REAL ESTATE

Mid-America signs 68,000+ sq. ft. of home furnishings stores in Illinois

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. — Mid-America Asset Management said it has signed three furniture/home décor stores to retail locations in Chicago’s suburbs of Oak Brook and McHenry as well as downstate in Bloomington, Ill.

Ashley Furniture signed a lease for 31,573 sq. ft. at Colonial Plaza in Bloomington, Ill., with plans to open in spring 2013. Ashley Furniture will co-anchor the 236,460-sq.-ft. center along with Kmart and OfficeMax.

Chicagoland furniture chain The Room Place signed a lease for 23,800 sq. ft. at a free-standing former Border’s store in McHenry, Ill, with plans to open in summer 2013.

Pier 1 Imports signed a lease for 12,996 sq. ft. at The Shops at Oak Brook Place in Oak Brook, Ill., with plans to open in September 2013. The 177,206-sq.-ft. center is anchored by Old Navy, T.J. Maxx, DSW, Nordstrom Rack and Cost Plus.

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Family Dollar names merchandise head

BY CSA STAFF

MATTHEWS, N.C. — Family Dollar Stores has named Scott Zucker to the newly created position of SVP merchandise operations. Zucker will be responsible for driving the strategy and execution of merchandise initiatives, category management, merchandise planning and replenishment. In his new role, he will report to Michael Bloom, president and COO.

"Meeting the needs of our customers and team members is critical to our mission of being a compelling place to shop and work. This new alignment will allow for improved execution, simplified operational processes, inventory optimization and faster strategic decision-making,” said Bloom. “Scott brings a wealth of leadership and experience in merchandising, supply chain planning and information technology, all of which will provide tremendous support of our long-term strategic goals.”

Zucker joined Family Dollar in 2006 as divisional VP pricing. In 2007 he was promoted to VP merchandise operations, and most recently, Zucker served as VP IT Solutions.

Prior to joining Family Dollar, Zucker was with BearingPoint Consulting where he had the opportunity to work with a number of large retail organizations. After graduating from Davidson College, he started his retail career with Belk. He earned his MBA from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 1997.

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DG to surpass 11,000 stores in ’13

BY CSA STAFF

Fourth quarter same store sales increased 3% at Dollar General as the company capped of another record year and indicated it would open 635 stores this year.

Total sales for the company’s 13 week fourth quarter ended February 1, increased 0.5%, to $4.21 billion compared to $4.19 billion during the 14 week fourth quarter the prior year. Excluding the extra week from the prior year’s fourth quarter, sales would have increased 8%. The company said its same store sales increase was driven by consumables and a mix of increased transaction size and customer traffic.

Net income for the fourth quarter was $317 million and earnings per share totaled 97 cents, compared to net income of $293 million, or earnings per share of 85 cents, which benefitted by six cents because of the extra week.

"Dollar General had yet another outstanding year in 2012 including exceptionally strong fourth quarter results," said chairman and CEO Rick Dreiling. "We grew our market share and invested strategically to continue to win with our customers. These results demonstrate the strength of our business strategy, and we believe we are very well-positioned for future growth."

During 2012, the Dollar General opened 625 new stores and remodeled or relocated 592 other stores to end the year with a total of 10,506 stores. It said it expects to open another 625 new stores this year and remodel or relocate 550 stores. The company has previously indicated the U.S. market is capable of accommodating as many as 20,000 Dollar General stores.

In 2013, the expansion of selling space and the upgrade of existing square footage is expected to combine with same store sales growth in the 4% to 6% range to produce total sales growth in the 10% to 12% range. Full year earnings per share are expected to total between $3.15 and $3.30.

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