FINANCE

Destination Maternity sales slip in Q2

BY Dan Berthiaume

Philadelphia – Destination Maternity Corp. reported declining net and same-store sales for the second quarter of fiscal 2014, compared to the same period a year earlier. Net sales decreased 6.5% to $126.1 million from $134.9 million, while same-store sales dropped 5.1%.

Destination Maternity said the decline in net sales resulted primarily from the decrease in comparable sales and decreased sales related to the company’s continued efforts to close underperforming stores.

“Our sales for the second quarter of fiscal 2014 were considerably weaker than planned,” said Ed Krell, CEO. “We believe the primary driver of this sales weakness was the adverse weather conditions across much of the U.S. during the quarter, which included significantly colder than normal temperatures and much more inclement weather than normal, with numerous periods of snow and icy conditions which suppressed store traffic for us and many retailers in many regions of the U.S. We believe that our weaker than planned sales results also reflect the continued challenging overall economic environment, which has affected many retailers in recent months.”

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FINANCE

EBay, Icahn end dispute

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Jose, Calif. – EBay Inc. has reached an agreement with investor Carl Icahn, ending the proxy contest before the company’s upcoming annual meeting of stockholders. Icahn is withdrawing both his proposal to separate the company’s PayPal business and his two nominees to the company’s board of directors.

The company said it has agreed to Icahn’s suggestion to appoint business executive David Dorman as an independent director to its board of directors. This will expand the number of independent directors to 10 on the 12-member board. The other two directors are eBay founder and chairman Pierre Omidyar, the company’s largest shareholder, and company president and CEO John Donahoe.

Dorman, 60, is a founding partner of Centerview Capital Technology and currently chairman of the board of CVS Caremark Corporation. Dorman was a board member of Motorola Inc. beginning in 2006 and served as chairman of the board from 2008 until 2012. After the separation of Motorola Mobility and Motorola Solutions, Dorman became lead independent director of Motorola Solutions. He also serves on the boards of Yum Brands Inc.

Icahn has signed a confidentiality agreement covering any non-public information that directors and certain officers of the company may share with him. In addition, the company agreed not to adopt a policy precluding such persons from speaking to Icahn, and that it would advise them that they may speak to Icahn if they are willing to do so.

“We are very pleased to have reached this agreement with Carl, settling proxy issues and enabling our board and management team to focus our full attention on a goal every shareholder agrees on – growing PayPal and eBay, and delivering sustainable shareholder value,” said Donahoe.

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REAL ESTATE

RadioShack concept store opens in Boston

BY Dan Berthiaume

Fort Worth, Texas – RadioShack opens its latest custom concept store, located in Boston, April 10. Situated in the Downtown Crossing neighborhood, the newly remodeled store features a custom contemporary nautical design, paying homage to the city’s maritime heritage with sailing rope accents, weathered wood and a ship’s bow centerpiece.

Interactive areas throughout the store encourage shoppers to discover personalized solutions and connect with sales associates. The Boston store is the third custom-designed location to open in the nation and is one of 30 concept stores to open since RadioShack debuted the new concept store model in July 2013. All RadioShack concept stores showcase an enhanced shopping experience, including:

• A speaker wall where customers can shop and compare more than a dozen different speakers using music installed on in-store tablets.

• Interactive displays that encourage shoppers to compare products, including headphone demo stations; a remote control toy exploration center; and a GoPro camera display, demonstrating the capabilities of several camera models.

• A "Do It Together" Idea Center where consumers can bring their ideas to life through collaboration with store associates at a convenient work space.

• Technology including touch-screens and apps to help shoppers understand product benefits.

• Newly configured displays highlighting in-demand brands like Apple, HTC and Samsung, as well as mobile carriers such as AT&T, Sprint and Verizon.

Design and technology features unique to this location include:

• A nautical aesthetic reflected throughout the store’s interior, drawing on the city’s maritime industrial history, including custom color palette, weathered wood with sailing rope accents, industrial lighting, a large navigation compass and ship’s bow centerpiece installation.

• Free mobile device charging stations so consumers can pop in to power up their phones or tablets.

• A 3D printer on display for interactive demonstrations to showcase this powerful new technology for consumers.

• Local content available throughout the store, so customers can use the store’s tablets or mobile devices to find out more about fun things to see and do in Boston.

With the opening of this custom concept store, RadioShack has updated 20% of the 30 stores in the Boston area, with locations receiving a range of updates, from updated signage, to bright, redesigned interiors, to interactive product displays for new product comparison.

"We are delighted to open our new custom concept store in Boston, the birthplace of RadioShack," said Joe Magnacca, CEO of RadioShack. "Boston exemplifies the true spirit of innovation, and the city prides itself on being a hub for entrepreneurialism. This is the ideal backdrop to showcase RadioShack’s fresh new look and renewed focus on technology discovery and collaboration."

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