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Report: J.C. Penney sued over share sale; shareholder seeks class action suit

BY Dan Berthiaume

Plano, Texas – J.C. Penney Company shareholder Alan Marcus is suing the troubled department store chain because of its recent decision to build equity by issuing more than $800 million worth of new stock, which sent share values plunging, Reuters reported.

The report said Marcus, who bought 300 shares of Penney stock on Sept. 26 shortly before the new stock was announced, is trying to obtain class-action status for his suit.

Marcus is being represented by law firm Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, which often represents plaintiffs in class action suits. He wants the suit to cover anyone who held Penney shares between Aug. 20 and Sept. 26, 2013.

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Staples acquires personalization vendor

BY Dan Berthiaume

Framingham, Mass. – Staples, Inc. has completed the acquisition of Runa, a software company based in San Mateo, Calif., that helps online retailers increase sales by personalizing the shopping experience. Terms and conditions of the acquisition were not disclosed.

“Runa has a unique platform and outstanding talent with experience in e-commerce and online marketplaces,” said Ronald Sargent, CEO and chairman, Staples. “With Runa, we’re adding technology to better serve our customers with personalized items, offers, and delivery estimates, all in real-time. Runa will allow us to tap into the wealth of engineering and e-commerce expertise in the Silicon Valley area.”

Staples is continuing to invest in e-commerce capabilities, creating a highly personalized shopping experience and building on its online leadership. Runa’s PerfectOffer serves up automated, data-driven and personalized offers in real-time and PerfectShipping provides real-time personalized delivery estimates and free-shipping offers.

The Runa facility in San Mateo will serve as the newest Staples Lab, following locations in Seattle and Cambridge. In the coming months Staples plans to increase the staff in San Mateo.

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Study: Nine-in-10 holiday shoppers overspend

BY Dan Berthiaume

Austin, Texas – More than nine-in-10 (91%) holiday shoppers admit to overspending on presents, according to a new survey from RetailMeNot, with 60% of overspenders saying they do so because they thought giving a gift the person would love was worth the extra money.

In addition, men are more likely to overspend on winter holiday gifts for their significant other than women are (50% compared to 34%). Women are more likely than men to overspend on their children (32% compared to 22%). However, more than one in 10 (14%) winter holiday gift givers overspent because they waited until the last minute and had to pay extra. During the winter holiday season, family members are the most likely to be overspent on, including significant others (44%), children (29%) and mothers (26%), while bosses/co-workers (1%) are the least likely to be overspent on.

Furthermore, 90% of 1,006 adult U.S. respondents surveyed indicated that they intend to shop for winter holiday gifts and plan to spend an average of $167 per person.

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