OPERATIONS

NRF welcomes job creation emphasis in State of Union address

BY Staff Writer

Washington, D.C. — The National Retail Federation said it welcomed the emphasis on job creation in President Obama’s State of the Union address, saying that it will help restore the nation’s economic state.

"Job creation is our nation’s No. 1 priority, and as the industry that supports one out of every four U.S. jobs, retailers stand ready to do their part in putting Americans back to work," NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. "Retailers are helping to rebuild the economy, but Washington must get moving to encourage job growth and remove barriers to job creation."

Although NRF supported the idea of job creation, the association did, however, express caution at the President’s emphasis on manufacturing.

"We welcome the President’s commitment to create jobs in manufacturing, an industry that’s critical to a healthy supply chain," Shay said. "But retail and other service industries support far more jobs than manufacturing, and we need economic policy that supports all industries and doesn’t favor one sector of the economy over another. We hope ‘Made in America’ isn’t code for protectionist trade policies that only drive up prices for American consumers while doing little to create U.S. jobs."

NRF earlier this month sent an open letter to Obama urging him to call for action on a number of initiatives — sales tax fairness legislation, corporate tax reform, and free and open trade initiatives — that support a strong retail sector as part of the State of the Union address.

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OPERATIONS

Lowe’s partners with social site Houzz in dream kitchen promo

BY Staff Writer

Mooresville, N.C. — Lowe’s announced that is partnering with Houzz, a social site for home remodeling and design, to offer consumers the chance to win a dream kitchen.

As part of its marketing relationship with Houzz, Lowe’s has launched the “Dream Kitchen” sweepstakes, giving customers the chance to win a dream kitchen, valued at $50,000, designed and built by Houzz’s top designers and contractors with materials from Lowe’s.

“We’re proud to announce a first-of-its kind marketing alliance with Houzz,” said Gihad Jawhar, VP Lowes.com. “With Houzz’s impressive community of designers and renovators and Lowe’s innovative online retail experience, we will provide the best possible tools and resources to improve homes at every stage of a project, from inspiration to completion.”

As part of its partnership with Houzz, Lowe’s will integrate Houzz’s image gallery and articles into MyLowe’s its online portal for managing everything related to the home.

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SUPPLY CHAIN

Charming Shoppes names supply chain officer

BY Staff Writer

Bensalem, Pa. — Charming Shoppes has promoted Bryan Eshelman to executive VP, chief supply chain officer. Eshelman started with the chain in 2010 as senior VP operations.

Eshelman retains his previous duties of overseeing technology, logistics, technical design and quality assurance. His new responsibilities include directing the retailer’s global direct sourcing from buying offices in such locations as Hong Kong and India, and ensuring supply chain compliance with trade and customs regulations.

Charming Shoppes also announced it has hired Donna Isralsky as senior VP strategic sourcing.

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