FINANCE

Aeropostale closes Sycamore transaction; names two board members

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – Aeropostale Inc. has entered into definitive agreements with respect to its previously announced strategic partnership and $150 million senior secured credit facilities with Sycamore Partners. As previously announced on March 13, 2014, the senior secured credit facilities with affiliates of Sycamore Partners consist of a five-year $100 million term loan facility and a ten-year $50 million term loan facility that includes a sourcing arrangement with MGF Sourcing, also an affiliate of Sycamore Partners.

In addition, through the new strategic sourcing partnership with MGF Sourcing, Aeropostale has committed to complete minimum merchandise purchases each year for 10 years. In connection with the closing of the transaction, the Company has appointed two new members to its board of directors: Stefan Kaluzny, managing director at Sycamore Partners, and Julian Geiger, former director and CEO of Crumbs Bake Shop and former chairman and CEO of Aeropostale Inc.

Arthur Rubinfeld is also stepping down as a director of Aeropostale. In addition, the company’s board of directors will nominate Kenneth Gilman, currently a director of Zale Corp. and Kate Spade & Co., for election as an independent director.

"The board and management team are very pleased to have completed this transaction with Sycamore Partners, which strengthens the company’s financial position, broadens Aeropostale’s already strong sourcing base, and provides additional runway for management to continue executing key strategic initiatives to reposition the Aeropostale brand,” said Karin Hirtler-Garvey, chairperson of Aeropostale. “We look forward to working with Stefan, and to gaining the fresh insights and extensive retail expertise he brings to our board. Further, we are pleased to have Julian return to the board and to have access to his experience in successfully building Aeropostale into a leading teen retailer. At the same time, we thank Arthur for his dedicated service and the counsel he has provided as a member of the board."

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Luxottica implements SAP Fashion Management solution

BY Dan Berthiaume

Milan, Italy – Luxottica is rolling out the SAP Fashion Management application. The retailer is implementing the solution with the goal of bringing wholesale and retail operations onto a single, vertical platform sharing the same master data, global inventory and processes.

Developed in collaboration with leading fashion brands and retailers, as well as through a collaboration with Attune Consulting, SAP Fashion Management is a vertical wholesale, manufacturing and retail solution that aims to bring all business operations onto a single platform powered by SAP Hana to help enable faster fashion and grow an adaptable global business while helping increase revenues, margin and efficiency. It was initially announced in January 2014.

"We at Luxottica are thrilled to have begun our implementation project and we are currently in the process of migrating systems," said Dario Scagliotti, group CIO, Luxottica. "Over the coming months, we anticipate big and exciting changes for our current operations."

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Town Shoes to upgrade POS, merchandising systems with Jesta I.S.

BY Dan Berthiaume

Montreal — Town Shoes Ltd. will upgrade its POS and merchandising systems with the Jesta I.S. Vision solutions in its network of close to 200 stores across Canada. With the upgraded suite of solutions, Town Shoes will be able to modernize its supply chain and deliver the right products to customers, faster than ever before.

New analytics, including POS data, will provide real-time information for store modeling, size profiling and inventory balancing to ensure the right product is in the right store at the right time. Town Shoes also hopes that by providing upgraded order fulfillment for e-commerce, customer experience will be consistent, seamless, and streamlined both in store and online.

“We have experienced good growth for all our banners so we felt it was imperative for us to ensure our strategic IT infrastructure was aligned to sustain and support our projected business growth,” said B.J. Morden, senior director I.T. e-commerce & customer service, Town Shoes Ltd. “We decided to extend our partnership with Jesta I.S. because they have been a partner that truly understands our business and has been investing in innovative product features that align with our future strategic business and IT goals.”

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