OPERATIONS

Canadian fashion retailer Jacob to close all 92 stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Montreal — After a failed attempt to restructure under bankruptcy protection, Canadian fashion retailer Boutique Jacob said it will liquidate its inventory and close all 92 stores.

The Montreal-based chain, which operates the Jacob, Jacob Outlet and Jacob Liquidation banners, exited bankruptcy protection in 2011 and has been unable to return to profitability. According to a Reuters report, the company said it was hurt by a challenging economy as well as competition from international brands that have debuted in Canada in recent years.

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FINANCE

GNC Holdings profit slides in Q1

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Pittsburgh — GNC Holdings reported that net income for the quarter ended March 31 dipped to $69.9 million, from $72.6 million in the year-ago period.

Retail revenue grew 3.1% to $509.0 million, compared to $493.5 million for first quarter 2013, driven primarily by strength from the e-commerce sector. Consolidated revenue edged up 1.9% to $677.3 million. Same-store sales decreased 0.7%.

“January and February were affected by severe weather across large parts of the country, resulting in a delayed start to the workout season,” said Joe Fortunato, GNC president and CEO. “Recent trends have also been affected by an unusually significant amount of negative media, and year-over-year sales hurdles in the third-party diet and pre-workout categories. Based on our current information it looks like these recent trends will persist for the next few quarters.”

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FINANCE

Roundy’s to sell 18 Rainbow stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Minneapolis — Grocery retailer Roundy’s said it had entered into definitive agreements to sell 18 Rainbow stores in the Minneapolis/St. Paul market to a group of local grocers, including Supervalu.

The sale price is $65 million, and Roundy’s said it is seeking buyers for a remaining nine Rainbow stores so that it can fully exit the Minneapolis/St. Paul market.

The transaction is expected to close during the third quarter of this year.

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