FINANCE

Family Dollar increases quarterly dividend

BY Dan Berthiaume

Matthews, N.C. – The board of directors has increased the amount of the regular quarterly dividend payment to $0.31 per share, an increase of 19.2% from the preceding quarterly cash dividend of $0.26 per share. The increase will be effective with the declaration of the next quarterly dividend.

“Family Dollar has a proven business model with a long-track record of success. For more than 54 years, we have provided our customers with a compelling combination of value and convenience,” said Howard Levine, chairman and CEO. “Our board’s decision to maintain our remarkable record of 38 consecutive years of dividend increases shows their unwavering commitment to shareholders, and the increase of 19.2% reflects our confidence in the company’s long-term growth potential and in our ability to deliver stronger financial returns.”

Family Dollar recently reported disappointing first quarter financial results, and also announced that president and COO Michael Bloom has left the company to pursue other interests. At the time, Levine said he and Bloom were not in agreement on merchandising strategies.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

CVS kicks off Project Health

BY Dan Berthiaume

Woonsocket, R.I. – CVS/pharmacy has kicked off its annual Project Health wellness campaign. Project Health will deliver more than $15 million worth of free health services to multicultural communities across the U.S. in 2014.

During the months of January, February and March, more than 350 Project Health events will be held at select CVS/pharmacy retail locations in 15 markets across the U.S., including Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Orlando, New York City, Philadelphia, Tampa, and Washington, DC. Project Health events will also be held at select CVS/pharmacy stores in Puerto Rico in March and April.

Project Health offers an array of free comprehensive health risk assessments. Project Health events will also offer participants’ information on the new health insurance marketplace and their coverage options under the new health care law. Health insurance experts will be available at many events to provide guidance.

"Ninety percent of the people who attended our Project Health screenings in the fall told us they found the health insurance experts at these events to be extremely helpful,” said Helena Foulkes, president of CVS/pharmacy. “For that reason, we decided to offer this resource again in early 2014. We are focused on helping our customers make informed decisions about their health care and will continue to do so as the new health care marketplace is rolled out."

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SUPPLY CHAIN

Stella & Dot selects GT Nexus for supply chain visibility

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Bruno, Calif. — Stella & Dot has selected GT Nexus to serve as the company’s end-to-end global supply chain visibility platform. The specialty jewelry retailer will leverage GT Nexus to help sustain its pace of business growth by standardizing processes and delivering visibility into the status of inventory from the moment goods are ordered through delivery to global distribution centers.

Thus customers will receive extended visibility into orders to know exactly when their goods will arrive, while Stella & Dot and its partners will benefit from a collaborative environment that enables everyone in the chain to operate as a single strategic network, opposed to a series of individual parties.

Stella & Dot will utilize GT Nexus cloud-based solutions to perform activities including factory management, work-in-process tracking, P.O. distribution and collaboration, and supplier collaboration.

“Maintaining our current pace of growth requires operational excellence in our supply chain to ensure efficiency and meet consumer demand,” Arun Kumar, VP of operations at Stella & Dot. “We needed a platform we could grow with. With GT Nexus we are able to move our supply chain to the cloud and operate as a global network. We now have a highly automated environment where we can track and manage orders and inventory across our global partner network. This is a strategic initiative that will directly impact our ability to serve customers and help expand internationally.”

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