OPERATIONS

Duane Reade debuts first mobile app

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York — Drugstore operator Duane Reade announced Wednesday the launch of its first mobile application for iOS devices.

The app, free in the iTunes store, is intended to facilitate and customer access to Duane Reade’s pharmacy services, photo printers, prescription refills, Balance Rewards offers, account information and in-store maps.

Duane Reade also announced that it has expanded its digital and social media initiatives to include comprehensive retail social amplification programs, largely credited for the company’s Twitter community growth from 15,000 to 390,000+ followers in seven months.

“The … unveiling of the Duane Reade branded retail mobile application reinforces our commitment to be relevant on digital mediums where our customers are dedicating most of their time today,” said Calvin Peters, online/PR manager for Duane Reade. Peters said the mobile application framework is based on parent company Walgreens mobile app.

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OPERATIONS

American Eagle Outfitters names former Guess exec as Asia Pacific head

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Pittsburgh — American Eagle Outfitters said Wednesday it has named Kitty Yung to the position of EVP/president of Asia Pacific, charged with supporting the chain’s global geographic and channel growth “while aligning with our strategic plan of fortifying core assets, growing North America and transforming to a global omni-channel competitor …,” said Robert Hanson, CEO.

Yung was previously president, Asia Pacific at Guess Inc., growing the business to over 200 stores in Greater China, and is expected to be instrumental in the expansion of AEO’s brands and company-operated stores across China.

The company also promoted Simon Nankervis to SVP, Americas and Global Country Licensing, putting him in charge of AEO’s U.S., Canada and Mexico stores, as well as real estate and country licensing.

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FINANCE

Family Dollar Q2 profit edges up; opening 500 stores this year

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Matthews, N.C. — Family Dollar Stores reported Wednesday that net income for the quarter ended March 2 edged up to $140.1 million, compared with $136.4 million in the year-ago period.

Sales increased 17.7% to $2.89 billion from $2.46 billion, and same-store sales rose 2.9%.

“Following a difficult December, we were pleased with our sales results in early January,” said Howard Levine, chairman and CEO. However, he added that as the company moves into the second half, “our discretionary sales continue to be challenged by both the financial pressures facing our customers as well as unseasonably cold spring weather. Given this uncertainty, we have adjusted our plans to reflect lower than anticipated Home and Apparel sales as our customers’ discretionary spend is expected to remain constrained.”

Still, Levine said, the company remains on track to open approximately 500 new stores in 2013 and close 30 to 50. CapEx is forecasted to range from $650 million to $700 million to support new store openings, store renovations, merchandising initiatives, and expansion of the Family Dollar supply chain.

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