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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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Macy’s heats up the grilling competition

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK — Macy’s has launched a new contest to find America’s best griller. Customers can enter the "Macy’s Great American Grilling Guru" contest via Facebook.com/macys from April 9 through April 27. Six finalists will be pitted against each other in a "Sizzle Showdown" on June 8 in Atlanta. One winner will earn the coveted title of America’s Greatest Grilling Guru and receive the grand prize: $10,000 and a trip to Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks in New York City.

"Firing up the grill and sharing a meal with family has long been a favorite American pastime, and Macy’s Great American Grilling Guru provides us a platform to celebrate this time-honored tradition," said Amy Kule, group VP Macy’s parade and entertainment group. "This promotion will help kickoff Macy’s American Icons campaign by giving customers coast-to-coast an opportunity to show off their best grilling recipes, with the winner to receive a trip to Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks, one of the most all-American events that we enjoy as a nation."

Six finalists will win a trip to Macy’s Lenox Square in Atlanta, where they will compete in the Sizzle Showdown hosted by Tracye Hutchins, co-anchor of CBS’s "Better Mornings Atlanta," and judged by Macy’s Culinary Council chefs Cat Cora, Marc Forgione and Stephanie Izard, three of our country’s top culinary talents. After two rounds of competition, the Macy’s Culinary Council chefs will select the winner, who will receive the grand prize of $10,000 and a trip to the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks in New York City where he or she will be revealed as America’s Greatest Grilling Guru. Those who cannot attend the Sizzle Showdown can still share in the fun through video and images of the competition that will be captured and available on macys.com/culinarycouncil after the event.

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Rena Ware announces CEO succession

BY CSA STAFF

BELLEVUE, Wash. — Kitchenware manufacturer, Rena Ware International, has announced that Benjamin J. Zylstra will succeed his father, Russell J. Zylstra , as CEO of the company. Russ Zylstra will remain as chairman of the board of Rena Ware and will continue to be involved in defining the direction and vision of the company.

In his new role as CEO, Ben Zylstra will be responsible for the development of the company’s policies, programs, and sales and marketing strategy, along with members of the senior management team including company president Brad Rich, SVP Mike Mossman, VP marketing June Sweetser, and VP U.S. operations Jeff Roberts.

Ben Zylstra joined Rena Ware in 1998 in the position of sales/marketing Assistant. He advanced to sales manager in 2003, VP in 2008, and EVP in 2011. His promotion to CEO marks the fourth time that a member of the Zylstra family has been at the helm of Rena Ware International, a cookware and home products company founded in 1941 by Dutch immigrant Fred Zylstra and his spouse, Rena Zylstra .

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