OPERATIONS

Online beauty retailer Julep taps former Blue Nile exec as chief delivery officer

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — Online beauty subscription brand Julep has tapped former Blue Nile executive Dwight Gaston as chief delivery officer. In the role, he will oversee Julep’s operations, customer service, fulfillment and product development teams to ensure efficient delivery of products to its customers.

Julep said it develops more than 300 new products each year for its Maven subscribers and e-commerce customers, and shipments are growing exponentially.

Gaston spent 15 years at online jewelry retailer Blue Nile in executive roles, most recently as senior VP of operations. He previously served as VP of operations and director of fulfillment operations.

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Ikea expands solar array on Maryland DC

BY Dan Berthiaume

Conshohocken, Pa. – Ikea has plugged-in an expansion of the solar array completed in April 2013 on the roof of its 1.7 million-sq.-ft. Perryville, Maryland, distribution center. Installation of the new panels began in fall 2013, and since then have nearly doubled the size of the original project.

The 467,618-sq.-ft. solar addition consists of a 2.2-MW system, built with 7,337 modules, and will produce about 2.7 million kWh of electricity annually. Including the existing system, this distribution center’s total 4.9-MW solar installation of 25,913 panels now will generate about 6.1 million kWh of clean electricity yearly, the equivalent of reducing 4,299 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2), eliminating the emissions of 896 cars or powering 591 homes.

For the development, design and installation of the Perryville distribution center’s original and expanded solar power system, Ikea contracted with Inovateus Solar LLC.

In 2013, Ikea achieved its goal of completing solar installations atop nearly 90% its U.S. buildings (39 out of 44 locations), with a generation goal of 38 MW. Ikea owns and operates each of its solar PV energy systems, as opposed to a solar lease or PPA (power purchase agreement), and globally has allocated $1.8 billion to invest in renewable energy through 2015. Ikea has installed more than 550,000 solar panels on buildings across the world and owns/operates approximately 157 wind turbines in Europe and Canada.

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Former Circuit City CEO, Car Max founder Richard Sharp dies at 67

BY Staff Writer

New York — Richard Sharp, the former CEO of Circuit City and driving force behind CarMax, has died due to complications from a rare type of Alzheimer’s disease. He was 67.

“Rick Sharp was a giant in the consumer electronics industry,” the Consumer Electronics Association said in a statement. “He helped build Circuit City from a regional chain into one of the nation’s leading electronics retailers. He also was an innovative businessman, leading the creation of the breakthrough consumer-friendly used car retailing concept, CarMax. Sharp was an innovative and bright mind who exemplified the creativity, dedication and passion that are hallmarks of our industry’s great leaders,”

Sharp joined Circuit City in 1982 and served as CEO of the company from 1986 to 2000. Under his leadership, Circuit City enjoyed meteoric growth with sales that increased from $175 million in 1986 to more than $10 billion by 2000. Eight years after he had left the company, Circuit City filed for bankruptcy in 2008 and the following year was liquidated.

During his tenure at Circuit City, Sharp was involved in the creation of CarMax, which promised shoppers a simple, no-haggling approach to car buying. Sharp joined CarMax in 2002 when it was spun off as a separate company from Circuit City and served as chairman of the company until 2007. CarMax has since grown to become the nation’s largest seller of used vehicles with 135 stores with annual sales of more than $12.5 billion.

Sharp was also a founding investor in the Crocs footwear company where he served as chairman from 2005 until 2011.

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