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Bath and Body Works announces CEO shift

BY CSA STAFF

COLUMBUS, Ohio— Bath and Body Works announced that it has named Nick Coe, formerly president of Lands’ End, as its new CEO. The current CEO of Bath and Body Works,Diane Neal, will remain in her role as CEO through summer and then transition into an advisory role with the company from San Francisco.

"Diane has done amazing things at Bath and Body Works. I truly appreciate her expertise as a leader and merchant," said Leslie Wexner, chairman and CEO of Limited Brands, Bath and Body Works’ parent company. "We think so highly of her work that we have asked her to stay connected with Bath and Body Works in an advisory capacity that leverages her unique skills while allowing her to return to San Francisco, a personal desire of hers."

Neal joined Bath and Body Works in November 2006 as president and COO and has served as CEO since 2007. Prior to joining Bath and Body Works, Neal held leadership positions at Gap and Target.

Prior to his career at Lands’ End, Coe held senior merchandising positions at Banana Republic and Levi Strauss.

"I am also very excited that we are welcoming Nick who has such an incredible track record as a merchant and leader," said Wexner. "He understands the centrality of the customer and has great admiration for the Bath and Body Works brand and team."

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PetroChina rolls out Retalix StorePoint

BY CSA STAFF

Ra-anana, Israel — Retalix announced Tuesday that PetroChina has completed a rollout of its StorePoint POS and StorePoint Fuel solutions to more than 16,000 convenience store and fuel locations across China.

The Retalix software rollout was part of a larger IT hardware and software upgrade for PetroChina, helping the retailer introduce greater automation and control over its store-level and enterprise-level operations.

“Prior to the IT upgrade, PetroChina retail operations were dependent upon many manual procedures,” said Wang Bo, VP of PetroChina Sales Co. “We realized the need for technology partners like Retalix to help us enhance our IT systems in an effort to better manage our rapid growth and expansion, and to sharpen our competitive edge.”

The rollout of the point-of-sale, store management and fuel software was completed in less than two years, and the software was adapted and customized to fit the specific needs of PetroChina and the Chinese market that it serves.

Retalix’s partner in China, MSGSB of Beijing, provided project management, training and local support during and after the rollout.

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Saks first-quarter profits soar, looks to grow Off 5th unit

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK — Saks Inc. announced reportednet income of $28.4 million, or 16 cents per diluted share, for the first quarter.For the prior year first quarter, the company recorded net income of $18.8 million, or 11 cents per diluted share.

Stephen Sadove, chairman and CEO, noted, "I am very pleased with our first quarter results. Our improved year-over-year performance was driven by a 10.2% comparable-store sales increase and continued gross margin rate improvement."

In the Saks Fifth Avenue stores, several merchandise categories showed strength during the first quarter, including women’s and men’s apparel, handbags and shoes, the company reported. For the quarter, the sales increase in the New York City flagship store was in line with the company’s aggregate comparable-store sales performance.

Saks Direct posted an approximate 25% comparable-store sales increase in the first quarter. Off 5th’s comparable-store sales performance was below the company’s aggregate comparable-store sales performance for the quarter.

The company said it expects comparable-store sales growth in the high-single digit range for the second quarter and in the mid-to-high single digit range in the second half of the fiscal year.

Saks also announced that it plans to open four new Off 5th stores this year inKansas City, Oklahoma City, Northbrook, Ill., and Charleston, S.C.

Additionally, the Off 5th arm said it will open a new store at the Market at Town Center in Sugar Land, Texas, that will replace its store located at The Fountains in Stafford, Texas.

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