OPERATIONS

Macy’s sues J.C. Penney over Martha Stewart agreement

BY Staff Writer

New York Bloomberg reported Thursday that Macy’s Inc. has filed suit against J.C. Penney Co. in New York state court over the rights to sell products branded by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. in their respective department stores.

Macy’s sued Martha Stewart Living in January to stop it from executing a sales agreement with J.C. Penney, as Macy’s claimed an exclusive right to sell Martha Stewart products in certain categories.

In July, Justice Jeffrey K. Oing in Manhattan granted Macy’s a preliminary injunction blocking Martha Stewart Living from taking any steps under the agreement with J.C. Penney.

Martha Stewart Living filed a notice of appeal last week.

In the suit filed Thursday in the same court, Macy’s said J.C. Penney caused it to “incur substantial damages and threatens to inflict incalculable further harm” and that the Martha Stewart pact is “transparently designed to eliminate the competitive advantage that Macy’s enjoys in the area of home products.”

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Curacao teams with Kronos for workforce management

BY Staff Writer

Chelmsford, Mass. — Kronos Inc. said Wednesday that Hispanic department store chain Curacao is using a comprehensive workforce management solution from Kronos to control labor costs and improve customer satisfaction.

Curacao’s previous manual and dispersed workforce management solutions have been automated and standardized with the Kronos time and attendance, forecasting and scheduling, and HR applications from Kronos. The new system also integrates seamlessly with the retailer’s enterprise-wide payroll system.

Previously, Curacao lacked the ability to accurately align labor to demand and incurred expenses from over scheduling. With the new system, Curacao has increased profitability through accurate schedules based on forecasts accounting for seasonal and weekly variations, events, and current trends.

"Kronos helps us control costs and improve profitability, which are important for any retailer, and especially for a growing one like Curacao,” said Noel Hernandez, area VP retail, Curacao. “As we are looking to expand, Kronos also gives us the peace of mind that no matter where we choose to go, our growing workforce will be managed effectively without added administrative burdens."

By using Kronos time clocks with biometric technology, Curacao has eliminated buddy punching, the costly act of employees punching in for one another. Kronos has also helped Curacao minimize compliance risk with federal, state, and other labor laws and regulations. As Curacao operates primarily in California, it must comply with complex California meal and break rules, and Kronos manages this through complete automation of pay policies.

As well, Curacao said it plans to expand to more than double its current size and Kronos will help it effectively manage its growing workforce through advanced integration and scalability capabilities.

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Dots names former Wal-Mart exec as new CEO, unveils plans to grow to 1,000 stores

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Glenwillow, Ohio — Fashion retailer Dots announced Tuesday it has named former Wal-Mart Stores senior VP Lisa Rhodes as its new CEO.

Rhodes, who led Wal-Mart’s U.S. apparel merchandising division, has been charged with leading Dots’ march toward 1,000 stores, also announced Tuesday.

Prior to her role at Wal-Mart, Rhodes was executive VP and chief merchandising officer for Maurice’s.

Rick Bunka will remain president at Dots, overseeing the balance of the corporate support functions at its Ohio headquarters, where the company’s store operations, distribution, financial, human resources, and information technology segments will remain. The retailer also announced plans to create a Dots merchandise center in New York City.

"These moves are a bold step to propel Dots into a true national retailer,” said Bunka.

Dots currently has more than 400 stores in 28 states. Irving Place Capital made an investment in the company in January 2011.

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