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Pet Supplies Plus executive chairman retires

BY CSA STAFF

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. — Pet Supplies Plus, the third-largest pet specialty retailer in the United States, announced that Harvey Solway, executive chairman of the company, is retiring effective Dec. 31.

Solway, 60, began his twenty-year career with Pet Supplies Plus as EVP and general counsel and served as the company’s CEO from January 1993 through June 2011. Solway led PSP through its formative years and was instrumental in growing the business to its 92 corporate and 159 franchise stores today, the company reported.

"Harvey has been a key member of the PSP leadership team and a respected leader in the pet specialty industry for many years," said David Bolen, PSP’s president and CEO. "Having led the successful integration of our company-operated stores, franchise stores and distribution operations, Harvey has positioned us well for continued growth in the future. Harvey’s industry experience, business savvy and the culture he has created have been great assets to our company, and we wish him all the best in his future endeavors."

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Apparel goes back to basics and Bentonville

BY CSA STAFF

After two years of being in New York City in order to be closer to the center of the fashion industry in the United States, Walmart is moving its apparel office back to Bentonville, Ark.

In an internal memo sent to U.S. and home office associates, Andy Barron, EVP softlines for Walmart U.S., said, “In Walmart U.S., we’re getting back to the basics of our business, and our customers and associates are noticing. Over the past year, we’ve renewed our focus on Every Day Low Costs and Every Day Low Prices in order to really deliver, and today we’re taking another step in that effort.”

Walmart moved its apparel office to New York City in early 2009, as it looked to be where fashion trends developed. That was 2009, and since then Walmart’s focus has returned to basics, and driving sales of socks, underwear, jeans and other staples is now more important than being close to major fashion players. In addition, the move will contribute to Walmart’s recently declared goal of reducing expenses by 100 basis points in the coming five years.

Aside from cutting costs, the move back to Bentonville makes sense as, according to Barron, nearly 40% of Walmart’s apparel planning, replenishment and modular execution associates are already in Bentonville. Barron noted that those associates in New York may have the opportunity to relocate to Bentonville.

Along with the move come some leadership changes:

  • Lisa Rhodes, SVP Walmart U.S. apparel merchandising, will continue to lead the apparel team through the transition.

  • Mary Fox, SVP global apparel sourcing will serve as project lead in New York through the transition to ensure delivery of major milestones of the fall buying cycle.

  • Jeff Dunn will assume the role of VP, divisional merchandise manager shoes, and will relocate to Bentonville to continue to lead Walmart’s shoe area. Dunn has been with Walmart since 1993 and has held various merchandising positions with the company.

  • Tom Dougherty, who joined Walmart in 1996 and most recently was VP store visual/merchandising execution team for general merchandise and softlines, is now VP, DMM men’s.

  • Patricia Snyder has been named VP, DMM kids. She joined Walmart in 2004 and most recently served as VP replenishment, home and apparel.

  • Deanah Baker, who joined Walmart in 1990 as an assistant buyer and held various merchandising roles, has been named VP, DMM ladies.

  • Dave Adams, has been promoted to VP, DMM intimates from senior director of apparel planning and will relocate to Bentonville.

  • Ginny Rothschild, who joined Walmart in 2009 and most recently was a director in men’s apparel, has been promoted to senior category director, jewelry and accessories.

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New Winn-Dixie smartphone app helps manage Rxs

BY CSA STAFF

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Winn-Dixie is looking to help pharmacy customers better manage their prescriptions by introducing a new mobile application for iPhone, Android or Blackberry smartphones.

The Winn-Dixie pharmacy app and its mobile website, m.WinnDixieRx.com, operate on a secure network created by San Francisco-based Mscripts. The app allows customers to track prescription refill status and manage doctor and key health information, locate the nearest Winn-Dixie pharmacy, and also supports interactive SMS messaging, email, push notifications and mobile calendar integration, the companies said.

“This new app will make our guests’ busy lives easier, allowing them to take better control of their health directly from their mobile device,” Winn-Dixie group VP marketing Mary Kellmanson said. “Using the new app will help guests view and reorder prescriptions, receive alerts when their prescription is ready, set reminders to take their medications and remind them of dosage, and even remind them to schedule a doctor’s appointment.”

Adding Mscripts CEO Mark Cullen, “The Winn-Dixie pharmacy app is all about improving the relationship between the pharmacy and the patient, reducing or eliminating wait times, and enabling the pharmacists to spend more time on important things — like listening to patient questions and giving health advice. Winn-Dixie guests can refill prescriptions with a touch of a button, wherever they are. The result is a better shopping experience and better health management.”

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