Judge weighs injunction against Abercrombie & Fitch over store accessibility
Denver — A federal judge in Denver is considering an injunction after ruling that nearly 250 Abercrombie & Fitch stores, including its namesake and Hollister banners, are unfriendly to the disabled, the Associated Press reported.
The judge agreed in March with the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition that the stores limited access for wheelchair-bound customers. He said the only option under the Americans With Disabilities Act is an injunction ordering the problems to be fixed, the report said.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of several Colorado customers who alleged they had trouble getting into the stores and that the sales countertops are too high.
Zale swings to profit in Q3; names former CEO of Signet as chairman
Dallas — Zale Corp. on Wednesday reported net income of $5.1 million for the third quarter, compared with a loss of $4.5 million in the year-ago period. The company also named Terry Burman as a director and as chairman of the board. Burman is the former CEO of Signet Jewelers Ltd., parent of Zale’s biggest rival, Kay Jewelers.
John Lowe Jr., Zales’ chairman for the past five years, will remain on the board.
Revenue for the third quarter, ended April 30, came in at $442.7 million, topping the Street estimates of $440 million.
Same-store sales increased 1.4%, with a 3% rise at Zales Jewelers and Zales Outlet stores. It was the company’s tenth straight quarter of same-store sales gains.
“We delivered strong results in March and April after a slow start to the quarter in February, which resulted in our tenth consecutive quarter of positive comps,” commented Theo Killion, CEO.
Kohl’s names Starbucks’ exec chief customer officer
Menomonee Falls, Wis. — Kohl’s has appointed Starbucks executive Michelle Gass to the newly created position of chief customer officer. She will report directly to Kohl’s chairman, president and CEO Kevin Mansell.
Gass, who joins Kohl’s on June 17, will have leadership responsibility for Kohl’s branding across all channels. She will oversee all marketing efforts, the company’s high growth e-commerce business on Kohls.com and the customer’s total omnichannel experience.
“I am extremely pleased Michelle is joining the Kohl’s leadership team,” said Mansell. “She comes to us with a track record of success and the experience, skills and imagination to lead and accelerate Kohl’s omnichannel efforts, as well as develop new strategies to move our consumer engagement in new directions. I fully expect this to be the start of an exciting journey to drive new growth for the company across all of our business areas.”
Prior to joining Kohl’s, Gass spent more than 16 years with Starbucks in a variety of senior leadership roles, including global strategy, marketing and category management. Most recently, Gass was president of Starbucks Europe, Middle East and Africa, overseeing and growing company and licensed operations across 36 markets and 1,900 stores. During her tenure with the company, Gass played a key role in working with the senior team in creating the company’s overall strategic blueprint, and most notably the transformation efforts of 2008-2009. She has led many key initiatives at Starbucks including the development of the Frappuccino blended beverage platform, the reinvention of Seattle’s Best Coffee, the launch of Starbucks VIA Ready Brew, Starbucks entry into warm breakfast and the introduction of the company’s customer loyalty and social media platforms. Before Starbucks, Gass worked in marketing and new product development with Procter & Gamble.
"I am thrilled to be joining the team at Kohl’s at this pivotal time in the retail industry,” said Gass. “How people shop and consume media is going through a change unlike any time before. I am delighted to help shape how Kohl’s will evolve its already strong brand to be even more compelling to today’s customers."
Kohl’s operates 1,155 stores in 49 states.