STORE SPACES

Ikea plugs-in four electric vehicle charging stations

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Costa Mesa, Calif. — Ikea said Thursday it has officially plugged-in four Blink Pedestal electric vehicle charging stations at its Costa Mesa, Calif., store as part of its partnership with ECOtality.

The initiative represents the fourth such project for IKEA in the United States. Installation also is planned at five other IKEA stores in the Western U.S.

ECOtality is the project manager of The EV Project, a public-private partnership funded in part by a federal stimulus grant from the U.S. Department of Energy made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to provide the necessary infrastructure to support the deployment of EVs.

The 308,000-sq.-ft. Ikea Costa Mesa opened May 2003 and employs approximately 300 coworkers.

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News

Saks redesigns SaksPOV website

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — Saks Fifth Avenue announced Thursday a redesign of the SaksPOV website.

SaksPOV presents a point of view from Fifth Avenue on fashion, culture and art, and the site features robust multimedia content, designer features, Saks brand coverage and lifestyle pieces. SaksPOV launched initially in December 2010.

“We will use SaksPOV as an outlet to engage with our customers and as a portal for our fashion lifestyle content,” said Denise Incandela, CMO and president of Saks Direct.

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OPERATIONS

Lowe’s to open new customer support center in New Mexico

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Mooresville, N.C. — Lowe’s said Thursday it will open a new Customer Support Center in Albuquerque, N.M., in first quarter 2012.

The center is estimated to create 250 jobs by March and a total of 600 jobs by the end of 2013.

Lowe’s said it plans to invest more than $15 million to renovate leased space in a 65,000-sq.-ft. building which, when complete, will provide multiple support functions including customer care, store support, internet sales support and repair services for customers. The new center is intended to complement the company’s existing Customer Support Center in Wilkesboro, N.C.

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