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Best Buy Co. to Test Mall-Based Mobile Stores

BY CSA STAFF

Minneapolis Best Buy Co. Wednesday announced it is launching stand-alone stores dedicated to mobile technology in malls. The format, called Best Buy Mobile, is designed to help customers navigate the wireless landscape by offering a full range of mobile devices including phones, laptops, and other handhelds, service plans and accessories, as well as teaching customers how the devices work together.

“The new Best Buy Mobile stores are based on one simple idea: Technology is better when it works together,” said Shawn Score, president of Best Buy Mobile. “Today, life happens on the go. On good days, technology helps. On bad days, the gadgets don’t work. This store is designed to help people get more from their mobile life.”

Best Buy Mobile was created as a joint venture with leading U.K. mobile retailer The Carphone Warehouse Group (CPW) in 2006. The Carphone Warehouse is Europe’s largest independent retailer of mobile phones and related services, with over 2,400 stores across nine countries.

Best Buy first introduced Best Buy Mobile as an in-store shop in its traditional stores in select locations. It also opened a freestanding version in select cities. But this is the first time the chain has opened the concept in a mall.

The chain said its new stores will average 3,000 sq. ft. and target shoppers that don’t traditionally shop at its big-box stores such as women and younger shoppers. The stores will feature dedicated “kids zones,” which will give shoppers a place to drop off the kids while they shop. Also, a “Geek Squad Precinct” will be located within each store for all services needs.

Best Buy will test its new mall-based concept in three locations: Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn., Fair Oaks Mall, in Fairfax, Va.; and Woodfield Mall, in Schaumburg, Ill. All of the stores are scheduled to open in October.

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Van Tassel named president of Post Foods

BY CSA STAFF

ST. LOUIS Ralcorp Holdings has named Stephen Van Tassel corporate vp and president of the recently acquired Post Foods business.

Van Tassel joined the company on Aug. 4 in connection with the acquisition of Post Foods from Kraft Foods. He will be responsible for managing and growing Post Foods and will report to David Skarie, co-ceo and president of Ralcorp.

 

Van Tassel most recently served as vp of marketing for the North America Post Cereal Category.

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Supervalu posts weaker-than-expected 2Q results

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS Supervalu reported second quarter net sales of $10.2 billion compared to $10.2 billion last year, net earnings of $128 million compared to $148 million last year, and diluted earnings per share of 60 cents compared to 69 cents last year. Second quarter fiscal 2009 and fiscal 2008 results included charges for one-time acquisition-related costs of $3 million and $19 million, pretax or 1 cent and 5 cent per diluted share, respectively.

The company reported year-to-date fiscal 2009 net sales of $23.6 billion compared to $23.5 billion last year, net earnings of $290 million compared to $296 million last year, and reported diluted earnings per share of $1.36 compared to $1.37 last year. Year to date fiscal 2009 results include charges for one-time acquisition-related costs of 4 cents per diluted share compared to 13 cents per diluted share last year.

 

Jeff Noddle, Supervalu chairman and ceo, said, Despite weaker than expected operating results in the second quarter, we expect another record earnings per share year, with earnings in a range of $2.86 to $2.96 per share. As for the balance of the year, we have taken action to improve our sales performance while creating value for our customers and to reduce costs in the back half of the year. Noddle went on to say, We are also affirming that our cash flows will provide for more than $1 billion in capital spending and debt reductions of at least $400 million this year. 

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