Amazon: over 3,000 Alexa skills now available to customers

SEATTLE, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Just over a year ago, Amazon launched the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK) and the Alexa Voice Service (AVS), making it simple and free for developers to build new capabilities for Alexa and integrate Alexa into their own products. Today (Sep. 13, 2016), there are tens of thousands of developers building Alexa skills, and over 3,000 Alexa skills now available to customers, increasing by 3x since June. Also today,Amazon announced new skills including Food Network and GE Appliances available now, with Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football, Bloomberg, and What to Expect When Expecting all coming by the end of this month.

“We’re thrilled to announce that developers have launched over 3,000 skills on Alexa-enabled devices such as the Amazon Echo and Echo Dot,” said Steve Rabuchin, Vice President, Amazon Alexa. “When we launched the Alexa Skills Kit over a year ago, our goal was to enable developers to build compelling voice experiences for Alexa customers. The response from both developers and customers has been overwhelmingly positive, and we’re excited for what’s ahead.”

Here’s a little more about these Alexa skills:

  • Food Network: Starting today, use the Food Network skill to get show times, recipes, and more by just asking Alexa. Take advantage of all the new recipes at your fingertips by saying “Alexa, ask Food Network to send me the recipes from the show I’m watching right now.”
  • GE Appliances: Starting today, use the GE Appliances skill, “Geneva,” to control your connected kitchen appliances using just your voice through Alexa. Just say “Alexa, tell Geneva to preheat the oven to 350°.”
  • Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football: Coming soon, you’ll be able to use the Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football skill to follow your Fantasy Football leagues on Yahoo including rankings, matchups, player points, and more—all by using the power of your voice.
  • Bloomberg: Coming by the end of this month, you can get quotes for US stocks and the leading international market indices. In addition, you can hear the latest business and financial news stories from “Bloomberg Market Minute.”
  • What to Expect, Pregnancy & Baby: Coming by the end of this month, parents and parents-to-be can get personalized updates for every day of pregnancy, including actionable tips, and guidance through the first year of their baby’s life, all from just asking Alexa.
  • Twitter Reader: Added just last week, customers can use the Twitter Reader skill to hear all the latest updates from your Twitter timeline, or follow a trending hashtag. Enable this skill today by saying, “Alexa, enable the Twitter Reader skill.”
  • Genesis: Added last month, Genesis allows Hyundai Genesis G80 and G90 customers to control their car via Alexa. For example, G80 and G90 customers can say, “Alexa, tell Genesis to lock my car.”
  • Find My Phone: Added last month, the Find My Phone skill from TrackR allows Alexa customers to locate a misplaced phone by saying, “Alexa, ask TrackR to find my phone”—the phone will ring loudly, even if it’s on silent mode.
  • KAYAK: Use the KAYAK skill to plan and track your next trip through Alexa, just say “Alexa, ask KAYAK: Where can I fly for $300?”
  • TP-LINK Kasa: Use the TP-LINK Kasa skill to easily set up and control your lights via Alexa, just say “Alexa, turn on my lights.”
  • Patrón: Use the Patrón skill to find and make tequila cocktails using Alexa, just say, “Alexa, ask Patrón to find a spicy margarita.”
  • Food Tracker by Nutritionix: The Food Tracker skill lets Alexa customers get detailed nutrition information for thousands of common foods from the Nutritionix database, and help track those foods in a personal food log. Just say, “Alexa, ask Food Tracker how many calories are in a slice of cheese pizza.”

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

Media Hotline:
206-266-7180
Amazon-pr@amazon.com
www.amazon.com/pr

Source: Amazon.com, Inc.

Amazon and Audible announce premium benefit for Prime members to enjoy unlimited free access to Audible Channels

SEATTLE, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Amazon and Audible today (Sep. 13, 2016) announced a new premium spoken-word benefit for Prime members in the U.S. Members now enjoy unlimited free access to the new short-form digital audio service, Audible Channels, as well as a rotating selection of more than 50 audiobooks from Audible’s catalog. Audible Channels for Prime now joins the growing list of all-you-can-eat benefits for Prime members including guaranteed unlimited fast, free shipping, unlimited access to Prime Video, Prime Music, Prime Photos, early access to Lightning Deals and more. Prime members can access Audible Channels for Prime by downloading the Audible app for iOS, Android, and Windows 10. To learn more about Audible Channels for Prime, please visit www.amazon.com/audiblechannels.

“As a longtime Audible member, I cannot wait for Prime members to discover this new premium spoken-word experience—for free,” said Greg Greeley, Vice President, Prime. “Tens of millions of members in the U.S. already enjoy the many benefits of Prime including unlimited fast, free Prime shipping, Prime Video, Prime Music, Prime Photos, and exclusive products and discounts. Prime provides a one-of-a-kind digital-physical hybrid benefit experience and now members can add Audible Channels and audiobooks to their daily habits.”

Audible Channels

Introduced this year, Audible Channels features a consistently refreshed, thoughtfully organized selection of original programs, distinctive comedy, lectures, and audio editions of standout articles and news from The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Harvard Business Review, Foreign Affairs,Charlie Rose, McSweeney’s, The Onion, and other leading periodicals. Audible Channels also showcases 20 hand-selected Audible Playlists, from essential stories of the day, meditation and commute-sized comedy to compilations on science, history, technology and more. Now free for Prime members, Audible Channels is otherwise available to purchase for $4.95 a month or the equivalent of $59.40 per year.

The lineup of ad-free programming includes:

  • Presidents are People Too!, a series that transforms U.S. Presidents into real-life people complete with quirks, flaws, triumphs, scandals and bodily ailments, hosted by former “The Daily Show” head writer Elliott Kalan and American historian Alexis Coe
  • Bedtime Stories for Cynics, inappropriate children’s stories for adults only, presented by Nick Offerman of “Parks and Recreation” fame
  • Hold On with Eugene Mirman, in which Mirman pauses funny live stories and gets his special comedian guests, including Jim Gaffigan and “Weird Al” Yankovic to divulge new details
  • Limelight, highlighting the best new standup performances from comedy clubs across the country, with rotating guest hosts such as T. J. Miller, Ron Funches and the Sklar Brothers
  • Lectures from The Great Courses

Prime members will also discover the first episodes or previews of the following original programs, subsequent episodes of which they’ll be able to explore and enjoy for free in the coming months:

  • The Butterfly Effect, hosted by Jon Ronson, which explores the question, what happens when we expect things for free?
  • Ponzi Supernova, a fascinating look at Bernard Madoff, the man behind the largest Ponzi scheme in history, featuring exclusive jailhouse interviews with Madoff himself
  • Damned Spot, a series that examines the afterlife of places defined by tragic events
  • West Cork, a true crime series about an unsolved society murder, set on the south coast of Ireland
  • Extra Credit with Neal Pollack, in which the author, musician and comedian takes his 13-year-old son’s education into his own hands, and hilarity ensues

New original programs will be introduced regularly.

Audible Playlists include:

  • Get Smart, in which Audible editors scour the world to unearth uncommon knowledge that will make you the most interesting person you know
  • Punchlines, your front-row seat to comedy clubs across America (without the two-drink minimum)
  • Science This, in which Audible editors uncover the accessible and fascinating science that connects you to your universe
  • Impact, your source of insights, commentary and reporting to give perspective, meaning and context to the news

“The ultimate mission of Audible Channels is to invent new ways to unleash the power of well-composed and artfully spoken words,” said Don Katz, Audible founder and CEO. “As millions of people every year discover the joy and utility of quality listening, Audible Channels will be the place where superior short-form audio information and entertainment captures and conveys a compelling sense of the world for daily consumption in fast-twitch time. We’re thrilled to make this evolving listening innovation available to Prime members.”

Free Audiobook Selection for Prime Members

Prime members will also be able to stream a rotating selection of more than 50 premium audiobooks, across nine Prime-exclusive channels, including:

  • Top-rated audiobooks across a range of genres, such as Mary Kubica’s The Good Girl, Karl Marlantes’ What It Is Like to Go to War, Matthew Quick’s The Silver Linings Playbook, Anne Lamott’s Stitches and Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game Alive
  • Celebrity-narrated classics, such as Scarlett Johansson’s performance of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Rosamund Pike’s narration of Pride and Prejudice, and a full-cast recording of Dracula, starring Alan Cumming
  • Shared listening experiences for the family, including Clifford the Big Red Dog, Winnie-the-Pooh, and The Velveteen Rabbit

More to Prime

Tens of millions of Prime members around the world enjoy the many benefits of Prime. In the U.S., that includes unlimited Free Two-Day Shipping on more than 30 million items across all categories, unlimited Free Same-Day Delivery on more than a million items in 27 major cities and one and two-hour delivery with Prime Now on tens of thousands of items available in more than 25 metro areas. In addition to fast, free Prime shipping, members have access to unlimited streaming of tens of thousands of movies and TV episodes with Prime Video, more than one million songs and thousands of curated playlists and stations with Prime Music, early access to select Lightning Deals all year long, free secure unlimited photo storage with Prime Photos and one free pre-released book a month with Kindle First. To learn more or start a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime, visit www.amazon.com/prime.

About AUDIBLE, INC.

Audible, Inc., an Amazon.com, Inc. subsidiary (NASDAQ:AMZN), is the leading provider of premium digital spoken audio information and entertainment, offering customers a new way to enhance and enrich their lives every day. Audible was created to unleash the emotive music in language and the habituating power and utility of verbal expression. Audible content includes more than 300,000 audio programs from leading audiobook publishers, broadcasters, entertainers, magazine and newspaper publishers, and business information providers. Audible serves millions of listeners around the world through dedicated Audible sites in the UK, Germany, France, Australia, Japan and Italy. Audible is also the preeminent provider of spoken-word audio products for Apple’s iTunes Store.

About Amazon

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

Media Hotline:
206-266-7180
Amazon-pr@amazon.com
www.amazon.com/pr

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Amazon and Audible announce premium benefit for Prime members to enjoy unlimited free access to Audible Channels
Amazon and Audible announce premium benefit for Prime members to enjoy unlimited free access to Audible Channels

 

Source: Amazon.com, Inc.

K-Group’s Pirkka is Finland’s most read customer magazine according to Media Audit Finland

HELSINKI, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — According to Media Audit Finland (MAF) published today (13.9.2016), the K-Group’s customer magazine Pirkka is Finland’s most read customer magazine with a readership of 2.36 million.

“The huge readership is definitely the best prize for all of us who contribute to the making of Pirkka. We thank our customers for their appreciation. It feels good to be able to say that we have succeeded in revamping the Pirkka magazine while respecting its traditions,” says Editor in Chief Merja Haverinen of Kesko.

Pirkka and its digital channels form a practical media package that makes the K-Group customers’ daily choices easier with ideas and tips derived from customers’ needs and recommendations. In addition to the magazine, Pirkka Media includes digital service, the most popular social media channels and an electronic monthly newsletter. The Pirkka magazine, published since 1933, is also available in facsimile form at the www.pirkka.fi/digilehti service.

There are 10 Pirkka magazine issues per year and the current print run of an issue is 800,000. Addressed copies are distributed to K-Plussa customer households. In addition to media makers, the magazine provides significant employment to the Finnish paper and printing industry. Pirkka is a printed product that carries the Swan Label indicating that the paper and the printing house meet the Nordic environmental criteria. The paper is manufactured in Finland at the Kirkniemi Mill of Sappi Finland Oy. The Pirkka magazine is printed by UPC Print in Vaasa. Pirkka Media’s publisher is A-lehdet Dialogi Oy.

“For A-lehdet Dialogi, the Pirkka Media revamp has been a great opportunity to redesign Finland’s largest media and to transform Pirkka Media into a multi-channel package to serve the K-Group customers,” says President and CEO Jyrki Rehumäki.

The about 45,000 exceptionally nice people of the K-Group work daily to make shopping fun for customers in our stores in the Nordic countries, the Baltic countries, Poland and Russia. We help our more than 1,500 stores serve their customers in the grocery trade, the building and technical trade, and the car trade. We do our work with a big heart while paying attention to society and the environment. We are already the most responsible food retailer in the world and always eager to try out something new. We are doing this to offer good choices both on the shelves of the local stores and online. www.kesko.fi K – for shopping to be fun.

A-lehdet Dialogi is a subsidiary of A-lehdet Oy and one of Finland’s biggest content marketing and customer communication houses. We engage in B2B and B2C marketing communications in a number of industries. We produce content in digital and print format and in all channels for over twenty customers. www.dialogi.fi

Further information is available from Vice President Merja Haverinen, tel. +358 105 322 764.

Source: Kesko

Loro Piana opens its new store at 38 Avenue Montaigne in Paris

Loro Piana opens its new store at 38 Avenue Montaigne in Paris
Loro Piana opens its new store at 38 Avenue Montaigne in Paris

 

Paris, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — On Tuesday, September 13, Loro Piana inaugurated its new store at 38 Avenue Montaigne in Paris. Promenade Pour un Objet d’Exception, a special event created for the occasion, invites visitors to discover the unique savoir-faire of the Italian house and the story of its exceptional cashmere.

Loro Piana has changed its address in Paris, leaving 8 Avenue Montaigne for No. 38, moving up the prestigious avenue towards the Rond-point des Champs Elysées. Nestled in a historic hôtel particulier, the new store provides an intimate and sophisticated atmosphere. Exquisitely noble materials including stone and wood combine with precious cashmere and vicuña fabrics, spanning 1,200 square meters of floorspace, with a VIP room on the top floor.

Loro Piana is marking the inauguration of this new jewel with a special event entitled Promenade Pour un Objet d’Exception. A celebration of the heritage of the Maison, the event celebrates Loro Piana’s originality and creativity. Sensorial and visual experiences invite visitors on a journey through the steps in the production of Loro Piana’s renowned cashmere. On display is a bale of the finest cashmere in the world, which arrived in Paris via the “Peking to Paris” vintage automobile rally in which Loro Piana took part this summer. The route retraces the journey of this rare natural fiber from China and Mongolia to Europe.

This exclusive material has been used to create a limited, numbered edition of 110 elegant pieces, including scarves, jackets, capes and carrés, available exclusively at the Maison Loro Piana in Paris.

Contact:

LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton
22, avenue Montaigne, 75008 Paris – France
Tel: +33 (0)1 44 13 22 22
Fax: +33 (0)1 44 13 22 23

Source: LVMH

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EROSKI utiliza solo bonito del norte pescado a caña para sus conservas de marca propia

EROSKI utiliza solo bonito del norte pescado a caña para sus conservas de marca propia
EROSKI utiliza solo bonito del norte pescado a caña para sus conservas de marca propia

 

ELORRIO,España, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — EROSKI avanza en su compromiso con la sostenibilidad de los caladeros de pesca utilizando solo bonito del norte pescado a caña para sus conservas de marca propia. Todo el bonito del norte en conserva de las marcas EROSKI, EROSKI Sannia y EROSKI Seleqtia, tanto en frasco como en lata, es procedente exclusivamente de la pesca artesanal a caña. Para destacarlo, sus envases, tanto las latas como el cristal, incorporarán un sello distintivo con un anzuelo que permitirá distinguir este producto más sostenible.

Se trata de bonitos del norte pescados uno a uno, a caña, seleccionados o devueltos al mar teniendo en cuenta el tamaño mínimo requerido. “Hemos optado por un método de pesca ancestral considerado como el más respetuoso, selectivo y sostenible. De este modo, se evitan las capturas accidentales de otras especies y no se deteriora el fondo marino como ocurre con otros tipos de pesca más masivos y que irremediablemente repercuten en la calidad de la pesca”, ha señalado el director de Responsabilidad Social de EROSKI, Alejandro Martínez Berriochoa.

El bonito del norte en conserva EROSKI está elaborado por los proveedores La Gaviota (Bermeo) y Yurrita (Mutriku), empresas conserveras de reconocido prestigio en el sector. El proceso productivo está adaptado a las exigencias medioambientales y el carácter tradicional se mantiene en todo momento, desde la pesca hasta el envasado.

El pescado se despieza, cuece y limpia totalmente en la misma planta con apenas unas horas de diferencia, siguiendo el método tradicional. “Todo ello redunda en un producto de primera calidad, tierno, jugoso y con la máxima frescura garantizada. Un producto muy bien valorado en las degustaciones por nuestros Socios Clientes y que ha sido muy bien acogido durante las primeras semanas de comercialización”, ha indicado Alejandro Martínez Berriochoa.

EROSKI colabora con WWF para una pesca sostenible

EROSKI trabaja en la adopción de políticas que contribuyan a cuidar el medio ambiente y fomentar el consumo responsable. En 2010 EROSKI se unió a WWF en la Iniciativa de Pesca Sostenible con el objetivo de conseguir que sus fuentes de pescado y marisco fuesen sostenibles y respetuosas con el medio ambiente. Así, por ejemplo, EROSKI ha apostado por productos con la ecoetiqueta azul de MSC y fue la primera cadena de distribución española en introducir esta certificación en el mostrador de fresco.

“Desde el barco hasta el mostrador, todos debemos impulsar una actividad pesquera más sostenible que permita conservar las poblaciones de peces. Tras importantes esfuerzos de la flota vasca de caña, la pesquería de bonito del norte del Cantábrico ha conseguido, recientemente, el reconocimiento del sello MSC. Los consumidores tenemos la responsabilidad de apoyar estos esfuerzos a través de nuestra decisión de compra y para sensibilizar sobre ello WWF ha lanzado la campaña Fish Forward. Con esta nueva iniciativa, EROSKI mantiene su compromiso con la pesca sostenible y es un gran ejemplo que marca la pauta a seguir”, apunta José Luis García Varas, responsable del Programa Marino de WWF-España.

Datos de contacto con el Departamento de Comunicación:
944 158 642
comunicacion@eroski.es

Source: Eroski

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Federated Co-operatives Limited breaks ground on new Propane storage facility in Dryden, Ontario

Saskatoon, SK, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Federated Co-operatives Limited (FCL) is breaking ground on a new Co-op Propane storage facility in Dryden, Ont.

Owned by FCL, a wholesale co-operative that serves 200 autonomous retail co-ops across Western Canada, the facility will provide propane to customers and members of Red River Co-op throughout the region.

“Co-op Propane is a safe, efficient and affordable source of energy with many uses around the home, at the cottage or in industry,” said Doug Wiebe, General Manager at Red River Co-op, the retail co-operative whose customers will be served. “With this facility, Co-op is making a long-term commitment to the community. We look forward to continuing our relationship with our existing customers as we introduce our high-quality service and products to new ones.”

The facility will be located in Dryden’s Norwill Industrial Park and will distribute propane to customers throughout northwest Ontario.

“The Dryden Development Board and staff are very excited to welcome Federated Co-operatives Limited to our Wilderness City as we continue our work with the economic development of Dryden and area,” said Sandra Boyko, Chair of the Dryden Development Corporation. “We are grateful for their continued partnership and wish them a successful venture.”

Local connections

Propane from the facility will be distributed to customers throughout the region by Energy Tech Services (ETS) of Kenora, Ont. FCL and ETS have operated in the region since 2002, supplying customers with propane from an FCL-owned facility in Kenora.

“On behalf of the City of Dryden, we welcome FCL to our community,” said Ernie Remillard, Chief Administrative Officer of the City of Dryden. “We wish FCL nothing but continued success in their expansion strategy.”

For 50 years, FCL has helped customers and businesses find propane solutions for their needs. FCL currently operates bulk propane locations throughout Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.

Source: Coop

RILA comments on House Committee vote on repeal of critical debit card fee reforms

Arlington , VA, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — In a letter sent to House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling and Ranking Member Maxine Waters, the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) outlined retailers’ objections to H.R. 5983, the Financial CHOICE Act, and urged the Committee to vote against the legislation this week.

The CHOICE Act, specifically Section 335, repeals important debit reforms passed more than six years ago that brought fairness and competition to the debit card market. Swipe fee reform, also known as the Durbin Amendment, passed the Senate in 2010. The reforms require that the fees that banks and card networks charge every time a debit card is swiped are “reasonable and proportionate to the cost of processing the transaction.” Prior to the passage of reforms, card networks utilized their overwhelming market power to raise fees at will. Swipe fees are estimated to cost merchants and consumers $50 billion every year.

According to the letter, “repealing these reforms would remove competition and transparency from the marketplace and provide banks the ability to drastically raise fees – ultimately hurting businesses of all sizes.”

“The Durbin Amendment quite simply brought fairness and competition to a market that previously had none. Repealing the amendment would be turning the clock back on commonsense bipartisan reforms,” said Jennifer Safavian, RILA’s executive vice president for government affairs. “We urge the Committee to take into consideration the harmful consequences of this legislation as they take a vote this week.”

In addition to urging committee members to vote against this harmful legislation, RILA’s letter disputes many false claims made by the banking community about the Durbin Amendment. Despite their claims, the reform has not resulted in consumers’ loss of free checking, nor has it disproportionately harmed smaller banks.

Numerous RILA member companies were among the more than 400 companies that wrote House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling and Subcommittee Chairman Randy Neugebauer (R-TX) last week urging that they withdraw their respective proposals to repeal debit swipe reform.

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

Contact:

Brian Dodge
Executive Vice President, Communications and Strategic Initiatives
Phone: 703-600-2017
Email: brian.dodge@rila.org

Source: Retail Industry Leaders Association

RILA objects House Committee vote on Financial CHOICE Act

Arlington , VA, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — In a letter sent to House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling and Ranking Member Maxine Waters, the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) outlined retailers’ objections to H.R. 5983, the Financial CHOICE Act, and urged the Committee to vote against the legislation this week.

The CHOICE Act, specifically Section 335, repeals important debit reforms passed more than six years ago that brought fairness and competition to the debit card market. Swipe fee reform, also known as the Durbin Amendment, passed the Senate in 2010. The reforms require that the fees that banks and card networks charge every time a debit card is swiped are “reasonable and proportionate to the cost of processing the transaction.” Prior to the passage of reforms, card networks utilized their overwhelming market power to raise fees at will. Swipe fees are estimated to cost merchants and consumers $50 billion every year.

According to the letter, “repealing these reforms would remove competition and transparency from the marketplace and provide banks the ability to drastically raise fees – ultimately hurting businesses of all sizes.”

“The Durbin Amendment quite simply brought fairness and competition to a market that previously had none. Repealing the amendment would be turning the clock back on commonsense bipartisan reforms,” said Jennifer Safavian, RILA’s executive vice president for government affairs. “We urge the Committee to take into consideration the harmful consequences of this legislation as they take a vote this week.”

In addition to urging committee members to vote against this harmful legislation, RILA’s letter disputes many false claims made by the banking community about the Durbin Amendment. Despite their claims, the reform has not resulted in consumers’ loss of free checking, nor has it disproportionately harmed smaller banks.

Numerous RILA member companies were among the more than 400 companies that wrote House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling and Subcommittee Chairman Randy Neugebauer (R-TX) last week urging that they withdraw their respective proposals to repeal debit swipe reform.

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

Contact:

Brian Dodge
Executive Vice President, Communications and Strategic Initiatives
Phone: 703-600-2017
Email: brian.dodge@rila.org

Source: Retail Industry Leaders Association

RILA and The Solar Foundation analysis: Whole Foods Market’s approach to rooftop solar installations outlines measures for other retailers to consider

Arlington , VA, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — A new analysis by the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and The Solar Foundation found that Whole Foods Market’s approach to rooftop solar installations in multiple facilities could be a valuable model for other retailers to consider.

The analysis, “Whole Foods Market — Making the Case for Rapid Solar Rollouts,” outlines how the grocer will complete solar installations at multiple facilities within two years. Whole Foods Market recently announced a plan to retrofit approximately 100 facilities with rooftop solar by 2017, in addition to the 40 solar installations already completed by the end of 2015.

“Whole Foods Market is going solar using an innovative approach that will save money, save time, and benefit the environment,” said Andrea Luecke, President and Executive Director at The Solar Foundation. “We hope that other retailers will look to this approach as a guide for how to rapidly install solar across multiple facilities.”

“Whole Foods Market was able to find sensible solutions to many common challenges retailers face when implementing solar and ultimately created a smart pathway for expansion,” said Erin Hiatt, RILA’s senior manager, sustainability and compliance. “With more and more businesses exploring solar as a highly cost effective way to expand renewable energy generation, Whole Foods Market offers a replicable approach for the industry.”

To accomplish this solar rollout expeditiously, Whole Foods Market has to overcome several challenges, the analysis finds. First, negotiating separate arrangements with landlords for each unique solar project can be time-consuming and expensive. Second, roof quality can be a concern, especially in older buildings. Finally, the costs of financing each project can be inconsistent and uncertain.

Whole Foods Market addressed these challenges in two different ways. First, toward the end of the last decade, they began including standardized language in their solar leases, which paved the way for future solar development. Earlier this year, the grocer selected two firms, NRG and SolarCity, to develop the new rooftop solar systems. Working with a small number of system providers (two), Whole Foods Market was able to benefit from better terms, volume pricing, and consistent, field-tested hardware.

In the analysis, Whole Foods Market recommends that based on its experience, other retailers interested in rolling out solar rooftop installations:

  • Start as early as possible to assess lease language and terms, establish solar-enabling language in new leases and renewals, and talk with landlords to gauge their interest in solar.
  • Understand the building stock. Obtain structural and electrical plans, roof membrane warranties, and determine the expected life of the roof.
  • Consider a limited vendor, multi-location approach to achieve economies of scale.

The complete analysis can be found here.

About The Solar Foundation
Our mission is to accelerate adoption of the world’s most abundant energy source. Through our leadership, research, and capacity building, we create transformative solutions to achieve a prosperous future in which solar technology is integrated into all aspects of our lives. Visit us at TheSolarFoundation.org.

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

Contact:

Caroline Stec
Manager, Communications
Phone: 703-600-2082
Email: caroline.stec@rila.org

Source: Retail Industry Leaders Association

NRF urges Congress to reject bill that would both undermine competition and repeal on debit card swipe fees

WASHINGTON, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Retail Federation today (September 13, 2016) asked Congress to reject legislation that would both undermine competition and repeal the Federal Reserve’s cap on debit card swipe fees. The proposed bill would unleash new, higher, hidden swipe fees that could more than double without competitive routing options and the cap that are currently in place. Most consumers want the billions of dollars in savings to remain.

“Billions of dollars that retailers have saved under this cap have been passed on to their customers, and the vast majority of consumers surveyed have made it clear that they want those savings to continue,” NRF Senior Vice President and General Counsel Mallory Duncan said. “Repealing this important consumer protection measure would drive up the price of almost everything consumers buy and create an unearned windfall for the nation’s largest banks. Big banks can’t be allowed to take yet another bite out of the consumer spending that drives the nation’s economy.”

The Dodd Frank Law set limits on what big banks could charge if they chose not to compete. Repealing the law would allow banks to raise the fees as high as they want, without fear of competition.  “Swipe fee reform pulled banks’ hand at least part of the way out of consumers’ pockets,” Duncan said. “We can’t let them put it back in again.”

Prior to reform, competition was also being undermined because the banks and their card companies locked processing competitors out of the marketplace. Debit card swipe fee reform reversed that, and as a result, there is now an opening for debit networks who are faster, cheaper, more innovative and certainly safer; for example, they all use PINs. Repeal of these reforms will undo this progress and will drive swipe fees up even higher.

A survey conducted for NRF this summer found that 89 percent of consumers said the reform should remain in place. In addition, 84 percent said swipe fees should be set on a competitive basis rather than letting credit card companies set price-fixed fees charged by virtually all the banks that issue their credit and debit cards.

As part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, debit card swipe fees are limited to a flat fee of 21 cents per transaction, plus 0.05 percent of the purchase price. The House Financial Services Committee is scheduled to begin consideration today of the Financial CHOICE Act, legislation sponsored by Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, that would repeal debit swipe fee reform as part of a broader rewrite of Dodd-Frank.

Prior to the cap, banks charged retailers one to two percent of the purchase amount to process debit card transactions, driving up the total amount paid by consumers. That amounted to about 45 cents on the typical debit purchase but could come to several dollars on larger purchases. Without the cap, the typical debit swipe fee would likely go back to the previous 45 cents if not higher, Duncan said.

Retailers have saved about $8.5 billion a year since Dodd-Frank was enacted, and most of the savings has been passed along to consumers, according to a study conducted by noted economist Robert Shapiro.

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

Contact:
Robin Roberts
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

Source: NRF

NACS: U.S. consumer optimism remained stable despite increase in gas prices over the past month

ALEXANDRIA, Va, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Despite a 10-cent increase in gas prices over the past month, U.S. consumer optimism about the overall state of the U.S. economy remained stable according to the latest national consumer survey released by the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS).

U.S. fuel consumers quickly noticed this month’s price increase. About two in five (43%) U.S. fuel consumers say that gas prices rose in their area in the last 30 days. Just last month (August 2016), roughly the same number (42%) said they had noticed prices at the pump declining. Although consumers across the nation noticed a gas price rise this month, there are regional differences. For example, fuel consumers in the South (48%) were more likely to notice an increase in the price of gas as compared to fuel consumers in the Midwest (43%).

Even though many customers noticed the gas price increases, their economic mood remained largely unchanged, increasing one percentage point to 45% optimistic. There were strong regional variations in the latest survey results, with consumers in the West much more likely to be optimistic (49%) compared to consumers in the Northeast (40%). Consumers in the Northeast also were the most likely to say that gas prices will increase over the next 30 days (51% in the Northeast vs. 45% in the rest of the country).

There were other variations across demographics. For the first time since the monthly surveys were launched in January 2013, younger consumers—those ages 18-34—are the least optimistic age group, with 42% expressing optimism about the economy. Also, women have been generally less optimistic about the economy than men, but were slightly more optimistic in September (45% vs. 44%).

“From 2013 to 2015, gas price increases have almost always led to declines in optimism—and vice versa, but we have only seen that dynamic in three of the nine months this year. The extended period of low gas prices and the sustained negative political campaign probably both play a role in this change,” said Jeff Lenard, NACS vice president of strategic industry initiatives.

Consumers say their vehicle’s average fuel efficiency dropped to 23.6 miles per gallon, which is about 2.5% lower that self-reported mileage a year ago. Average miles per dollar—a calculation that examines gas prices related to vehicle fuel efficiency—dipped to 10.7 miles per dollar as gas prices rose and fuel efficiency declined.

Despite the uptick in gas prices, they are still 19 cents lower than last September, when consumers reported a median gas price of $2.39 per gallon.

NACS, which represents the convenience store industry that sells 80% of the gas in the United States, conducts monthly consumer surveys to gauge how gas prices affect broader economic trends. The survey was conducted online by Penn Schoen Berland; 1,100 U.S. adults who purchase fuel for a vehicle such as a car, truck or van at least once per month were surveyed September 6-9, 2016. Summary results are available at nacsonline.com/fuelssurvey.

Contact:

(703) 684-3600 (phone)
(703) 836-4564 (fax)

Source: NACS

NACS issues statement on the House Financial Services Committee vote to report the Financial Choice Act

Alexandria, VA, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Lyle Beckwith, senior vice president of government relations at NACS, today (9/13/2016) issued the following statement on the House Financial Services Committee vote to report H.R. 5983, the Financial Choice Act:

“NACS is deeply disappointed at the House Financial Services Committee’s vote to report the controversial and misnamed ‘Financial Choice Act’—which includes repeal of the highly effective, pro-competition and pro-consumer debit swipe fee reform—but given the bipartisan opposition that arose even as the bill was rammed through Committee, repeal efforts should not move forward.

“While the bill’s sponsors inserted the acronym CHOICE in the bill title—standing for ‘Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers and Entrepreneurs’—the Act as currently constituted would instead generate more costs and lost opportunity for entrepreneurs, higher prices for consumers and greater monopoly profits for the credit-card giants by eliminating competition in the debit-card arena.

“Along with members of Congress from both sides of the aisle who have already stood against this ill-considered measure, NACS will continue to fight to keep the interests of merchants and consumers ahead of the credit-card Goliaths, who already benefit from the highest swipe fees in the world.

“Specifically, we’ll keep doing everything in our power to build on the strong opposition to this bill and ensure that members of Congress and the Senate recognize the success of this vital reform in re-establishing competition in the debit-card market.  Repeal of swipe fee reform would put Visa and MasterCard right back into the price-fixing business by making it impossible for smaller card networks to compete, and would dramatically increase costs for convenience store owners, for whom swipe fees are already, on average, their fastest-growing expense.  And it would quickly wipe out the nearly $6 billion in savings consumers have experienced each year thanks to the reform.

“In the end, it is clear that the bill in its current form lacks the support necessary to get through Congress, given its potential harm to competition, consumers and small business.”

Swipe fee reform, enacted in 2010 as part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform package, required centrally price-fixed swipe fees on debit transactions to be “reasonable and proportional” to the cost of processing the transaction and ensured competition among debit networks. Repeal would allow unlimited price-fixing of fees and let the credit card giants block their competitors from having a chance to try to get business from merchants.

According to a report by the Merchants Payments Coalition, reductions in debit fees driven by swipe fee reform put nearly $6 billion in consumers’ hands through lower prices in the first year of reform alone and supported more than 37,000 new jobs annually.  In addition, small merchants have benefited from greater transparency in debit-card transactions.

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

Contact:

(703) 684-3600 (phone)
(703) 836-4564 (fax)

Source: NACS

GGP to present at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2016 Global Real Estate Conference in New York

CHICAGO, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — General Growth Properties, Inc. (NYSE: GGP)(the “Company”) today (September 12, 2016) announced that Michael Berman, Chief Financial Officer, and Shobi Khan, Chief Operating Officer, will present at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2016 Global Real Estate Conference in New York on Tuesday, September 13, 2016, at 12:40 p.m. Eastern Time.

Live Webcast: http://www.veracast.com/webcasts/baml/realestate2016/id75102266392.cfm

About General Growth Properties, Inc.
General Growth Properties, Inc. is an S&P 500 company focused exclusively on owning, managing, leasing, and redeveloping high-quality retail properties throughout the United States. GGP is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, and publicly traded on the NYSE under the symbol GGP.

CONTACT:
General Growth Properties, Inc.
Kevin Berry, SVP Investor & Public Relations
kevin.berry@ggp.com
(312) 960-5529

Source: General Growth Properties, Inc

Kimco Realty Corp. to participate in the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Real Estate Conference

NEW HYDE PARK, New York, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Kimco Realty Corp. (NYSE: KIM) announced today (September 12, 2016) that its management will participate in the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Real Estate Conference on Wednesday, September 14, 2016 in New York City. Kimco management will provide a general overview of the company followed by a question and answer session. The webcast information is as follows:

Event: Kimco Realty Corp. Management Presentation at Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Real Estate Conference

When: Wednesday, September 14, 2016 from 3:40 P.M. – 4:15 P.M. EDT

Where: Live webcast can be accessed by clicking on the following link: Kimco to Present at Bank of American Merrill Lynch Global Real Estate Conference or by entering http://www.veracast.com/webcasts/baml/realestate2016/id18206179516.cfm in your browser.

If you are unable to participate during the live webcast, audio from the conference will be available until December 12, 2016 at the link above.

Kimco Realty Corp. (NYSE: KIM) is a real estate investment trust (REIT) headquartered in New Hyde Park, N.Y., that is North America’s largest publicly traded owner and operator of open-air shopping centers. As of June 30, 2016, the company owned interests in 537 U.S. shopping centers comprising 86 million square feet of leasable space across 36 states and Puerto Rico. Publicly traded on the NYSE since 1991, and included in the S&P 500 Index, the company has specialized in shopping center acquisitions, development and management for more than 50 years. For further information, please visit www.kimcorealty.com, the company’s blog at blog.kimcorealty.com, or follow Kimco on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kimcorealty.

CONTACT:
David F. Bujnicki
Senior Vice President, Investor Relations and Strategy
1-866-831-4297
dbujnicki@kimcorealty.com

Source: Kimco Realty Corp

Gap and Pendleton Woolen Mills celebrate American style with limited-edition collection for the whole family

NEW YORK, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — For fall 2016, Gap and Pendleton Woolen Mills will celebrate American style with the introduction of a limited-edition collection featuring clothes and accessories for men, women, kids and baby. The collection brings together two classic American brands, celebrating Gap’s beloved denim and Pendleton’s signature plaids specially curated from Pendleton’s rich archive of historic patterns.

“We’re excited to bring a unique pairing of two American icons to our customers with this new collaboration combining the best of Gap and Pendleton’s signature styles,” said Jeff Kirwan, Global President, Gap. “Both brands have played an important role in shaping the American wardrobe and have won generations of fans along the way, making this the ideal collection to share with the whole family.”

“Pendleton joins Gap in saluting American Style in a collection that is rich in heritage and authenticity,” said Pendleton President, Mort Bishop III.  “With our joined legacy of design and fabric, the Gap x Pendleton limited-edition collection celebrates this exceptional collaboration of classic fashion and iconic plaids.”

The collection includes shirt dresses ($69.95), denim (jeans and jacket both $79.95), shirts ($59.95) and ponchos ($199) for women, a puffer vest ($98), shirt jackets ($199), baseball caps ($24.95) and scarves for men ($49.95), tote bags ($49.95-$64.95) and a full range of offerings for kids and babies ranging in price from $16.95 to $44.95. The collection is available in September at select global Gap stores and on gap.com.

About Gap
Gap is one of the world’s most iconic apparel and accessories brands and the authority on American casual style.  Founded in San Francisco in 1969, Gap’s collections are designed to build the foundation of modern wardrobes – all things denim, classic white shirts, khakis and must-have trends.  Beginning with the first international store in London in 1987, Gap continues to connect with customers online and across the brand’s about 1,700 company-operated and franchise retail locations around the world. Gap includes Women’s and Men’s apparel and accessories, GapKids, babyGap, GapMaternity, GapBody and GapFit collections.  The brand also serves value-conscious customers with exclusively-designed collections for Gap Outlet and Gap Factory Stores.  Gap is the namesake brand for leading global specialty retailer, Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) which includes Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Athleta and Intermix. For more information, please visit www.gapinc.com.

About Pendleton
Setting the standard for classic American style, Pendleton is a lifestyle brand recognized as a symbol of American heritage, authenticity and craftsmanship. With six generations of family ownership since 1863, the company recently celebrated 153 years of weaving fabrics in the Pacific Northwest. Known for fabric innovation, Pendleton owns and operates two of America’s remaining woolen mills, constantly updating them with state-of-the-art looms and eco-friendly technology. Inspired by its heritage, the company designs and produces apparel for men and women, blankets, home décor, and gifts. Pendleton is available through select retailers in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Japan, Korea and Australia; Pendleton stores; company catalogs; and direct-to-consumer channels including the Pendleton website, http://www.pendleton-usa.com.

Investor information:

investor_relations@gap.com
650-952-4400

Source: Gap Inc.

NGA disappointed on House Financial Services Committee bill that repeals debit card swipe fee reform

ARLINGTON, VA, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Grocers Association (NGA) today (Sep 13, 2016) issued the following statement in response to a House Financial Services Committee markup of the Financial CHOICE Act of 2016 (H.R. 5983), a bill that repeals debit card swipe fee reform, also known as the Durbin Amendment that was passed in the 2010 as a part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

NGA Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs Greg Ferrara said: “Since its passage six years ago, the Durbin Amendment has brought competition and transparency into a payment system that has historically been void of it. Repealing these reforms would have negative impacts on the independent supermarket industry and the consumers it serves. We need to ensure more competition within the debit market – not remove it.”

“NGA is disappointed to see members of the House Financial Services Committee side with Wall Street banks over Main Street grocers and merchants.  Repeal of these important reforms is simply another gift to the nation’s biggest banks and card networks.  NGA and our members are committed to defeating this legislation so long as it continues to include repeal of the Durbin reforms.”

Yesterday, NGA sent a key vote letter to members of the House Financial Services Committee urging them to oppose the CHOICE Act. Click HERE to view the letter.

Contact:

(703) 516-0700
Fax (703) 516-0115

Source: National Grocers Association

Shippit integrates Intershop Commerce Suite into its Freight Management & Booking Platform

Melbourne, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Start up logistics software solutions company Shippit who have re-engineered parcel delivery by leveraging cloud services and smart digital technology called on Intershop to “ice the cake” by completing the integration of the Intershop Commerce Suite into the Shippit Freight Management & Booking Platform.

The appeal of Shippit is it is a one stop shop where Shippit connects retailers to traditional parcel courier companies and offers great flexibility in delivery options and experiences where all their client parcel delivery needs get optimised to deliver the best result, timing and cost. Central to the Shippit business model is the subscription based financing model which gives customers the comfort of a known and controllable cost.

Intershop has played its part in the exciting Shippit business model by completing the full integration of its Intershop Commerce Suite. The key benefits of this effort for Shippit customers is an ability to strip out hours of wasted time and transform the order management and shipping process with smart delivery management technology.

Intershop Managing Director APAC & USA, Albert Woo was over the moon with the business relationship with Shippit: “Intershop provides one of the world’s leading digital platforms and now with the Shippit back end integration complete the whole solution will deliver major process improvement and savings for customers. Shippit are run by a great team and we are thrilled they partnered with Intershop to be part of their smart solution to parcel delivery across Australia”.

About Intershop
Intershop Communications AG (founded in Germany 1992; Prime Standard: ISH2) is the leading independent provider of omni-channel commerce solutions. Intershop offers high-performance packaged software for internet sales, complemented by all necessary services. Intershop also acts as a business process outsourcing provider, covering all aspects of online retailing up to fulfillment. Around the globe more than 300 enterprise customers, including HP, BMW, Würth, and Deutsche Telekom run Intershop solutions. Intershop is headquartered in Jena, Germany, and has offices in the United States, Europe, Australia, and China. More information about Intershop can be found online at www.intershop.com.

This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding future events or the future financial and operational performance of Intershop. Actual events or performance may differ materially from those contained or implied in such forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties that could lead to such difference could include, among other things: Intershop’s limited operating history, the unpredictability of future revenues and expenses and potential fluctuations in revenues and operating results, significant dependence on large single customer deals, consumer trends, the level of competition, seasonality, risks related to electronic security, possible governmental regulation, and general economic conditions.

Contact:

Intershop Public Relations
HEIDE RAUSCH
Head of Corporate Communication
Phone: +49 3641 50-1000
Fax: +49 3641 50-1309

Source: Intershop

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts celebrates Talk Like a Pirate Day on Sept. 19

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts celebrates Talk Like a Pirate Day on Sept. 19
Krispy Kreme Doughnuts celebrates Talk Like a Pirate Day on Sept. 19

 

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Say “ahoy” to your free Original Glazed doughnut! Krispy Kreme Doughnuts announced today (September 13, 2016) that participating shops in the United States and Canada will celebrate Talk Like a Pirate Day on Sept. 19.

Any swashbuckling guest who talks like a pirate will receive one free Original Glazed doughnut, while fans who dress like a pirate will receive one dozen Original Glazed doughnuts.

For the first time this year, guests can also use a custom Krispy Kreme Snapchat pirate filter to digitally ‘dress’ like a pirate. Any guest who shows his or her Snapchat image to a team member at a participating Krispy Kreme shop will qualify for a dozen Original Glazeddoughnuts.

“Talk Like a Pirate Day has become one of our guests favorite days of the year, and this year they will have the opportunity to take part in this day socially using our Snapchat filter,” said Jackie Woodward, Chief Marketing Officer of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts. “As this day is all about fun, we see it as a natural extension of our offers to get free Original Glazed doughnuts.”

The Snapchat campaign will be the first time Krispy Kreme has launched a national campaign on the social media outlet. Krispy Kreme’s Talk Like a Pirate Day was created following a social trend in 2012, and the Snapchat campaign is an organic way to honor the social beginnings of the occasion day.

Two Pirate Doughnuts are also available ahead of Talk Like a Pirate Day. The Pirate Doughnut is a filled doughnut decorated with a pirate face, while the Skull and Crossbones Doughnut is topped with chocolate icing and finished with white icing and a skull candy piece.

Qualifying pirate costumes must include three pirate items, such as an eye patch or bandana. No purchase is necessary to take part in Talk Like a Pirate Day.

Be sure to show off your Talk Like a Pirate Day bounty by using #TalkLikeaPirateDay and #KrispyKreme across social media platforms.

About Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc.
Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc., is a global retailer of premium-quality sweet treats, including its signature Original Glazed doughnut. Headquartered in Winston-Salem, N.C., the Company has offered the highest-quality doughnuts and great-tasting coffee since it was founded in 1937. Krispy Kreme Doughnuts is proud of its Fundraising program, which for decades has helped non-profit organizations raise millions of dollars in needed funds. Krispy Kreme doughnuts can be found in approximately 12,000 grocery, convenience and mass merchant stores in the U.S. The Company has more than 1,100 retail shops in 27 countries. Connect with Krispy Kreme Doughnuts at www.KrispyKreme.com, or on one its many social media channels, including www.Facebook.com/KrispyKreme, and www.Twitter.com/KrispyKreme.

Contact:

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc.
Sarah Roof
Corporate Communications Coordinator
336-726-8878
sroof@krispykreme.com

Source: Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc.

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iOS 10 now available for iPhone and iPad update

Cupertino, California, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — The biggest iOS release ever is available today (SEPTEMBER 13, 2016) as a free update for iPhone and iPad. iOS 10 is a massive release for Messages, brings new ways to use Siri with your favorite apps and introduces Memories in Photos, an exciting way to help you rediscover favorite and forgotten occasions from your photo library.

Messages gets a massive update with more animated and personalized ways to message friends and family using full-screen effects, Tapback and more. iOS 10 brings the power of the App Store to Messages, creating fun new ways to communicate with friends using apps that let you send stickers, edit photos, send payments or schedule dinner or a movie, all from within Messages. Using emoji is more fun than ever, with predictions that present the perfect emoji as you type, a new tap to replace feature that lets you “emojify” any message and new emoji that appear three times larger.

With iOS 10, your favorite apps can now talk to Siri so you can search for photos, make payments, message friends, place calls, book rides and start workouts just by using your voice.

Photos helps you rediscover favorite and forgotten occasions from your photo library by automatically surfacing them in Memories and uses machine learning to group the people, places and things inside your images into albums with on-device face, object and scene recognition. This intelligence brings Memories and Related photos to life in a way that’s personal and meaningful to you.

Additional features in iOS 10:

  • A new Home app lets you simply and securely set up, manage and control your home all in one place. Accessories can be managed individually or grouped into scenes so they work together with a single command and can be controlled by using Siri.
  • Maps is even simpler and more intuitive to use and now your favorite ride booking apps and reservation services are available from within the app.
  • Apple Music brings greater clarity and simplicity to every aspect of the experience with an easier way to navigate your library and discover new music and lyrics to your favorite songs.
  • The new News app simply surfaces the stories you want to read and adds support for breaking news notifications and paid subscriptions.

Press Contacts:
Jacqueline Roy
Apple
jacqueline_roy@apple.com
(408) 862-4386

Catherine Anderson
Apple
catherine_anderson@apple.com
(669) 227-0491

Apple Media Helpline:
media.help@apple.com
(408) 974-2042

Source: Apple

Swift Playgrounds: New iPad app that makes learning to code easy and fun now available on the App Store

Cupertino, California, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Swift Playgrounds, an innovative new iPad app from Apple that makes learning to code easy and fun for everyone, is now available on the App Store. With Swift Playgrounds, real coding concepts are brought to life with an interactive interface that allows students and beginners to explore working with Swift, the easy-to-learn programming language from Apple used by professional developers to create world-class apps.

The Swift Playgrounds app is approachable enough for students with no previous programming experience to begin exploring key coding concepts, but also powerful enough for skilled programmers to experiment and express their creativity using Swift.

“Everyone should have the opportunity to learn coding, and we are excited to bring Swift Playgrounds to the next generation of programmers looking for a fun and easy way to explore key coding concepts using real code,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering. “More than 100 schools around the world have already committed to adding Swift Playgrounds to their fall curriculum, and we can’t wait to see what students create with it.”

Swift Playgrounds includes Apple-developed programming lessons that guide students through a series of challenges and puzzles to guide three on-screen characters through an immersive graphical world as they learn core coding concepts, like issuing commands, creating functions, performing loops and using conditional code and variables. Apple will also regularly release new standalone challenges so users can continue learning new skills.

Swift Playgrounds also features built-in templates that users can modify and build on to create their own programs with graphics and touch interactions. They can then share their creations with friends using Mail or Messages or even by posting to the Web. And since Swift Playgrounds uses real Swift code, projects can be exported directly to Xcode and ultimately be turned into full-fledged iOS and Mac apps.

Availability
Swift Playgrounds is available today on the App Store for free. Swift Playgrounds is compatible with all iPad Air and iPad Pro models and iPad mini 2 and later running iOS 10. For more information including videos, images and demos, visit: apple.com/swift/playgrounds.

Apple revolutionized personal technology with the introduction of the Macintosh in 1984. Today, Apple leads the world in innovation with iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and Apple TV. Apple’s four software platforms — iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS — provide seamless experiences across all Apple devices and empower people with breakthrough services including the App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay and iCloud. Apple’s 100,000 employees are dedicated to making the best products on earth, and to leaving the world better than we found it.

Press Contacts:

Bill Evans
Apple
bevans@apple.com
(408) 974-0610

Starlayne Meza
Apple
starlayne_meza@apple.com
(408) 974-3391

Apple Media Helpline
media.help@apple.com
(408) 974-2042

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Swift Playgrounds: New iPad app that makes learning to code easy and fun now available on the App Store
Swift Playgrounds: New iPad app that makes learning to code easy and fun now available on the App Store

 

Source: Apple

365 by Whole Foods Market opens its third store in Bellevue, Washington

BELLEVUE, Wash., 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — The third 365 by Whole Foods Market location opens on Wednesday, Sept. 14, at 9 a.m. in Bellevue, Washington, at 10200 NE 4th Street in Bellevue Square.

Open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., the 30,000-square-foot store offers a thoughtful selection of grab-and-go  prepared foods, grocery items and retail innovations that streamline the shopping experience for customers who are seeking convenience and value on high quality products without any artificial colors, sweeteners or preservatives.

“From the food offerings to the design, we’re excited to introduce people to a shopping experience that delivers on the quality standards they expect from Whole Foods Market in a fun new format that’s easy to navigate and is focused on value in every department,” said Jeff Turnas, president of 365 by Whole Foods Market. “Whether you’re planning a quick stop on the way home from work for a grab-and-go dinner, stocking up on groceries for the week, or fueling up with a burrito after shopping, you’ll find a blend of innovation and convenience here that’s unmatched.”

Grab-and-Go

In the store’s large grab-and-go section, shoppers can find a range of healthy, prepared food options, priced by the container at small, medium and large. Shoppers can order hot dogs, tacos, bowls, and burritos, as well as pizza from self-serve kiosks. Prepared foods items meet the same quality standards as all products sold in the store. Menu highlights:

  • Eclectic hot dogs like the vegan “Carrot Dog” made with a braised carrot, tamarind chutney slaw, cilantro and avocado
  • Pizza offerings like the vegan veggie, made with Kite Hill ricotta and chicken bulgogi with sauce made from Bianco DiNapoli tomatoes
  • Hot and cold bars with global cuisines and rotating items like bibimbap and kimchee fried rice, chicken verde enchiladas and schichimi togorashi brussel sprouts
  • Soups include West African peanut, Tonkatsu chicken and vegatable soup, chicken Hlelem, and vegan coconut vegetable
  • Everyday items like brown rice, beans, tortillas and seasonal salads like cauliflower and radicchio

Veg

The store offers shoppers an expansive produce department, including “Veg Valley,” an enclosed area for chilled produce options.

  • A great selection of both organic and conventionally grown fruits and vegetables
  • An entire wall of bagged greens, salads and pre-prepped produce to help make eating more fruits and veggies easier
  • Many items sold by the each; customers can weigh and sticker their own items for convenience
  • Value priced floral selections at two price points: $5 and $10

Meat & Sea

Offers a wide variety of ready-to-cook items, including chicken, meat, pork, seafood and marinated selections of high-quality meats from animals raised without antibiotics and added hormones. All items are packaged for convenience. Includes:

  • Sustainably sourced fresh fillets, value priced, vacuum-packed fish and shellfish, and steaks and marinated options
  • Selection of 100 percent grass-fed organic beef
  • 365 by Whole Foods Market has full knowledge and traceability of all seafood and strives to source local options that meet Whole Foods Market’s strict quality standards
  • All beef, chicken and pork are step-rated, using Global Animal Partnership’s 5-Step® Animal Welfare rating system, and adhere to Whole Foods Market’s stringent quality standards

Total Pantry (grocery, bakery, supplements and body care)

This department offers shoppers great value on high quality everyday pantry staples without any artificial colors, flavors, preservatives or hydrogenated oils.

  • Aisles are full of hundreds of favorite 365 Everyday Value™ products – from salty snacks to baking supplies, supplements and body care
  • All bakery items are in line with Whole Foods Market quality standards, and are made with cage-free eggs

Beverage

Features an assortment of kombucha and cold-pressed juices from Suja, Evolution Fresh, Temple Turmeric and REBBL, plus a curated collection of more than 400 wines, including eco-friendly and biodynamic options, a varied selection of special-occasion wines and fun beverages like sake and sangria. Highlights:

  • 365 by Whole Foods Market partnered with Banquet by Delectable, a smartphone app that scans wine labels and provides instant descriptions and ratings for customers seeking wine selections
  • The wide selection of wine is value-oriented; the majority of bottles are priced at or below $20. Shoppers will also find a handful of popular higher-end champagne offerings like Veuve Clicquot, which were thoughtfully selected by buyers
  • A large selection of chilled beer with an assortment of local craft beers, domestic favorites and unique imports

Chilled and Frozen

  • An assortment of yogurt, eggs, milk, including non-dairy milks and yogurts, like refrigerated rice soy, almond, coconut and flax; also, many shelf-stable milk alternatives: almond, soy, rice, quinoa, hemp
  • A frozen section of goodies, from entrees to ice cream, pizza and more
  • All eggs sold at 365 by Whole Foods Market are cage-free

Wild Ginger Kitchen

The “Friends of 365” program allows innovative businesses and entrepreneurs that align with the mission and quality standards of Whole Foods Market to establish independent retail spaces inside the store. The Bellevue store’s “Friends of 365” partner is Wild Ginger Kitchen. The masterminds behind Wild Ginger and Triple Door will offer a more fast-casual take on their acclaimed fresh and flavorful Asian fare, with customized bowls and a seasonally inspired menu. Wild Ginger Kitchen opens in October 2016.

teaBOT

One of shoppers’ favorite stops in 365 by Whole Foods Market stores is the customizable tea station, teaBOT. It offers an efficient, self-serve kiosk, allowing customers to create personalized tea blends by choosing from a selection of 18 teas and herbal ingredients.

Allegro Coffee Bus

This funky take on an in-store coffee bar features brewed coffee, tea and espresso drinks served from a classic 1960s VW bus. The coffee bus hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., seven days a week.

Store Design

The Bellevue store and subsequent locations are designed with convenience and efficiency in mind to create an easy flow and a streamlined customer experience.

  • Each 365 by Whole Foods Market store features a signature piece of art that reflects the community in which it opens. “KaleVue” is a colorful and textured piece of art by Sebastien Leon
  • There are limited printed signs, all price tags are digital, and customers should be able to see the entire store as soon as they walk in
  • Additional amenities include home delivery via Instacart, free Wi-Fi available in seating areas throughout the store, and accessible parking

My 365 Rewards

Shoppers can take advantage of My 365 Rewards, a 100 percent digital loyalty program, offering personalized product recommendations, tailored content and special deals based on individual preferences.

  • “Gimme 10 Deals” provides 10 percent off products featured on the end caps and elsewhere throughout the store
  • Digital punch cards offer “buy 10 and get one free” deals on favorite items such as rotisserie chicken, Driscoll’s berries, organicgirl greens, and Evolution Fresh juices
  • Shoppers can sign up online and use their digital membership card or phone number at checkout to access their benefits

Opening Day Deals & Happenings

Throughout the store, customers will discover “Flash Finds,” featuring new products, seasonal items or unique offerings available for a limited time. Opening week highlights include Oro di Sicilia olive oil, Back to the Roots breakfast cereals, EatPops natural fruit and veggie ice pops, and Califia Farms citrus juices.

On opening day (Wednesday, Sept. 14), the first 365 shoppers will receive a free reusable shopping bag. The first 100 shoppers will receive gift cards in varying amounts – from $5 to $365.

For details on what’s inside the store, as well as featured deals and everyday values in each aisle, click here, follow us on Facebook or @365bywholefoods on Instagram and Twitter.

Store Contact Information:

Drew Stout, Store Team Leader (drew.stout@wholefoods.com)
365 by Whole Foods Market
10200 NE 4th Street
Bellevue, WA 98004
Phone: (425) 453-4708

Source: 365 by Whole Foods Market

Taubman to announce its third quarter 2016 earnings on November 1, 2016

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Taubman Centers, Inc. (NYSE: TCO) will announce its third quarter 2016 earnings after the market closes on November 1, 2016. The company will host a conference call to discuss these results on November 2, 2016 at 11 a.m. EDT.

Stockholders and interested parties may listen to a live broadcast of the conference call by dialing 1-866-820-1712 or 1-973-638-3468 and using reservation code 9675582 or by accessing the call online at http://investors.taubman.com/investors/investor-events-and-presentations. An online replay will be available for approximately 90 days.

A telephone replay will be available until November 25, 2016 and can be accessed at 1-855-859-2056 using reservation code 9675582.

About Taubman
Taubman Centers is an S&P MidCap 400 Real Estate Investment Trust engaged in the ownership, management and/or leasing of 26 regional, super-regional and outlet shopping centers in the U.S. and Asia. Taubman’s U.S.-owned properties are the most productive in the publicly held U.S. regional mall industry. Founded in 1950, Taubman is headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Taubman Asia, founded in 2005, is headquartered in Hong Kong. www.taubman.com.

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

This press release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These statements reflect management’s current views with respect to future events and financial performance. Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as “will”, “may”, “could”, “expect”, “anticipate”, “believes”, “intends”, “should”, “plans”, “estimates”, “approximate”, “guidance” and similar expressions in this press release that predict or indicate future events and trends and that do not report historical matters. The forward-looking statements included in this release are made as of the date hereof. Except as required by law, we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future. Actual results may differ materially from those expected because of various risks, uncertainties and other factors. Such factors include, but are not limited to: changes in market rental rates; unscheduled closings or bankruptcies of tenants; relationships with anchor tenants; trends in the retail industry; the liquidity of real estate investments; the company’s ability to comply with debt covenants; the availability and terms of financings; changes in market rates of interest and foreign exchange rates for foreign currencies; changes in value of investments in foreign entities; the ability to hedge interest rate and currency risk; risks related to acquiring, developing, expanding, leasing and managing properties; changes in value of investments in foreign entities; risks related to joint venture properties; insurance costs and coverage; security breaches that could impact the company’s information technology, infrastructure or personal data; the loss of key management personnel; terrorist activities; maintaining the company’s status as a real estate investment trust; changes in the laws of states, localities, and foreign jurisdictions that may increase taxes on the company’s operations; and changes in global, national, regional and/or local economic and geopolitical climates. You should review the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including “Risk Factors” in its most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent quarterly reports, for a discussion of such risks and uncertainties.

Contact:

Maria Mainville
Taubman, Director, Communications
1-248-258-7469
mmainville@taubman.com

Ryan Hurren
Taubman, Director, Investor Relations
1-248-258-7232
rhurren@taubman.com

Source: Taubman Centers, Inc.

Best Buy launches recyclable gift cards

Best Buy launches recyclable gift cards
Best Buy launches recyclable gift cards

 

Minneapolis, MN, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — Best Buy recently released a gift card that can be recycled at home – with your paper, cans and bottles.

Because the “Go Green” gift card is made out of paper, it can go right into your recycling bin at home.  Easy peasy.

The traditional gift card is made out of polyvinyl chloride, also known as PVC, a material that is not usually accepted in city recycling programs. By using paper, we want to help reduce the amount of plastic that’s thrown out.

There are a couple of key ingredients to make recyclable cards. First, the paper becomes Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, which is an internationally recognized standard for sustainable paper sourcing. Next, they are printed with water-soluble ink instead of solvent-based ink, which is better for the environment.  Then, a water-soluble glue is used to adhere the front to the back. We’re talking sustainability from start to finish.

Not only are these cards better for the environment, but they’re strong, too. The durability matches those of traditional gift cards – they paper ones are stiff and will slide into your wallet just as easily. Of course, the paper cards also come in the familiar Best Buy price tag shape.

So for your next Best Buy gift card purchase, consider selecting the “Go Green” gift card – just look for the green on the display case next to the check out. The new cards are easier to recycle and they’re better for the environment. That’s a win for you and a win for the earth.

And when you’re using your new “Go Green” gift card, check out Best Buy’s latest sustainable tech.

Recyclable gift cards are available at Best Buy stores and can also be purchased online.

You can keep up with more Best Buy sustainability stories, as well as follow @BestBuyCSR on Twitter for news

Source: Best Buy

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CBRE named top global real estate advisory firm in the annual Euromoney Real Estate Awards for the fifth consecutive year

Los Angeles, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG) has been named the top global real estate advisory firm in the annual Euromoney Real Estate Awards for the fifth consecutive year. Globally, CBRE was also ranked highest overall in the Sales/Leasing, Valuation and Research categories.

In addition to the global awards, CBRE was named as the leading real estate advisory firm in Western Europe, North America and Africa as well as in 21 individual countries, including Australia, France, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Euromoney, a leading international finance publication, annually surveys the opinions of real estate advisors, developers, investment managers, corporate end-users and banks worldwide to determine the best providers of real estate services. Industry professionals from more than 160 countries participated in this year’s survey.

“The Euromoney awards are important because they reflect the perceptions of our clients and industry peers around the world. Our strong performance in this program—year-in and year-out—underscores the ongoing success of our people in delivering distinct advantages to our clients, “said Bob Sulentic, President & Chief Executive Officer, CBRE.

For more information on the 2016 Euromoney Real Estate Awards, please go to www.euromoney.com.

About CBRE Group, Inc.
CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBG), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Los Angeles, is the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm (based on 2015 revenue).  The Company has more than 70,000 employees (excluding affiliates), and serves real estate investors and occupiers through more than 400 offices (excluding affiliates) worldwide.  CBRE offers a broad range of integrated services, including facilities, transaction and project management; property management; investment management; appraisal and valuation; property leasing; strategic consulting; property sales; mortgage services and development services. Please visit our website at www.cbre.com.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Robert McGrath
Senior Director, Global Media Relations
+1 212 9848267

Source:  CBRE Group, Inc.

BESTSELLER opens its doors at its offices in Brande and Aarhus for three days of the latest trends and fashion

BRANDE, Denmark, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — For the third year running, BESTSELLER’s offices in Brande and Aarhus will be turned into buzzing fashion fair venues for this year’s BESTSELLER FASHION DAYS.

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week, more than 300 Danish and international customers are in for a unique experience, when BESTSELLER opens its doors at the head office in Brande and at the office in Aarhus for three days of the latest trends and fashion.

BESTSELLER’s brands have worked hard to put together an inspiring fashion fair for the invited customers, and designers, buyers and salespeople representing BESTSELLER’s men’s, women’s and kids’ brands will present the latest collections for September, October and November.

Stay tuned on @bestselleroneworld on Instagram to get a glimpse of the buzzing fair activities at the two locations.

Contact:

BESTSELLER A/S
Fredskovvej, DK-7330 Brande
Phone: + 45 99 42 32 00
Fax: + 45 99 42 34 99
E-mail: contact(@)bestseller.com

Source: Bestseller

PetSmart celebrates seven millionth pet adoption

PHOENIX, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — When Daisy trotted out the doors of a Staten Island PetSmart store on a Saturday in August, she became more than the milestone-setting seven millionth pet adopted through PetSmart® and PetSmart Charities® since the in-store adoption program began in 1994. She became another powerful story of people saving pets and pets saving people.

To date, PetSmart, “The Adopt Spot,” has been a part of more of these heartwarming stories than any other organization. PetSmart achieves this milestone together with nonprofits PetSmart Charities and PetSmart Charities™ of Canada, who facilitate in-store adoptions by creating lasting relationships with the more than 3,000 animal welfare partners that bring adoptable pets to the stores. As a strategic grant making organization, PetSmart Charities has also donated more than $285 million directly to help pets – more than any other animal welfare funder in North America.

Every 30 seconds a PetSmart store is open, a pet’s life is saved, totaling about 1,400 lives saved every day. PetSmart, “The Adopt Spot,” has become the leading resource for pet adoptions in North America.

“Daisy’s adoption is an enormous milestone. Not just because she is the seven millionth adoption PetSmart has facilitated, but because she has had such an impact on her new family already, bringing joy and love to the McKenzie family,” said Eran Cohen, chief customer experience officer, PetSmart.

“Daisy was transported from the South to New York to have a better shot at being adopted. Already she is transitioning seamlessly into the high-energy McKenzie family as a second canine family member joining adopted dog Sabrina, pet parents Angela and Brad, and their two busy boys under five Jack and Henry,” said Cohen. “We believe every pet is tremendously special. And while we’ve always celebrated how people save these animals’ lives – like Angela and Brad did – this is the perfect time to also reflect on the amazing ways pets save people.”

Over the next few months, Daisy’s adoption story is just one of seven PetSmart will share to show how pets save people:

  • Blake Senses Owner’s Seizures – With a personality as big as Texas, this little black kitten spent months in foster care after his original owner got sick and couldn’t care for him. Days after being adopted, Blake woke his new pet parent Glen by biting his toes, alerting him to an oncoming seizure. Glen suffers from three separate brain diseases with frequent seizures that can be deadly if they strike during sleep. With Blake’s sixth sense he instinctively knows the onset of a seizure and encourages Glen to take action such as sitting down (or waking up), acting as a life-saving companion and forming an incredible bond.
  • Polly Helps Vet Cope with PTSD – As an adult dog, Polly’s chances at adoptions were not good. However, Vietnam veteran Ed fell in love with her. Today, Polly has graduated from service dog training and is a constant companion to Ed, who suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Polly spent months in a shelter. Ed said, “I found Polly when I did because she has a higher calling in life.”
  • Chica and Bruce’s New Normal – After losing his beloved wife to cancer and just months later, his dog Taco to a heart condition, Bruce thought he’d never adopt again. But he fell in love with and adopted Chica, a little Chihuahua. After a year together, Bruce often remarks, “I don’t know who rescued whom?” Chica loves rides in Bruce’s Corvette classic and has provided the canine companionship he needed to embrace life once again.
  • Zephyr to Save Lots of Lives – Adam adopted Zephyr, a German Shepherd mix, from a Miami PetSmart store and then moved to Michigan so Adam could finish his graduate school. With a love of the outdoors and having emergency medical experience himself, Adam decided to put Zephyr into the Michigan Search and Rescue. The dog is moving through the program with flying colors and is expected to reach field-deployable status as an Air Scent Search and Rescue K9 by next spring.
  • Pete Helps Grandma and Grandson with Loss – In May, Dottie lost her husband of nearly 43 years and two months later her 10-and-one-half-year old Boxer, Pibbs. Her family was encouraging adopting another dog and so she set out to a PetSmart store with her daughter, son-in-law, granddaughter Bennett and grandson John Andrew, who picked out “Harvey” and named him “Pete,” after his grandfather. Dottie spends a lot time with her grandchildren and John Andrew in particular is missing his grandfather. Pete is providing playful companionship to the family.
  • Adopted Bunny Calms Anxiety – Mis lives with anxiety and sometimes experiences attacks. Her adopted bunny, Tobi, which she rescued from a PetSmart store in March of this year, helps relieve her anxiety. Tobi has a caregiving and fun personality and knows when Mis’ anxiety is rising. Tobi’s antics – like leaping onto or under the bed – make her laugh, shifting her mood.

“I have been adopting dogs all my life and Daisy is number eight, the smallest dog so far and our first puppy as we have always adopted older dogs,” said Angela McKenzie, new pet parent of Daisy, who joins husband Brad, and two sons, Henry, who is three and Jack, five, and Sabrina, an eight-year-old Great Dane mix. “With two active boys, we wanted two dogs and found Daisy online through Louie’s Legacy. We met Daisy in the PetSmart store and fell in love. Immediately, Daisy transitioned into our family and even after a short week, it felt like she has been part of our family forever. She is a wonderful puppy and a great addition to our family.”

Pet parents everywhere are invited to share their own pet’s adoption story on Instagram or Twitter using #iadopted for a chance to be featured on a special adoption story wall at www.petsmart.com and www.petsmartcharities.org. So far, more than 450,000 stories have been submitted and nearly 2,000 posted on the #iadopted story wall. Go to petsmart.com/iadopted and petsmartcharities.org/iadopted to see the stories.

“Maybe you’re a military veteran like Ed who is comforted by their service dog. Or you’ve embraced a more active lifestyle because you have to walk an active pup, or you have a hero cat like Blake. Whatever your story is – we want to recognize all pets and share their amazing stories with the world,” said Cohen.

It’s Time to Save More Lives!
The next PetSmart Charities National Adoption Weekend takes place at local PetSmart stores this coming weekend, Sept. 16-18. All weekend long, PetSmart will host adoption events across its chain of more than 1,470 stores featuring thousands of pets to adopt. At its last two events in February and May, PetSmart set records – more than 25,000 and 24,000 pets adopted, respectively.

Where: Nationwide at PetSmart stores – “The Adopt Spot!”

When: Fri., Sept. 16, and Sat., Sept. 17, 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sun., Sept. 18, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. & at The Adopt Spot at Chase Field, 1:10 p.m. game

Contact: Find the PetSmart store nearest you at http://pets.petsmart.com/adoptions/ or call 1-877-473-8762.

About PetSmart
PetSmart, Inc. is the largest specialty pet retailer of services and solutions for the lifetime needs of pets. At PetSmart, we love pets, and we believe pets make us better people. Every day with every connection, PetSmart’s passionate associates help bring pet parents closer to their pets so they can live more fulfilled lives. This vision impacts everything we do for our customers, the way we support our associates and how we give back to our communities. We employ approximately 53,000 associates, operate 1,477 pet stores in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico and 203 in-store PetSmart® PetsHotel® dog and cat boarding facilities. PetSmart provides a broad range of competitively priced pet food and pet products and offers dog training, pet grooming, pet boarding, PetSmart Doggie Day Camp day care services and pet adoption services in-store. Our portfolio of digital resources for pet parents – including PetSmart.com, PetFoodDirect.com, Pet360.com and petMD.com – offers the most comprehensive online pet supplies and pet care information in the U.S. Through our in-store pet adoption partnership with independent nonprofit organizations, PetSmart Charities® and PetSmart Charities™ of Canada, PetSmart helps to save the lives of more than 500,000 homeless pets each year.

About PetSmart Charities®
PetSmart Charities, Inc. is a nonprofit animal welfare organization that saves the lives of homeless pets. Each year nearly 500,000 dogs and cats find homes through our adoption program in all PetSmart® stores across the U.S. and sponsored adoption events. Each year millions of PetSmart shoppers contribute to pets in need by making donations directly to PetSmart Charities on a pin pad at the registers in PetSmart stores.  PetSmart Charities administers and efficiently uses 90 cents of every dollar of the generous donations by issuing grants and providing additional support to help pets in need.  PetSmart Charities grants more money to directly help pets in need than any other animal welfare group in North America, with a focus on funding adoption and spay/neuter programs that help communities solve pet overpopulation. PetSmart Charities is a 501(c)(3) organization, independent from PetSmart, Inc. PetSmart Charities has received the Four Star Rating for the past 13 years from Charity Navigator, an independent nonprofit that reports on the effectiveness, accountability and transparency of nonprofits, placing it among the top one percent of charities rated by this organization.

About PetSmart Charities™ of Canada
PetSmart Charities of Canada is a nonprofit animal welfare organization that saves the lives of homeless pets in Canada. Each year more than 20,000 cats and dogs find Canadian homes through our adoption program in nearly all PetSmart stores across Canada and our sponsored adoption events. A leading funder of animal welfare, PetSmart Charities of Canada has granted more than $9 million to help pets in need with a funding focus on adoption and spay/neuter programs that help communities solve pet overpopulation. PetSmart Charities of Canada is a registered charity, independent from PetSmart.

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

PetSmart Media Line:
623-587-2177

Source: PetSmart

McColl’s Retail Group appointments: Steve Goswell as Operations Director and Karen Bird as Human Resources Director

Brentwood, United Kingdom, 2016-Sep-14 — /EPR Retail News/ — McColl’s Retail Group, the leading neighbourhood retailer, today (12th September 2016) announces two new appointments to its operational board.

Steve Goswell has joined the Group as Operations Director. Steve has held a number of senior roles at Tesco spanning twenty years, including Regional Store Director of the South West, Transformation Director of New Stores and Refresh, and Multi-Channel Direct Retail Programme Manager. Steve will report to the Group’s Chief Operating Officer, Dave Thomas.

Karen Bird will join the Group on 3rd October 2016 as Human Resources Director. Karen also joins McColl’s from Tesco where she gained over thirty years’ experience in a variety of operational and HR roles, most recently as People Director where she led the HR transformation agenda for Tesco’s UK operations. Karen will report directly to the Group’s Chief Executive, Jonathan Miller.

Jonathan Miller, Chief Executive, McColl’s Retail Group, said: “I am delighted to welcome Steve and Karen, both of whom have extensive experience in our sector. Their skills will be a considerable asset as we continue to enhance and expand our market-leading convenience offering. They will also help to ensure our customers and colleagues remain at the very heart of our proposition.

“Steve and Karen join at an exciting time for McColl’s, particularly as we start planning for the transformational acquisition of 298 convenience stores from the Co-Op, announced in July.”

Notes to editors

About McColl’s Retail Group

McColl’s is a leading neighbourhood retailer in the independent managed sector running 1,366 convenience and newsagent stores. We operate 933 McColl’s branded UK convenience stores as well as 433 newsagents branded Martin’s, except in Scotland where we operate under our heritage brand, RS McColl. In addition we are also the largest operator of Post Offices in the UK.

Excluding the new appointments detailed above, McColl’s’ operational board is comprised of Jonathan Miller, Chief Executive, Simon Fuller, Chief Financial Officer, Dave Thomas, Chief Operating Officer, David Archibald FRICS, Development Director, Neil Hodge, Information Technology Director, Peter Miller, Trading Director.

Media enquiries:
Headland Lucy Legh, Simon Burton, Rob Walker
+44 (0)20 3805 4822
McColls@headlandconsultancy.com

Source: McColl’s Retail Group