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Nordstrom and Aeropostale Announce Expansion

BY CSA STAFF

New York City Executives from Nordstrom and Aeropostale detailed their companies’ expansion plans during presentations Wednesday at the Piper Jaffray 28th Annual Consumer Conference in New York City.

Nordstrom said that it will open eight new stores this year and five in 2009. Michael Koppel, CFO, said he is confident that Nordstrom will gain market share with an improved product line and opening new stores.

“New stores are our best investment,” said Koppel, adding that they generate long-term growth and excitement among shoppers in the community.

Also, Nordstrom has been revamping current locations. According to Koppel, the company has spent more than $120 million per year to remodel stores.

Nordstrom is helped, Koppel said, by the fact that the company’s core demographic, typically between the ages of 25 and 54 and making over $100,000 in income, is growing faster than the broader market.

Also, demand for Nordstrom’s core consumable items, such as cosmetics, has remained healthy.

During the Aeropostale presentation, CEO Julian Geiger said the chain, which operated 814 stores at the end of 2007, could grow to 1,000 during the next couple of years. About 85 stores are on tap for this year.  Geigher also said the chain is developing a new retail concept.

Looking north, Aeropostale expects to grow its store count in Canada from its current 27 locations to about 100 eventually.

Geiger did not offer any details about Aeropostale’s new concept, which reportedly is in the children’s area. He did say that if the growth of the namesake format slows in the future, the new concept, along with the company’s Jimmy’Z format, will pick up the slack.

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Walgreens to acquire Express Scripts

BY CSA STAFF

DEERFIELD, Ill. Walgreens announced that through its subsidiary OptionCare Enterprises it will acquire Express Scripts, a Louisville, Ky.-based home infusion pharmacy division. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The parties expect the transaction to close within 30 days.

This acquisition further expands our national coverage in home infusion services, said Paul Mastrapa, president of Walgreens-OptionCare. CuraScript IP is highly regarded in the industry for its clinical expertise and commitment to exceptional patient care. We welcome this addition to our infusion pharmacy network and look forward to reaching even more patients with this combined high level of personalized therapy and support.

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RadioShack hold DTV info sessions

BY CSA STAFF

FORT WORTH, Texas RadioShack is partnering with the American Library Association to help educate the consumers nationwide about the Digital Television (DTV) Transition set to begin in all 50 states and Puerto Rico on Feb. 17, 2009, and at noon, Sept. 8, in the test market of Wilmington, N.C.

Through this partnership, RadioShack’s 4,500 company stores and many of the 1,000-plus participating franchise stores will offer knowledgeable team members to 16,000 ALA public libraries to host educational sessions for library patrons. Included in these sessions will be information about why the digital television transition is occurring, the benefits digital television offers television viewers, what people need to do in order to continue receiving over-the-air television broadcasts after the conversion occurs, and how to apply for up to two $40 government coupons per household to help reduce the costs of obtaining a digital converter box. RadioShack’s education outreach will also include demonstrations on how to successfully set up a digital converter box to an analog television set.

“We’re excited to be partnering with the American Library Association in the ongoing effort to help educate everyone about this milestone event in television broadcasting history,” said Peter Whitsett, RadioShack’s evp, general merchandising manager. “Consumer education is the number-one key to ensuring a smooth digital transition. While we have focused on store training and advertising to communicate the digital transition to our customers, we want to take advantage of every opportunity to extend our reputation as the trusted neighborhood electronics advisor into the community as a whole. I can think of no better way to do this than by having our knowledgeable team members meet fact-to-face with library patrons to explain the transition and answer questions.”

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