STORE SPACES

Harris Teeter details expansion plans

BY Allison Cerra

Matthews, N.C. — Harris Teeter plans to expand its presence in existing markets, the company said in its third-quarter earnings release.

Harris Teeter noted that it continues to accelerate its new store growth as the new store development program for fiscal 2012 is expected to result in a 4.5% increase in retail square footage, as compared with a 3.2% increase in fiscal 2011. Looking ahead, the retailer said it plans to open 12 new stores (two of which are replacements), open the three stores acquired from Lowes Foods that are being converted to the new innovative format and complete major remodels on nine stores (three of which will be expanded in size) during fiscal 2013. The new store openings currently are scheduled for three in the first quarter, two in the second quarter, two in the third quarter and eight in the fourth quarter.

Third-quarter sales for Harris Teeter rose 4.6% to $1.15 billion for the period ended July 1, thanks to an increase in comparable-store sales and sales from new stores, partially offset by store closings. Comps for the North Carolina-based retailer rose 3.7% for the quarter.

Harris Teeter said its capital expenditure plans entail the continued expansion of its existing markets, including the Washington, D.C., metro market area, which incorporates northern Virginia, the District of Columbia, southern Maryland and coastal Delaware. In June, the retailer entered into a purchase agreement with regional chain Lowes Foods, through which Harris Teeter acquired ten Lowes Foods store locations in the central Carolinas region and Lowes Foods acquired six Harris Teeter store locations in western North Carolina. Next quarter, Harris Teeter said it plans to open a total of seven stores (six-of-the-10 stores acquired from Lowes Foods and one additional store) and complete major remodels on nine stores, five of which will be expanded in size.

The Lowes Foods transaction, the company said, impacted its net earnings, which dropped from $32.1 million to $15.8 million for the third quarter of fiscal 2012.

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FINANCE

Samsonite acquires Hartmann

BY Staff Writer

New York — Samsonite International is acquiring high-end luggage and leather goods firm Hartmann from Clarion Capital Partners for $35 million.

“The Hartmann brand is an important addition to our portfolio and gives us the ability to successfully expand our presence in the global luxury luggage section,” stated Tim Parker, chairman and CEO, Samsonite.

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News

P&G goes for gold with Walmart display

BY CSA STAFF

And the award for the world’s largest in-store display goes to Procter & Gamble for an Olympic themed creation the consumer products company dropped in the aisle of a Walmart store in American Canyon, Calif.

The 535-sq.-ft. display is so massive photographs can’t capture the scale, but the premise behind the design is it represents a “Tour of London” and was created to honor athletes participating in the games. The display was set in the store last week and will remain in place through Aug. 10. It features 25 pallets worth of P&G’s signature brands merchandised against the backdrop of iconic London landmarks such as a 21-foot tall functioning Big Ben clock that chimes on the hour, A 17-foot rotating London Eye and three eight-foot tall replica double decker buses. The decision to locate the display in the California Walmart store was based on the high concentration of U.S. athletes who live and train in California.

“The display celebrates our dedicated athletes and creates a unique in-store shopping event that customers will remember for years to come,” said Stuart Heflin, P&G’s brand manager on the Walmart Global Consumer Team. “P&G is behind the Olympic Games and our athletes 100%. We want to give people who can’t travel to Europe the opportunity to feel some of the excitement of the Games here at home.”

It took a team of eight people approximately 36 hours to construct the display.

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