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CBL and TIAA-CREF in $1.09 billion real estate joint venture

BY CSA STAFF

New York City — TIAA-CREF, a national financial services organization and a provider of retirement services for educators, and CBL & Associates Properties have formed a $1.09 billion real estate joint venture to invest in market-dominant shopping malls.

TIAA-CREF will invest in four of CBL’s shopping malls: Oakland Park Mall, Kansas City, Ks.; West County Center, St. Louis; CoolSprings Galleria, Nashville; and Pearland Town Center, Pearland, Texas.

“We believe TIAA-CREF is the right partner for CBL and together have structured a mutually beneficial venture,” said Stephen Lebovitz, president and CEO of CBL & Associates Properties. “We are pleased to recognize the significant enhancement in value for our portfolio through this transaction.”

Lebovitz added: “This transaction will not only further our deleveraging efforts by reducing our total debt by approximately $480 million, it will also create a vehicle to pursue future corporate growth opportunities.”

CBL will continue to manage and lease the properties. CBL said it anticipates closing on the transaction by third quarter 2011

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Weis Markets selects Retalix to reduce out-of-stocks

BY CSA STAFF

Dallas — Weis Markets has selected Retalix’s Demand-Driven Replenishment solution to optimize its overall in-stock position and reduce excess inventory and out-of-stocks in its stores.

“We wanted a system that could provide demand-based forecasting and replenishment and assist us in optimizing our inventory. Retalix’s Demand-Driven Replenishment solution was the ideal fit," said Bob Mawyer, VP of information technology at Weis Markets, Sunbury, Pa., which operates 164 stores.

In addition, Mawyer said, Weiss expects the solution to help it drive sales and improve its customer experience by reducing out-of-stocks, while making it operations more efficient and reducing overall costs.

The Demand-Driven Replenishment system is a demand forecasting and store replenishment system based on Microsoft technologies. It is comprised of four modules: Demand Forecasting, Inventory Management, Order Optimization and Analytics. It contains proprietary algorithms to interpret demand and optimize replenishment orders.

Weis Markets plans to roll out the Demand-Driven Replenishment system this year, and it will also be integrated with the other Retalix systems already used by the grocer.

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College students to get schooled in retail marketing

BY CSA STAFF

SAN FRANCISCO and DULUTH, Minn.— DemandTec, an optimization network for retailers and consumer products companies, announced that it has partnered with the Labovitz School of Business & Economics at the University of Minnesota Duluth to support the university’s new program training students with skills for careers in the retail and consumer products industries.

Pending approval from the University’s board of regents, the Retail Marketing Analytics program will provideundergraduate UMD students with an educational curriculum that can be directly applied to careers in the retail and consumer products industries, DemandTec reported.

"We are excited to partner with an industry leader like DemandTec to help make the Retail Marketing Analytics Program a reality for LSBE," said Dr. Kjell R. Knudsen, Dean of LSBE at UMD. "The program fills a large and previously unaddressed void in the retail and consumer products industries for early-career, analytical talent. Our program is designed to attract and nurture the future leaders of the retail sector."

Offered as an undergraduate major or minor area of study, the program will focuson core competencies that are necessary for a successful career in the retail marketing industry including marketing research, consumer behavior, marketing analytics, customer relationship and database marketing, analytics practicum, database management and design, and applications of economic analysis.

"DemandTec and LSBE at UMD share a common goal to ensure the future leaders of the retail and consumer products industries acquire the skills they need to be competitive in today’s workforce," said Dan Fishback, president and CEO of DemandTec. "We are excited to make this commitment to a program that will provide students a unique opportunity to gain valuable knowledge that will benefit them and our industry, specifically our Minnesota-based customers Best Buy, General Mills, Target, Nash Finch, Advance Auto Parts, and Schwan’s, for years to come."

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