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Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia ‘encouraged’ with Q2 results

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK — Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia decided to end the publication of two print titles and exit live television programming following lower revenues in publishing and broadcasting, which caused total revenues to decrease 13.5% to $42.2 million in the second quarter ended June 30, from $47.9 million in the same quarter last year.

The company’s lower revenues in publishing and broadcasting negatively impacted its merchandising revenues, which actually grew 11% to $16.1 million for the quarter, compared to $14.5 million in the prior year’s second quarter. Results benefited from the commencement of royalty revenue recognition from J.C. Penney.

"MSLO generated a narrower net loss in the quarter due primarily to growth in merchandising and the positive impact on our bottom line of strategic actions taken over the last 18 months,” said Dan Taitz, interim principal executive officer. “Our publishing business produced higher print advertising revenue compared with last year’s second quarter, after excluding last year’s contribution from titles that we no longer publish, and digital advertising revenue grew strongly. While much remains to be done to drive sustainable performance improvement, we are encouraged with the results this quarter and the steps we have taken across our media and merchandising operations to position the company to drive greater engagement with consumers."

Additional highlights for the quarter include comScore data showing that MSLO’s websites averaged 5.4 million monthly unique visitors in the quarter, an 8% increase over the prior year. In June, the company launched a redesigned marthastewart.com, which included enhancements such as responsive Web design and practical, short-form video.

MSLO also launched MarthaCelebrations, MarthaPantry, MarthaWindow, MarthaRugs, MarthaLighting and MarthaMirrors at 550 J.C. Penney stores in the quarter. Martha Stewart’s partnership with J.C. Penney, announced at the end of 2011, made headlines when Macy’s claimed it had exclusive rights to sell Martha Stewart Living products in certain categories and sued J.C. Penney and Martha Stewart Living. They went to trial earlier this year and in April, the presiding judge gave a partial ruling, allowing the sale of some Martha Stewart merchandise at J.C. Penney stores.

In May, MSLO announced a new partnership with Nutraceuticals and nutritional supplement developer Inergetics to develop Martha Stewart Essentials, the first branded line of women’s supplements in the market. The product line will be sold at retailers and drugstores in the fall.

On April 6, PBS began airing the second season of Martha Stewart’s Cooking School and also debuted Martha Bakes, sponsored by J.C. Penney and Kitchen Aid along with charitable partner March of Dimes.

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24 GGP malls celebrate Teen Vogue’s Back-to-School Saturday

BY Michael Fickes

Seeking to boost back-to-school sales, 24 GGP malls will host Teen Vogue’s Back-to-School Saturday™ on Aug. 10.

For the second year in a row, Teen Vogue magazine has declared a national shopping holiday for Back-To-School.

This year, 100 malls and numerous national retailers — H&M, Topshop and American Eagle, for instance —have decided to see what the marketing concept can do for them.

Retailers will offer back-to-school deals and discounts, and the malls will host events.

Participating GGP malls will offer live in-mall music performances, including popular musical acts such as Hayley Kiyoko, Thomas Fiss, 1GrilNation and Drew Seeley.

Willowbrook Mall in Houston will offer Back-to-School Fashion 101, freeze modeling, giveaways, gift with purchase, photo booth along with a DJ.

Alderwood Mall in Lynnwood, Wash., will also have a live DJ, samples and giveaways. Macy’s will punctuate the day with a series of runway fashion shows at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. Aeropostale will have a Denim Bar. The Body Shop, Inglot, Clinique & Benefit will offer free makeup sessions. Brow Arc will sketch out free henna tattoos. Icing, Claire’s & Francesca’s Collections will hand out fashion tips and trends.

Natick Mall in Natick, Mass., will spell out the latest trends in Fall Fashions. Retailers will offer plenty of deals. A Back-to-School Saturday Photo Booth will take your picture and put it on a cover of Teen Vogue.

Mall St. Matthews in Louisville, Ky., will offer fashion shows at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m., a photo booth, a DJ and karaoke. Retailers will offer chances to win prizes along with deals on merchandise.

Not everyone likes going back to school, but GGP’s Teen Vogue Back-to-School Saturday aims to make getting ready to go back to school fun for customers and good for business.


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Kmart offers gas rewards program to Shop Your Way members

BY CSA STAFF

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. — Kmart is offering Shop Your Way members a chance to save at the pump while checking off their school supply and grocery shopping lists at select stores.

The retailer cited the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report, which states that the average national price of a regular gallon of gas is $3.62, compared to the national average of $3.48 a year ago. And Kmart wants to make sure the recent spike in gas prices which has coincided with the back-to-school shopping season doesn’t negatively impact foot traffic to stores.

Shop Your Way members who purchase $50 or more of Procter & Gamble products at select Kmart stores between now and Aug. 3 will be eligible to save $1 per gallon of gas (certain gallon limits apply) at participating BP and Speedway gas stations.

Members can also save 30 cents per gallon on gas when they spend $50 or more with a coupon they receive at checkout, which can result in potential savings of $1.30 per gallon of gas at participating Speedway gas stations.

As further incentive to keep traffic coming into its stores, Kmart offers Shop Your Way members free layaway (no service fee), weekly exclusive members-only deals on school supplies and the chance to earn 5% in rewards points every day they use their Sears MasterCard at Kmart.

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