REAL ESTATE

Francesca’s Holdings on track to open 76 stores in 2012

BY Marianne Wilson

New York – The fast-growing Francesca’s Holdings Corp. plans to open 76 stores in 2012.

The Houston-based women’s apparel and accessories retailer, which targets young women, has opened 21 new stores so far in 2012, with plans to open 55 additional locations by year-end.

Currently, Francesca’s operates 304 locations nationwide.

For its most recently completed fiscal year, Francesca’s net sales increased 51.0% to $204.2 million, from $135.2 million in the prior year. Same-store sales increased 10.4%.

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Sears loses CMO to financial services provider

BY CSA STAFF

DALLAS — Former Sears chief marketing officer, Monica Woo, has joined Mozido, a leading global provider of low-cost, multi-channel financial services platform for mobile network operators, financial institutions, consumer packaged goods corporations and retailers, as EVP, global chief marketing and strategy officer.

In this capacity, Woo will be responsible for Mozido’s overall brand strategy, communications, and customer experience across channels, as well as key business-building initiatives.

"Defining our brand and brand-building strategies are critical to our success and there is no one better to lead this effort than Monica," said Rick Braddock, chairman, Mozido LLC. "She has demonstrated a strong track record in building brands in the e-commerce, financial services, and consumer packaged goods space. I have no doubt that she will be just as successful with Mozido."

Woo joined Sears Holdings in August 2011 and resigned from her post in January. According to Reuters, analysts at the time expected Woo, who had a strong e-commerce background, to boost the company’s online business. That e-commerce experience includes serving as chief marketing and strategy officer of FreshDirect Holdings from 2009 to 2011 and serving as chief marketing and merchandising officer of 1-800-Flowers.com.

Woo graduated, cum laude, from Mills College with a B.A. in Journalism, and received her MBA from The Wharton Graduate School, University of Pennsylvania.

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Disney celebrates 25 years

BY CSA STAFF

PASADENA, Calif. — On March 28, Disney Store will celebrate its 25th anniversary by givingthe first 250 guests at each location silver commemorative Mickey Mouse ears. In addition, Disney Store will host a variety of family fun activities throughout the day, including Disney trivia, games, a dance party and more. As an added bonus, guests will receive 25% off purchases made in store and online at DisneyStore.com for the entire day. Although known for delivering “the best 30 minutes of a child’s day,” Disney Store has created magical memories for guests of all ages for 25 magical years.

“Disney Store’s 25th anniversary is about celebrating our guests, our products, and the memorable experiences we create for families every day,” said Jim Fielding, president of Disney Store worldwide, “We take great pride in delivering on the Disney promise of excellence, and look forward to bringing the magic of Disney to our guests around the world for many years to come.”

In 1987, Disney launched the entertainment retail model, by opening the first Disney Store in Glendale, California. In 2004, Children’s Place took over operations, only to give them back to Disney four years later. Today, there are more than 350 Disney Store locations worldwide.

As part of the celebration, Disney Store created a commemorative video featuring guests who shared their favorite videos and photos of Disney Store memories over the years. Exclusive products inspired by Disney stories sets Disney Store apart, and a collection of 25th anniversary merchandise has been released with new artwork featuring a collage of favorite Disney characters.

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