OPERATIONS

Court says Sears chairman can be deposed in age bias lawsuit

BY CSA STAFF

New York An appeals court says Sears Holdings Corp. chairman Edward Lampert must give a deposition in a lawsuit filed by a former Kmart employee who says he was the victim of age discrimination, the Associated Press reported.

The former employee, David Marsico, says he had a conversation with Lampert in 2003 after Kmart emerged from bankruptcy. He says the new Kmart chairman told him, “You’ve been around here a long time.” Kmart is part of Sears Holdings.

Marsico had been with the retailer for 30 years and was a senior vice president. He quit in 2005 after his responsibilities changed.

A federal judge in Detroit dismissed his lawsuit in 2007. But an appeals court revived the case Thursday.

Sears is exploring its options and said Friday that Lampert didn’t make an employment decision on Marsico.

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Books-A-Million offering special deals for educators

BY CSA STAFF

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. Books-A-Million announced that all Books-A-Million stores will be hosting Educators’ Day on Saturday, April 17. The Books-A-Million Educators’ Day will be a special day for educators with extra savings, exclusive offers and prizes and free food and beverages. the company reported.

In addition, Books-A-Million announced that from April 17 through April 23, educators will also receive 25% off their classroom purchases with their Books-A-Million Educator Discount Card.

 

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Cost Plus improves comps, earnings

BY CSA STAFF

OAKLAND, Calif. Cost Plus reported that net sales for the fourth quarter ended Jan. 30 were $320 million, a 4.6% decrease from the $335.4 million in net sales for the fourth quarter ended Jan. 31, 2009. Same-store sales for the fourth quarter decreased 2.5% compared with a 6.1% decrease last year.

Net sales for fiscal 2009 were $869.5 million, an 8.6% decrease from $950.9 million in fiscal 2008. For fiscal 2009, same-store sales decreased 7.1% driven by a reduction in the average ticket, the company reported.

 

Barry Feld, president and CEO commented, “We are pleased with the return to profitability in our most important quarter. The company’s core competency in unique and affordable seasonal gift-giving and entertaining products, augmented with a new customer acquisition campaign, reversed the negative trend in customer count and drove significantly more profitable sales in the quarter than a year ago.”

 

Net income on a GAAP basis for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009 was $21.1 million or 95 cents per diluted share versus a loss of $18.3 million or 83 cents per diluted share for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008. Net loss for fiscal 2009 was $63.3 million or $2.87 per diluted share compared with a net loss of $102.7 million or $4.65 per diluted share last year.

 

For the first quarter of fiscal 2010, the company expects net sales in the range of $185 million to $188 million, based on a same-store sales increase in the range of 3% to 5%.

 

For the first quarter of fiscal 2010, the company is projecting a loss from continuing operations before interest and taxes in the range of $11 million to $13 million versus a loss of $22.3 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2009.

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