OPERATIONS

Interbrand Design Forum announces seven new hires

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Dayton, Ohio — Retail design firm Interbrand Design Forum has announced seven new hires to support its continued growth. Staff additions include three new members to the environmental design team, a fixture specialist and several supporting staff members.

Ryan Slicer has been named Senior Environmental Designer. Previously he worked with WD Partners.

Amanda Handermann joins as an Environmental Designer. Before coming to Interbrand Design Forum she co-founded the Wig Wam Collaborative, a multi-disciplinary freelance design team.

Natalie Benos also joins as an Environmental Designer after interning at WD Partners and The Little Tykes Company as a toy design intern.

Adam Minch comes to Interbrand Design Forum as a Fixture Specialist after working for a fixture manufacturing company.

Carrie Krochta has taken over the role of Marketing Coordinator for the North America Region.

Cindy Hovell is a new Director of Client Services, after serving as a production manager for a woman’s clothing manufacturer.

Jenny Brown joins the organization as Executive Assistant. Her experience includes work as an assistant at an investment firm and serving as a legal assistant at a law firm.

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OPERATIONS

Wal-Mart labor settlement calls for safety fixes at 2,857 stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Washington, D.C. — In a settlement agreement with the U.S. Labor Department, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has agreed to improve safety conditions for employees who use trash compactors and cleaning chemicals at 2,857 Walmart and Sam’s Club stores in 28 states.

The retailer will also pay a $190,000 fine to fix hazards uncovered during an Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspection at a store in Rochester, N.Y.

The agreement covers those stores that follow federal OSHA standards; the remaining states, which operate their own OSHA inspection programs, could negotiate similar agreements.

Wal-Mart spokesman Randy Hargrove said the company immediately addressed the problems as soon as it was made aware of them. "We have long-standing policies and training requirements in our stores designed to ensure the safety of our associates," Hargrove said.

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News

Wealth effect evident at Tumi

BY CSA STAFF

Affluent shoppers feeling better about their personal balance sheets helped global luxury brand Tumi grow total sales by 12.9%, same store sales by 4.6% and double profits in the second quarter ended June 24.

Best known for its expensive luggage, Tumi said sales total $108.2 million during the period and profits increased to $11.2 million, or 16 cents a share, compared to profits of $6.5 million, or 10 cents a share in the same period the prior year.

“Our global expansion continued to progress nicely in the second quarter, and we are proud of our year-to-date performance at the halfway point in 2013,” said Tumi CEO Jerome Griffith. “While our domestic store traffic slowed modestly in the second quarter, our new stores, e-commerce business, wholesale volume, and new product initiatives in the women’s and accessories categories all continued to show strong momentum in the quarter.”

Griffith said the company has a strong pipeline of store openings in favorable markets as it continues to capitalize of Tumi’s status as a premium lifestyle brand.

Sold in high end department stores and specialty stores worldwide, Tumi also operates a network of 200 stores.

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