AmazonFreshPickup
REAL ESTATE

More details on Amazon’s drive-up grocery store concept

BY CSA STAFF

A new report reveals that construction work is almost done on Amazon’s upcoming drive-up grocery concept, AmazonFresh Pickup.

Two locations are in the works, both in Seattle, according to GeekWire, which based its report on city permits filings. Each store includes an awning for drivers to park under and a brick-and-mortar store where employees put orders together, the report said.

Amazon has not commented on the project. But signs that appear to be motion-activated and that read “Your order is order on the way” are installed in front of the parking spaces at one of the locations, the report said.

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Circle_K
FINANCE

Couche-Tard’s Circle K remodels, earnings increase

BY Al Urbanski

Canada-based convenience store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard posted net earnings of $287 million in the third quarter of its fiscal year, up 4.7% from the previous-year period.

Same-store merchandise sales fell by a point in Europe, but were up 1.9% in the U.S. Same-store gasoline sales volumes rose 2.8% stateside.

Couche-Tard’s global rebranding of its Circle K stores proceeded at a quick pace during the quarter, with more than 1,000 U.S. stores completed.

The company took a $3 million hit from Hurricane Matthew in October, due to lost sales, floods, and power outages at more than 500 stores.

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BonTOn
FINANCE

Bon-Ton misses Q4 estimates

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Weak traffic and unseasonably warm weather impacted Bon-Ton’s earnings for the fourth quarter.

For the period ending January 28, 2017, the department store chain reported net income of $44.7 million, or $2.09 per diluted share, short of analyst estimates by 37 cents.

Revenue fell 5.5% to $877.3 million for the period, and comparable store sales decreased 4.7%.

For the full year, Bon Ton's net loss widened to $63.4 million from $57.1 million a year ago. Total revenue for the year decreased 4.3% to $2.6 billion.

"While the continued weak traffic trends and unseasonably warm weather pressured sales in the fourth quarter, we expanded gross margin by 145 basis points and grew adjusted EBITDA by 8%” said Kathryn Bufano, president and CEO. “In addition, we exceeded our cost reduction goal by $7 million, with net savings of $31 million for the year.”

The company also made progress on a number of initiatives, including the introduction of its ‘Close to Home’ product assortment, and a continued to focus on its omnichannel strategy, with double-digit sales growth through its website, mobile site and its Buy Online Pick Up In-Store program.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2017, the company remains focused on its omnichannel business, refining marketing strategies, and further evolving its merchandise assortment, “with even greater emphasis on growth categories and localization,” Bufano said.

Bon-Ton Stores operates 263 department stores in 25 states under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers banners.

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