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Color Commentary

BY CSA STAFF

For some retailers, earth tones have been the trend when choosing a color palette; for others, bright white has been the choice as it adds a contrasting backdrop to the merchandise they showcase. Meet Brian Foster of Paint Folks as he discusses trends in paint colors and how his company offers more than just paint.

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Sears board member new addition at Staples

BY CSA STAFF

Starboard Value, the investment firm driving change at Staples, pushed the retailer to merge with Office Depot and now has achieved another of its goals with the addition of a new board member.

At the behest of Starboard, Staples said it nominated former investment banker and cruise line executive Kunal Kamlani to stand for election at its annual meeting to fill a position being vacated after seven years by Justin King. Unlike Kamlani, King was a veteran retailer who at the time of his appointment in 2007 was CEO of leading U.K. food retailer Sainsbury and had also spent time at Marks & Spencer and Walmart’s Asda division. King resigned as Sainsbury CEO last year after 10 years.

Kamlani isn’t joining the Staples board for his retail expertise and outgoing board member King disagreed with the agreement reached with Starboard that made room for Kamlani on the board.Kamlani was named to the board of Sears Holdings in December 2014 and he also serves on the retailer’s audit committee. He most recently served as president, COO and CFO of Prestige Cruise Holdings and , the parent company of Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises from 2011 to 2014.

Prior to that he served as head of the global investment solutions division of Bank of America/Merrill Lynch. Prior to that, he was managing director and COO of Smith Barney. Kamlani was nominated pursuant to an agreement with Starboard Value in which the firm agreed to support all of Staples’ director nominees at the upcoming 2015 annual meeting.

We have an extremely strong board with extensive skills and experience in areas including integration, strategic planning, e-commerce and operations,” said Ron Sargent, Staples’ chairman and CEO. “We look forward to working with Kunal, and we are confident he will help us continue to build value for our stockholders through our reinvention and the acquisition of Office Depot. We will continue to work to close the Office Depot transaction and prepare for a seamless integration.”

Jeff Smith, CEO of Starboard added, “We are appreciative of the productive relationship we have had with Staples and are pleased to have worked constructively with Staples’ Board and management to add Kunal to the Board. We look forward to continued value creation at Staples, and we believe Kunal’s skills and experience will help the Board as it continues to focus on Staples’ strategic priorities.”

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Affordable fashion expands close to 90210

BY CSA STAFF

Saks Off 5th is joining the likes of Nordstrom Rack, Marshalls and Old Navy as the newest tenant at a Southern California shopping center that serves by value conscious residents of a community synonymous with celebrity and glamour.

Saks' new 27,000-sq.-ft. Off 5th location is located in the Beverly Connection shopping center at 100 La Cienega Boulevard. The shopping center is located along the east side of the road which, despite the inference in the name, means the center is located in Los Angeles with a less recognizable zip code of 90048. To the west of the center lies the affluent enclave of Beverly Hills where Saks operates one of its pricier flagship Saks Fifth Avenue stores about five miles away on Wilshire Boulevard in between a Nieman Marcus and a Barney’s New York.

The newest Off 5th location will give Saks 12 Southern California locations, only four of which are Saks Fifth Avenue stores. That ration mirrors what the company’s footprint looks like nationally with 79 Off Fifth stores and 39 Saks Fifth Avenue stores.

The company’s newest two-level store at the Beverly Connection centers is said to feature an open, modular layout with a unique and unparalleled selection of designer goods for men and women.

“Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th’s move to Beverly Hills is an exciting venture for us,” said Jonathan Greller, president of outlets with Saks parent the Hudson’s Bay Company. “This is a fashion-forward, style-savvy community, and Off 5th will cater to the market with luxury, on-trend shopping – all at incredible prices – and become a must-shop destination for fashion in L.A.”

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