OPERATIONS

Jewel-Osco names VP of marketing and merchandising

BY Staff Writer

Itasca, Ill. — Jewel-Osco has named company veteran Doug Cygan as VP of marketing and merchandising. His appointment accompanies the grocer’s recent selection of the company’s VP operations Scott Hays under president Shane Sampson’s leadership.

Cygan began his career with Jewel-Osco in 1980 as a grocery clerk. He was promoted to store director, and then held positions of increasing responsibility throughout the company, including VP fresh food merchandising and VP merchandising.

When New Albertson’s Inc. assumed ownership of Jewel-Osco, Cygan was named director of grocery.

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Mobile momentum continues at Facebook

BY CSA STAFF

Usage of Facebook’s social media platform continued to expand during the first quarter with mobile advertising now accounting for 59% of the company’s revenue.

Facebook’s revenues grew 72% to $2.5 billion from $1.5 billion and earnings increased to 25 cents a share from 9 cents a share with operating margins expanding to 43% from 26%. The company also highlighted the fact that mobile advertising revenue now accounts for 59% of total revenue compared to 30% during the same period the prior year.

"Facebook’s business is strong and growing, and this quarter was a great start to 2014," said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO. "We’ve made some long term bets on the future while staying focused on executing and improving our core products and business. We’re in great position to continue making progress towards our mission."

Usage of the Facebook platform continued to grow across a range of metrics the company tracks. Daily active users during March increased 21% to 802 million, with mobile daily active users increasing 43% to 609 million. Monthly active users stood at 1.28 billlion, a 15% increase from the prior year with mobile monthly active users up 34% to slighly more than one billion.

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Claire’s names new CEO after weak Q4

BY CSA STAFF

Beatrice Lafon was named CEO at specialty retailer Claire’s Stores following the release of fourth quarter results and a steep slide in same store sales.

The operator of 3,535 stores focused on fashion jewelry and accessories for young women, teens, tweens, and kids said same store sales in North America declined 12% for its fourth quarter ended February 1. Total sales for the 13 week period declined 11.7% to $435.5 million when compared to the 14 week period the prior year. Excluding the additional week of sales in the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, the company said its net sales would have decreased 7.3%. Operating profits on an adjusted basis fell to $93.3 million from $129.6 million during the prior year’s 14 week fourth quarter.

In conjunction with the result, Claire’s announced that Beatrice Lafon, the company’s current European president, would replace current CEO James Fielding.

"We thank Jim for his contributions as CEO of Claire's over the past two years. Under Jim's leadership, the company has made important strides in merchandising and extending our e-commerce platform to Icing (stores), Canada and Europe,” said Peter Copses, chairman of the Claire’s board. “We wish Jim well in all his future endeavors. In Beatrice, we have a strong leader with deep retail experience. She has an intimate understanding of our business, and a track record of driving sales in existing locations and successfully opening new stores.”

Lafon spent the past three years leading the company’s European business which ended last year with 1,185 stores compared to 1,912 stores in North America.

“As President of Claire's Europe over the last three years, I have operated a multinational business across 15 countries in a challenging macro-economic environment,” Lafon said. “As CEO, I look forward to creating value by leveraging best practices, by maximizing the unique talents of both our North American and European teams as well as by harnessing the strength of our sourcing teams based in Asia.”

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