Home Depot expects eight new stores, 5% sales growth in fiscal 2014
Atlanta – The Home Depot plans to open new eight new stores and increase sales by approximately 5% during fiscal 2014. The retailer released guidance for both fiscal 2013 and 2014 on Dec. 10.
For fiscal 2013, Home Depot has reaffirmed guidance of 5.6% sales growth and 7% same-store sales growth.
At the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2013 the retailer operated a total of 2,260 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, 10 Canadian provinces and Mexico. In fiscal 2012, Home Depot had sales of $74.8 billion and earnings of $4.5 billion. The company employs more than 300,000 associates.
Survey: Nine-in-10 holiday shoppers not finished
Austin, Texas – Nine-in-10 (87%) holiday shoppers surveyed still have presents to buy. Recent surveys by RetailMeNot and The Omnibus Company found that nearly 200 million Americans have not completed their holiday shopping.
Nearly nine-in-10 (88%) winter holiday shoppers surveyed said they have had to buy gifts in the 11th hour. Parents seem to be the biggest procrastinators, as nearly all (95%) parents surveyed admitted to waiting until the last minute to buy holiday gifts.
Since the majority of holiday shoppers (64%) surveyed have had to pay for expedited shipping when purchasing a last-minute gift online, it’s expected that this charge did not factor into the original budget for many. In fact, nearly two in five (38%) who have reported that they have had to pay for expedited shipping have gone beyond their holiday budget because of these costs.
However, according to the survey, more than one in four (27%) online shoppers would not purchase a product online without free shipping. This is an increasingly important promotional offer considering seven in 10 gift givers surveyed felt that shopping online takes less time (70%), is more convenient (69%) and is less stressful (69%) than shopping in-store. Nine-in-10 (90%) consumers consider free shipping to be important when purchasing a product online. When shopping online, nearly two-in-three (65%) consumers will search for a free shipping coupon if they see they have to pay for shipping. More than one in four (27%) online shoppers would not purchase a product without free shipping.
In addition, respondents found some of the most stressful parts of holiday shopping to be caused by in-store troubles: lines at in-store checkouts (53%) and crowded stores (40%) rank high on their list of holiday pressures. What’s more, three in five (60%) winter holiday gift-givers feel that it is easier to find deals online than in-store when shopping for presents.
"Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone, but the majority of shoppers still have gifts to purchase," said Trae Bodge, senior editor of The Real Deal by RetailMeNot.
Report: Barnes & Noble chairman sells 2 million company shares
New York – Leonard Riggio, chairman of Barnes & Noble, has reportedly sold 2 million shares of company stock. According to Reuters, Riggio’s sale, reported in an SEC regulatory filing, lowers Riggio’s stake in Barnes & Noble to 26.3%.
After selling 2 million shares and donating 160,000 shares to a charitable foundation with his name, Riggio owns 15.75 million shares of Barnes & Noble stock. He remains the company’s biggest shareholder. The SEC filing indicates Riggio sold the shares on Dec. 10 at a price of $13.81 per share.