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BY CSA STAFF

REUSABLE PALLETS

The Stop-Waste Partnership, an Oakland, Calif.-based public agency, and the Reusable Pallet & Container Coalition (RPCC), a Washington, D.C., trade association, launched a campaign in Alameda County (Calif.) to advocate the benefits of reusable transport packaging systems and assist businesses that want to convert to reusable packaging. In addition to the reduced costs associated with reusing transport packaging, businesses that have made the switch report a reduction in shipping errors, lower waste-management costs and increased worker ergonomics and safety. Visit www.usereusables.com for more information.

CALIFORNIA PORTS

U.S. District Judge William Shubb drew a new line in the water relative to pollution control. On Aug. 30, Shubb ruled that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) cannot force shippers to use cleaner diesel fuel. In December 2006, the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association (PMSA) filed a lawsuit in Federal District Court against CARB with regard to regulations on the emission of diesel fuel from vessels that operate within 24 nautical miles of the California coastline. Under Shubb’s ruling, the use of cleaner fuels would have to be regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) responded to the ruling with disappointment. ILWU president Robert McEllrath commended Maersk Shipping Lines and American President Lines for having voluntarily adopted cleaner fuel policies.

MHIA CONFERENCE

The 2008 Material Handling & Logistics Show and Conference, slated for April 21-24 in Cleveland, will feature a keynote address from Andrew Watson, co-author of “Green to Gold: How Smart Companies Use Environmental Strategy to Innovate, Create Value and Build Competitive Advantage.” The event is sponsored by the Material Handling Industry of America, www.mhia.org.

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Winn-Dixie team honored for turnaround

BY CSA STAFF

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. The team that lead Winn-Dixie Stores’ successful turnaround initiative is being honored by the Turnaround Management Association for the best ‘Mega Company Turnaround’ for 2007. Comprised of financial experts from The Blackstone Group, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Smith Hulsey & Busey, the team helped Winn-Dixie regain the market share and profits it started to lose in the mid 1990s and early 2000s to competitors Publix and Wal-Mart.

Winn-Dixie filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in early 2005 after reporting  year-to-date losses of $552.8 million or $3.93 per share of common stock and a decline of 4.9% in identical-store sales in its second fiscal quarter over the same period in 2004.

 

Despite the difficulty of achieving a succesful turnaround, Winn-Dixie began its reorganization effort, while still continuing to operate its core business and preserving jobs. According to the Turnaround Management Association, it created new common stock for five classes of unsecured creditors, with recoveries ranging from about 96% to 53%. The company emerged from bankruptcy on Nov. 21, 2006.

For its fiscal year ended June 27, Winn-Dixie reported adjusted EBITDA of  $85.9 million compared to a loss of $27.8 million last year and an identical-store sales increase of 1.6% 

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Sears ends deal with maternity retailer

BY CSA STAFF

PHILADELPHIA Sears and Mothers Work, the world’s leading maternity apparel retailer, will not be renewing their agreement, Mothers Work announced today. Under their current agreement, Mothers Works operates the maternity apparel department in 502 Sears stores through the sale of its Two Hearts Maternity branded merchandise.

Mothers Work said it expects its partnership with Sears to end on June 20, 2008, when it current deal with the company is expected to expire.

Rebecca Matthias, president and ceo of Mothers Work, noted, “While we are disappointed about the end of our relationship with Sears, we feel the decision not to proceed with a renewal is in the best interest of our stockholders since we were unable to reach terms on a renewal which would be favorable for Mothers Work and our stockholders. “

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