OPERATIONS

CVS offers veterans special store discounts

BY Dan Berthiaume

Woonsocket, R.I. – CVS is offering holders of the Veterans Advantage VetRewards card $2 off every $10 purchase of CVS/pharmacy brand merchandise in stores. To take advantage of the offer, members are verified at VeteransAdvantage.com for access to a special downloadable coupon good every day at CVS/pharmacy. This coupon offer complements the existing 10% online-only discount for purchases made on CVS.com for Veterans Advantage members that was launched in 2012.

"This new benefit for Veterans Advantage members demonstrates our continued commitment to those who have given so much in service to our country," said George Coleman, VP merchandising, store brands, CVS/pharmacy. “We are proud and honored to support the Veterans Advantage mission of respect, recognition and rewards for veterans and military families.”

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OPERATIONS

Dunkin’ Brands elects CEO of Travelocity Global to board

BY Dan Berthiaume

Canton, Mass. — Dunkin’ Brands Group, parent company of Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins, has elected Carl Sparks, president and CEO of Travelocity Global, to the Dunkin’ Brands board of directors, effective July 26. Sparks, 45, has a background in e-commerce, consumer brands and retailing.

"Carl is one of the pre-eminent business leaders in the digital business space, and we are delighted he has joined Dunkin’ Brands’ board of directors," said Nigel Travis, chairman and CEO, Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc. "With his extensive online and digital background, he will be a tremendous addition to our Board. We look forward to benefitting from his insights as we continue to develop new and compelling programs to enhance the engagement with our communities worldwide."

Sparks’ previous experience includes serving as president of online fashion retailer Gilt Groupe and GM of Hotels.com. He is a current member of the board of directors of Vonage Holdings Corp.

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FINANCE

Family Dollar’s Q3 net income drops 3%; announces merchandising changes

BY Dan Berthiaume

Matthews, N.C. — Family Dollar reported lower net income in the third quarter of 2013 as its shoppers continue to hold off on discretionary spending. The discounter also named Jason Reiser to the position of senior VP merchandising.

Family Dollar posted net income of $120.9 million, down 3% from $124.5 million in the year-ago period. Its results, however, topped expectations.

Sales rose 9% to $2.57 billion. Same-store sales increased 2.9% as a result of higher customer transaction totals and traffic volumes.

Family Dollar chairman and CEO Howard R. Levine said the company is doing well in the face of economic challenges for its customers and will adapt to expected continuing fiscal difficulties for consumers.

“Our consumables sales remained strong and we continued to gain market share,” Levine said. “However, our discretionary sales remained challenged as our customers have been forced to make spending choices between basic needs and wants. Consistent with market trends, we expect that our customers will continue to face financial headwinds. We are adapting accordingly, and we are focused on stabilizing gross margin, controlling expenses, improving inventory productivity, and driving greater operational efficiencies.”

For fourth quarter 2013, Family Dollar expects same store sales to increase 2%. For fiscal year 2013, the retailer anticipates an increase in same-store sales of between 3% and 4% and approximately 500 new store openings and 30-50 store closings. During the third quarter, the company opened 129 new stores, closed three stores, and renovated, relocated or expanded 228 stores.

As senior VP merchandising, Reiser will replace John Scanlon, who retired from the company at the end of March. Reiser comes to Family Dollar from Sam’s Club, where he spent more than 17 years in a variety of roles, most recently serving as VP merchandising, health and family care.

In addition, Paul G. White, executive VP, chief merchandising officer, has left the company to pursue other interests. Michael K. Bloom, president and COO, will assume executive responsibility for merchandising while Family Dollar searches for a permanent replacement.

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