International Paper exec joins Kellogg board
BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — Kellogg has elected Mary Laschinger, SVP International Paper (IP) and president of IP’s xpedx distribution business, to its board of directors effective Oct. 26.
"Mary’s more than 30 years of experience leading operating units of some of the world’s most well-respected companies will be a real asset to Kellogg," said chairman Jim Jenness. "We are excited that Mary has agreed to join our board."
In her current role, Laschinger is responsible for IP’s North American distribution business. She previously served as president of the company’s Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) business in Belgium. Earlier in her career, Laschinger worked at James River Corp. and Kimberly-Clark Corp.
The board also appointed Laschinger to the manufacturing, and social responsibility and public policy committees.
LeapFrog, Disney music partnership the right tune
EMERYVILLE, Calif. — LeapFrog Enterprises and Walt Disney Records have come together to bring Disney music to LeapFrog’s learning platforms.
"Disney Princess: Fairy Tale Songs," "Jake and the Never Land Pirates," "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse," "Baby Einstein Lullaby Classics" and "They Might Be Giants’ Here Come the ABCs" albums will be available for purchase starting early December. All the Disney hits will be featured in the "Music" section of the LeapFrog App Center for the LeapPad1 and LeapPad2 tablets, and video game systems Leapster Explorer and LeapsterGS.
"We are thrilled to offer music from the most recognized children’s brand featuring favorite characters such as Mickey, Jake and Rapunzel," said Greg Ahearn, chief marketing officer at LeapFrog. "Music continues to be an underserved subject area in schools despite the fact that it can benefit many areas of children’s development. Our team of learning experts worked with Disney to select age-appropriate music content that will provide children with hours of fun on our best-selling learning platforms."
The Walt Disney Records albums will be available for purchase (MSRP $10, for children 3 years and up) in the LeapFrog App Center beginning in December. The LeapFrog App Center can be accessed through the LeapFrog Connect Application for LeapPad1, LeapPad2 and LeapsterGS. LeapPad1 (MSRP $79.99, for children ages 4-9), LeapPad2 (MSRP $99.99, for children ages 3-9), Leapster Explorer (MSRP $69.99, for children ages 4-9) and LeapsterGS (MSRP $69.99, for children ages 4-9) are currently available at major retail locations and at www.leapfrog.com.
HSN Q3 driven by strong digital sales
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — HSN Inc. reported that net sales for the third quarter increased 5% to $537.4 million, including 10% growth in digital sales. Cornerstone’s net sales increased 13% to $241.4 million, including 22% growth in digital sales.
Adjusted EPS increased 32% to 66 cents compared with 50 cents in the prior year. GAAP diluted EPS from continuing operations decreased 26% to 31 cents compared with 42 cents in the prior year.
"Our strong financial performance during the quarter demonstrates the sustained effectiveness of our overall strategy of creating immersive experiences, offering differentiated products and leveraging technology to build relationships, not just transactions," said Mindy Grossman, CEO of HSN, Inc. "This approach enabled HSNi to achieve 7% sales growth and 32% growth in Adjusted EPS. In addition, we continued to return value to shareholders by increasing our cash dividend and through our share repurchase program."
HSN’s net sales were $537.4 million, an increase of 5% from the prior year. Digital sales grew 10% with penetration increasing 180 basis points to 34.6%. Strong sales growth primarily in home design, household, culinary and beauty were offset by the expected sales decline in electronics. Shipping and handling revenue decreased 6% primarily due to an increase in shipping and handling promotions. The average price point decreased 4% and the units shipped increased 9% primarily due to changes in product mix.
Net sales for Cornerstone increased 13% to $241.4 million compared with the prior year due to the addition of Chasing Fireflies to the portfolio and sales growth in the home brands. Digital sales grew 22% with penetration increasing 520 basis points to 65.5%. The return rate decreased 120 basis points to 13.6% from 14.8% primarily due to changes in product mix.