FINANCE

H&M Q3 profit falls 15%, to add 265 stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Stockholm, Sweden — Hennes & Mauritz AB reported Thursday that profit for the third quarter fell 15% to $533 million, from nearly $621 million in the year-ago period. The Swedish fashion retailer cited rising procurement costs, marketing investments and a bump-up in new-store expansion for the decrease in profit.

H&M said it will add 265 new stores, up from the 250 previously planned, and will make market debuts in Indonesia and Thailand.

Sales for the quarter were essentially flat at $4.7 billion, performance the company said it found satisfactory since large parts of Europe had experienced a warmer-than-usual start to the autumn season.

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STORE SPACES

T-Mobile USA to roll out new design for 400 U.S. stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Bellevue, Wash. — T-Mobile USA announced Thursday the rollout of a new global design for nearly 400 new and remodeled stores across the country. The move follows successful test pilots in Tukwila, Wash., and in New York City at Seventh Ave. and 48th St.,

T-Mobile said it adopted the new design format from its parent company, Deutsche Telekom AG, which has received positive customer feedback for this new design in retail stores across Europe.

Each redesigned store will be completely new from floor to ceiling, and will feature a more customer-centric layout, including private customer service desks and clearly defined product areas.

“With the continued complexity of wireless choices, T-Mobile is always looking to help simplify the consumer retail experience and make it more personal for each customer,” said Debra Coates, senior director of store development, T-Mobile USA.

Other new design features include hardwood flooring, large digital messaging screen at the rear of the store, and vertical highlight panels installed with information kiosks and video monitors.

Customers also will have several service options, from standing service counters on the sales floor for quick transactions to seated service desks for long transactions, discreet conversations and business-to-business consultations. With this new format, customer wait times are expected to be reduced.

T-Mobile said it is opening or remodeling stores in approximately 65 markets across the country, led by openings in Boston, and Washington, D.C., on Oct. 5.

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News

Bartell’s launches card for local charitable donations

BY CSA STAFF

SEATTLE — Bartell Drugs is introducing a new way for customers to donate to local schools and nonprofit organizations, the regional retail pharmacy chain said Thursday.

Bartell’s announced the launch of the "B" Caring Card program. Customers who enroll in the program can present the card for scanning whenever they shop at a Bartell’s store, and 4% of the purchase amount will be contributed to qualifying organizations, such as schools, churches, athletic groups and youth groups. Customers can designate up to three schools or nonprofit organizations to receive benefits. The company also is working with eScrip, a company that establishes relationships between commerce and communities.

"We are so excited to have Bartell’s coming on the eScrip program," said Amy Perez, eScrip coordinator for Lake Wilderness Elementary School, in the Seattle suburb of Maple Valley, Wash. "There is a Bartell’s close to our school, and we are excited for the great addition they will make to our eScrip program."

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