REAL ESTATE

Divaris’ A.R.M.S division hired to lease, manage Palace Plaza Shops

BY CSA STAFF

Williamsburg, Va. Virginia Beach, Va.-based Divaris Real Estate’s Asset Repositioning and Monetization Services Division said it has been named the exclusive leasing and property management firm for Palace Plaza Shops, located in Williamsburg, Va.

The 22,610-sq.-ft. retail shopping center is anchored by Gridiron Sports Bar, AmeriClean Laundromat and Europol Deli.

Divaris Property Management Corp. and Sandy Cohen, its COO, were appointed by the court as receiver on the recommendation of the loan servicer, J.E. Robert Cos. of Dallas.

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Entertainment Studios Networks names distribution head

BY CSA STAFF

LOS ANGELES Entertainment Studios Networks announced the appointment of Janice Arouh as president domestic distribution and marketing. Arouh will join Entertainment Studios on May 10. Arouh is currently EVP affiliate sales and marketing for Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movie Channel.

In her new capacity, Arouh will oversee all facets of domestic distribution and marketing for all of Entertainment Studios’ six 24-hour HD television networks: PETS.TV, COMEDY.TV, RECIPE.TV, CARS.TV, ES.TV, and MYDESTINATION.TV Arouh’s duties will include sales strategy, national accounts, contractual negotiations, affiliate relations, sales operations and various business development initiatives including spearheading the company’s expansion into 3D networks.

Prior to joining Hallmark Channel in 2004, Arouh was SVP affiliate marketing at Fox Cable Networks which includes Fox Sports Net, FX, Fox Movie Channel, Fox Soccer Channel, SPEED and National Geographic Channel.

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Office Depot sees improvement in Q1 results

BY CSA STAFF

BOCA RATON, Fla. Office Depot announced that total company sales for the first quarter of 2010 were $3.1 billion, a 5% decrease compared with the first quarter of 2009.

The company reported earnings, after preferred stock dividends, of $20 million in the first quarter of 2010, compared with a loss of $55 million in the first quarter of 2009. Earnings per share were 7 cents for the quarter, versus a loss per share of 20 cents in the same period one year ago.

 

“Our first quarter operating results exceeded our expectations due primarily to a stronger than anticipated performance for the second consecutive quarter by our international division,” said Mike Newman, Office Depot’s chief financial officer. “We’re pleased that these results include year-over-year gross profit margin improvement, marking the third consecutive quarter of such improvement.”

 

First quarter 2010 sales in the North American retail division were $1.3 billion, a decrease of 6% compared with the same period last year, mostly due to closing 120 stores in 2009 as part of the restructuring, according to the company. Comparable-store sales in the 1,133 stores in the U.S. and Canada decreased 1% for the first quarter compared with the prior-year period.

 

First quarter 2010 sales in the North American business solutions division were $831 million, a decrease of 9% compared with the same period last year, Office Depot reported.

 

Office Depot reported that first quarter 2010 sales in the international division were $894 million, an increase of 2% in U.S. dollars compared with the same period last year. First quarter sales in local currency decreased by 5% due primarily to a decline in the number of customer transaction counts.

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