer customers a wide assortment of merchandise at competitive prices; impacts from the macro-economic environment, financial and credit markets, and geopolitical conditions that affect consumer confidence and consumer disposable income; our ability to continually attract, train and retain associates to execute our off-price strategies; unseasonable weather trends; potential data security breaches, including cyber-attacks on our transaction processing and computer information systems, which could result in theft or unauthorized disclosure of customer, credit card, employee, or other private and valuable information that we handle in the ordinary course of our business – such breaches of our data security, or our failure or delay in detecting and mitigating a loss of personal or business information, could result in damage to our reputation, loss of customer confidence, violation (or alleged violation) of applicable laws, and could expose us to civil claims, litigation and regulatory action, and to unanticipated costs and disruption of our operations; potential disruptions in our supply chain or information systems; issues involving the quality, safety, or authenticity of products we sell; our ability to effectively manage our inventories, markdowns, and inventory shortage to achieve planned gross margin; volatility in revenues and earnings; an adverse outcome in various legal, regulatory, or tax matters; natural or man-made disaster inCalifornia or in another region where we have a concentration of stores or a distribution center; increase in our labor costs; unexpected issues or costs from expanding in existing markets and entering new geographic markets; obtaining acceptable new store sites with favorable demographics; damage to our corporate reputation or brands; issues from importing merchandise from other countries; and maintaining sufficient liquidity to support our continuing operations, new store and distribution center growth plans, and stock repurchase and dividend programs. Other risk factors are set forth in our SEC filings including without limitation, the Form 10-K for fiscal 2015 and Form 10-Q and 8-Ks for fiscal 2016.  The factors underlying our forecasts are dynamic and subject to change.  As a result, our forecasts speak only as of the date they are given and do not necessarily reflect our outlook at any other point in time.  We do not undertake to update or revise these forward-looking statements.

Ross Stores, Inc. is an S&P 500, Fortune 500 and Nasdaq 100 (ROST) company headquartered in Dublin, California, with fiscal 2015 revenues of $11.9 billion.  The Company operates Ross Dress for Less® (“Ross”), the largest off-price apparel and home fashion chain in the United States with 1,317 locations in 34 states, theDistrict of Columbia and Guam as of July 30, 2016. Ross offers first-quality, in-season, name brand and designer apparel, accessories, footwear and home fashions for the entire family at savings of 20% to 60% off department and specialty store regular prices every day. The Company also operates 184 dd’s DISCOUNTS® in 14 states as of July 30, 2016 that feature a more moderately-priced assortment of first-quality, in-season, name brand apparel, accessories, footwear and home fashions for the entire family at savings of 20% to 70% off moderate department and discount store regular prices every day. Additional information is available at www.rossstores.com.

Contact:

Michael Hartshorn
Group Senior Vice President
Chief Financial Officer
(925) 965-4503

Connie Kao
Vice President, Investor Relations
(925) 965-4668
connie.kao@ros.com

SOURCE: Ross Stores, Inc.

Ross Stores, Inc. declares regular quarterly cash dividend of $.135 per common share

DUBLIN, Calif., 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Ross Stores, Inc. (Nasdaq: ROST) announced today (Aug. 17, 2016) that the Company’s Board of Directors declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of $.135 per common share, payable on September 30, 2016 to stockholders of record as of September 2, 2016.

Ross Stores, Inc. is an S&P 500, Fortune 500 and Nasdaq 100 (ROST) company headquartered in Dublin, California, with fiscal 2015 revenues of $11.9 billion.  The Company operates Ross Dress for Less® (“Ross”), the largest off-price apparel and home fashion chain in the United States with 1,317 locations in 34 states, the District of Columbia and Guam as of July 30, 2016. Ross offers first-quality, in-season, name brand and designer apparel, accessories, footwear and home fashions for the entire family at savings of 20% to 60% off department and specialty store regular prices every day. The Company also operates 184 dd’s DISCOUNTS® in 14 states as of July 30, 2016 that feature a more moderately-priced assortment of first-quality, in-season, name brand apparel, accessories, footwear and home fashions for the entire family at savings of 20% to 70% off moderate department and discount store regular prices every day. Additional information is available at www.rossstores.com.

Contact:

Michael Hartshorn
Group Senior Vice President
Chief Financial Officer
(925) 965-4503

Connie Kao
Vice President, Investor Relations
(925) 965-4668
connie.kao@ros.com

SOURCE: Ross Stores, Inc.

CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation donates $100,000 to organizations providing relief efforts to flood victims in central Louisiana

WOONSOCKET, R.I., 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation today (August 18, 2016) announced a $100,000 donation in cash and in-kind support to organizations providing relief efforts to flood victims in central Louisiana, including the Salvation Army USA Southern Territory and the American Red Cross.

The CVS Health Foundation made a $50,000 to the Salvation Army USA Southern Territory which reported that more than 11,000 people remained in shelters this week after flooding forced rescues and evacuations in southern Louisiana. They are providing meals, water, hygiene kits, clean-up kits and other much-needed items to help those who have been affected by the floods.

“We are deeply saddened by the devastating floods in Louisiana and the catastrophic effect it’s having on our customers and colleagues in the community,” said Eileen Howard Boone, SVP of Corporate Social Responsibility and Philanthropy at CVS Health, and President of the CVS Health Foundation. “We’re committed to ensuring that residents hit hard by the historic flooding have continued access to critical pharmacy care services and the support they need to recover and rebuild.”

In addition, CVS Health is donating $50,000 worth of products including infant care, personal hygiene and over-the-counter items to the American Red Cross, Direct Relief and the Office of Baton Rouge Mayor Kip Holden. These donated goods will be distributed to Baton Rouge locations that are supporting displaced residents and first responders and their families including Bethany Church South, East Baton Rouge Parish Emergency Medical Services, Care South and Southeast Community Health Systems. The CVS Health Employee Relief Fund will also be providing support to colleagues who have been affected by the disaster.

As a result of the flooding, CVS Pharmacy is also deploying a mobile pharmacy in the parking lot of the Denham Springs location, which is currently closed due to water damage. Beginning Saturday, August 20, customers will be able to pick up their prescription medications at the mobile pharmacy as well as purchase a variety of over-the-counter medications. Nearby CVS Pharmacy store locations at 29881 Walker Road South in Walker, as well as 15255 George O’Neal Road and 11430 Florida Boulevard in Baton Rouge remain open and ready to serve patients whose pharmacies were impacted by the storms.

CVS Health has a longstanding commitment to Louisiana and a tradition of providing financial support and other services to communities nationwide affected by natural disasters and other tragedies. In May, CVS Pharmacy opened its New Orleans Lower Ninth Ward location, becoming the first major retailer to build in the neighborhood since Hurricane Katrina.

As the nation’s largest pharmacy innovation company, CVS Health contributed more than $80 million in 2015 to communities around the country through the CVS Health Foundation, corporate grants, gifts in-kind, and employee volunteerism.

About CVS Health
CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 9,600 retail pharmacies, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with nearly 80 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, the Company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contact:
Mary Alfieri
Mary.Alfieri@CVSHealth.com
401.770.9811

SOURCE: CVS Health

Staples helps parents and students get back to school on budget with lowest prices on technology

Staples helps parents and students get back to school on budget with lowest prices on technology
Staples helps parents and students get back to school on budget with lowest prices on technology

 

FRAMINGHAM, Mass, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLS) is offering the lowest prices on technology this back-to-school season. Top brand laptops as low as $249.99, earbuds as low as $7 and an exclusive bundle deal on the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 help parents and students get back to school on budget.

“Building on 30 years of back-to-school experience, Staples is in stock all season long with the latest technology and tech services backed by our 110% Lowest Price Guarantee,” said Eric Cayton, vice president, merchandising, Staples. “We make it easy for parents and students to get the right technology including laptops, tablets, PCs and tech accessories at the lowest prices.”

Amazing Technology Deals for Back To School
Among the top technology deals at Staples are:

  • Lightweight 15-inch laptops including the Dell® Intel® Pentium® Notebook and the Dell® Inspiron Notebook each priced at $249.99 for back to school.
  • Students can also save more than $300 with the Microsoft® Surface Pro 4 exclusive Staples® bundle ($999.99 with coupon code 85005) that includes the ultra-light tablet with Windows 10, the Microsoft Surface Dock, Microsoft Office 365 software and a wireless mobile mouse.
  • All laptops, desktops or all-in-one PC purchases at Staples also qualify for free 30 days of tech support and prices are backed by the Staples 110% Lowest Price Guarantee.
  • College students and teachers can also receive exclusive offers by signing up at www.staples.com/exclusivedeals.

Streaming devices such as the Google Chromecast provide students with entertainment, wearable fitness trackers keep them moving and headphones help them tune out distractions and relax.

Must Have Tech Accessories
Students can keep their tech and tech accessories protected and organized with backpacks and accessories designed specifically for students with technology including:

  • Exclusive Designed by Students Back 2 Back Backpack ($49.99)
  • Jansport Digital Student Backpack ($54.99)
  • Jansport Digital Burrito Pouch ($17.99)
  • Jansport Pixel Pouch ($17.99)

The Staples Less List for School features lowest prices top tech essentials every student needs including Staples Earbuds ($7.00), USB Drives (8GB, 4-Pack $14.00), Display Calculators ($5.00) and Coppertop Batteries (AAA 4-Pack $4.00) and more.

Additional ways to save include the Staples technology trade-in program (get paid when you trade in old devices), weekly school steals and 110% Lowest Price Guarantee.

For media information, visit www.staples.com/btspr

About Staples, Inc.
Staples retail stores and Staples.com help small business customers make more happen by providing a broad assortment of products, expanded business services and easy ways to shop, all backed with a lowest price guarantee. Staples offers businesses the convenience to shop and buy how and when they want – in store, online, via mobile or though social apps. Staples.com customers can either buy online and pick-up in store or ship for free from Staples.com with Staples Rewards minimum purchase. Expanded services also make it easy for businesses to succeed with in-store Business Centers featuring shipping services and products, copying, scanning, faxing and computer work stations, Tech Services, full-service Print & Marketing Services, Staples Merchant Services, small business lending and credit services.

Staples Business Advantage, the business-to-business division of Staples, Inc., helps mid-market, commercial and enterprise-sized customers make more happen by offering a curated assortment of products and services combined with deep expertise, best-in-class customer service, competitive pricing and state-of-the art-ecommerce site. Staples Business Advantage is the one-source solution for all things businesses need to succeed, including office supplies, facilities cleaning and maintenance, breakroom snacks and beverages, technology, furniture, interior design and Print & Marketing Services. Headquartered outside of Boston, Staples, Inc. operates throughout North and South America,Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. More information about Staples (NASDAQ: SPLS) is available at www.staples.com.

Contact:
Kaitlyn Reardon
508-253-4195
Kaitlyn.Reardon@Staples.com

Carrie McElwee
508-253-1405
Carrie.McElwee@Staples.com

Source: Staples, Inc.

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SpartanNash Company reports Q2 FY2016 financial results

Byron Center, MI, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — SpartanNash Company (the “Company”) (Nasdaq: SPTN) today (Aug 17th, 2016) reported financial results for the 12-week second quarter and 28-week period ended July 16, 2016.

Second Quarter Results

Consolidated net sales for the 12-week second quarter increased to $1.83 billion from $1.80 billion in the prior year quarter, driven by increases in the food distribution and military segments.

Reported operating earnings were $32.6 million compared to $36.8 million for the prior year quarter primarily due to higher restructuring and asset impairment charges. Adjusted operating earnings improved $2.1 million to $39.3 million from $37.2 million for the prior year quarter due to lower operating expenses resulting from productivity and efficiency initiatives as well as the benefit from increased sales, partially offset by higher health care costs and expenses related to the start-up of new business.

Adjusted Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (Adjusted EBITDA) was $58.7 million, or 3.2 percent of net sales, compared to $58.5 million, or 3.3 percent of net sales in the prior year quarter. Adjusted EBITDA is a non-Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) financial measure. Please see the financial tables at the end of this press release for a reconciliation of net earnings to Adjusted EBITDA, and a reconciliation of each non-GAAP financial measure to the most directly comparable measure prepared and presented in accordance with GAAP.

Reported earnings from continuing operations for the second quarter were $17.6 million, or $0.47 per diluted share, compared to $20.3 million, or $0.54 per diluted share, in the prior year quarter. Adjusted earnings from continuing operations for the second quarter increased to $21.7 million, or $0.58 per diluted share, from $19.8 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, in the prior year quarter. Current year adjusted earnings from continuing operations exclude net after-tax charges of $0.11 per diluted share primarily related to asset impairment charges, restructuring activities associated with the Company’s warehouse rationalization plan, and ongoing merger integration activities. Prior year adjusted earnings from continuing operations excluded a net after-tax gain of $0.01 per diluted share related to a benefit associated with tax planning initiatives and net gains on sales of previously closed stores, partially offset by expenses associated with merger integration activities. Adjusted earnings from continuing operations is a non-GAAP operating financial measure.

“We are generally pleased with our execution in the second quarter and the progress we have made operationally and strategically, particularly our ability to grow sales in a challenging operating environment,” stated Dennis Eidson, SpartanNash’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “New business growth and operational efficiencies helped mitigate the impact of deflation on our bottom line. We are also encouraged by our diverse pipeline of sales opportunities and remain on track to achieve our financial objectives for the year. Additionally, we continue to take steps to position the company for growth by: enhancing our merchandising, pricing, and promotional strategies to drive greater customer engagement and improve the overall shopping experience; expanding our organic and private brand product offerings to provide our customers with quality products at affordable prices; investing in select retail markets; and improving operations and expense leverage through our supply chain optimization and merger integration efforts.”

Gross profit margin for the second quarter was 14.4 percent compared to 14.6 percent in the prior year quarter primarily due to changes in the mix of business operations, new business, and deflationary impacts.

Reported operating expenses for the second quarter were $230.1 million, or 12.6 percent of sales, compared to $225.2 million, or 12.5 percent of sales, in the prior year quarter. Second quarter operating expenses would have been $223.4 million, or 12.2 percent of net sales, compared to $224.9 million, or 12.5 percent of net sales in the prior year quarter, if restructuring, asset impairment, and merger integration charges were excluded from both periods and last year’s net gains on property sales and expenses related to tax planning initiatives were excluded. The decrease as a rate to sales would have been primarily due to lower: depreciation expense associated with fully depreciated assets; utility and occupancy costs; and various operating expenses resulting from productivity and efficiency initiatives, partially offset by higher health care costs.

Food Distribution Segment

Net sales for the food distribution segment increased to $820.3 million from $782.7 million in the prior year quarter primarily due to new business gains and growth of existing accounts.

Reported operating earnings for the food distribution segment were $19.2 million compared to $19.4 million in the prior year quarter. Second quarter adjusted operating earnings increased to $21.6 million from $18.5 million in the prior year quarter. The increase was due to improvements from new sales, supply chain optimization efforts, merger synergies and lower depreciation expense partially offset by higher health care costs.

Second quarter adjusted operating earnings exclude $2.4 million of net pre-tax charges consisting of restructuring charges related to the Company’s warehouse optimization plan and merger integration expenses. The prior year second quarter excludes $0.9 million of pre-tax gains related to a legal settlement, net of merger integration costs and professional fees associated with tax planning initiatives. Adjusted operating earnings is a non-GAAP operating financial measure.

Retail Segment

Net sales for the retail segment were $501.8 million in the second quarter compared to $516.1 million for the prior year quarter. The decrease was primarily attributable to a 3.0 percent decrease in comparable store sales, excluding fuel; $9.8 million in lower sales resulting from the closure of retail stores and fuel centers; and $4.1 million due to lower retail fuel prices compared to the prior year; partially offset by contributions from stores acquired in the second quarter of last year.

Comparable store sales reflect the continued challenging economic conditions in select geographies, retail price deflation and competitive store openings, particularly in the Company’s western region.

Reported operating earnings in the retail segment were $10.9 million compared to $13.5 million in the prior year quarter primarily due to asset impairment charges incurred in the current year. Adjusted operating earnings increased to $15.5 million from $14.7 million in the prior year quarter. Current year adjusted operating earnings exclude $4.6 million of pre-tax asset impairment and merger integration charges. The prior year second quarter excludes $1.2 million of pre-tax merger integration and acquisition costs and net gains on the sales of previously closed stores. The increase in adjusted operating earnings was primarily due to improved fuel margins and favorable rebate programs, partially offset by the lower comparable store sales volumes.

During the second quarter, the Company completed one remodel in Michigan and eight remodels in Omaha. Grand re-openings for the Omaha stores, which were re-bannered to Family Fare, were held the first week of the third quarter. SpartanNash ended the quarter with 160 Company-owned retail stores, 79 pharmacies, and 29 fuel centers.

Military Segment

Net sales for the Company’s military segment increased to $505.4 million from $497.0 million in the prior year quarter. The increase was primarily due to new business gains associated with the distribution of fresh products, partially offset by continued lower sales at the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) operated commissaries.

Reported operating earnings for the military segment were $2.5 million compared to $3.9 million in the prior year quarter. The decrease was primarily due to the lack of inflationary gains, higher health care costs, and a shift in business mix. Second quarter adjusted operating earnings were $2.2 million compared to $4.0 million in the prior year period.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flow

Cash flow provided by operating activities for the year-to-date period was $54.7 million, compared to $123.4 million in the comparable period last year. The decrease was primarily due to changes in working capital, particularly around the timing of vendor and income tax payments and increased working capital requirements to support sales growth.

Long-term debt and capital lease obligations, including current maturities, were $492.5 million at July 16, 2016 compared to $486.8 million at January 2, 2016. Net long-term debt (including current maturities and capital lease obligations and subtracting cash) for the Company was $468.7 million as of July 16, 2016 compared to $464.1 million at January 2, 2016. The Company’s total net long-term debt-to-capital ratio is 0.4-to-1.0 and net long-term debt to Adjusted EBITDA is 2.0-to-1.0 as of July 16, 2016. Net long-term debt is a non-GAAP financial measure.

Outlook

Mr. Eidson continued, “With current market headwinds and economic conditions likely to persist, particularly in our western geographic areas, we remain focused on operating our business with a disciplined approach. We will continue to implement our initiatives to enhance our merchandising, pricing and promotional strategies, including expanding our organic and private brand product offerings, improving our produce offering, and driving greater customer engagement through our loyalty program. We are excited about the initial roll out of Open Acres™, our new private brand for fresh products, as this will provide our consumers in both Company-owned and independent store locations with quality fresh products at a significant savings. Additionally, we recently completed eight remodels and re-banners to Family Fare in Omaha, Nebraska, improving our offering to the customer while highlighting our variety and value, especially as it relates to produce and private brand, and have been encouraged by the initial customer response. In our combined food distribution and military network, we consolidated our Statesboro, Georgia warehouse facility and continue to look for ways to optimize our supply chain. We also continue to see opportunities to drive new business and growth, including those within the alternative channel space, and we remain dedicated to offering solutions to complicated logistic issues. We will also proactively pursue financially and strategically attractive acquisition opportunities.”

Based on the first half results and outlook for the remainder of the year, the Company is maintaining its previously issued fiscal 2016 guidance of adjusted earnings per diluted share from continuing operations of approximately $2.07 to $2.18, excluding merger integration costs and other adjusted charges and gains, compared to $1.98 in the prior year. We anticipate that reported earnings from continuing operations will be in the range of approximately $1.66 to $1.77 per diluted share, compared to $1.67 in the prior year. The guidance is based on expectations for the second half of the year of sales growth in food distribution; continued contributions from new fresh business in the Company’s military division, which will lessen the volume impact of the poor performance at the DeCA operated commissaries; and slightly negative to flat comparable retail store sales, reflecting deflation and the competitive sales environment, partially offset by improvements resulting from capital investments, merchandising initiatives and the cycling of competitive openings. The Company anticipates that fourth quarter adjusted earnings per diluted share from continuing operations will be lower than the prior year due to the significant inflation-related benefit from LIFO realized in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015 of approximately $0.07 per diluted share.

The Company continues to expect capital expenditures for fiscal year 2016 to be in the range of $72.0 million to $75.0 million, with depreciation and amortization of approximately $76.0 million to $78.0 million and total interest expense of approximately $18.0 to $20.0 million.

Conference Call

A telephone conference call to discuss the Company’s second quarter of fiscal 2016 financial results is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time, Thursday, August 18, 2016. A live webcast of this conference call will be available on the Company’s website, www.spartannash.com/webcasts. Simply click on “For Investors” and follow the links to the live webcast. The webcast will remain available for replay on the Company’s website for approximately ten days.

About SpartanNash

SpartanNash (SPTN) is a Fortune 400 company and the leading distributor serving U.S. military commissaries and exchanges in the world, in terms of revenue. The Company’s core businesses include distributing grocery products to military commissaries and exchanges and independent and Company-owned retail stores located in 47 states and the District of Columbia, Europe, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Bahrain and Egypt. SpartanNash currently operates 160 supermarkets, primarily under the banners of Family Fare Supermarkets, Family Fresh Markets, D&W Fresh Markets, and Sun Mart.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains “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. These include statements preceded by, followed by or that otherwise include the words “outlook,” “pipeline,” “optimistic,” “committed,” “anticipates,” “continue,” “expects,” “look forward,” “guidance,” “opportunities,” “position,” “focus,” or “plan” or similar expressions or that an event or trend “will” occur, or is “beginning.” Forward-looking statements relating to expectations about future results or events are based upon information available to SpartanNash as of today’s date, and are not guarantees of the future performance of the combined company, and actual results may vary materially from the results and expectations discussed. Additional risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the company’s ability to compete in the highly competitive grocery distribution, retail grocery, and military distribution industries. Additional information concerning these and other risks is contained in SpartanNash’s most recently filed Annual Report on Form 10-K, recent Current Reports on Form 8-K and other SEC filings. All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements concerning SpartanNash, the merger, or other matters and attributable to SpartanNash or any person acting on its behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements above. SpartanNash does not undertake any obligation to publicly update any of these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that may arise after the date hereof.

Investor Contact:
Chris Meyers
Executive Vice President & CFO
(616) 878-8023

Media Contact:
Meredith Gremel
Vice President Corporate Affairs and Communications
(616) 878-2830

Source: SpartanNash Company

Kohl’s announces $100,000 cash donation to the American Red Cross to support flood victims in Louisiana

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis, 2016-Aug-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) announced a $100,000 cash donation toward flood relief efforts in Louisiana. Kohl’s is providing this donation to the American Red Cross, which is delivering much needed emergency supplies and services in the impacted areas.

In addition to a financial contribution, Kohl’s encourages its associates to volunteer in support of cleanup efforts through its Associates in Action volunteer program. In recognition of volunteer hours, Kohl’s will donate additional corporate grants to the nonprofit organizations being supported by Kohl’s associates.

“We would like to express our deepest sympathies to those families, including many of our Associates, who are impacted by the devastating flooding in Louisiana. Our dedicated Kohl’s Associates in Action volunteers are offering assistance and are committed to helping the area recover,” said Jen Johnson, Kohl’s vice president of corporate communications. “Our business is rooted in these communities which is why we partner with the American Red Cross to provide critical support when it is needed most.”

Kohl’s Associates in Action volunteers help a range of youth-serving nonprofit organizations year-round. Through the Associates in Action volunteer program, more than 1 million associates have donated more than 3.7 million hours of their time since 2001, and Kohl’s has donated more than $112 million to the nonprofit organizations served. This program is part of Kohl’s overall philanthropic platform, Kohl’s Cares®, which is committed to supporting children’s health initiatives nationwide.

To inquire about coordinating a Kohl’s Associates in Action volunteer event, contact your local Kohl’s store and ask to speak with the store manager about Associates in Action. Find your nearest Kohl’s by visiting www.KohlsCorporation.com.

About Kohl’s
Kohl’s (NYSE: KSS) is a leading specialty department store with more than 1,100 stores in 49 states. With a commitment to inspiring and empowering families to lead fulfilled lives, the company offers amazing national and exclusive brands, incredible savings and inspiring shopping experiences in-store, online at Kohls.com and via mobile devices. Committed to its communities, Kohl’s has raised nearly $300 million for children’s initiatives nationwide through its Kohl’s Cares® cause merchandise program, which operates under Kohl’s Cares, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc. For additional information about Kohl’s philanthropic and environmental initiatives, visit http://www.Kohls.com/Cares. For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit www.Kohls.com.

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

Contacts:

Ale DesJean
Ale.DesJean@Kohls.com
262-703-2985

Lyra O’Brien
Lyra.Obrien@Kohls.com
262-703-5186

Source: Kohl’s