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Blockbuster Franchisees Revert to Late Fees

BY CSA STAFF

New York City, Late fees are being reinstated at 17 Blockbuster franchises owned by Capitol Entertainment, according to The Washington Post. The northern Virginia franchisor is going against the company’s highly publicized—and frequently criticized—policy of no late fees that was introduced in January. The newspaper quoted Capitol Entertainment’s director of operations Mickey McFarland: “With the no-late-fee policy we were having an extreme problem with satisfying the customer on movie availability. We did not know when the movies were coming back.”

The stores have imposed a 99? per day late fee.

Blockbuster has 4,700 corporate-owned locations, all of which participate in the no-late-fee plan. However, about half of the 1,100 franchises still charge late fees.

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Tuesday Morning Posts 9.2% Income Growth

BY CSA STAFF

Dallas, Tuesday Morning Corporation reported net income for the third quarter ended Sept. 30 increased 9.2% to $8.2 million, compared to $7.5 million for the third quarter of 2004. As previously reported, net sales for the third quarter of 2005 increased 3.3% to $192.3 million from $186.1 million for the third quarter last year. Comparable store sales, excluding the impact from the hurricanes, decreased 3.6% for the third quarter of 2005.

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Wal-Mart Bolsters Eco-Friendly Practices

BY CSA STAFF

Bentonville, Ark., On the heels of a plan to make health care more affordable for its associates, Wal-Mart Stores introduced a second major act of corporate responsibility: this time it’s corporate policies aimed at environmental stewardship. The company hopes to save costs as well as reduce energy use in its stores, increase the fuel efficiency of its trucking system and encourage its vendors to follow suit, the New York Times reported. In an address to employees, CEO Lee Scott said: “As one of the largest companies in the world, with an expanding global presence, environmental problems are our problems.”

Some of Wal-Mart’s plans specifics are to invest $500 million in technologies that will reduce greenhouse gases from stores and distribution centers by 20% over the next seven years; increase the fuel efficiency of its truck fleet by 25% over the next three years and double it within 10 years. The company also intends to design a new store within four years that is at least 25% more energy-efficient.

The company recently unveiled an experimental store in McKinney, Texas, that includes eco-friendly features such as a 120 ft. –tall wind turbine, solar panels and a bio-waste boiler that converts waste oil from cooking fryers and motors into heat.

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