June retail sales edge up 0.1%
Washington, D.C. — A report released Thursday by the U.S. Commerce Department showed that retail sales in June experienced a slight uptick of 0.1%. This comes on the heels of a 0.1% dip in May, the first time in 11 months that sales fell.
The June resurgence was attributed to a rise in auto sales and increased spending in big chain stores. Sales excluding gasoline rebounded 0.3% after declining 0.2% in May.
Sales at general merchandise stores, which include Wal-Mart and Target, increased 0.4% on warmer weather and aggressive discounting.
Report: Borders deal on verge of collapse
New York — Najafi Cos., the private equity firm that tentatively agreed to purchase bankrupt Borders Group, is is reportedly no longer interested in Borders unless its conditions are met, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Najafi, which owns the Book of the Month Club, said in a statement that financial advisors “have elected another option which is in contrast to what he had envisioned for the future of Borders.”
Borders entered Chapter 11 in February and has closed hundreds of stores around the country. Without a suitor, the only viable remaining option could be liquidation.
A hearing is scheduled for Thursday in bankruptcy court in New York. Competing bids must be submitted by Sunday.
Subway opens 8,000th non-traditional location
Milford, Conn. — The Subway restaurant chain announced that a franchisee in Toledo, Ohio, has opened the brand’s 8,000th non-traditional location— in a two million-sq.-ft. automobile assembly facility that produces Jeep and Chrysler vehicles.
“They closed the cafeteria because of downsizing, but still needed a way to provide food options,” said Marc Hall, a former supermarket chain executive, and franchisee since 1989 who owns and operates ten Subway restaurants. “So, we got together and started talking and developed a pre-ordering system that could feed up to two thousand people in ten minutes.”
Other notable non-traditional Subway locations include the True Bethel Baptist Church, Buffalo, NY, where the pastor is the franchisee and uses the store to teach job skills to area residents who are in need of a helping hand; a new car showroom in California; and a high school in Detroit, in which students run the restaurant as part of a business class curriculum and can qualify for college credits by talking online University of Subway training and job development courses.
"Because of the Subway concept’s flexible floor plans, minimal space and equipment requirements and popular menu offerings, Subway restaurants are uniquely suited for these special sites, which are an integral part of our overall growth and on-going development strategy, and have been a large contributor to our record breaking 137 months of consecutive positive growth." said Don Fertman, chief development officer, Subway,
One of the more unique locations is the Subway restaurant at the construction site of 1 World Trade Center, in New York City, where the restaurant is hoisted up to the next level as each floor of the 105 –story building is completed.