OPERATIONS

Office Depot Re-Elects 12 Board Members

BY CSA STAFF

Delray Beach, Fla. Office Depot announced during Wednesday’s annual meeting that stockholders re-elected all 12 Office Depot board members, according to a company statement. These results are based on a preliminary voting analysis by its proxy solicitor MacKenzie Partners, Inc.

“With the proxy contest behind us, we can now focus all of our energy on taking care of business and continuing to implement our strategic plan, which we are confident will position the company for sustainable and profitable growth. We will do everything necessary to improve Office Depot’s performance,” said Office Depot chairman and CEO Steve Odland.

Office Depot’s stockholders also ratified the selection of Deloitte & Touche LLP as the company’s independent registered public accounting firm for the current year, and approved the 2008 Office Depot, Inc. Bonus Plan for executive management employees.

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BJ’s touts low-cost healthy offerings

BY CSA STAFF

NATICK, Mass. BJ’s Wholesale Club is promoting itself as the smart solution for price-and-health-conscious consumers. The company is touting its savings on organic and natural food selections such as a six pack of Stonyfield Farms 10 oz. Organic Smoothies which costs $6.99 at BJ’s, versus $10.14 at the supermarket.

“We believe our organic foods and natural meat and poultry provide the exceptional quality our members have come to expect at a price they can afford,” said Laura Sen, president and coo of BJ’s Wholesale Club. “These two categories are growing exponentially and are on a pace that is outgrowing other product categories.”

Sen reiterated the organic and natural food selection at BJ’s is undergoing continuous expansion. “With the popularity of items like 100-calorie packs and flavored waters, consumers continue to show that products related to health and fitness are extremely important to them,” said Sen. “We take pride in being able to provide our members with additional organic and natural food selections on a regular basis.”

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Report: Blockbuster weighing options for Circuit City

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK Blockbuster is studying various options to fund its buyout offer of Circuit City, such as using Circuit City’s own balance sheet, even as the electronics retailer is asking Blockbuster to prove it can handle an all-cash bid, the Wall Street Journal reported on April 21.

Blockbuster is also considering using its existing debt facility, possible asset sales and cost savings for the deal, the report said.

Last week, Blockbuster offered up to $1.3 billion to buy Circuit City but the offer has drawn doubts from Wall Street, investors and Circuit City itself over how Blockbuster will fund the bid.

While investors fear that Blockbuster may need to raise new debt or renegotiate its current debt to finance the offer, Blockbuster is hopeful that it has alternative funds to sidestep that possibility, the report said.

Still, Blockbuster will not go ahead with the offer if it does not like what it sees in Circuit City’s financial books, the report said in a separate report, citing an interview with Blockbuster ceo Jim Keyes.

Circuit City has not allowed Blockbuster to see its books.

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