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Costco profit surges 39%, beating expectations

BY Marianne Wilson

Issaquah, Wash. — Costco Wholesale Corp posted a better-than expected 39% increase in quarterly profit, helped by increasing sales and a rise in membership fees.

Net income was $547 million in the fiscal second quarter ended on Feb. 17, compared with $394 million a year ago.

“Costco continues to outperform its peers in terms of overall sales growth, comparable club gains, and space and SKU productivity,” commented Sandy Skrovan, U.S. research director. “The retailer’s ability to keep members engaged and coming back for more is unparalleled. It has some of the most loyal customers across retailing.”

The company’s net sales for the quarter rose 8% to $24.34 billion. Total same-store sales rose 5%
Membership fee revenue increased 15% to $528 million in the second quarter.

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Post-it launches Big Pads

BY CSA STAFF

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Post-it brand from 3M announces the launch of Post-it Big Pads, the company announced this weekend at the SXSW 2013 trade show.

Post-It Big Pads are available in three sizes and colors, including 11-in.-by-11-in. bright yellow, 15-in.-by-15-in. fuchsia and 22-in.-by-22-in. electric blue. Post-it Big Pads can be used together and with Post-it Notes, Post-it Full Adhesive Notes and Post-it Full Adhesive Rolls to create a customized system for sharing ideas with others. Each Post-it Big Pad includes 30 sheets that stick to smooth, vertical surfaces and have a hard backing for transportability.

"In an increasingly techie world, sometimes the most organic and fundamental way to share ideas with others is to go back to basics," said technology and lifestyle expert Katie Linendoll. "The Post-it Big Pad is a brainstorming tool that enhances innovation and creativity by capturing the many ideas of a group or individual on one collaborative, inspirational canvas."

"The Post-it Brand is all about finding new ways to help people make the most of their days with products that trigger both efficiency and creativity," said Jeff Hillins, director of marketing for Post-it Brand. "The new Post-it Big Pads facilitate better communication and help ideas standout through connectivity with others in a more personal, authentic way.’

Attendees at this year’s SXSW trade show will have the opportunity to learn about and interact with Post-it Big Pads at the Post-it Brand booth. Attendees are invited to "Fill the White Space," and discover how Post-it Big Pads can unleash your creativity by helping to fill the booth with color and ideas. The Post-it Brand booth is open from Sunday, March 10 through Wednesday, March 13 and is located between aisles 700 to 800 near exhibitor services.

Post-it Big Pads are available at office supply stores or online.

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Kimberly-Clark names CMO

BY CSA STAFF

DALLAS — Kimberly-Clark has announced that Clive Sirkin has been named vice president and chief marketing officer, reporting to Tony Palmer, president of global brands and innovation.

Sirkin joined K-C in 2007 and has held a number of marketing leadership positions.

"Since joining K-C, Clive has been instrumental in building strong, healthy brands and businesses around the world," Palmer said. "As CMO, Clive will continue the ongoing transformation of our marketing function as a core driver of our growth agenda."

A native of South Africa, Sirkin graduated from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg with a bachelor of commerce degree in economics and marketing. He spent the first part of his career in finance and operational roles. In 1989, Sirkin joined advertising giant Leo Burnett and spent the next 16 years in a variety of increasingly responsible roles, ending his time at the agency as Group Managing Director, Leo Burnett Worldwide.

Prior to joining K-C, Sirkin consulted with consumer packaged goods firms and specialized in helping clients transform marketing processes to commercialize their brands more effectively and efficiently.

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