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Lowe’s strategic priorities included expanded focus on omnichannel

BY CSA STAFF

by Gina Acosta

Mooresville, N.C. – Lowe’s Companies’ CEO Robert Niblock cited the recovering U.S. economy as among the reasons why the company plans to focus more on market differentiation and omnichannel retailing.

The company said it will outline these and other strategic priorities in a meeting with investors on Dec. 11 in North Carolina.

"We're at a great point in our company's evolution. The housing market and broader economy are recovering just as our transformation is gaining momentum," Niblock said.

Although the company shared few specifics, the company announced that it plans to increase its focus on:

Enhancing its relevance to customers through omnichannel retailing

Differentiating itself through better customer experiences

Adapting to a changing home improvement landscape

And delivering long-term profitable growth and substantial returns for shareholders

"We continue to generate solid cash flow and have exciting opportunities ahead of us," said Robert F. Hull, Jr., Lowe's CFO. "Return on invested capital is expected to reach approximately 19 percent by 2017, an increase of almost 500 basis points over the next three years."

Lowe's also reiterated its sales and earnings guidance for the 2014 fiscal year:

Total sales are expected to increase 4.5% to 5%.

Same store sales are expected to increase 3.5% to 4%.

The company expects to open six home improvement and four hardware stores.

Diluted earnings per share of approximately $2.68 are expected for the fiscal year ending Jan. 30.

Lowe's currently operates more than 1,835 home improvement and hardware stores and has more than 260,000 employees.

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Posiflex to display new mobile tablet POS at NRF

BY Dan Berthiaume

Hayward, Calif. – Posiflex USA, long known for its fixed POS terminals, is the latest addition to the mobile generation. Posiflex will reveal the MT4008, a new mobile eight-inch tablet POS system to complement its touchscreen POS terminal portfolio, at NRF 2015, booth #2969

Features an aluminum chassis, and the tablet utilizes an Intel processor running Windows 8.1 with a 1024×768 screen resolution, so most Windows-based applications can be ported over with minimal to no modification. By adding a pistol grip and docking station, the MT4008 becomes a full-featured, compact POS system or kiosk.

In addition to a charging station, the MT4008 pistol grip includes a built-in removable battery extending the tablet’s operational life past an eight-hour shift. With the pistol grip, retail clerks can use an integrated 1D or 2D built-in barcode scanner for inventory, line busting or ticket taking.

Two cameras are integrated into the tablet to scan coupons for retail and hospitality uses. An encryption-capable magnetic stripe reader allows for quick card swiping from anywhere. Wireless capability allows mobile printing of receipts from an integrated three-inch thermal printer in the charging station, or when used as a traditional fixed position, all-in-one POS. When docked, the MT4008, when docked, includes serial, USB, LAN and cash drawer ports.

Watch a video about the MT4008 here.

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HGTV paints to launch at Lowe’s

BY CSA STAFF

The paint competition will heat up in March as Lowe’s rolls out HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams.

The HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams product line will feature what both companies describe as “a new and improved interior and exterior paint program.” The line will be available at both Sherwin-Williams' company stores and Lowe's stores nationwide, as well as exclusive line extensions available at Lowe's.

"Lowe's is a recognized leader in home improvement and a preferred project destination for homeowners and pros, alike," said Chris Connor, chairman and CEO of The Sherwin-Williams Company. "Offering the HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams brand at Lowe's is a perfect complement to the high quality product assortment and shopping environment Lowe's shoppers have come to expect."

The HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams color palette will offer 16 designer-inspired color collections, eight of which will be exclusive to Lowe's. Each collection will include 20 coordinating colors along with design tips for homeowners.

In total, consumers will be able to select from 1,100 shades within the full HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams color offering, including the designer-inspired collections plus other classic colors selected by the color experts at HGTV and Sherwin-Williams.

Additionally, Sherwin-Williams will provide Lowe's with two independent brands of paint that will serve professional painters and property managers: Painter's Masterpiece and Property Advantage.

"Sherwin-Williams is the most recognized and trusted brand in paint for both homeowners and pros," said Mike Jones, Lowe's Chief Customer Officer. "We are proud to bring the quality and long-standing reputation of Sherwin-Williams combined with the design expertise of HGTV to our customers. With the addition of HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams, Lowe's offers consumers the top brand they trust for their next paint projects."

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