Levin announces innovative incubator program
Erie, Pa. Levin Management Corp. said that it is launching a business incubator program at Liberty Center, a 227,000-sq.-ft. retail property in Erie, Pa.
The program is designed to help entrepreneurs test retail and professional services concepts through a variety of flexible, low-cost options.
“In times like these, when many businesses have been forced to close, it is crucial that new businesses — and jobs — be created,” said Peter S. Mitchell, leasing representative for Levin Management, exclusive managing and leasing agent for Liberty Center. “With a Quality Market, Peebles department store, and many other great tenants drawing shoppers to Liberty Center, this program will provide entrepreneurs with an opportunity to test their retail, personal service and professional concepts at a location that will offer the greatest chance of success.”
Altogether, nearly 20,000 sq. ft. is being set aside in a variety of size increments, offered to start-ups as well as existing local businesses looking to improve their locations. Flexible, short-term leases are part of the program.
The new incubator program continues an ongoing repositioning of Liberty Center, an effort that has already seen the completion of an extensive renovation and the signing of several new tenants. Quality Market and Peebles department store anchor a tenant roster that includes such national and regional names as RadioShack, Payless Shoes, Harbor Freight Tools, Dollar Tree and Blockbuster.
Hhgregg names new execs
INDIANAPOLIS Hhgregg announced that it has appointed Jeremy Aguilar, currently interim CFO, as the company’s new CFO. Hhgregg has also promoted Gregg Throgmartin, SVP store operations, to the role of EVP and COO, while Michael Larimer is being promoted to chief merchandising officer from his current position as SVP electronics merchandising.
Aguilar has served as the company’s interim CFO since March. He joined Hhgregg in 2005 and previously served as the company’s VP controller as well as director of financial reporting.
Throgmartin joined the company in 2001 and has held the positions of SVP store operations, VP sales, director of strategic merchandising, regional manager and store manager.
Larimer joined the company in 1999 as the video merchandising manager, a position he held until he assumed his current role in 2001.
Pharmacists star in Target Rx effort
Shoppers at Target stores are being encouraged to “Ask Us” as part of an aggressive new advertising campaign designed to promote the retailer’s pharmacy department.
An extensive new sign package hit stores this week, as part of that campaign, encouraging shoppers to ask the pharmacists about $4 generics, flu shots or other health questions. Overhead “Ask Us” signs are visible at store entrances, in main aisles and above the pharmacy. The retailer also makes use of endcap signs and floor graphics leading to the pharmacy. The aggressive in-store communication effort is part of a larger marketing initiative the company announced at the end of its second quarter.
At that time, EVP merchandising Kathy Tesija said the third quarter would see Target begin “an unprecedented integrated marketing campaign to drive even greater awareness for our pharmacy services and convert more Target guests into Target pharmacy guests.”
Target operates more than 1,700, of which about 1,500 contain pharmacies.
“These efforts will help contribute to store wide sales growth as loyal pharmacy guests are some of our best guests in terms of frequency and basket size,” Tesija said.
The emphasis on pharmacy is seen as an important driver of customer traffic and average transaction size, areas where Target has stuggled this year as the weak economy prompted customers to shop elsewhere.